Let's Travel and Discover the Secrets of ILOILO

WELCOME to Iloilo, A Province that dances with the rhythm of the past and the promise of the future. HALA BIRA!!!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Dinagyang 2009: The Awakening

Excited? Oh yes! I can feel it too... drums rolling, "Hala Biras" roaring and colors exploding into the beat of fun and excitement. This is Dinagyang Festival, the best Tourism Event there is in the Philippines...

Okay! It'll be on January but the Iloilo Dinagyang Foundation and the local Government of Iloilo City have initiated the "PAMUKAW" to liven up the people's thoughts about Dinagyang.

Are you ready to celebrate a season of Life? Who will ever win  the competition? What surprises will be there for both local and foreign tourists? Can you hear it coming? You must!


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Guisi Clearwater Resort

Welcome to Guimaras! A paradise Island overlooking the city of Iloilo. If you're a tourist who wants to spend a peaceful day at the beach without spending much time and money, then the island of Guimaras is definitely for you. 
Nueva Valencia, is a town in Guimaras which is known for its great beaches. One of these is the beach in Dolores, the Guisi Clearwater Beach Resort. This resort is proud of its pinkish white sand, crystal clear waters and a nearby Historical Watchtower. The rooms and cottages are simply affordable whether if you want to visit for just a day or stay for the entire night. There are also facilities around and food is no problem for they will simply catch the freshest fish there is in the sea. Roomrates vary from 400 pesos to 2500 pesos per night. For me, This is the best beach resort there is in Guimaras; clean, serene and simply beautiful.

For more information, contact: 0919-5636-688

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Cabatuan Church: Grand and Massive

Built larger than the usual town church, the people in the early days thought that Cabatuan church in Central Iloilo appeared like a Basilica. The church was then known during the Hispanic Era for its three domes and three facades. It was even dubbed by local publications as 'The Model of Temples'. Today, only two of the three domes survived the 1948 Earthquake but the three facades are still intact.
The whole structure emphasizes simplicity and massiveness, yet the overall use of red bricks add up a sense of sophistication. Now, I wonder how many bricks were baked to built a church this huge?
The architectural style fuses Neoclassicism and Baroque, perhaps influenced by Latin American Colonial Art. The Retablo inside the church is also considered to be the tallest retablo there is in all of Iloilo. It is built of yellowish stone, a feature that churches in Iloilo is known for because retablos in other regions are built of wood.
Cabatuan Church is considered the largest red brick Hispanic structure in all of the Visayas, and perhaps, the entire Philippines. It's size and beauty make it one of the architectural wonders of the country.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The People's Park in La Paz

Looking for a place teeming with activities? If the weekend brings boredom, why not visit The freedom park at La paz? It is perhaps the busiest park there is in the city. The park is considered the widest public leisure park in Iloilo City. It can host sports events like soccer and badminton.
If you want to have a good afternoon stroll, you might want to look at the cool scene of the man-made lagoon at the left corner of the park; play some ball games with friends in the nearby courts or have a good excercise to stay fit and healthy.

Monday, October 6, 2008

The Artistic Lapaz Church

There are three notable Red brick structures in the province of Iloilo; the historical San Jose Church, the gargantuan Cabatuan Church and the Lapaz Church. These three churches are very similar in the fact that all of them have twin domed belfries and neoclassic facades. The Lapaz Church however is more on Greek inspired architecture which makes it artistic in its very own way.
It's construction was initiated during the late nineteenth century. Compared to San Jose and Cabatuan churches, The one in Lapaz has the most decorated facade. The Domes of the belfry are also very interesting because they resemble slight Russo-Byzantine styles, a pleasing deviation from the usual onion or bell shaped domes.
Amongst the many churches of Iloilo, this one in Lapaz, may not be as popular but surely, it is one sight that is equally pleasing to the eyes, a fine structure that showcases fine Ilonggo artistry.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Elegant Locsin Mansion

Jaro is known for its numerous collections of Heritage Buildings from the 18th and the 19th centuries. Jaro was once the center of Hispanic rule in the the Province of Iloilo. It was where wealthy Ilonggos lived and built Mansions of Elegance and Prestige. One of the most photographed mansions in Jaro is the Locsin House which peacefully lies just outside the Metropolitan Cathedral. The Mansion is like any typical Hispanio-Filipino Colonial House... simple yet elegant. With continuous restoration and preservation, the mansion remained as one of the most attractive sights in the town of Jaro.
Tuscanic Pilasters flank the three entrance doors which are of varied architectural styles and a continuous Capiz-shell window dominated the upper level. The interior is reinforced by stained glasses, antique furnitures and wares that provides a timeless and classic atmosphere.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Intricate Facade of Miagao Church

What makes Miagao Church Iloilo's most visited historical site?

