Let me say once there was a train. Yes, once there was a train to Bicol from Metro Manila. The latest trip was on October 2012. Until now, I long for the train to be back.
The train to Bicol was so friendly to local tourists. It takes about 12 hours from Tutuban terminal to Naga City. My last stop supposedly is Legazpi City. Until now I am still hopeful that one day, train from Metro Manila will be able to reach Legazpi City - the Mayon Volcano country.
|My family sleeper couch.|
|Naga City Railway Station|
When the Philippine National Railways'
trains are still available Bicol-bound, I tried to board the family sleeper. It was a couch for a family of four with two double deck spaces. I counted the number of stones thrown to us as we passed by slum areas totaled to more than 10 before we reached Laguna. It can be noted that one will not enjoy sightseeing because the windows are screened as protection from stone-throwing.
|Inside the train that I long to ride again.|
Despite the sounds of stones that I feared might pierce through the windows, I enjoyed the ride. The train was so clean and so cold inside. Two police men were on duty roving during the entire journey. Alcoholic beverage is not allowed.
I was disturbed by a group of 40 local tourists who did not sleep in the night but just enjoyed jamming inside the train. Nevertheless, I understood that they were just having fun as it was the only longest train journey in the country during that time.
Now, I long to have the train back. I hope that I can try the executive sleeper. Indeed, train system boosts tourism and I wish that we can have it back soon.