The almost four centuries of Spanish rule in the Philippines left us with a lot of influences and legacies including some grand Catholic churches. In the province of Albay and even in the entire Bicol Region, among that really stand out is the one in the town of Daraga. Different versions of history tell us of the church’s colorful past. Daraga then was just a small village of Budiao, the name given by Franciscan missionaries in this settlement located in the southern slopes of Mayon…Continue Reading “Albay: The Picturesque Nuestra Señora dela Porteria Church of Daraga”


Who would have thought that the quiet and laid back town of Naujan in the island of Mindoro hides awesome surprises? Well, perhaps only Mindorenses know. Thankfully though, I was able to see some of its hidden treasures. I was in Puerto Galera early this year for the Malasimbo International Music Festival on a trip sponsored and organized by the Tourism Promotion Board of the Department of Tourism. Part of our itinerary was a day trip to the town of Naujan where we were able…Continue Reading “Surprises in Naujan”

Tukon Chapel

“This is where I want to get married!” That’s the thought playing on my head when I first saw the chapel on the hill of Tukon. It is one of the icons of Basco and the even the entire province of Batanes. A picture we often see in social media sites, blogs, magazines and promotional materials of the place, a proven eye-catching and curiosity invoking sight because of its captivating aura. But seeing it in real is a different thing, because it is more beautiful…Continue Reading “Basco: The Chapel on the Hill of Tukon”

Paoay Church

Ilocos is home to some of the Philippine’s oldest churches, one that is always being mentioned when talking about the region is the imposing St. Augustine Church of Paoay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It takes almost two decades to complete the construction of this massive edifice which was started by the Augustinian friars led by Father Antonio Estavillo in 1694 and completed in 1710. It is made up of coral stone and bricks with 24 enormous buttresses on the both sides and at the…Continue Reading “UNESCO World Heritage Site: Paoay Church”

Bato Church

When the Spaniards came to Catanduanes Island in the latter part of 16th century, they introduced Catholicism, established parishes and built churches just like in any other islands in the Philippines. A legacy that the present day Catanduanes values until today. One of the churches they built is the St. John the Baptist Church in the town of Bato, Province of Catanduanes. Although the parish and its original wooden church was established in the late 1500s, the presently standing stone church is said to be…Continue Reading “Catanduanes: The Heritage Church of Bato”

Bantay, Ilocos Sur

For someone going to or leaving the Ilocos Sur capital of Vigan, one that will certainly not be missed is this old yet captivating structure, obviously noticeable from the main road before entering the heritage town, ready to steal ones attention, the old bell tower of the town of Bantay. The old belfry of Bantay Bantay, a neighboring town of Vigan City to the east, is one of the oldest parishes in the region and in the country. Its icons are the brick red church…Continue Reading “The Proud Bantay”