MANY Filipinos combine religion and summer vacation to get a relief from the stress of daily living. To help get the best of Holy Week, real-estate web site MyProperty recommended some of the must-go sites even after Holy Week that might be less crowded and just perfect for the season.
The mystical island of Siquijor also boasts various tourist destinations. Some of the most noted are the Isla del Fuego, the pristine beaches in San Juan town and the centuries-old Saint Francis de Asisi Parish, which is also the biggest convent in the country, built in 1884. Moreover, Siquijor also has a butterfly sanctuary and breathtaking waterfalls and springs, but medical tourism is the real attraction here.
Simultaneous with Holy Week is the yearly Healing Festival. The four-day festival is opened by a Holy Mass and will include healing sessions, exploration in Cantabon Cave and a holy trek to Mount Bandilaan.
It is known as the country’s version of the Holy Land. Just 30 minutes from the main highway, a traveler can view life-size images that show the mysteries of the Holy Rosary and a number of Bible verses. The local Holy Land also has a replica of the tomb of Jesus Christ to complete the experience. It also highlights a 40-foot statue of Jesus on the cross on Mount Golgotha.
Furthermore, Tarlac should be part of anyone’s bucket list as some of the most thrilling tourism experiences can be found here, including the Mount Pinatubo trek adventure and Kart City Tarlac.
The well-preserved white-sand beaches of Cagayan and Palaui Island’s raw beauty are the province’s top attractions. Palaui, once hailed as one of the “World’s 100 Best Beaches” by CNN, is beyond doubt a magnificent sight to behold and experience.
Aside from its amazing water features, Cagayan offers activities suited for Lent. One of the must-visit pilgrimage destinations in the country is the Calvary Hills in the town of Iguig. It has life-size statues depicting the 14 Stations of the Cross, and the old church of San Antonio de Galica built in the 1900s can be explored here.
Mount Pulong Bato in Zamboanga City
Going to a pilgrimage is a favorite Filipino activity during Lent. In Zamboanga City, a traveler can go on a nature trekking, while observing religious traditions. At Pulong Bato in Abong Abong Park, the Stations of the Cross commence at the foot of the mountain and end at the peak. Religious images are also scattered and carved into the mountainside. Apart from this marvelous religious place, Zamboanga City is also the home of a large number of natural and man-made attractions to add worth to a meaningful vacation. Carreon, Congo, Nancy, Busay and Merloquet Falls are just some of the water adventures that are an absolute must-see in Zamboanga City.
Doing the Visita Iglesia becomes more special because of its centuries-old churches. A traveler will be mesmerized with the historical churches that surround Iloilo, such as the Jaro Cathedral, Molo Church, Miag-ao Church and Guimbal Church, to name just a few.
After church hopping, the neighboring island-province of Guimaras is just a short boat ride away, which offers a different kind of water adventure for tourists as they will see various offerings, such as marine sanctuaries, limestone formations, isolated beaches and coves, and a lot more