June 10, 2019 – Ally Soriano
Whether you’re halfway through summer or just about to dip your toes into the pool, sometimes it’s hard just get those haphazardly thrown together plans of your barkada to come off the drawing board and into real life. Summer is all about making a splash, and it’s probably the perfect time to get immersed in the multitude of festivals happening all around the country. Whether cultural or religious, you’re sure to leave each of these festivals with an enriched soul.
Celebrate Nationalism at the Kalayaan Festival
With only a handful of days left until Independence day, consider celebrating it in what is considered to be the Cradle of the Philippine Revolution: Kawit, Cavite. The Kalayaan Festival provides the perfect backdrop for immersing yourself in the city’s rich history. Experience the country’s glorious past in the Kalayaan Festival that lasts from May 28 until June 12 with its colorful float parade, rhythmic street dancing, various beauty pageants, and the local trade fair.
Pig out at the Parada ng Lechon
If the beautiful beaches of Batangas aren’t enough to draw you in, this yearly food fest that takes place in the province of Balayan just might do the trick. It’s a celebration that falls on the 24th of June and boasts an entire day filled with succulent roast pigs dressed in a variety of amusing outfits that are paraded and doused with water during what the locals call the “basaan.”
This festival is one of many that celebrate the Feast of Saint John the Baptist across the country (spanning from San Juan City, Batangas, Davao del Norte, Bataan, Misamis Oriental, and Bulacan.) If your friends are worried about their beach bodies, lecture them on body positivity and eat away.
Experience the artistry of the Pintados-Kasadyaan Festival
Just before June ends in the urban town of Tacloban, the Pintados-Kasadyaan Festival takes us back to a time where the most intricate and aesthetic of art was displayed not on walls but on the bodies of our ancestors. It celebrates the body-painting traditions of valiant native tattooed warriors, called Pintados, in olden Leyte. During the festival, the streets are filled with people bathed in bold and dramatic colors that mirror the province’s rich culture and history. At the same time, the festival also pays homage to Sto. Niño de Tacloban and his feast day, the 29th of the month.
Despite being the second religious festival on our list, Pintados-Kasadyaan is colorfully unique and is definitely worth a visit.
Delve into history at the Sandugo Festival
You may have heard of the phrase “blood is thicker than water.” Though often being interpreted as meaning that familial bonds are the strongest and most important. However, if we take a look at the full proverb, it actually says “the blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb.” This means that the bonds formed by choice and by friendship is stronger than the ones you were born with.
And it’s this bond that was formed on March 16, 1565, between Datu Sikatuna and Spanish conquistador Miguel López de Legazpi in Tagbilaran City, Bohol. The Treaty of Friendship is celebrated for the whole month of July with beauty pageants, dance competitions, and re-enactments of the “blood pact” or Sandugo.
Another festival marked by its lively and colorful celebrations, the T’nalak Festival commemorates the vibrant abaca cloth woven by the women of the local T’boli tribe in South Cotabato. The cloth symbolizes the diversity of the province with its multiple ethnic tribes that result in a unique blend of culture, tradition, and heritage only found on this particular island. It’s celebrated during the whole foundation month of South Cotabato but particularly during July 11 to 17.
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