Calabarzon Category

Nagcarlan Underground Cemetery

June 9, 2018

Arguably the most popular attraction in the town of Nagcarlan, Laguna is the Nagcarlan Underground Cemetery (Wikipedia). Touted as the country’s only underground cemetery, this octagonal-shaped tourist attraction was constructed by the Fransciscans in 1845 to serve as the town’s cemetery. Due to its cultural importance, it was declared as... (read more)

Fort Drum

June 6, 2018

Most people know about the historic island of Corregidor found at the mouth of Manila Bay. But did you know that Corregidor is just one (albeit very major) part of the American-built defense system in Manila Bay? Other islands that were fortified include Caballo Island which was the site of... (read more)

Shrine of the National Flag

May 28, 2018

Today, May 28, is the National Flag Day and it is the day that everybody in the Philippines is encouraged to display the flag of the Philippines until June 12, the anniversary of the declaration of Philippine Independence. The reason why May 28 is the National Flag Day is because... (read more)

Pacific War Memorial Dome

April 9, 2014

Today, April 9, is a Philippine holiday named Araw ng Kagitingan (Day of Valor) also known as the Bataan and Corregidor Day. This day marks the Fall of Bataan in 1942 when American and Filipino troops surrendered to the invading Japanese forces during World War II. Inside the... (read more)

Kaybiang Tunnel

April 7, 2014

Before 2013, if you wanted to go to the beaches and coves of Nasugbu, Lian, and Calatagan in Batangas, the shortest route was through the popular tourist City of Tagaytay. And as anybody who have been to that city knows, Tagaytay on weekends is chocked with traffic. Fortunately, the Kaybiang... (read more)


March 19, 2014

One of the crazily popular wedding venues near Metro Manila is Caleruega (Facebook page), specifically the Chapel of the Transfiguration whose facade (shown below) is a favorite among wedding photographers. (It’s also possible that they’re sick and tired of taking a photo this chapel already. Hehehe.) The picturesque... (read more)

Fort Sto. Domingo

September 9, 2013

Fort Sto. Domingo is in the local Philippine news yet again. Unless you’re hiding under a rock, you should already know that Janet Lim-Napoles, the alleged mastermind of the 10-billion-peso Pork Barrel Scam, is currently being detained within this fort. Prior to Mrs. Napoles, other high-profile personalities that have been... (read more)

Batangas Racing Circuit

August 26, 2013

I have previously featured a couple of motorsport racing circuits in the country and these are the Carmona Racing Circuit in Carmona, Cavite, and the Subic International Raceway in Subic Bay Freeport Zone. The track of the former is about 1 kilometer long, while the latter’s is 3 kilometers. Well,... (read more)

Mak-Ban Geothermal Power Plant

February 28, 2011

I’ve already featured one geothermal power plant before and that is the one at Tiwi, Albay. Well, if you want to visit a geothermal power plant and you find Albay too far, the nearest one to Metro Manila is the Mak-Ban Geothermal Power Plant located primarily in Bay, Laguna and... (read more)

Dalahican Fish Port

June 6, 2010

Located in Barangay Dalahican in Lucena City is what is probably Quezon province’s largest fish port built on reclaimed land from Tayabas Bay. This is the primary port where the fresh seafood catch from the Sibuyan Sea is delivered and from thereon distributed to many parts of Luzon. Photo by... (read more)

Cavitex Zapote Interchange

March 16, 2010

Almost every weekday, I pass by the Coastal Road on my way to and from the office and there are times when the traffic on the way home gets really bad. The problem is that Coastal Road is the only viable highway for those people living in Cavite and working... (read more)

Kutang San Diego

January 31, 2010

Kutang San Diego (Fort San Diego) is a really small fort built by the Franciscans in in the town proper of Gumaca, Quezon in the latter part of the 18th century. This fort, equipped with at least one canon (shown below), is meant to repel sea pirates from Lamon Bay... (read more)

Blanco Family Museum and Academy

December 31, 2009

Photo by my friend Nina Fuentes Jose “Pitok” V. Blanco, his wife Loreta, and all seven children are all accomplished painters versed in the “Folk Realism” style. What’s quite intriguing is that most of them have had no professional art training, especially the children. This celebrated art family is commemorated... (read more)

Lucena Grand Central Terminal

October 2, 2009

If you’re going to Bicol from the Manila area or to other towns of Quezon province further from Lucena City, then the Lucena Grand Central Terminal should be a stopover in your itinerary. Located along the Diversion Road, the terminal is a huge building catering to commuters from all over... (read more)

Caltex and Petron (SLEX San Pedro)

August 16, 2009

Photo from the website. Back in 2006, I featured the Petron Express Center at NLEX in Marilao, Bulacan. So why not feature something similar along SLEX? Well, there’s plenty of “megastations” along SLEX, but I decided on the Petron-Caltex tandem at Kilometer 29 in San Pedro. The Petron megastation... (read more)

Bonito Island Resort at Culebra Island

July 15, 2009

I’ve featured several solitary island resorts here in Vista Pinas. Those are resorts that have a whole island to themselves. These include Grande Island Resort in Subic Bay, Dos Palmas Arreceffi Island in Puerto Princesa, and Amanpulo in the Sulu Sea. So now I’ll be featuring yet another one and... (read more)