Undeniably, this sandstone church has the most artistic sculptured facade there is in Iloilo, or perhaps in all of the Philippines. It is a distinct and grand description of what we call Filipino Baroque.
The entire facade that must have been inspired by Churrisguresque Architecture appears more like an intricate Retablo and is overwhelmed with carvings of local botanicals, Rococo curves, and Classical pilasters. These curves generate an eternal movement which further creates an imaginative array of fansy and enchantment. Local botanicals of the tropical archipelago dominate the pediment of the facade. Here, there is an explosion of floral fantasy where San Cristobal, with the Child Jesus on his shoulder holds a coconut tree while being flanked by more tropical plants with some still on intricate vases. All these features and details make the church's facade extraordinary... something very magical...something very unusual.

Friday, September 12, 2008

The Masonic Temple

Designed in New World Neoclassic Architecture that was popularized in the Philippines by the Americans in the 20th century, the Masonic Temple is one of the most historical Sites found in the old square of Plaza Libertad. It is beautiful example of a 20th century building that gives emphasis to balance and simplicity. The Details of the Temple are highly inspired by Greek and Renaissance Art which makes it blend well with the neighboring historic structures that is of Hispanic and American Influences.
The Temple is a religious icon that is almost facing another religious wonder, the San Jose Church. The Masonic Temple is a beautiful structure that cradles a tapestry of belief and tradition that beholds the essences of Faith and Hope.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Cathedral of Jaro

One of the earliest cathedrals that was built in the Philippines was The Jaro Cathedral or known as the church Our Lady of Candles. Unlike most of the Hispanic structures in Iloilo that were built either of bricks or of yellowish sandstones, the cathedral was built of cream like fossil stones.
It is mainly designed of baroque architecture emphasized by slopes and curves entwining with many neoclassic features. The stained glass Romanesque windows contribute a unique balance between the Baroque and Classic features of the Church. The small rose window at the upper half of the facade which is typical of Gothic churches also deviates from the church's Baroque dominance.
The cathedral has been a part of Iloilo's rich history. It is perhaps the most important Roman Catholic Shrine in all of the Region and is considered as the heart of Catholicism in the island. Many important events in history happened in the very grounds of the Cathedral. Hundreds of pilgrims gather every year in February to celebrate the anniversary of the miraculous patron Saint whose statue is believed to have outgrown its niche. The Feast of Our Lady of Candles is also one of the largest festivals in the country that is filled with traditions practiced from generations to generations.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Santa Barbara Church and her Walls of Memories

It is known to many that the northern parts of Iloilo keeps a wondrous tapestry of history that will always be manifested by many beautiful sceneries that have been viewed in a similar way by our forefathers many centuries ago.
Santa Barbara, a flourishing town in central Iloilo that leads to the northlands is known for a beautiful church of fine yellowish stone. This church is a beautiful remnant of a rich history, a structure that projects the elegance of culture sprawling within artistry. The convent of the church is adored by many tourist because it has this "ancient-like" feel within its red brick walls. Arches and pillasters dominate the ground level that is highlighted by a spacious courtyard while the porch of the upper level is entranced by Moorish-like details on wood that suggest of Southern Spanish architecture.
Santa Barbara church is the cradle of the Ilonggo revolution against the Hispanic rule. It has witnessed an array stories that could had happened years before anyone of us were born. An exceptional collection of History and Culture makes the ancient walls of this structure as intact as the stones that it was made of...So who needs a history book when you've got history afore you?

