LOOK: Explore Pampanga’s ‘Little Cambodia’ for Only PHP 50

The handmade house took over four decades to finish.
by | June 30, 2023

If you’re driving to Pampanga for a food trip, staycation, or cafe hopping, here’s an interesting destination you might want to squeeze into your itinerary. Go off the beaten path and discover this little gem at the foot of Mt. Arayat. Without plane tickets, here’s how you can have a similar experience by visiting Cambodia’s temples at Bale Batu:


Bale Batu

Nestled in Arayat, Bale Batu has been dubbed the “Little Cambodia” of Pampanga over the years. While the Cambodian temples have religious roots, Bale Batu is a house built to withstand wildfires and the destruction brought upon by invasive termites. The beautiful handmade structure was the brainchild of artist Jesus Padilla or Apo Susing, and it took him and his family over 40 years to finish it completely.


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Meaning “Bahay na Bato” in Kapampangan, Bale Batu was Apo Susing’s solution to rebuilding his family’s mountain home made from bamboo. Forest fires and termites were rampant in the 70s and 80s in Mt. Arayat, which inspired the artist to slowly build a house made from river sand, mountain boulders, and cement. All the details you’ll see around the house were sketched by Apo Susing.

The family doesn’t reside here anymore, and the house has been open to the public for tourists to enjoy.


How much is the entrance fee?

Pampanga’s Little Cambodia is open daily from 6 AM to 5 PM with a PHP 50 entrance fee per person.


How to get there

Bale Batu is located at Purok 6, Brgy. Baliti, Arayat, Pampanga. If you’re driving, simply type “Bale Batu Pampanga” on Google Maps or Waze.

If you’re commuting, there’s a jeep at SM Pampanga going to Magalang. Get off at Buensuceso and ride a tricycle to the house. You may ask the driver to bring you to Gintung Pakpak Eco Park, in case the driver isn’t aware of the location. The house is nearby!


For more information and updates, visit Bale Batu on Facebook.


Looking for other places to explore? Join WindowSeat.ph’s official Facebook community What’s Your Trip PH for more recos!

When she’s not writing, Ina’s busy curating playlists that will save her when words don’t work, reading, annoying her cat, or thinking of her next meal.

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