Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Welcome to Rizal, Philippines


AREA : 130,383 HEC.
POPULATION : 1,312,489


Rizal is one of the provinces closet to Metro Manila. It is clubbed by urban planners as the country'' next business capital.

The province still has many green area and is exciting to watch on account of its wide low lying valleys and rolling hills. Rugged ridges are found near the foothills of the Sierra Madre Mountain ranges, which overlooks the entire province. An encompassing vista of Metro Manila can be engaged at certain points along the Sumulong Highway leading to the town of Antipolo. A number of restaurants with viewdecks can be found here.

The province has also so much to offer to both foreign and local tourists like the breathtaking view of the Laguna Lake and the Sierra Madre mountain ranges. People residing in the 14 towns which today compose Rizal engage in traditional arts and crafts, and hold colorful yearly fiestas that function as accessible major attractions. Its strategic geographical location makes it one of the fastest growing provinces in the CALABARZON in terms of economic development. The province was named in honor of the country's national hero, Dr. Jose P. Rizal.

In the early 90's the province gained sudden prominence worldwide with the discovery of the Petrolyph Artifacts in the mountainsides of Angono and Binangonan. The petrolyphs are considered remmants of the stone age which were carved by hand and mortar as a unique form of "rock-art." The discovery led art observers to theorize that thse towns possess some kind of a mystique for having given ascendancy to a lineage of natural-born artists. The Department of Tourism and the Commission on Culture and the Arts have teamed up to preserved the site and protect what remains of the blocks.

Todays, world-class artist and painters continue to be spawned by Angono and Binangonan, close to the very sites where the petroglyphs were unearthed. However farfetched, it is easy to assume that the predisposition toward visual arts and the indigenous creativity of the people raised within the lakeshore communities, is a priceless inheritance for countless of generations. Some of the art luminaries spawned by the province are Vicente Manansala, Carlos "Botong" Francisco, Nemiranda, and the Jose Blanco family of painters. In this regards, not to be missed in the Rizal tourist itinerary are the Blanco, Nemiranda and other private artists' galleries and the Angono Artists' Village.

Angono is equally famous for its Carabao Festival held in May during the feast of San Isidro Labrador. Rizal is also a nearby picnic ground for Metro Manila. Talim Island, a swim and picnic spot situated in Laguna Lake has excellent potentials for further development.

The province of Rizal has lately assumed the title of being the Convention and Conference Center of many clients from Metro-Manila business, commerial and social service entities. A number of religious houses have sprouted for the benefit of spiritual retreat in search of a nearby yet conductive venue. Thse facilties can be found in Antipolo and Binangonan which offer good accomodations, refreshing pools, and gournet-wise, dining specialities sourced from water ponds.

A stellar attraction of Rizal is its fabled Lenten rituals in the town of Cainta which turns out stage presentations of the Senakulo performed by folk theater artists for a series of evenings during Holy Week. The Good Friday parade of the Crucifixion replete with horse-riding Roman soldiers and characters of the New Testament, and the famous month-long Pilgrimage to the Image of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage for the whole month of May in Cathedral of Antipolo. The multiplicity of stalls that selling local handicrafts, hot cashew nuts, native rice pastries and freshly-picked duhat (local blackberry) surround the church grounds at this time. An industrial center is now on the rise in the town of Tanay, over a 328-hectare lot. It is expected to locate medium to large-scale industries, and to pave the way toward an alternative eastern growth corridor involving the provinces of Rizal, Laguna Quezon.

A visit to an old town, a tour of the early Spanish centuries-old churches and artists' galleries, shopping for native products, delicasies, fruits and fresh fish from nearby fruit orchards and lakeshore fishermen - all these tour possibilities would create new touring patterns for local and international vacationers.

A. Brief History

With the organization of Tondo and La Laguna during the Spanish regime, Rizal Province was composed of towns. Some of the towns like pasig, Parañaque, Taytay and Cainta were already thriving because long before the Spanish conquest, the Tagalog settlements had already carried on trade with the Chinese.