Paseo de Sta. Rosa

June 23, 2009

I’ve featured the Plaza Luisita Commercial Complex last year and it is a popular (and maybe even mandatory) stopover for travelers going to the north from Manila. One popular near-counterpart in the south is Paseo de Sta. Rosa in Sta. Rosa, Laguna. Launched way back in 1997, This strip mall... (read more)

People’s Park in the Sky

May 24, 2009

Last Saturday, May 16, I, together with other OpenStreetMap contributors, went to Tagaytay City for a mapping party (check out my fellow mapper’s blog post about it to learn more). The area assigned for my team to map was the eastern portion which includes the People’s Park in the Sky.... (read more)

Mabini Shrine (Tanauan)

April 8, 2009

There is a shrine dedicated to the hero Apolinario Mabini in Manila at Malacañang Park near the Mabini (Nagtahan) Bridge, but the main Mabini Shrine is the one located in his in hometown of Tanauan City, Batangas. Mabini is called the “brains of the Philippine Revolution” having penned several writings... (read more)

Batangas Country Club

February 11, 2009

The Batangas Country Club was the venue of the team-building outing my company’s team participated in last year. According to a sign at the front gate, the Club styles itself as an international-class resort. Well, I personally don’t think the resort is that classy but there were foreign guests there... (read more)

National Arts Center

November 16, 2008

The National Arts Center is a picturesque institution located at the sides of Mount Makiling 200 meters above sea level in Los Baños, Laguna. This is one of former First Lady Imelda Marcos’ numerous architectural projects and was established in 1976. (Other such projects that have been featured here in... (read more)

Ilijan Power Plant

September 4, 2008

Did you know that the Ilijan Power Plant in Batangas City is the largest electricity-generating facility in the Philippines that uses domestic fuel? The power plant uses natural gas sourced from the Camago-Malampaya gas field located 80 kilometers from Palawan. The natural gas that is extracted is processed offshore near... (read more)

Wawa Dam and the Montalban Gorge

August 21, 2008

Before, I didn’t know that several kilometers from Quezon City in Rodriguez, Rizal lies a popular outdoor destination that’s possibly one of the best places to visit during the summer months. I’m taking about the Wawa Dam and the Montalban Gorge. The Wawa Dam is the white arc that you... (read more)

International Rice Research Institute

July 6, 2008

Since I’ve talked about the Nagacadan Rice Terraces the last time and there’s a global rice supply crisis at the moment, I guess it’s prudent to feature the International Rice Research Institute or IRRI next. This global organization is tasked to study and to improve on methods rice production, to... (read more)

Carmona Racing Circuit

June 16, 2008

Here’s something for all you racing enthusiasts out there! Just outside Metro Manila in Carmona, Cavite is the Carmona Racing Circuit. I believe this is the second-best multi-purpose racing circuit in the country after the Batangas Racing Circuit (which sadly doesn’t have any hi-res satellite photos in Google Maps yet).... (read more)

Hinulugang Taktak

May 2, 2008

Antipolo City in Rizal has a folk song called “Tayo Na Sa Antipolo” and the chorus goes like this: Tayo na sa Antipolo At doon maligo tayo Sa batis na kung tawagin ay Hi, hi, Hinulugang Taktak At doon tayo kumain Ng mangga, suman, kasoy, at balimbing Kaya’t magmadali ka At tayo’y tutuloy na sa Antipolo English translation: Let’s... (read more)

Antipolo Cathedral

March 14, 2008

Next week is Holy Week for Roman Catholics and while many will take advantage of the holidays to go Boracay or Puerto Galera, you might want to swing by Antipolo Cathedral on a pilgrimage instead. Like the Manaoag Shrine in Pangasinan, the cathedral in Antipolo City is a popular pilgrimage... (read more)

Ynares Center

December 30, 2007

If you know something about Filipino politics, then you know that there are certain families in every locality that seem to have made politics a family business. The province of Rizal and the City of Antipolo is no exception, being the fiefdom of the Ynares Family (pronounce the ‘y’ like... (read more)

Angono Petroglyphs

August 21, 2007

Did you know that the Philippines has prehistoric art dated 5,000 years ago? Well, just take a short trip outside Metro Manila to Binangonan, Rizal and see the Angono Petroglyphs. The Angono Petroglyphs1 (pronounced /ang-GO-no/, not /a-NGO-no/) is the oldest known work of art in the country. It features stylized... (read more)

Erap’s Tanay Rest House

August 10, 2007

Continuing our coverage on former President Joseph “Erap” Estrada, let me now turn your attention over to Erap’s rest house in Tanay, Rizal, 70 km east of Manila. Erap was to have been detained at the neighboring Camp Capinpin of the Philippine Army (due north) during his plunder trial at... (read more)

Batangas International Port

July 30, 2007

The Batangas International Port, locally known as the Batangas Pier, is the premier seaport of the CALABARZON region and is located in Batangas City along the shores of Batangas Bay in Batangas. (Whew! Lots of “Batangases” there.) Unfortunately, despite the “International” in its name, Batangas International Port is still primarily a... (read more)

