Businessman Edwin V. Ortiz hopes to put Gaas, Balamban on the country’s tourism map through a recreational facility that promotes nature-centered adventures.
The EVO Nature Camp, a 4.5-hectare sprawling destination in the highlands of Balamban, features around 40,000 flowering plants, and 2,509 pine trees and giant ferns aside from a huge campsite, a restaurant and a scenic hiking trail.
Less than an hour away on foot is the so-called Ground Zero rock formation, which is said to lie at the geographical center of Cebu island. Before reaching Ground Zero, hikers will come across the Ilihan Cave.
“We came up with this kind of recreational venue to promote Gaas and one day, put (on) the map as a top destination for nature enthusiasts at the same time, we are helping the locals get employed,” he said in an interview on the sidelines of the launching of the facility on January 11, 2020.
Among the activities that EVO Nature Camp offers are trekking, rappelling, camping and glamping.
Glamping, or glamorous camping, is an emerging tourism sector that combines camping and comfort. Guests stay in huge tents with beds, electric fans and other amenities while enjoying the outdoors.
“EVO Nature Camp is a great venue for
outdoor sports activities."
- Edwin V. Ortiz
He is also eyeing to offer EVO’s huge camping grounds as site for summer camps for elementary and high school students soon.
At present, EVO’s facilities include gazebos and a restaurant called The Grill House, which offers barbecue, grilled dishes, corn soup, pumpkin soup, fruit shakes and other food items.
The traditional ribbon cutting ceremony to officially open EVO Nature Camp was spearheaded by Ortiz and family, together with Balamban Mayor Alex Binghay, Cebu 3rd District Representative Pablo John Garcia, and Gaas Barangay Captain William Genel.
EVO Nature Camp is located about 32 kilometers west of Cebu City, about 45 minutes by car through the Transcentral Highway. (Ventures Cebu)