From 1582 to 1583, the Encomienda (Morong was under the jurisdiction of La Laguna and Passi (Pasig), Taitai (Taytay), Tagui (Taguig) belonged to Tondo. In 1591, the Encomeindas of Moron and Taitai were under the jurisdiction of Franciscan Order in La Laguna. The Augustinians in Tondo had jurisdiction of Nabotas (Navotas), Tambobo (Malabon), Tondo, Parañaque, Longalo (Dongalo), Taguig and Pasig.

A new political subdivision was formed in 1853 consisting of the towns of Antipolo, Boso-Boso, Cainta, and Taytay from Tondo and the towns of Morong, Baras, Tanay, Palilla, Angono, Binangonan and Jalajala from La Laguna. Then in 1860, Tondo became the province of Manila, placing its towns under the fiscal supervision land control of the Governor of the new province. It was during the revolutionary government of General Emilio Aguinaldo when Mariquina (Marikina) became the capital of Manila. In 1898-1899, Antipolo became the capital of Morong, then in 1899-1900, Tanay became its capital.

On 5 June 1901, the first Philippine Commission, headed by president William Taft and Commissioner Wright Ide and Dr. Trinidad Pardo de Tavera proposed the unification of Manila and Morong which resulted in the creation of a new province named after Dr. Jose P. Rizal, the Philippines' National Hero.

Rizal Province was officially and legally created by virtue of Act No. 310 by the Philippine Commission. It was composed of 26 municipalities, 13 from the old province of Manila comprising Las Piñas, Malabon, Makati, Parañaque, Mandaluyong, San Juan, Navotas, Muntinlupa, Taguig, Pateros, Marikina, San Mateo and Rodriguez (formerly Montalban). The 12 other municipalities were from the district of Morong which include Angono, Baras, Binangonan, Cainta, Antipolo Cardona, Jalajala, Morong, Pilila, Tanay, Taytay and Teresa. But in 8 November 1975, the formed Metro Manila area was created by virtue of Presidential Decree No. 824 which resulted in the incorporation of the 12 towns of Las Piñas, Parañaque, Muntinlupa, Taguig, Pateros, Makati, Mandaluyong, San Juan, Malabon, Navotas, Pasig and Marikina. The remaining 14 towns were left to Rizal.

When the Metro Manila Commission incorporated Pasig, the former capital, Rizal became the only province in the Philippines to have no capital town. But there is a proposal to make Antipolo as the new capital of the province.

B. Geography

Rizal Province is Metro Manila's most immediate eatern neighbor. It is bounded on the north by Bulacan, on the east by Laguna and Quezon Province, and on the south by Laguna de Bay. It has a total land area of 130,383 hectares, 27 percent of which is suitable for intensive agriculture, pastures and forests, 62 percent for high density urban development and 70 percent for fish and farming and wildlife conservation.

Its terrain is mostly flat mostly flat-lands on the western part, but is also endowed with rolling hills and rugged ridges on the eastern portion. With a temperate climate, Rizal is protected from violent winds by the Sierra Madre Mountain ranges on the east and by the Batangas and Laguna mountains on the southwest.

C. Political Subdivision

Rizal comprises of 14 municipalities divided into two (2) political districts. The first district comprises the towns of Angono, Antipolo, Binangonan, Cainta and Taytay while the towns of Baras, Cardona, Morong, Jalajala, Pililla, Rodriguez, San Mateo, Tanay and Teresa constitute the second district.


Angono - Antipolo - Baras - Morong - Cainta - Cardon - Jalajala - Tanay - Pililla - Rodriguez - San Mateo - Taytay - Teresa - Bionangonan

D. Climate

The climate in Rizal consists of two seasons: the wet and dry. It is relatively dry from December to May and wet during the rest of the year. Northeast prevailed over the province. The province is not directly hit by typhoons, low pressure systems and high winds.

