Best Tourist Spots in Nueva Ecija You Probably Didn’t Know Exist But Will Want To Visit ASAP

Nueva Ecija is situated between Bulacan and Nueva Vizcaya. It is known as the “Rice Bowl of the Philippines” because it grows most of the rice for Luzon. You can find more in Nueva Ecija than just rice paddies, though. This province in Central Luzon is landlocked, but it also has some great tourist spots that people don’t always notice.

Best Tourist Spots in Nueva Ecija

Nueva Ecija has a lot to offer tourists, from beaches and islands to historical sites, waterfalls, and views of mountains. Popular tourist spots like Palawan, Boracay, and Cebu may get a lot of visitors, but Nueva Ecija is a great place to go if you want to get away from the crowds. It’s also close to Metro Manila, which makes it an easy weekend getaway for people who want to get away from the city quickly.

Within this blog post, I will create an official list of the 20 most interesting tourist spots in Nueva Ecija that you should visit. Let’s shine a light on this province that doesn’t get enough attention. Nobody can get bored in Nueva Ecija. It has something for everyone, whether they are interested in history, nature, or adventure. Get ready to start making plans for your trip to these hidden gems!

1. Nagsasa Cove  

Nagsasa Cove in San Antonio town is an unspoiled coastal paradise with powdery white sand beach and crystal clear waters. Camp under the starry night skies or stay in traditional cottages along the shoreline. The cove is fringed by rich greenery and boulder formations, with Mount Nagpatong as the backdrop. You’ll feel worlds away from city life at this pristine beach getaway.  

Nagsasa Cove
Nagsasa Cove” by nitrosaint is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

2. St. Nicholas of Tolentine Cathedral

Cabanatuan Cathedral
Cabanatuan Cathedral – November 24, 2019” by Captainmorlypogi1959 is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

With its towering spires and intricate architectural details, St. Nicholas of Tolentine Cathedral is the most impressive 19th century Gothic revival church in Cabanatuan City. Marvel at the carved stone facade and arched entrance as you enter the sanctuary. Inside, you’ll find the nave illuminated by stained glass windows as well as historical relics and religious artwork on display in the altars. 

3. Casa San Miguel

Cassa San Miguel Nueva Ecija
Image Source:

Step back in time with a visit to Casa San Miguel, a well-preserved Spanish colonial era mansion in San Miguel, Bulacan. Dating back to the late 18th century, this elegant house reflects the architecture and interior decor of the period. Wander through rooms showcasing antique furnishings and art pieces while learning about its previous owners through an audio-guided tour. Don’t miss the azotea offering panoramic town views.  

4. Capones Island

Capones Island
Capones Island, San Antonio, Zambales” by nitrosaint is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

With pink sand beaches surrounded by crystal blue waters, Capones Island offers a castaway-style escape off the coast of Palauig town. Take a quick bangka boat ride to this protected cove that remains unspoiled by modern commercialization. Spend the afternoon snorkeling and seeing colorful coral reefs beneath the calm waters or exploring forest trails to a historic lighthouse ruin. 

5. Minalungao National Park

Minalungao National Park
Minalungao National Park 3” by Kathleen Mae Tugano is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

At the narrowest point of Penaranda River lies Minalungao National Park, protected limestone cliffs and rock formations rising dramatically above the water. Cross the hanging bridge to behold magnificent views of the river bend from atop the cliffs. Go spelunking through Karst cave networks or take Instagrammable shots of the unique rockscape shaped by nature. 

6. Dalton Pass Shrine 

Dalton Pass Shrine 
File:DaltonPassjf6256 05.JPG” by Ramon FVelasquez is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Dalton Pass in Carranglan town holds an emotional site – a white cross shrine commemorating workers who died during the pass’ construction. Take a moment of silence for the victims who enable travelers to now safely traverse this high mountain road with spellbinding views of the Caraballo ranges. Offer a prayer as you pass memorial markers dedicated to them along the route.  

7. Dalton Pass

Dalton Pass
File:DaltonPassjf6217 09.JPG” by Ramon FVelasquez is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Traversing the scenic Dalton Pass is a road trip highlight connecting Nueva Ecija and Nueva Vizcaya provinces. Drive along cliffs offering jaw-dropping vistas of the mountain ranges surrounding the Cordillera region. Stop at designated view decks to appreciate nature’s grandiose as you take in imposing mountain peaks one after another. Don’t miss photo ops with the towering wind turbines that line the pass.  

8. St Joseph’s Cathedral

St Joseph's Cathedral Nueva Ecija
San Jose Cathedral facade in San Jose, Nueva Ecija” by Ramon FVelasquez is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Standing at 97 meters, St Joseph’s Cathedral has the tallest church tower in Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija. Completed in 1872, this impressive cathedral built in Gothic architectural style took nearly 10 years to construct using strong materials. Gaze in awe at the towering spires, arched porticos and stained glass rosette windows that amplify the elegant façade. Inside, the pipe organ and artistic ceiling will captivate you.

9. Rice Science Museum

Rice Science Museum
File:09107jfRice Science Museum Exhibits Philippine Rice Research Institute Muñoz Ecijafvf 19.JPG” by Judgefloro is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Learn about Nueva Ecija’s agricultural legacy at the Rice Science Museum, an interactive gallery displaying antiquated farm tools in Muñoz City. See the evolution of technologies used in rice production, from hand tools to machinery advancements. Exhibits walk you through the stages of planting, harvesting, and milling rice while briefing on best practices. Don’t miss the miniature rice terraces model showing traditional techniques.

