My Trip to Sonrisa Organic Farm in Camarines Sur

I spent a couple of days in Bicol last month to visit four organic farm, sustainable destinations in Bicol region. I'm glad to be back in the province after ten years. Back then, I was just planning to start medical blogging. I'd also like to share a part of my personal life so LivingMarjorney blog was created.

My Trip to Sonrisa Organic Farm in Camarines Sur

Situated at the foot of Mount Isarog, Sonrisa Farm is home for different crops, herbs, fruit-bearing trees, poultry and sting-less bees. Upon entering the gates I was impressed with the expansive lush green that look so inviting. We proceeded to the welcome area where our tour guide and host Michael Villezar of ATI Region 5 await us.

Sonrisa Organic Farm is just one of the four farms we visited in Region 5. A 3.5 hectare organic, eco-friendly farm located in Camarines Sur that offers an educational farm tour to those who are interested in organic farming. Travelers and wellness enthusiasts would visit the farm for a different kind of dining experience with all-organic, Bicol's excellent dishes.

Sonrisa Farm in Camarines Sur

OABloggers in Bicol

OABloggers in Bicol

We met Ms. Cherry Lo, the owner of Sonrisa Farm cheerfully waiting at the open air restaurant. She immediately invited us for a sumptuous lunch prepared like a fiesta. Everyone looks so excited with the variety of guilt-free desserts made of organic and healthy fruits from the farm.

Ms. Cherry Lo, the owner of Sonrisa Farm

From Farm to Table: Guilt-free Desserts and Delightfully Delicious Bicolano Dishes

Food is one of the many things I'm always excited for when traveling. Vegetables, pork and poultry that are free from pesticide, antibiotics or any form of chemicals. Our lunch was extra special, mostly comprises of Bicolano dishes that I haven't tried even before. Ms. Cherry highlights the region's famous products like pili nuts, chili, fruits and vegetables from her farm to create a unique dishes. My favorite is the crispy dilis with pili nuts and chili. It has the blend of spicy-sweet flavors. There are organic colored rice as well. She also uses camote tops as a lumpia wrapper. We got to try the camote buns filled with oyster. Everything was made from fresh ingredients without food or artificial flavorings. Anyone who love the kitchen will surely be inspired by how she prepares and cooks food. I must say it's for the love for the family and guests.

Guilt-free organic dessert
Guilt-free organic dessert

Organic Salad Sonrisa Farm
Organic Salad

This open air restaurant is one of my favorite spot at Sonrisa farm.

We feasted on a big bowl of organic salad made of red amarant, a red to purple plant that thrives in her farm. We were told that red amarant came from China and there were few farms growing this crop. Red amarant is very nutritious, ten times rich in anti-oxidant compared to camote tops. The salad is very colorful because it has pancit-pancitan, alugbati, different kinds of lettuce, santan, blue ternate tossed in a special dressing. We ended with a guilt-free desserts, pastries baked with berries, guyabano, camote and a lot more. It was also my first time to have (pipino) cucumber soup. I skipped the usual coffee and enjoyed a cup of rice brew instead. I never thought it was good. Now, I wanted to take a break from coffee and have rice brew, unfortunately it's not easy to find one here in Manila.

Finding Healing

Cherry Lo of Sonrisa Farm
Cherry Lo of Sonrisa Farm

Cherry Lo's Sonrisa Farm
Take inspiration from the photo above. A vacant space at home even in the city can turn into an urban garden with lots of herbs and other crops.

organic bitter gourd (ampalaya)
Organic bitter gourd are smaller compared to the ones we see in the market. They are sweet and crunchy and pesticide free. Mushroom cultivation maybe difficult but with proper knowledge, farmers will increase income due to the high demand. I've been using mushroom instead of ground pork to sautee my vegetables. Not only that it's highly nutritious, it's makes dishes even more flavorful. Less fats and bad cholesterol as well.

Organic mushroom cultivation
Organic mushroom cultivation
Ms. Cherry is a breast cancer survivor. Her family decided to put up an organic farm primarily for personal consumption. It was only two years ago when she decided to open the gates of Sonrisa Farm so people could come and experience the benefits of organic food and farming. The owner makes sure that the food she prepares will not be redundant.

OABloggers in Sonrisa Farm, Camarines Sur
with Ruth and Erica

OABloggers in Sonrisa Farm, Camarines Sur
OABloggers in Sonrisa Farm, Camarines Sur

I'm a city girl and it really delights me to visit provinces to discover and share how it is living in a farm even for a day. We spent an hour at the restaurant made of wood as we enjoy a feast of Bicol dishes. For six years of doing an organic farm tour to different parts of the country, I'm very much aware how this tour works. There are times we had to travel more than two hours from the airport going to one farm, then another farm.

Agricultural Training Institute Central Office
ATI Building, Elliptical Road, Diliman
Quezon City 1100 Philippines
Trunkline: (63-2) 9298541 to 49
Fax no. (63-2) 9209792

Sonrisa Organic Farm
Magarao, Camarines Sur
Facebook Page:

Each farm provides a different kind of travel experiences as well as learning opportunities. Perhaps to some of us, it gives emotional, physical and spiritual healing. But best of all, we learned our responsibility to share the importance of eating organic food and promoting urban gardening. I look forward to future #OABloggerAko farm tours. This trip was made possible in partnership with the Agricultural Training Institute.


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