September 2011
Photos, videos and stories of town explorations.
 "What makes it more beautiful, relaxing and soothing is the cool air, sometimes you have to encounter fogs, the tall pine trees and the beautifully blooming flowers around that blend well together to feel a Swiss-like village in the Philippines."

The lake is located at the center of the city. I mean, everything center - center of business, center of tourism, center for leisure, etc. The location is really strategic. Imagine that! A lake was created within a metropolis up high the highlands of Cordillera.

The man-made lake called the Burnham Lake located within a park with the same name, Burnham Park in the city of Baguio, Philippines is the melting point of culture and different kinds of people. The park is busy almost the whole day. 

As you roam around, you'll be able to hear a group of people speaking Cebuano at one side, and at the other corner is Ilonggo, beside you is another Ilocano tongue and behind you are groups of people speaking Tagalog, English, Taglish and in a surprising manner, some speak Ibaloi and Kankanna-ey. 

It is not uncommon to experience those because Baguio City is a premier tourist destination in the Philippines and everyone loves to go in this lovely place. Burnham Park with the man-made lake is the most popular destination in this city so expect to hear different languages in this part of Baguio. However, Tagalog is the most widely used which is the Philippines' national language then Ilocano, Baguio's native tongue along with other minor dialects.

Around the Burnham Lake is teaming with fun, excitement and activities but if you wish to reflect and have a personal reflection, the view of the Burnham Lake would be that enough to soothe your soul.

What makes it more beautiful, relaxing and soothing is the cool air, sometimes you have to encounter fogs, the tall pine trees and the beautifully blooming flowers around that blend well together to feel a Swiss-like village in the Philippines.

The ambiance is of great help to have a quiet time. Although the place is filled with a lot of people and activities, you still can't help but to feel a relaxing feeling in a relaxing scene given those variables at hand.

Around the lake is full of activities. Boating at the lake itself is a very popular choice. Anyone can enjoy the ride as you're going to float at the man-made lake through rented colorful boats.

Aside from boating, anyone can also enjoy biking, jogging or simply walking around the lake.

Burnham Park is an urban park that is planned as part of Baguio's urban planning. The Burnham Park is named after Daniel Burnham, an American architect and an urban planner who laid out the plans for the city.

The man-made lake is the main feature of Burnham Park. Around the lake is filled with a lot of leisure activities and experiences.

At the southern part of the lake is a skating rink. At the Eastern part is the Melvin Jones Grand Stand and Football Field. This grand stand is where activities such as concerts, parades and political rallies are made. And there you have the football field. No wonder, the architect is from America, a football-crazy nation.

At the western part of the lake is the Children's Park and the Orchidarium where one can rent a bike - single bike, bike in tandem or bike with sidecar. There are also bikes for little kids.

At the northern part of the lake is the bust of Daniel Burnham where a rose garden is located.

Really, around the man-made lake is filled with activities. Aside from those mentioned from North to South and East to West, there are more activities waiting.

Among these plenty of activities are chatting with friends, picnicking, having pedicure and manicure, dating and name them.

As I observe the behavior of the people in this park, I observed that eating at the edges of the lake is a good choice especially with a hot sip of coffee and a hot barbecue.

It is also a place for family bonding. Really a nice choice.

At the Burnham Park, no one can really hide the happiness and enjoyment that every person can feel because the park is like a small city within a city full of trade and commerce, with attractions, full of people of different culture, experiences, happenings, activities and the like in one man-made lake and a park.

Truly, the park brings smile to every face. /end

Baguio #TownExploration Series

Mines View Park, Baguio | Becoming an Igorot for 30 minutesBaguio Cathedral | The Low-Degree AmbianceThe Mansion, Baguio | For Your Eyes OnlyWhat to Eat in Baguio | The Fruits of FragariaWhat a Wacky Igorot!ABaguio City | Lady Horsie GagaBaguio City | Exclusive Igorot Fashion ExperienceBaguio City | Stolen at BaguioBaguio City | Baguio Botanical Garden in Full BloomBaguio City | Romance at the Burnham ParkBurnham Lake | Man-Made Lake Within a City in the Mountains 

Map Showing the Location of #Baguio

Click this map to view other posts for BENGUET PROVINCE


NAGUSTUAM DIAY NABASAM/NAKITAM? MABALIN MO MET I-LIKE.

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Photos, videos and stories of town explorations.
"As our scooter gets closer to that gigantic rock, the majesty, grandeur and the royal highness of that rock becomes more stunning every moment being the queen of all rocks in that area."

In a jungle where scarcity of human population is evident, there are a lot of surprises. Because of remoteness, there are things hidden by the mysteries and stories of the residents. But towns like this need to move on and go out with usual inconvenient way of living inside a jungle with several little cluster of communities. I landed in the town of Suyo, Ilocos Sur and gladly, the mountain town is now gaining a connection to the more developed towns.