E. Population

As of 1995, the population of the province was 1,312,489 with an annual growth rate of 68 percent.

F. Languages/Dialects

The predominant language is Tagalog with accents, while the English language is used as medium of communication in business and education.

G. How to get there

Rizal is the Metro's most proximate eastern province hence, mobility poses no problem. Take a metro bus, taxi or jeepney to EDSA/Crossing or the Farmer's Market in Cubao, Quezon City and proceed to the jeepney terminal within the shopping area. These vehicles are bound separately for Antipolo, Taytay, Cainta, Binangonan, Angono and Tanay. There are many public utilities making it easy to return to Manila destinations any time of day and even night time.

H. Getting around the place

Jeepneys, tricycles and ferry boats take passengers to various sites within the towns.


Rizal boats of several tourist attractions like Daranak and Batlag Falls, Villa Virginia Resort and Conference Center, Hinulugang Taktak National Park, Boso-Boso Ruin Church, Baras Church, Antipolo Cathedral, And Kalbaryo, Manansala Landmark and other galleries.

It is also rich in cultural heritage. Various cultural plays, enactments and dances are held throughout the year to commemorate certain occasions. The town fiestas are celebrated during the birth of patron saints of the different municipalities.

Perhaps the most outstanding point of its heritage is in the field of the arts created by many distinguished artists. Some are world renowned and already proclaimed national artists. Thus, the title, "Crade of Philippine Art".

A. Historical

Ang Kalbaryo

Kalbaryo is known not only for its religious significance but also its historical value. According to the old folks, a cross-shaped rock suddenly grew out of the summit but was destroyed by lighting and earthquake. The people then erected on the same spot, a wooden cross in place of the original cross in 1783. A chapel was built on top of a hill overlooking Laguna Lake in due respect for the cross.

Location: Barangay Libid, Binangonan]
How to get there: From the town proper, the top of the kalbaryo is walking distance.
Travel time: 30 minutes' walk

B. Cultural

Rafael Pacheco Finger Painting Gallery
Rafael Pacheco, a local artist, has a unique way of expressing his artistic talent. He uses bare fingers, knuckers and palms to complete a masterpiece in 20 minutes mainly on flora, fauna and underwater life.

Location: No. 332 Tomas Claudio St. Morong
How to get there: Take the Morong-bound bus at the EDSA Central Complex, Mandaluyong City. From the town proper, the gallery can be reached by tricycle.
Travel time: 90 minutes from Manila

Nemiranda Arthouse and Atelier Gallerie
The Arthouse filling up the whole 1,012 square meters lot (one block) is the product of Nemiranda's natural wit and ingenuity, all poured into transforming Angono's indigenous and recycled materilas like bamboo, nipa, sawali, abacca, old wood as well as its artifacts into this function art. Like a labyrinth, the Arthouse is an environment-friendly architecture concept where trees, birds and ornament plants play a major role. It has become the venue for countless art lessons, sysposia, art competitions, exhibitions and other complimentary activities primarily for the artists of Rizal, making it a credible witness to Nemiranda's commitment to elevate the province into an Artists' Village. A wide collection of the artist's paintings masterfully implying figurative realism in the artworks portraying rural life and folkloric art is on display.

Location: No. 10 Doña Elena St., Doña Justa Village, Barangay San Roque, Angono
How to get there: Take a tricycle from the town proper or from the Manila East Road or Angono Highway to the gallery.
Travel time: About 10 - 15 minutes

Vicente Manansala Historical Landmark
Declared by the National Historical Institute as a historical landmark in June 1978, it now houses the relics of national artist Vicente Manansala. It is also features some of his well-preserved original paintings and paraphernalia.

