July 15 – 18, 2016
Who knew we’d get to stay in fancy eco hostels one day? Not us. Although we didn’t sleep on fluffy beds nor got buried under heavy, warm comforters, we had the same marvelous view of the mountains (perhaps even better than other guests), utilised same facilities, and got served the same fantastic breakfasts when we went camping in La Serrana Eco Farm and Hostel.
If you don’t knew us yet, we are dirt cheap backpackers. There’s the regular travellers, the budget travellers, then there’s us. If you’ve done it cheaply, chances are we’ve done it much cheaper to accommodate everything within our [ultra] limited funds. But sometimes, we score in life.
La Serrana Eco Farm and Hostel was our first taste of fancy schmanciness in South America. Although we didn’t pay for a room, we paid for a good space to pitch our cheap but relatively new tent. For COP20,000 (~$6.50) per night, we were able to stay for three nights in this lovely farm house slash hostel. That’s a steal considering a night in their 8-bed dorm room costs COP30,000 (~$10) per person while the cheapest private bedroom starts at COP95,000.
Disclaimer: It says on their website now that camping costs COP20,000 per person (they didn’t have the rates online before) however, when I was corresponding with one of their staff, verifying pricing and included amenities, they were clear about it: the COP20,000 fees are good for two persons. Fast forward to our arrival in La Serrana. It should have been COP20,000 per person but they acknowledged the error was on their end and did not charge us extra. YAY!
There was a lone camper van and a lone tent the afternoon we arrived. The next day more camper vans and campers arrived however, the place never looked nor felt crowded. That’s how spacious the place is!
Campers have their own toilet and shower area complete with TPs, hand soap, dryer, and a rack to hang towels. It was really nice.
For three days, we woke up to lovely views of the surrounding mountains. Lush greeneries I would never tire staring at. We loved the weather in Salento! Baguio weather ba. The perfect kind of cold we could bear haha.
Located 20 minutes away from the main plaza of Salento (by foot), it’s a short but easy hike. Everyday we walked to and fro from the main plaza. There was one time on our way back to the hostel a local man stopped and gave us a lift which was normal in the area.
Breakfast was our favourite part of the day in La Serrana. Ganun kami kasaya sa libreng pagkain lol. Breakfast is served in their warm and cosy kitchen from 7am – 10am. Simple but sufficient especially for PG like us hihi. There are two options: eggs and bread or fruit/s and bread. Coffee and tea are served too. They also offer other breakfast choices for a fee if you really miss your bacon and pancake mornings.
The owners of this camper van and map (that doubles as table cloth!) are two incredibly nice British couple. We chatted with them, learning all about their travels thus far as well as future plans. On the afternoon it drizzled, they offered us their tarp so our chipaz tent won’t get soaked. 😆
Our second favourite area in the hostel – next to the kitchen – is er, another kitchen. The breakfast kitchen is strictly for staff use only but La Serrana provides a common kitchen for guests’ usage located in the main building. This common kitchen is where guests can cook their meals. Chit chats with other fellow travellers are staple here as well as people giving away their leftover stuff. Around this time we’ve quite mastered already the art of rummaging in any hostel’s free for all section. They’re life savers. I mean just look at us. 😆
If you find yourself in the lovely little town of Salento, check out La Serrana! They have dorm rooms, private rooms, fancy tents (for glamping), and spacious grounds if you have your own tent. Depending on your type and budget, there’s something for everyone here. Wish we are affiliated or got paid for writing about the hostel but we were NOT. We just had a great stay and experience in La Serrana and so, wish other fellow backpackers to have the same. If you stayed in La Serrana, email us or leave a comment, we’d love to hear about your experience.