Rizal Shrine (Calamba)

July 24, 2007

Besides the Canlubang Golf Course and Country Club and Barangay Pansol’s numerous hot spring resorts, Rizal Shrine is one of the top tourist draws in the developing City of Calamba. This shrine is is a reconstruction of the ancestral home of Calamba’s greatest son, Dr. José P. Rizal. The original... (read more)

Club Manila East Central

July 15, 2007

If we have a miniature Philippines in Rizal Park, how about a miniature Laguna de Bay Laguna de Bay is the largest lake in the Philippines and I believe that Club Manila East Central, a popular water resort in Taytay, Rizal, sports the largest model of Laguna de Bay as... (read more)

Intel Philippines, Cavite Plant

July 7, 2007

Intel is arguably the most high-tech company to invest in the Philippines. Their main operations in the country is located at their manufacturing plant in General Trias, Cavite where they manufacture and test their microprocessors and flash memory. (I’m not sure if this is where some of their Core 2... (read more)

San Lazaro Racetrack

June 11, 2007

Years ago, when I heard that SM was to put up SM City San Lazaro where the San Lazaro Hippodrome was, I wondered what happened to the racetrack. I guess it shows my ignorance that I only learned recently that the Manila Jockey Club, which manages the Manila property, had... (read more)

Splash Island

June 4, 2007

Summer is over, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have some wet and wild fun. I even think that some rain and drizzle is actually nice. So if you want to enjoy some water fun, Splash Island at Southwoods Ecocentrum in Biñan, Laguna might be an excellent choice since it’s... (read more)

Avilon Zoo

March 26, 2007

If you’re in the Metro Manila area and you want to go to a zoo that’s newer than Manila Zoo and bigger than Malabon Zoo, you should try Avilon Zoo. This 7.5 hectare zoo is found in Rodriguez (formerly Montalban) in Rizal and is less than an hour away from... (read more)

Enchanted Kingdom

June 25, 2006

“The Magic Is Here!” so goes the slogan of Enchanted Kingdom, arguably the country’s most well-known amusement park. This 17-hectare park is located in the city of Sta. Rosa, Laguna and its Space Shuttle roller coaster (a Vekoma Boomerang model) is quite visible from the South Luzon Expressway about 300... (read more)

(Old) South Luzon Expressway Terminus

June 23, 2006

To complement our previous post on the northern end of NLEX is its sibling, the southern end of the South Luzon Expressway, or Exit 50, located in Brgy. Turbina, Calamba City, Laguna. From here, motorists going further can turn east into the heart of Laguna, like Los Baños, Pagsanjan, Sta.... (read more)

Zapote Bridge

April 27, 2006

Spanning the Zapote River between Las Piñas and Bacoor, Cavite is the historic Zapote Bridge. While it is a traffic hellhole nowadays, this bridge is significant because this is where the Battle of Zapote Bridge took place. The Battle of Zapote Bridge was the largest battle of the Philippine-American War. 3,000... (read more)

Peninsula de Punta Fuego

March 26, 2006

In Nasugbu, Batangas, three hours away from Manila via Tagaytay, is the exclusive Peninsula de Punta Fuego residential resorts. The 88-hectare site, mostly sitting on top of a rocky landform jutting out into the South China Sea, features a 9-hole golf course; a club house with its two-decked infinity pool,... (read more)

Sangley Point Naval Base

March 20, 2006

The location of Sangley Point Naval Base is the most probable reason why northern Cavite has hi-res imagery in Google Local. The same can be said for the former U.S. Clark Air Base. But it’s intriguing to note that Subic Bay isn’t in hi-res, and we don’t know why... (read more)

Aguinaldo Monument (Bacoor)

March 11, 2006

At the end of the Coastal Road (officially, the Manila-Cavite Toll Expressway) in Bacoor, Cavite stands a monument to Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo. This landmark features a statue of Aguinaldo holding aloft a sword and riding a horse atop a marble-cased pedestal looking northeast. The statue is an ubiquitous sight for commuters... (read more)

SM City Bacoor

March 7, 2006

Here’s our first mall! SM City Bacoor, located in Bacoor, Cavite, is SM Prime Holding’s sixth mall. It formally opened to the public on July 1997 and has a total floor area of almost 120,000 square meters. SM City Bacoor isn’t the only SM property in Bacoor. Far to the southeast... (read more)

Island Cove Resort

March 1, 2006

Let’s leave the public places a bit and head into the resort and leisure world. Our next feature is Southern Metro Manila’s secret hideaway, the Island Cove Resort and Leisure Park in Kawit, Cavite. This 12-hectare resort is only about an hour away from Manila via the Coastal Road and... (read more)

Aguinaldo Shrine

February 24, 2006

What a better site to show first than the Aguinaldo Shrine in Kawit, Cavite This historical landmark is where the Philippines declared itself independent from Spain. The Aguinaldo Shrine is essentially the ancestral home of Emilio Aguinaldo. The house is now a museum showing memorabilia from Emilio Aguinaldo’s life. To the... (read more)