Location: No. 73 Gloria St. San Carlos Hights Subd., Tayuman, Binangonan
How to get there: Take a tricycle from the second gate of San Carlos Heights Subdivision

Tiamson Art Gallerie
A painter, a musician and transmedia artist all rolled into one - this is the young Orville Tiamson. His style ranges from the conventional to new age.

No. 203 Doña Nieves, St. Angono
How to get there: It will take a one (1) minute walk from the municipal town hall to reach the place.

Blanco Art Gallery

Jose V. Blanco is the partriarch of an entire family of painters. A protégé of Carlos "Botong" Francisco, he is the father and indisputable master of Philippine genre painting. He projects what it is to be a Filipino in folk tradition and contemporary ancestry. His works and those of his wife and sons are frequently displayed in world expositions in Europe and the United States of America.

Location: 312 Ibañez St., Angono Rizal
How to get there: A jeepney ride from Cubao takes one to the main streets of Angono. From the center, take a tricycle to the Blanco Art Gallery
Travel time: 3 minutes from the town center..

Angono Artist Village
Rizal is the province of choice and a definite tourist destination particularly in the field of arts and crafts. It is known as the home of recognized and national artists and musicians. It is for this reason that the Angono Artists Association prodded the creation of an Artists' Village located at the foothills of the Sierras.

Location: Angono
How to get there: Take the Angono-bound buses at the Shaw Boulevard Terminal. Upon reaching the town proper, take a tricycle going to the area.
Travel time: 45 minutes from Shaw Boulevard

Tariki Dance
The Tariki dance was copied and adopted by the natives from the movements of the "tariki" birds seen hopping from one bundle of palay to another. It is performed by five pairs of boys and girls dressed in white shirts and pants and blouses and skirts, respectively.

How to get there: Take the Tanay-bound bus at the EDSA Shaw Boulevard, Mandaluyong.
Travel Time: 2 ½ hours from Shaw Boulevard

World Sikaran/Arnis Brotherhood of the Philippines

Sikaran/Arnis (Foot game/Sword Play) are a combination of two kinds of martial arts that are unique Filipino. In sikaran, the players move around like boxers. Each one aims to knock his opponent down by kicking the latter's legs. The kicks are delivered with considered force and agility and sudden upward and backward movements of the foot. The use of the feet is necessary in winning over the opponent thus, the name "sikaran" which menas "to kick" came about. In playing the arnis, the players use rattan or wooden sword and strike each other's sticks. The player who is able to touch his opponent's body first with the point of his wooden sword or force him to drop his weapon is declared winner.

Location: No. 20 Katipunan St., Barangay San Jose, Baras
How to get there: Baras town is accessible from Manila by bus from EDSA Central Complex at shaw Boulevard]
Travel time: 45 minutes to 1 hour, depending on traffic situations.

C. Natural

Angono and Binangonan Petroglyphs
A recent archeological breakthrough of the 90's is the discovery of ancient petroglyphs in the mountainside of Angono and Binangonan. The petroglyphs were validated by the National Museum, the UNESCO and KOMOS as one of the oldest in the Asia-Pacific Region. They can be traced back to the third millennium, B.C. It has been declared as aheritage site. The Deaprtment of Tourism in coordination with the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, is now engaged in the development of the site, the protection of the walls from damaged caused by man the elements, and the construction of viewing and rest areas.

Talim Island

The island which lies in Laguna de Bay, is a typical fishing community with 17 barangays of Binangonan and 8 barangays of Cardona.

Location: It is a nearby which forms part of the mainland of Binangonan
How to get there: It is accessible by an outrigger boat from the Pretel Wharf. It takes an hour and a half to reach the last of the coastal barangays
Travel time: 90 minutes by boat

Daranak/Batlag Falls
It is 14-meter high falls which stands majestically beneath a running stream. A short walk over the wooden trestle to the top of Daranak are the smaller streams known as the Batlag Falls.