10. Burburayok Falls 

Trek through lush forests to be rewarded by Burburayok Falls, a majestic 50-foot tall waterfall hidden in the town of Kasibu. This natural cascade drops into rock pools perfect for a refreshing dip on a hot day. Have a picnic lunch while being surrounded by tropical vegetation and butterflies fluttering nearby. Keep an eye out for more surprise waterfalls as you explore the vicinity by foot.  

11. St Francis of Assisi Parish

St Francis of Assisi Parish
St.FrancisofAssisiParishChurchofBongabonjf4413 11” by Ramon FVelasquez is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Displaying exquisite Baroque-inspired architecture, the 18th century St Francis of Assisi Church is an underrated historical gem in Gapan City. Gaze in wonder at the iconic bell tower and elegantly carved stone relief across its pink façade. Inside, find artistic ceiling murals and grand pipe organ accentuating the marble altar and pulpit. Join a guided tour to appreciate small details and learn captivating stories of its past. 

12. Diamond Park 

Diamond Park
Image Source: Gandang Nueva Ecija Facebook Page

Bring your kids to enjoy nature at Diamond Park, a family-friendly eco-tourism spot in San Jose City. Stroll through blooming botanical gardens lined with flower patches and towering trees. Let children release energy at the large playground or interactive water fountain area. Picnic under hut gazebos after learning about native wildlife at the mini zoo exhibition.  

13. Cabanatuan American Memorial

Cabanatuan American Memorial
File:Cabanatuanraid3334jf.JPG” by Ramon FVelasquez is licensed under CC CC0 1.0

Pay tribute to lives lost during WWII at this landmark managed by the American Battle Monuments Commission in Cabanatuan City. Walk along pathways marked with strong quotes about war, sacrifice and resilience. Reflect in front of massive tablets inscribed with over 2 thousand names belonging to brave martyrs and heroes. Join the daily flag retreat ceremony with veterans to honor their invaluable service.  

14. Mount 387 (Batong Amat)

Mount 387 (Batong Amat)
Image Source:

If hiking Nueva Ecija’s highest peak sounds appealing, set your sights on Mount 387 in Llanera town, also called Batong Amat. The moderate 2-hour trek rewards sweating with cooling mountain air and vistas across provinces at the summit. Set up camp to stargaze at night or catch the sunrise after an early ascent. Don’t miss photo ops with the iconic white cross mountaintop marker.

15. Overview Tanajuan

Overview Tanajuan
Image Source: Overview TanaJuan

The Overview Tanajuan offers perfectly framed panoramas of Nueva Ecija’s agricultural landscape from atop a hill in Tanajuan town. Stand beside a stone gazebo taking in the vivid golden hue of rice terraces as far as the eye can see. Come at dusk to witness the fields glow under dramatic purple and pink skies that create dreamy scenes. This viewpoint makes an ideal background for capturing captivating portraits too.


Beyond its agricultural plains and rice paddies, Nueva Ecija hides underrated travel gems waiting to be explored. From shrines commemorating national heroes to riverside adventures through limestone valleys, this Central Luzon province enthralls with captivating culture and scenery.

The 16 spots highlighted in this countdown reveal Nueva Ecija’s versatility in catering to all types of travelers – whether you’re a devout Catholic wanting to make religious pilgrimages, adrenaline junkie hungry for hiking challenges, or laidback beach bum in need of a quick weekend escape from Manila.

Its proximity to the metro capital also works favorable for embarking on DIY trips even with limited time. So escape the concrete jungle every once in awhile to immerse in fascinating histories as you support local communities dependent on tourism.

Each destination lets you come home with unique travel stories that stray from the expected. Because beyond chasing coveted Instagram backdrops, the most meaningful memories come through genuine human connections and a sense of purpose.

So what are you waiting for? Start plotting your Nueva Ecija adventure to uncover its delightful secrets sprinkled across lively towns. Trust me, you’ll return home wanting more!

Frequently Asked Questions About Tourist Spots in Nueva Ecija


Where exactly is Nueva Ecija located?

Nueva Ecija is a landlocked province located in the Central Luzon region of the Philippines. It’s bordered by several provinces including Bulacan, Pampanga, Tarlac, Nueva Vizcaya, and Aurora.

How do you get to Nueva Ecija’s tourist spots?

Most tourist spots are accessible by bus or private transportation from Manila, which is only 1.5-3 hours away depending on your origin point. Victory Liner and Genesis Transport offer direct bus routes to cities like Cabanatuan. Renting a car is also possible.

What is the best time of year to visit Nueva Ecija?

The cooler dry season from November to April is ideal, when rainfall is low and humidity takes a dip. Temperatures averaging 25°C make outdoor activities pleasant. The May to October wet season sees some sporadic typhoons.

What unique activities does Nueva Ecija offer travelers?

Top attractions range from water adventures like river cruising and waterfall trekking to cultural sights like visiting Spanish colonial mansions and museums. Religious pilgrimages to ornate cathedrals and hiking up scenic mountain peaks are also popular.

What traditional dishes should visitors try in Nueva Ecija?

Make sure to sample Nueva Ecija staples like kamaru (mole crickets), duman (sticky rice snack), tinudok rice cake, super creamy carabao milk pastillas candy, and chicharon bulaklak (crispy deep fried pork).

Are the tourist spots beginner friendly for first-timers?

Most destinations highlighted in this blog will appeal to both beginner and veteran travelers seeking fuss-free, off beaten path charm. Just take usual safety precautions as you would for any trip.


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