The forts were built during the Spanish-colonial times often as a defense point of the colonizers against the marauding foreigners, including the Moros of Mindanao. While majority of these were constructed near the coasts, since most invasions come from the sea, Fort Pikit in Cotabato Province seems to be one of those who are exempted to the rule—because it’s located right at the heart of Mindanao Island!
It has been years since we have been travelling for festivals around the country. Each of these has their distinct signature moves, dances, and musicality. In central Mindanao, the crossroad city of Tacurong City in the Province of Sultan Kudarat, also has its own festival celebrating its cityhood—Talakudong Festival.
Despite it being a lesser-known festival, and often overlooked in the “national schedule of events,” Talakudong offers some big punch for being unassumingly good! The colourful parade of five contingents graced the dusty yet wide streets, giving a burst of life from their costumes, to their cheers, and to that deep drum and kulintangan music that marks that this is a Mindanaoan feast!
The BGC Bus serves as the main public mass transport in one of Metro Manila’s newest central business districts. Located in Taguig City (we’re not going to that Makati-Taguig thingy here), its strategic location in between two established financial districts of Makati and Ortigas, has made it a business and urban-leisure destination. BGC Bus serves locals, tourists, and locals between the district and to terminals at EDSA and Market-Market.
Out of my frustration with lack of maps, or perhaps the ever changing routes of Bonifacio Global City’s (BGC) buses, we decided to make a map based on BGC Bus’s latest information posted on their official Facebook page, plus the existing maps on Bonifacio Estate Services Corporation.
Facing the Pacific has its own assets. Surfing waves are its most ideal, hence Baler in the province of Aurora is known for being a pilgrimage center of surfistas both local and foreign. If you are not into surfing and you would just like to experience and feel Mother Nature’s beauty, then Baler’s coastline in Diguisit can be your therapy. Yet the best time to experience it’s ruggedness-December.
Rice cakes have been a staple dessert for most Filipino tables—rice and coconut are almost found anywhere in the islands! Ilagan, the capital city of Isabela Province, holds no exemption to the rule, especially for the hungry. While Batil Patong and Pancit Cabagan are known as the delicacies of the Valley, inatata and binalay deserves some attention too—especially for the foodies out there.
That December afternoon, amihan was blowing hard. At least that makes our trip like air-conditioned all over. It was siesta time in rural Isabela in northern Luzon and we were heading to one of the province’s most famous Spanish-colonial churches, the Church of San Matias in the town of Tumauini.
Even though the church is not located beside the national highway, its belfry was imposing enough to let our manong driver stop at the unloading area.
We’ve stayed in the Visayas for much as we can remember, but never had we been to Dumaguete City, the said “City of Gentle People.” It was our first time heading there the previous June and all we can say is that this city never failed to impress us! For such a city, it has this aura of laidback life, yet it has its own perky and hip side.
We have always believed that old city centers retain the vibe and the cultural soul of a city—what makes a city unique. In the chaotic streets of Manila, one street—or perhaps a neighborhood—stands out for being the core of Philippine economy and the city’s urban cultural hotbed back in the heydays. Nope, it isn’t EDSA or Ayala, but Escolta.
Bataan Province may have been known more in its role during World War II, but it too has some notable Spanish-colonial influences, such as its centuries-old churches. One of the most notable of these churches is found in the town of Samal, at the coast of Manila Bay. It is notable for its old-world charm.