Location: Barangay Tandang, Kutyo, Tanay
How to get there: From the town proper, jeepneys ply regularly going to the Manila East Road or Tanay Highway
Travel time: 30 minutes to 1 hour from the town proper

U-Ugong Arts and Cultural Parks
A place owned by Rafael Pacheco where he conducts his art workshops, demonstrations and lectures is also a perfect hideaway from the maddening crowd of the metropolis and a nature's sanctuary. One can enjoy a three-in one view of the Ugong Falls on one side the Laguna Lake on the other and the town of Morong with its four-century-old bell tower.

Sitio Butig, Barangay Bombongan, Morong
How to get there: From the town proper, it can reached by jeepneys and tricycles.
Travel Time: 20 minutes from the town proper

Calinawan Cave
Calinawan Cave got its name from the word "linaw", a Tagalog term for "clear".
It is said that during the 15th to 18th centuries, opposing parties used to convene inside the cave to settle disputes, thus, the name Calinawan came about. This cave also served as a shelter and a hideaway from the Japanese during World War II. It was also in this cave where Japanese soldier surrendered to the Liberation Forces.

Location: Barangay Tandang, Kutyo, Tanay
How to get there: Take a jeepney bound for Barangay Tandang Kutyo and get off at the cave site.
Travel time: 20 minutes from Barangay Tandang Katyo

Hinulugang Taktak
The town of Antipolo was traditionally known for its Hinulugang Taktak Falls even before World War II. This mountain resort has picnic cottages, a swimming pool, artificial paths and steps down to view the waterfalls. During the month of May, cultural concerts and plays are held in the area fronting the waterfalls.

Location: Taktak Road Antipolo
How to get there: Jeepneys bound for Antipolo are stationed at the Araneta Commecial Center (Cubao) right across the Quezon City Post Office. From the town proper of Antipolo, take a tricycle for the one kilometer ride to Hinulugang Taktak.
Travel time: 1 ½ hour from Cubao

D. Man-Made

Igorot Village

The Village covers one and a half hectares and is situated within the residential area of Valley Golf which is sloping downward the hill. There are several clusters of semi-modern houses covered by iron roofs which house Igorot families who settled in the area turned it into a traditional Igorot Village with the support of the local government. An authentic Igorot Village within the heart of Cainta provides tourists a glimpse of the culture and lifeways of the Cordillera people.

Location: Valley Golf 4, Barangay San Juan, Cainta
How to get there: Valley Golf can be reached by jeepneys bound for Antipolo or Angono and from the main road, tricycles are available to service passengers to the village.
Travel time: 15 minutes from main road.

Wawa Dam
Wawa Dam is located at the foothills of the Sierra Madre mountains. It supplies water to Novaliches passing through large pipes. It has a gorge which lies between two limestone mountains and through it passes the upper Marikina River. Four caves are visible on the way to the dam. These caves are said to have been inhabited by the Japanese soldiers during the Second World War. A historical marker can be found at the entrance of the one of the caves in memory of the dead Japanese soldiers.

Location: Barangay Wawa, Montalban
How to get there: From Cubao, Quezon City, take a jeepney plying the Montalban-Cubao route. This will take one to as far as Barangay San Rafael from where jeepneys to Barangay Wawa are stationed.
Travel time: 1 hour from Cubao

The Philippine Communications Satelite station nestles on a 700-hectare site at the foot of Sierra Madre mountains whose thickly forested ranges act as a natural barrier and protection againts radio interference. Facilities in this station include two huge dish-shaped antenna-the "Pacific Ocean Region" and the "Indian Ocean", used receive signals from satelites in space. A third relatively smaller but flexible antenna, Pinugay-3, serves as a reserve that can handle telecommunications requirements for both ocean regions.

