March 2012
Photos, videos and stories of town explorations.
"This is indeed a very historic landmark that tourists and travelers who are going to Vigan fail to visit or worse, even fail to discover the significance of it."

Arzobispado Nueva Segovia is the only surviving archbishop residence in the Philippines that was built during the Spanish era and it remains to be intact and still standing with might and power at the heart of the heritage city of Vigan, Philippines. In Vigan, this is simply called palasyo since it is also named as the archbishop palace.

The presence of Arzobispado Nueva Segovia is a symbol of an extreme Roman Catholic power that ruled the Northern parts of the Philippine archipelago during the Spanish era in the Philippines. This is the last and the only remaining 18th century arzobispado in the Philippines.

Ok, maybe we fail to understand what arzobispado means. Arzobispado is the territorial jurisdiction of an archbishop and an archbishop is a highly ranked priest that is assigned to manage a certain geographical scope covered by the Roman Catholic faith.

This archbishop palace remains to be the seat of religious power as it used to be during the Spanish colonial periods to the Philippines.

The structure looks like a typical Old Vigan ancestral structure with capiz windows, arched and wide windows at the ground floor and big entrance doors.

It might look like to be just one of those old Vigan houses and structures but the historical value of this archbishop palace is more valuable than any other old house you see in the Philippines.

Two prominent people in the history of the Philippines have sought refuge in this old building. Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo, the very first president of the Philippines made this old building as their headquarters when he came to Vigan in 1898.

The following year, Col. James Parker, the head of the American forces who was in the Philippines took over this old building and also made this building as their headquarters.

This is indeed a very historic landmark that tourists and travelers who are going to Vigan fail to visit or worse, even fail to discover the significance of it. This building is a living symbol of the greatest influence of the Spaniards to the Philippines - the Roman Catholic religion.

This historical building is built in front of Nueva Segovia Street in front of the Vigan Metropolitan Cathedral and another historical landmark, the Plaza Salcedo.

In spite of the wars, the Spanish colonization, the American invasion to the Japanese master plans for the Philippines, the role of Arzobizpado de Nueva Segovia never ceased. It remains as it is.

It's purpose from the time it was built until the present days remains to be intact - and that is to continue to spread unity, harmony, peace and faith in God to the people under it's jurisdiction that even World War I and II were unable to stop it

Tags: Arzobispado de Nueva Segovia | Archdiocese of Nueva Segovia | Archbishop Palace | Historical Landmark in Vigan | Historical building in Vigan | historical structure in Vigan | historical landmark in Ilocos Sur | historical building in Ilocos Sur | historical structure in ilocos sur | ilocos sur heritage | ilocos heritage | vigan heritage | religious structures in vigan | religious structure in ilocos | Influence of Spain to the Philippines | religious landmark in vigan | religious landmark in the Philippines | rligious landmark in ilocos | historical landmark in the Philippines | religious structure in the Philippines | historical landmark in the Philippines
Photos, videos and stories of town explorations.
"Live with the people of Vigan and love them. From there, you will learn that there are just culture and traditions that can not be explained in words and can not be showcased in festivals that you have to actually experience it for a considerable length of time for you to understand."

After the success of the New7Wonders of the Modern World, and the New7Wonders of Nature where our very own Puerto Princesa underground river (PPUR) was included, another campaign is being held by the same non-profit organization to choose the New7Wonders Cities and Vigan is nominated for the current phase of that search.

[VIGAN] This is probably, the Philippines' most photographed street, I surmise

[VIGAN] Calle Crisologo at night

Allow me to convince you why you should vote for Vigan to be one of the new7wonders cities.

Vigan is the capital of the province of Ilocos Sur and it is the only World Heritage city in the Philippines. Vigan is the home of well-preserved colonial houses with extent that can never be seen anywhere else in the Philippines.

According to the decision of UNESCO, Vigan represents a unique fusion of Asian building design and construction with European colonial architecture and planning.

Vigan is also an exceptionally intact and well-preserved example of a European trading town in East and South-East Asia.

[VIGAN] Calesa along Burgos Street

In Vigan, century-old transportation system remains in use -- the calesa, a horse-drawn carriage.

While some other places in the world use calesa for touristy purposes, in Vigan, the use of this old way of commuting is both for tourists and the residents.

Calesa is still being used by the residents in going to certain parts of the city. For example, in front of the University of Northern Philippines, there is actually a part where these calesas fall in line for passengers.

Of course, like a famous bus line, usually they are "fully-booked" because the riding public makes calesa the priority, ignoring tricycles and jeepneys. Since they are limited, they can not accommodate all the commuters so usually getting a calesa ride is by chance.

[VIGAN] A Horse + Belfry

Although a calesa ride is a way of commuting in Vigan, many kutseros now choose to be with the tourists because they earn more penny from this industry.

Vigan is the home of cultural activities and festivities. On January, Vigan celebrates her fiesta with the Longganisa Festival. Longganisa is an OTOP (one town one product) of Vigan, a very delicious sausage you should not miss.

[VIGAN] Longganisa Festival happens every January

At February, Kannawidan Ylocos Festival takes off. It showcases the different culture and traditions of the province of Ilocos Sur.