Monday, July 14, 2008

Cabatuan: A Grand View

The sight of hills and of the colonial remnants of what was once a Hispanic Era town will surely amaze travelers as soon as they arrive in the peaceful town called Cabatuan. Settled peacefully between the great Tigum River and the magnificent array of hills of the northlands, the town started as a small village of Brave Warriors of 'Sinulog' or Death Dance. As the Spanish regime flourished towards the depth of the island, Cabatuan then became a town that was dedicated to the Patron Saint San Nicolas de Tolentino. The discovery of Cabatuan was preceded by planting a molave cross in the highest hill of the town and for almost three hundred years, that very site became a notable pilgrim destination. Cabatuan's most prominent tourist site is the grand neoclassic church that was built of red bricks. Being the largest red brick church there is in all of the Visayas, the church is indeed a sight to behold, a treasure of a glorious past.
A compliment to the massive church is the town square which is by every inch an example of a Spanish Plaza that is cornered by huge park markers resembling chess pawns. Cabatuan holds art and creativity in things we least expect of, it is a peaceful place that showcases wondrous destinations and delightful surprises.

Monday, July 7, 2008


This is an actual story from someone who has experienced how Typhoon Frank made a dramatic entrance to the province of Iloilo and to its neighboring provinces. I know how everything took place. I know how people have to let go of valuable possessions. I know how many places have been damaged. I know, because I was there.

It has been two weeks since that typhoon came to 'visit' Iloilo, many typhoons had come and the people have gone tired of the usual thing that happens all over again.
However, what happened last June 21, 2008 was not 'history repeating itself', it was one of the strongest typhoons that came to the Ilonggo Nation, something that gave all of us a lesson.

"It was seven in the morning and I was ready, all fixed, my white uniform suited me well, and I have an hour and thirty minutes left until duty starts at the hospital. As I took the jeepney away from our house, everything seemed well. Though it was raining, there seemed to be nothing to worry about. As I reached the city, water was swelling up a few streets but it didn't worried me for it'll go after the rain would stop or so. I was in the hospital and I was oblivious about a storm hitting the city, I mean, there's rain, there's wind but no one said anything about a storm.
As I left the hospital early that afternoon, it was quite odd since not a jeep was to be found, I mean, the street was almost completely empty except for some vehicles passing through. It took a while before a jeep passed. As I reached my university, flood was already surrounding the school. It was like the school was built with rivers running around it. I went to the dormitory changed to my civilian clothes, washed my white uniform and took a bath. I was getting hungry and some of my dorm mates asked me to go with them to a mall since we were all starved. I went with them to the mall and all was quite well, we met up with our other dorm mates and there were like thirteen of us hanging around.

At five o'clock in the afternoon, the mall was then surrounded by water. There was a lot of people panicking and crying all around us. The mall became an evacuation center in an instant. We were not aloud to go outside since it is very dangerous, the current was fast and the highways were like rivers and fields were like lakes. We were stranded inside that mall overnight. The salesladies, the shoppers, tourist and more people stayed too and people slept in the food court. By morning the flood has left but it carried many things away too.

Bridges were broken, damaged and nulled. Houses were destroyed and businesses were devastated. In some parts of the province, transportation was even distorted. It was like the storm created a new picture not worth looking at. Many lives were taken away as well and for the first time in my life, I know how to become one of the victims of a great storm."

Ilonggos need you. I have lost many things as well, my camera is broke and I have to save money to buy a new one, My father's business was paralyzed after a vital bridge collapsed in our town. I hope you can help the victims of typhoon Frank. Iloilo Needs You. We need you.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

The Mysterious Ruins of Miagao

It is not in Turkey or Greece, people. The Ionic pillars and the semi-arched niches are the only details that could give a clue to what this mysterious structure in Miagao was centuries ago. Surrounded by wild flowering vines, the mysterious yellow-stone ruins stands within the cemetery of the town before the Romanesque Chapel.
It is known to folks as a pre-Hispanic structure but the details on its remaining walls suggest typical Spanish colonial architecture. Its mysterious existence is a reminder that there is a great story behind the place where it was established.
This new discovery is worth preserving for it is an icon that hides a magnificent story that is yet to be revealed. If it existed and was ruined in a time when Moro pirates would raid the shores, then it is an icon of the people's hardships and trials. It is a reminder that Miagao is indeed one magnificent town that has many stories worth unveiling.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Racsos Resort: Too Close to Nature

Before arriving in the town of Guimbal, a tourist may pass by Racsos Woodland Resort, which is one of the town's popular resort destinations. Racsos is known as the only zoo-resort in the island of Panay. Animals of varied kinds live in Racsos. At the Aviary, a visitor can enjoy seeing different kinds of birds from the most common kinds of sparrows to the rarest species of doves, eagles and hawks. At the heart of the resort is a sanctuary for deers, peacocks and wild ducks.
The Cave Museum, which is a replica of a real cave guides a traveler through a dark walk of exhibits of stuffed wild animals like bears and jaguars and realistic prehistoric cave painting replicas.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Convento de Patnongon