Location: Barangay Pinugay, Baras
How to get there: Philcomsat is accessible from the town of Baras. To reach Baras, take the Sumulong Highway until you reach the Antipolo T-junction. Turn right leading to Morong until you reach Baras town. To visit Philcomsat, travel through a 15 minute car ride that will bring you to the earth station.
Travel time: 1 ½ hours from Sumulong Highway

D. Religious

Baras Church
Baras Church is one of the oldest in the area, having been completed in 1686. The first church in Baras was built by the Franciscans in 1595. The town of Baras was transferred to Ibayo in 1682. It was the Jesuits who administered the parish from 1616 to 1679. The interior of the church was simply done. The altar and lecterns store artifacts unearthened beneath the church.

Location: San Jose St., Baras
How to get there: Take the Antipolo by-pass to reach the town proper.
Walking distance from the poblacion.
Travel time: 1 ½ hours' drive from Mandaluyong City

Boso-Boso Ruin Church
A remnant of a centuries-old church which was destroyed during the Second World War. It stands in the gradeur of old stones with wild vines and plants growing on top of the church.

Barangay Boso-Boso, Antipolo
How to get there: A 45 minute ride by jeepney from the town proper will bring you to the ruins.
Travel time: 45 minutes

St. Jerome Church
St. Jerome Church which stands high above the town of Morong, was built in 1615 by Chinese craftmen as evidence by the two Chinese lions sculptured at the entrance to the steep driveway. It took three years to construct the church. The stone and the mortar church has a steps leading up to the front. The cross on the tower, is illuminated at night and can be seen clearly from the surrounding countryside. It has a tower in front about 100 feet high with the statue of St. Michael the Archangel on top. The three-storey façade which was built in 1850-1853 to support a new bell tower is one of the most splendid examples of baroque architecture in the Philippines. It is in graduated levels with a four-storey octagonal bell tower of European influence, and paired columns at the four exterior corners.

Location: Barangay San Jose, Morong
How to get there: Walking distance from the town proper

Tanay Church

Built in the 17th century. The construction of the stone church was completed in 1680 but by 1773 it had deteriorated. The church had to be demolished and rebuilt with good local stones from the Tanay quarry. The strong and solid structure standing today was completed in 1783 with slight restoration. The church is a mixture of Philippine colonial design and with some integration of baroque in the façade which has two layers of columns. The main entrance is flanked by lateral niches and the side portal has a elaborate designs. It has five altars with rococo designs. The main altar is silver-planted. The stations of the cross are made of wood relief structures.

Location: Barangay Plaza Aldea, Tanay
How to get there: Accessible by public transport from the town proper.

Our Lady of Antipolo Shrine
Antipolo is known to be the home of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage, Nuestra Señora de la Paz y Buenviaje. History says this miraculous icon has sailed back and forth between Manila and Acapulco eight times and, on several occassions, was credited with saving her galleon from destruction by pirates and Dutch and British blockades. The galleon's safe arrivals were attributed to the miraculous powers of the statuette. It was on 26 November 1626 when the Blessed Virgin from Acapulco was canonized by the Arcbishop of Manila, Michael O'Doherty. Thousands of devotees pay homage to the Shrine of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage.

Town proper of Antipolo
How to get there: Walking distance from the bus and jeepneys terminal
Travel time : 1 ½ hours' from Manila

F. Festival

Palaspas/Domingo De Ramos Festival
Palm Sunday
The most colorful celebrations may be witnessed in Angono. The parish priest, sacristan and disciples parade around the town together with the townspeople and a brass band. As the procession commences, people wave their palm fronds in the air and sing religious songs. The men lay down their mats and the veils of the ladies for the barefoot priest to walk on as they visit and bless four floral stations located in the four corners of the town. The stations also serve as platforms for children to stand on a as they shower abd bless the townsfolk with flower petals and confetti while they beat the ryhthmic pattern of the tunes which the brass band plays.

Holy Week
A re-enactment of the Passion of Christ which starts on the night of Palm Sunday (Palaspas) up to the night of Easter Sunday (Salubong). The Cenaculo, is conducted in the Plaza square on public theaters constructed for purposes, with the participation of village thespians with perpetual vows. They render their services for fee.