Alone and Free!

Unexpectedly, I really thought that the place will be very challenging for us to traverse because it is located up high the highlands of Ilocos Sur where there are no nice road networks and infrastructures.

Surprisingly, I came to know that I just underestimated my expectation with the town and to encounter it personally is an unbelievable feeling because the road is better than what I am seeing at the lowlands, and the cities as well.

I encountered a lot of bridges along the road that span several rivers that have separated the town for years from the other more developed towns. Now through these projects, we are now bridging the gap between development and underdevelopment. Dozens of bridges were constructed within a span of not more than a year to complete the highway and pursue the convenience while on the road.

These dozen bridges in the town of Suyo, Ilocos Sur is just the first step in the dozens of opportunities that may come to the town through trading their Rambutan products, coffee, ube and other local produces. It is also a very important tool to show to the world the dozens of beauty the town could offer us.

An instant feeling of solitude truly came in the depth of my soul as I take that very great opportunity to grasp and enjoy that very fresh chilly air that is impossible to find in the downtown of cities.

Mostly, the construction of development projects may destroy and alter the natural beauty of a place but in Suyo, the scenery was enhanced! Thanks to the roads and the bridges that are bringing the people to experience the charm of Suyo town.

Freedom! Approaching the Huge Mountain rock


The well-paved mountain roads curved at the slopes of the mountains has brought me to a different experience for without it, I may not reach Suyo with ease. In the past years, the town is really sleepy and no one would dare to go there given the hindrances of traveling such muddy rough narrow roads and the lack of bridges to cross the wild rivers and rapids.

But now the story is different. It is more inviting because those bridges have bridged the gap between doubt and trust. We can trust those bridges and roads to lead us safely in the town.

One of the many bridges


Marker: Urzadan Bridge


Huge Stones: Find the small man


From afar, the stones at the river may look so small but in a nearer scale, some stones are as large as a bus!

So this river is not that typical town river, it is huge, wide with a big volume of potential threats. However in its calmest period, it is an asset to the people being a host for aquaculture-related industries and fishing.

Those huge rocks that serve as a partial obstruction for the river flow hail their own queen! As we reach another bridge called the Urzadan bridge of the same town, I got mixed emotions to see a huge mountain rock that is meeting us as we were able to cross the curved part of the road!

I was emotional that I even wanted to cry just to express the unexplainable feeling of amazement to what I saw and at the same time the fear that a landslide would happen  being a first timer to see that.

We paused our journey with my bro for a while to enjoy the amazing and heavenly view! The Urzadan bridge is meeting the huge rock mountain at the end!

As our scooter gets closer to that gigantic rock, the majesty, grandeur and the royal highness of that rock becomes more stunning every moment being the queen of all rocks in that area.

The gigantic rock mountain was really a grand welcome for us telling that the town will remain strong amidst the calamities and dangers of nature and that the beauty will remain.

We had a long while spent at Urzadan bridge and we only saw one vehicle that passed the bridge aside from us. It feels like I was in a natural national park wherein it was exclusively made for me and my bro.

As we looked down below the bridge, we saw persons fishing and it is hard to imagine where these people came from because looking around, there is no house, and worse, there is no practical, if not impossible, place to build a house.

A river in Suyo


The only truck we met along the road in Suyo


Rocky Mountain


A memorable encounter really. The huge mountain rock is decorated by tropical vegetation at its foot but in a certain height, the rock is exposed.

Thanks to the bridges of Suyo because I was able to see the beauty of the town. Truly the bridge didn't just bring me to see an awesome gigantic creation of God but also this bridge will bring the people to Suyo that eventually bring the town a gigantic opportunity for trade and tourism.

Suyo #TownExploration Series

Suyo, Ilocos Sur | Thirsty Paduquit RiverSuyo, Ilocos Sur | The Bridge that Meets the Gigantic Mountain RockSuyo, Ilocos Sur | Stunning Waterfalls along the Mountain RoadFallen in Love with Suyo Mountain Town of Ilocos Sur

Map showing the Location of #Suyo

Click this map to view all posts about #Suyo

NAGUSTUAM DIAY NABASAM/NAKITAM? MABALIN MO MET I-LIKE.

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Photos, videos and stories of town explorations.
"It was in a high noon and I can feel the scorching heat of the sun but the fact that behind that ordinary wall is a historical gem hidden, the emotions have overwhelmed the sensation of discomforts landing on my tan skin.."