During April, Vigan becomes a crowded city because it is the peak season for the arrival of tourists and visitors. April is the Semana Santa and Vigan celebrates the Holy Week extensively and deeply. Do try to visit Vigan during the whole Holy Week and you'll know what I mean.

[VIGAN] Semana Santa scene in this city

[VIGAN] Boklan Arts Festival

[VIGAN] Calesa Parade in the City

May is a month for arts because Vigan celebrates the Boklan Arts Festival, Karbo Festival, Pasagad DressingCalesa Parade, Binatbatan Festival, Bankathon and many more! It is an activity-filled month composed of many festivals under one mother festival which is the Viva Vigan Festival of the Arts.

During September, Vigan joins other heritage cities in the world in celebrating the World Heritage Cities Solidarity Day. It is a week-long celebration that showcases the rich history and culture of Vigan.

[VIGAN] Binatbatan Festival

[VIGAN] Bankathon: a boat race in Vigan's fishing community

[VIGAN] Pasagad Dressing

[VIGAN] Carabao as canvass

November is the month for the Vigan Raniag Twilight Festival it is another week-long celebration that is being celebrated in the darkness of the night. It happens during Halloween. It gives you a reason to enjoy the All Soul's Day. Every night, colorful lights make the Vigan streets brighter through float and costume parades including the candle-lighting at the Meztizo River.

[VIGAN] Mestizo River in Vigan

[VIGAN] Candle-lit Mestizo River on a Halloween

[VIGAN] Float Parade during the Raniag Twilight Festival

During December, Vigan celebrates the Christmas Lantern Parade. Although the city has many festivals and activities, it is not still enough to showcase the rich culture of the city and the only way to learn about it is to be a citizen of Vigan.

Live with the people of Vigan and love them. From there, you will learn that there are just culture and traditions that can not be explained in words and can not be showcased in festivals that you have to actually experience it for a considerable length of time for you to understand. That what makes Vigan unique.

[VIGAN] Central Business District: Notice the building designs

[VIGAN] Calle Crisologo

[VIGAN] A fisherman of Vigan's coastal communities

[VIGAN] St. Paul Metropolitan Cathedral

Through the New7Wonders Cities campaign, I want more people to experience the culture and charm of Vigan, taste food you've never tasted before like the bagnet, empanada, pipian, miki, kaskaron, sinanglao, papaitan, dinardaraan, poqui-poqui, dinengdeng (diningding), pinakbet, toron, tinudok, tinubong, and many more!

To be able to realize this endeavour, being chosen as a new 7 wonder city will give this small city a chance to prove that size doesn't matter.

To vote for Vigan city, click here. /end

Vigan #TownExploration Series

Map showing the Location of Vigan

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[IFUGAO] Giving the Children of Ifugao a Bright Future

TEASER: "If the smile of your crush or your loved one can make your day complete, I would say a helping hand that will make the children of the rice terraces to continually smile will mean a lot."

[PANGASINAN] Flesh-Eating Disease: Of Prophecy, Hypocrisy & Politics

TEASER: "...though media are very entertaining and informative, our role is to become critical thinkers."/span>

Tags: Vigan for New7wonders cities | Candidates for new 7 wonders cities | Philippine cities neew seven wonders

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Photos, videos and stories of town explorations.
"I was also browsing the internet some pictures of the Swiss countryside and I can say that La Trinidad is like a Swiss town."

La Trinidad, Benguet, dubbed as the Strawberry capital of the Philippines has emerged to be a vibrant town for commerce, trade and tourism. It is 3 kilometers away from Baguio City but it may take you to a 30-minute drive when there is heavy traffic especially rush hour. It is the provincial capital of Benguet.

I confess that I love the mountains of the Philippines more than the beach. Being a person who has been residing on a coastal city since birth at the west coast of Luzon, I have seen a lot of beaches and now that I have grown enough, my target is to hop to mountain towns.

When I visit a town, I never ask myself if the travel is worth it or not, instead, whenever I am in that town, I find a way to make the travel worth it. Sometimes I go to towns without any idea what to expect at all. I don't know but everytime I step in a "new" town, it is already a fulfillment whether or not there is something worth seeing in that place. Being able to say to my friends that I have been in that town is an achievement that I consider.

In La Trinidad, Benguet, the first thing that came to my mind is that it is following the steps of Baguio.

The mountainsides have been turned into residential communities and the main road in La Trinidad has the potential to be the next Session Road wherein business can thrive.

The only difference is that along that road, there is a university, the municipal hall and many government offices that Session Road is not known for. Session Road is more of hotels, restaurants and shopping stalls.

I was also browsing the internet some pictures of the Swiss countryside and I can say that La Trinidad is like a Swiss town. Anyway, we can actually relate it to the Swiss nation because the Swiss people have once invaded Benguet to establish a religion.

Its cool weather, the lush green mountains and the houses built at the slope remind me of the photos I saw in the web.

It is a first class municipality and the economy of La Trinidad is booming. I also walked to its street alone and it gave me another first impression that it is generally safe to walk along the streets of La Trinidad.

La Trinidad is very much alike with Baguio City and my verdict is that, it is the next commercial hub in Cordillera as Baguio has now shrinking space to contain more people and structures.
Tags: La Trinidad, Benguet | Swiss-like town in Asia | Swiss-like town in the Philippines | Strawberry Capital of the Philippines | First impression to La Trinidad, Benguet