Good Friday
Rituals in observance of the suffering, passion, and death of Jesus Christ are observed with steadfast intensity throughout the province, specially in Cainta, sometimes with the actual enactments of the stations of the cross and mailing. From early morning until noontime each Good Friday, members of non-sectarian "cenaculo" companies, walk throughout the main streets of Cainta, usually in the company of penitents.

Holy Week
This is a Holy Week practice which includes religious singing of the Passion of Christ. Salagat and other native dishes/delicacies are served during the activity.

Good Friday
It is a play executive every Good Friday by replaying the funeral of Jesus Christ through a procession.

The Subok
Good Friday
A group of men, after feasting and overnight meditation, gather around the church to wait for the flowerdecked carroza of the Santo Sepulcre, a wooden statue of the dead Christ. They rush forward to insert various objects in the folds of the robes, under the feet, in the hollows of the hands. The image is then loaded with handkerchiefs, bronze medals and pieces of paper inscribed with Latin phrases. The float is encircled by the men with linden hands. After the procession, these men retrieve the objects from the image. Now it is the time for the "subok"-the testing of the talismans by using whips, revolvers, knives and machetes (bolo) throughout the afternoon and evening, or till Saturday. Each one tests the effectivity of his talisman by requesting another man to shoot , whip or stab him.

Salubong Festival
Date: Sabado de Gloria/Easter Sunday
Black Saturday is highlighted by a 3-hour presentation at the patio of the church wherein high-tech stage decorations and sound system are used. Trained production staff assist in the presentation of the "Vigilia ng Muling Pagkabuhay." Easter Sunday Celebration is held in a place called Galilea where the reunion of the Risen Christ with the Virgin Mary is re-enacted. It is facilitated by the removal from Mary's head of the mourning veil by a young girl inside an inverted giant paper flower suspended from bamboo trellis. The petals are mechanically opened by giant toy birds toy birds to reveal the girl inside. It is then followed by a religious dancing of young ladies called Kapitana and Tenyenta, to the tune of "Bati"

Santakrusan Festival
This evening parade is usually graced by the town's crop of beauties portraying the Marian Litany of Titles and assorted biblical characters, dressed in the fairytale clothes and escorted by good-looking bachelors. Under flower-decked arches held by aides, they walk down the towns thoroughfares like kings and queens of yore.

Flores de Mayo Festival
The Flores de Mayo or Flowers of May is an offering to the blessed Virgin Mary. On the first day of May, a procession is held where little girls are dressed immaculate white finery and carry flowers (mainly sampaguita) as an offering to the Image of the Blessed Virgin Mary. A mass is held everyday and devotees offer flowers up to the end of the month.

Paalay Festival
The traditional celebration of the month of flowers in May is celebrated by processions of little girls, offering flowers-locally called the "Paalay". Another activity held is the "Salapang" a practice among townsfolk wherein local officials and their wives offer foods to the people who joined the procession.

Tayo na Antipolo Festival
A month-long celebration to honor the Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage. Devotees are seen taking the much-trodden pat leading to Antipolo. The image, which is already three centuries old, is said to exhibit supernatural powers. On the evenings of April 30, thousands of pilgrims from several places in Metro Manila and the nearby towns begin an annual trek on foot.

San Isidro/Carabao Festival
May 15
Farmers pay tribute to the carabao during the feast day of San Isidro Labrador, their patron saint. On this day, before all the festivities begin, the carabaos are shaved, leaving aesthetic patterns on their back. They are bathed and scrubbed till they glow, theirs toes manicured, their tail combed, plaited and beribboned, and they are crown
With colorful flowers and buntings. A mass is held followed by a procession that ends at the town square where prizes are awarded to the strongest, healthiest, longest- horned, most beautiful and best-trained carabaos. The climax of the day's activities occur when the carabaos race each other across the ricefields.