Actually, the church is not so evident along the highway because of that red wall.  It is located at Central East, Bauang, La Union. What is only very notable is the bell tower which rises some meters high. Unlike most churches in Ilocos which are all grandiosely founded with alluring architectural beauty that is displayed in a strategic location where everyone can see the architectural feat direct to the beholder's eye, Bauang church has a surprising twist.

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Location Highlighted in Red
At my back is a huge wall, somewhat maroon or red in color, thick, high and truly wide. I was a bit intrigued why this wall was so huge as if it is hiding a very important gem.

I stepped back, lingered and had a sudden flavor of curiosity gushing in my blood stream.

Ordinary people might not care or won't care about this wall because it is just a typical huge wall seen in some elite mansions along the McArthur Highway. People who are going to commute will just stay foot, wait for a bus or jeepney ride and for sure won't care that much to see what is behind that wall because it looked ordinary and considerably huge.

Being a person who loves to explore for the sake of fulfillment and blogging, I wanted to discover what's behind. It could be a quality material for my blog I said to myself.

I turned on my back, faced the huge red wall then to feel the thrill of discovering something, I made a slow motion. Slowly but surely, little by little I am already approaching that huge entrance and note, there is an additional twist because the area is elevated with several stairs you have to step on.

The first thing that caught my attention is the radiance of the orange painting at the facade that looks like a sun. It is the heart of the church that enlightens the whole facade from the center giving the church an appeal that gives me a radiance of awe.

As I approach that huge entrance, my eyes' photoreceptor is experiencing a massive radiance coming out from that huge opening. As I reached that level where anything can be seen behind that big wall,  I was shouting deep inside with "wow!" Peeping at that level of my sight is an architectural masterpiece with historical value! It was very fantastic that behind that red wall is really a precious gem - a historical gem!

I don't want to rush in going nearer to the church because I simply just wanted to enjoy the feeling of awe in terms of the church's architectural feat. It was in a high noon and I can feel the scorching heat of the sun but the fact that behind that ordinary wall is a historical gem hidden, the emotions have overwhelmed the sensation of discomforts landing on my tan skin.

I am always telling with my previous posts regarding the churches I have visited that it is not the religion that I am after with in featuring these churches but I just wanted to express my appreciation through this blog that I appreciate the architectural breakthroughs and desgins in the Philippines and a good example for this are the Roman Catholic churches.

I am not a Roman Catholic per se, but I always believe that what is important is my relationship to Jesus Christ who is my Savior. The talk for religion is out of here. I am here to appreciate the beauty of my country Philippines!

I preferred to stay in a distance for a while and have time to reflect with a touch of thinking about our Philippine history and on how the Spaniards who colonized the Philippines exerted a massive effort to introduce Roman Catholicism in the Philippines.

I was looking at the church and its inert beauty in front of a park with wide space and the blue sky that seemed like relating with my nuerochemicals and nerves' behavior that time.

At the side of the church is a Catholic school called the Sacred Heart School.

I approached the church into a more intimate scale of appreciation. As I am nearing the church, the architectural details is flaring like a spark. And as the architectural detail is flaring out, more manifestations of excitement and awe is becoming more evident with dilated pupils, increased heart rate and a deep breathing pattern.

Wow! It becomes more thrilling as I see it in a nearer perspective. I can see the old walls at the sides, the mixing colors and some modern additions that truly fit well with the original and old materials.

It is very interesting to look at that every parish church in the Philippines has its own story on how it was made, the struggles of the people attached with it including the devotion and faith that truly makes the history of their makings worth cherishing for. That is how sentimental the value of the churches is that can never be traded with money and fame. Truly it was a precious gem, not even as precious as a precious stone. It is even far from that. It is priceless!

Another great architectural beauty has been seen by me and I am truly glad that I am seeing these things.

They weren't gone, they were preserved. The name of the church is Sts. Peter and Paul Church.

Without any expectation, that red wall was really ordinary. But through this experience, it is teaching me a big lesson that one "should not judge a book by its cover." Behind that dull maroon reddish wall, is a bastion of colorful beauty that has made the history as colorful as the rainbow up in the sky.

NAGUSTUAM DIAY NABASAM/NAKITAM? MABALIN MO MET I-LIKE.
Photos, videos and stories of town explorations.
"It is noteworthy that these roads hail their own king. They ignore the jeepneys and tricycles but it has given way for industries to thrive in this town."

Along the highway is a plenty bundle of coconuts/copra. They almost occupy the space of the highway shoulders and block the highway into a minimal degree. There is no other place to store these things except along the highway by preference. But let's don't underestimate these stuffs we see along the road because they are neither wastes nor a community problem. Those green-colored big hard nuts is the asset of the people of San Fabian, Pangasinan.

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Location Highlighted in Red
As you see these lovely plastic bottles along the road displayed in an attractive array of bottled drink waving a mystery of taste under curiosity, you'll be stunned how plenty they are - as plenty as the coconuts.