Patnongon is a town in the Western parts of Antique, Iloilo's neighboring province. It once had a beautiful Roman Catholic church that was destroyed in the second world war. However, the old convent was spared and is now considered a National Historical Treasure.. This beautiful yellowish stone structure deviates from the usual 'Bahay na Bato' architecture because instead of squat windows, lofty terraces dominate the second level of the building. This feature is common in houses in Spain and Portugal.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Anhawan Beach Resort

It's not in the Caribbeans people, appears like it is somewhere in Jamaica or Panama but no. Anhawan Beach resort is a premiere resort in the province of Iloilo. It is located in the town of Oton and is accessible by any means of transportation.The Resort has large thatched cottages blending with the brownish gray sand of the Ilonggo beach, a good way to relax with the fresh sea breeze under some cool shade. The entrance fee is 100 pesos but it is consumable which means that you can use the ticket to buy food, go horse riding and bathe in the pool while some barbecue is being grilled on . Perfect isn't it?
Well a summer in the beach is a classic Filipino thing, right? so why not take the Anhawan Experience? It's so worth it that you will want to go back again, again and again.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Hamtik Cemetery

Hamtik is a historical town in a neighboring province of Antique. Here lies the oldest Spanish Filipino Church in the entire Antique province. Built by Spanish conquistadores, the Hamtik Church was completed using dark gray stones with simple baroque designs. After the construction of newer church, the church ground was turned into a cemetery and the small stone church was turned into a cemetery chapel.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Molo Church: Grand and Gothic

The magnificent towers, the dark gray coral stonewalls, and the grand battle between the elements of Romanesque and Gothic features all contribute to make Molo Church appear as if it was built in the time of Kings and Queens. The church is built by combining Gothic with Classic art dominantly proven by the complimenting effect of the Romanesque central dome and the Gothic twin towers. The Corinthian columns which flank the aisle to the altar each hoist a female saint, a unique aspect that makes the whole edifice not like the usual.
Mistaken as a castle by many tourists, Molo Church is considered the tallest Historical structure in all of Panay Island. It is known by many as the women's church and a photographer's favorite.
Once inside, everyone can feel the essence of solemnity by looking at the biblically inspired masterpieces painted on the walls, wooden artworks like the artistic pulpits, niches and the five grand retablos that highlight the whole beauty of the interior, no wonder Dr. Jose Rizal called it a 'pretty' church.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Leganes Church: The Mecca of Iloilo

Iloilo is a known religious province and the number of pilgrim sites scattered all over the land testify the Ilonggo's strong faith and devotion to God. Amongst these shrines of faith, the church of San Vincente Ferrer in the town of Leganes is perhaps the most visited because people from all over the country would come to pay homage and display their acts of faith with hopes that the desires of their hearts might be fulfilled.
Declared as a diocesan shrine, the imposing baroque structure stands facing the town plaza as it struck passersby with its captivating beauty. The facade is an elaborate example of the usual baroque church common in the Philippines and in other countries around Europe. Without the canopy, the facade would have shared a lot similarities with the Church of Saint Theresa in Lithuania. Though it was just recently rebuilt, the architects and engineers did choose the best details that could make an astonishing facade that depitcs nothing else but elegance, faith and magnificence.

Friday, March 14, 2008

The Celso Ledesma Mansion

Located in Ortiz St., downtown Iloilo, the Celso Ledesma Ancestral Mansion is one of the most beautiful heritage houses with a preserved elegance that is very appealing to a traveler's eye. It is a Neoclassic structure common in the early 20th century during the border of the late Spanish Colonization and Early American Occupation.
Though Neoclassic architecture is the predominant style that is being encompassed by this mansion, it is noticeable that the gate pillars are conquered by a demanding array of medieval inspired eagles instead of the usual urns or finials that are used as classical ornaments. Almost every part of the mansion is preserved very well that someone may never think that it has been there already for many decades.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The Gargantuan Cabatuan Church

