Sunflowers, sunflowers, sunflowers. Everywhere I look these sunshine-yellow blooms are surround me, facing toward the sun already setting in the horizon. If your favorite flowers are sunflowers like me, the experience walking in a sea of sunflowers is bliss.
One of our stops in our South Cotabato trip after we had a heritage experience with the Blaan indigenous people was Mariano’s Blooming Petals. Also known as Mariano’s Blooming Agri-Tourism Park, this park, I later learned, has 15,000 sunflowers in perfect rows at any given time. It is indeed a sea of sunflowers.
The park does not just have sunflowers, though. Outside the sunflower rows is a giant mandala of marigolds. Some of the marigolds and cosmos also form flower shapes when seen from afar, like flowers in a flower. I learned from Mariano’s that they change the patterns of flowers from time to time. In February, for example, they have blooms in heart mandalas.
Mariano’s Blooming Agri-Tourism Park covers a huge 13 hectares. Flowers occupy 1.5 hectares. The rest of the park houses a bird sanctuary, a farmer’s market, and a café.
As our time was short in the park, we only explored the flower park. We also had a hearty meal at Mirasol Cafe, the park’s restaurant.
We were not able to visit these areas, but Mariano’s was kind enough to share more photos.
My favorite part at Mariano’s Blooming Agri-Tourism Park, is of course, still the sunflowers.
I would recommend at least two hours in Mariano’s Blooming Petals only for exploring. Allot another hour just for eating, as they have quite a spread of food choices. My favorite is the fresh salad with the ternate and the chicken binakol served in a coconut.
Enjoy your visit!
Entrance fee: P50 for weekdays, P70 for weekends
Hours: Weekdays at 7 am to 530 pm, weekends at 7 am to 6 pm
How to get there:
Take a flight to General Santos City. From the airport, you can already ride a bus to Marbel, but ask the conductor first if they are stopping by Tupi. Alternatively, you can head over to Bulaong Terminal first then ride a Tupi-bound bus or van from there. Once in Tupi, ride a tricycle to Mariano’s Blooming Agri-Tourism Park.
Facebook page – https://www.facebook.com/bloomingagritourismparkofficial/
Contact numbers – +639972042560 for the park in general, +639105470020 for Mirasol Cafe