Just along these straight forward, lonesome and peaceful highway, the jeepneys, and not even the tricycles can ever steal the crown as the king of San Fabian, Pangasinan's highway in the rural area. But, in a very different manner, what is so noticeable in this part of San Fabian's highway are these coconuts.

In this part of the town, these bottled drinks placed in a plastic container is directly proportional with the coconuts. The reason is, these coconuts are the raw materials in making these bottled products locally known as Tuba.

In every little store there is tuba and at the other side of the store are the raw materials but take note, those hard nuts are not actually the real raw materials in making this kind of wine but their stem where these nuts are attached.

Just before they turned into mature nuts, tuba wine makers cut the stem where they are attached, better it they are still flowers, and the juice extracted from those stems is the reason why everyone enjoys tuba in San Fabian.



Dozens of stores with common identity [because they are all kubo in style] always have their appearance along this highway. Into a great surprise, I was aback to learn as I was researching about tuba that it was not the nuts that are made in making tuba but the stems therein as I mentioned earlier.

The question that lingered at the back of my mind is where they are going to use these nuts? By which, they are not the real raw materials in making tuba. It would be of great help for the readers if someone from San Fabian or anywhere else in the Philippines [or in the world] with knowledge of tuba making can come and post a comment in this entry regarding the treatment of the nuts displayed along the highway because I had no opportunity to interview the townsmen. All I had to experience is to be destructed by the very presence of these hard green nuts that don't even go away my sight.

San Fabian is also a coastal town by which, the sea is an inherent asset. Along the coastal highway of this town is another royal discovery because there is another king - the king of the coastal road on Fabian.


It was very unusual to see that these oysters are displayed in pails waiting for seafood lovers to grab them away. Looks inviting and fresh from the waters, this is a very practical way to buy oysters when you are in San Fabian, Pangasinan because they are way cheaper than those sold at the market.

Aside from the domination of oysters, there are also other seafood that make way for a possible seafood menu back home. Truly, the waters of San Fabian are blessed to hold this kind of industry.

It is noteworthy that these roads hail their own king. They ignore the jeepneys and tricycles but it has given way for industries to thrive in this town.


NAGUSTUAM DIAY NABASAM/NAKITAM? MABALIN MO MET I-LIKE.

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Photos, videos and stories of town explorations.
"I am aware of dragon fruit and it is not new to me but it was my first time to encounter a dragon fruit in person that I became so ignorant. It was a total embarrassment or shall I say ignorance in a severe degree." 

I looked at it thoroughly and meticulously. I was in front of a fruit shake stall where a lot of fruits were displayed in an array. I saw a strange display and I said to myself, "Why this fruit stand is displaying an artificial fruit at their display table?" then had a little frown on my face. 

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Location Highlighted in Red
I was also a  little bit disappointed because that artificial fruit seemed like to be made in China that contains toxic chemicals that would intoxicate the other fresh fruits and eventually intoxicate human.

I wanted to confront the vendor and ask what is that heck? She told me, "It is Dragon Fruit." I was abacked! Why it is there? That is really made from China where the famous Dragon Dance during Chinese New Year originated and they should have named it Dragon Fruit.

Suddenly she asked me, "Are you gonna buy dragon fruit."? 

"Buy dragon fruit?" I pleaded. I thought it was a joke but when I said yes, it was really a fresh natural fruit that looks so artificial.

I am aware of dragon fruit and it is not new to me but it was my first time to encounter a dragon fruit in person that I became so ignorant. It was a total embarrassment or shall I say ignorance in a severe degree.

The pinkish color and the strange look appeared to be synthetic to me that I just can't believe it is edible. I never tried a fruit as colorful as the dragon fruit especially that pinkish to somewhat violet color that is edible. I see colorful fruits but they are my little cousins' toys and not food.

The vendor just sliced the fruit. I just can't believe that the color also looks like something with artificial food color! It was pinkish again like a "palamig" or an ice mixed with an artificially colored pink gulaman but its not! It was all natural and it was normal! My emotion is trembling with doubt although I already see it before my very naked eyes but the colorful pink shade of that fruit was like in a fantasy. I never thought it could be as colorful as that and believe me it was normal and that's natural. 

So great! Very nice pink shade out there that is not mixed with artificial food coloring!

And yeah! It was perfect to a hot 12 noon in a leisure time with friends as the vendor gave me that very cold and refreshing Dragon Fruit Shake! 'Twas a very perfect momentum and timing to chill and enjoy.

It was a nice dragon day for us and had bonding with my friends with that very controversial dragon fruit.

NAGUSTUAM DIAY NABASAM/NAKITAM? MABALIN MO MET I-LIKE.