Higantes Festival
November 22 and 23
This is also a thanksgiving festival in honor of San Clemente, the patron saint of the fishermen. On the actual feast day, the image of San Clemente is carried on a barge on the lake with a fluvial procession participated in by most of the residents of the town. Little children of every barangay called "parehadoras" are dressed in colorful costumes bearing boat paddles and bakya. Then the townfolk and the "higantes" (giants) accompany the image back to the church through a joyful parade with a brass band and "parehadoras."

Santo Entierro
Good Friday
On Good Friday, Christ symbolically dies at three o'clock in the afternoon. His carved image is interred in a niche-like carroza or float covered with glass. Hundreds of male devotees scramble for the chance to bear the image and bear towards the church where it is laid to its final resting place.

San Clemente Festival
November 23
One of the major festivals celebrated by the townfolks of Angono. San Clemente is the patron saint of fishermen, highly revered by the people of Angono, most of whom are fisherfolk. On the actual feast day, the image of San Clemente is carried on a barge in Laguna Lake, in a fluvial procession joined in by most of the residents of the town. The fishermen and their families are dressed in their fishermen's clothes bearing occupational gear- boat paddles, fish nets, traps, etc. and accompany the image back to the church. Little children called "parehadoras" are dressed in colorful costumes and put up a mardi gras-like procession in salutation to the image of San Clemente.

G. Special Interest

The land area, terrain and topography of the Valley meet the criteria for a standard championship golf course. The clubhouse is the venue for social events of its members and guests.

Valley Golf & Country Club

Sumulong Highway, Antipolo
P.O. Box, 706, Manila
Tel. No.: 665-8565 (club house)
How to get there: There are two alternative routes going to Valley Golf. One is through Ortigas Avenue and the other is through the Sumulong Highway (which offers a scenic, easier way to the valley).
Travel time: About 9 kilometers from EDSA and about 6 kilometers from the poblacion.
Facilities: Club house dressing room with 1,500 lockers, the viewing decks for the 9th and 18th greens, bar room for 150 pax, game room for parlor games functionq room for 200 persons, swimming pools with sun deck, driving range with 10 covered berths, pitching putting areas, Parking Area for 200 cars, Restaurant, Chapel, Pro-shop Gymnasium and Sauna.

East Ridge Golf Club

Binangonan, Rizal
Tel. No.: 727-4066 to 69
Booking Address: Antipolo Properties, Inc.
2/F Agora Complex
N. Domingo St., San Juan, Metro Manila


· Sta. Lucia East, Imelda Avenue, Cainta
· Mia Mall, M.L. Quezon Ext. Antipolo
· Suburban Lanes, Cainta
· Imperial Lanes, M.L. Quezon, Antipolo
· Gardenville II Resort, National Road, Tayuman, Binangonan

Art Appreciation Tours
Take a trip to the galleries of Rizal, notably to the Angono, Binangonan, Tanay or Morong art houses where with mere eyesweeps of traditional and contemporary paintings and masterpieces, atraveller can imbibe the culture and the psyche of the Filipino. Visit the galleries of Vicente Manansala in Binangonan, the galleries of Blanco and Nemiranda in Angono, the Angon Art Galleries, and the Pacheco gallery in Morong.

Nature Tripping
Nature tripping near Manila can be had to heart's contest in any Rizal's well appointed natural sites. Try the Daranak Falls in Tanay, and troop to Talim Island to taste the finest catch of the Lake.

Take a tour of churches, in particular during Lenten Season when the entire province turns out in mass to observe the rites of the church. Watch passion plays especially along the streets of Cainta when the folk theater re-enacts the Crucifixion of Christ replete with Roman soldiers in horses and flagellants. Witness the colorful tableau of the Cenaculo, a theatrical presentation performed for free by the townsfolk as a devout practice each season.