March 29, 2012

Siquijor’s Magic: St. Isidore Church and Convent

St. Isidore Church | Lazi, Siquijor, Philippines The town of Lazi is located fifteen kilometers from San Juan. It is the home of the popular St. Isidore Labradore Church and Convent. Known as the largest Convent in the Asian region, the structure is situated at the southern edge of Siquijor surrounded by acacia trees. The planning and construction of this religious edifice was started by the Augustinian Recollects in the year 1857 and was finalized by Filipino artisans twenty seven years later. The convent as well as the church was listed as a National Historical Shrine during the ’70s.
March 28, 2012

Where Does Siquijor’s Magic Come from?

Siquijor, Siquijor, Philippines While sitting under the thick foliage of Acacia trees lining Dumaguete’s boulevard, we spied a blur of an island riding the edges of the sea. “Siquijor,” a friend said. The way the tongue curls for “jor” elicits an immediate longing to walk its beaches and start a conversation with a fisherman about the lights that can be seen across the strait. Whereas Dumaguete’s night was images of lights and young love, Siquijor’s of witchcraft and isolation. Yet, its appearance from afar is a big deception. Perhaps to mislead its visitors. Or perhaps to draw them more. I […]
March 14, 2012

Reclaiming Memories: From the Leaping Kan-irag Falls to Mt. Kan-irag

Kan-irag Falls | Budlaan, Talamban, Cebu City, Philippines “Nangatol na akong tiil, Jon. Una lang ta nila na?” “Err. But I already forgot the trail, Ton,” I admitted. My last trek from Kan-irag Falls to Mt. Kan-irag was last August. The trail was vague in my memory. But the idea of trekking with trails half-remembered appealed to me. I said yes.
March 9, 2012

River-Trekking to Casaroro Falls

Casaroro Falls | Valencia, Dumaguete, Philippines Casaroro Falls is “lodged deep into the rock crevices of the rugged Valencia mountains. With an astounding height of 100 feet, the water plunges into a deep cold basin before it flows down to a stream.” Of course, with a description like that, it left me wanting to jump into the water roaring in my head. Fellow mountaineers, who have scaled up Mt. Talinis—also known as Cuernos de Negros or the Horns of Negros—often say “nindot ang Casaroro.” Aside from the neighboring volcanic lakes, it is the temporary solitude for the terrain-bitten climbers.