Sunday, November 27, 2011

IFUGAO And MOUNTAIN PROVINCE - The Heart Of The Cordilleras

Visit the Cordilleras and experience the indigenous Igorot living and culture despite modernization. This is the home of the awesome rice terraces built on the mountainsides by native Igorots using their bare hands 2,000 years ago.

Major tourist destination of the region:

1. Baguio City - the Philippines ' Summer Capital
2. Banaue - the tourist capital of Ifugao, home to the Banaue Rice Terraces - a World Heritage Site.
3. Bontoc - Mountain Province's capital town and center for Igorot culture
4. Sagada - the second summer capital, famous for nature trippers and adventure lovers, famous for its hanging coffins, cave explorations and simply trekking the rice terraces

The Shrine City of DAPITAN

Located in Zamboanga Del Norte, Dapitan City gained its fame as the place of exile of Gat. Jose Rizal. Our National Hero arrived here in 1892 and left shortly before his death in 1898. For four years, he made his exile days significant to the people of Dapitan by practicing medicine and pursuing scientific studies, composing artistic and literary works, establishing community development projects, etc.

Have your own feel of Rizal's life by visiting the Rizal Shrine museum containing memorabilia such as old photos, books and medical equipments, the park where replicas of the exile houses were rebuilt, the Relief Map of Mindanao and the Dapitan Town Plaza which were previously declared as National Cultural Treasure and National Historical Landmark respectively.

Other historical sites and structures worth visiting are the Rizal's Disembarkation Site, Town Hall Building (City Hall), Old Rizal Memorial District Hospital, Ilihan Hill, Parochial School, Casa Real, Gabaldon Building, St. James Church, the Sta. Cruz marker, Gabaldon school building, and old ancestral houses.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Enchanting Daranak and Batlag Falls - Tanay, Rizal

For an exciting and unforgettable nature tripping, I recommend Tanay, Rizal which is just a stone's throw away from Manila. 

The main attraction of Tanay is the enchanting Daranak Falls located at the foot of Tanay mountain. The area is refreshing, with natural vegetation, ponds and streams cascading through rocks, complemented with a recreation area of nipa huts and a cafe-restaurant overlooking the falls.
Just a short walk uphill from Daranak Falls is another waterfalls which is called the Batlag Falls. To get there, a signage will lead you to the concrete stair leading further up. At the end of the stairs, you will fnd a desolate-looking park and cottages but that's ok - this is the real definition of untouched nature. Overgrown bushes, catch basins, cascading waters, clear pools and streams, beautifully gnarled trees and interesting plants greet you as you reach the falls. The feeling was like getting lost, then finding a paradise. It is such an awesome sight.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Lakbay Loyd Recall - MASBATE In Pictures

It was May 2009, out on my usual Legaspi City trip, I decided to gather some information from the net on how to get to Masbate for another off-the-beaten-path adventure. Simple. I took a van to Port of Pilar in Sorsogon Province. From there I jumped on a ferry which will take me to Masbate.

Masbate Island is a cattle county. It is well known for its week long rodeo competition held each year in the last week in June. Beside cattle, Masbate is also known for its beautiful beaches lined with coral reefs, perfect for snorkeling and scuba diving. There are some great waterfalls to visit and the province also has some of the best spring water around.

I only spent a day and a night in the province so I wasn't able to see these great attractions. But I was able to learn some history and add a stamp on my travel map.


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