Many people would agree that the most beautiful colonial churches in the Philippines are found in the Visayas. Indeed, this cluster of islands in the heart of the Philippines is the haven of historical shrines of faith. Using red to brownish bricks as the only medium to create a magnificent temple, the Cabatuan church became the largest red brick structure in the Visayas after it was completely finished in 1866.
Cabatuan Church is so large that many tourist are awed by it's massiveness and would ask of why early villagers built a gargantuan church like it. Tall, Artistic and Massive, it is an epitome of grand temples just like those in Latin American Countries since it appeared like it was inspired by Peruvian Classical Architecture
The twin belfries are unique and compelling that no one will find any other bell tower just like them anywhere else in the country. The three facades of Neoclassic and Early Renaissance Architecture blends well with the baroque elements the burgeoned many parts of the temple.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Hotel Del Rio

Situated along the Iloilo River, Hotel del Rio in Del Pilar Street, Molo is one of the premiere hotels there is in the city. Its most spectacular feature that no other hotel in Iloilo can offer is the view of the magnificent and tranquil Iloilo River. It is a recommended place for jam packed travelers who need a peaceful place to stay.If you are searching for great food, comfortable rooms, friendly and hospitable staffs, then Hotel del Rio is your stop. You don't need to travel far to find malls, schools, historic and touristy sites in the city. Hotel del Rio is so accessible to the public that you can reach your preferred destination in no time.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Remembering Old Jaro

If Ilocos Sur has Vigan and Manila has Intramuros, here in Iloilo, we have Jaro. Many would agree that there is no other town in Iloilo that might surpass Jaro's colonial era atmosphere. Why? It is because that when you are in Jaro, you would notice that an 18th to an early 20th century building is standing beside another historical edifice or is a few meters away from a known heritage site. This means that almost every street has one or more historical site to be proud of and that when you are along the public square or commonly known as plazas, then, you might realize that almost everything in front of you is a gift of history. When you speak of the languages of architecture, you will surely be mesmerized of Jaro's varied classical 18th and 19th century Hispanio-Filipino houses as they mix along with the 20th century American inspired art deco buildings. Therefore, it is quite obvious that a walk within Jaro's old town area will surely fill your history notes and satisfy your camera films.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

The Magic of San Jose Church

If there is any tourist destination in Iloilo that never fails to satisfy me whenever I visit, it would be the Parish Church of San Jose in Plaza Libertad. The Church of San Jose is the queen of old Iloilo or the downtown city. It may not be as popular as the magnificent St. Anne Church in Molo or the miraculous St. Elizabeth of Hungary Cathedral in Jaro, but it is undoubtedly the most historical religious structure built in the entire city.
The beauty of San Jose Church looms unmindful of its time frame, it is as perfect as it has always been whether it is sunrise or sunset. It's artistic neoclassic facade with few details of greek, byzantine and tuscan architecture speaks of what a perfect Spanish Colonial Era structure is.According to history, the church was about to be bombed in the second world war when a false alarm was raised that Japanese soldiers were using the structure as a hideout. However, the alarm was proven wrong just before the church is to be destroyed. Miraculously, San Jose church is the only religious edifice in Iloilo that has survived the 1948 Earthquake calamity, which destroyed many of the beautiful Spanish and American Colonial structures in the Region

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Historic Calle Real In Dinagyang Season

Have you ever imagined historic Calle Real without the hustling vehicles?
Iloilo's Heritage Street appeared like a touristy destination when foreign and local tourists flocked to witness the Dinagyang Street dancing competition. Traffic was closed and the main roads of downtown Iloilo was only opened to those who are willing to beat the heat and stroll around the city's historic corner.
Many of the buildings in Calle Real matched the festive mood of Dinagyang as colorful rays of banderitas showered the street with fun-filled colors. With a single look, a tourist may appreciate the beauty of Colonial architecture where Asian and European architectures are merged in one place. If further restorations will be push through, Calle Real may become one of Asia's Historic Business Centers just like the San Ma Lo in Macau.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Dinagyang Festival: A Celebration of Life

January is considered as the Philippines' Festival Season. Three notable festivals from three cities showcase the extravagance of their lively cultures... The Sinulog of Cebu, the Ati-atihan of Aklan and the Dinagyang of Iloilo.
Dinagyang Festival, like Sinulog and Ati-atihan commemorates the Christianization of the natives. Dancing warriors in full regalia, accompanied by lively drums, shows how the native Filipinos glorify the child Jesus or the 'Santo NiƱo'. Noted as the 'Best Tourism Event in the Philippines' Dinagyang is an explosion of colors, reinvention of culture and an evolution of a tradition. It is a collection of different tribes competing in the 'Ati Contest', which is the very highlight of the Festival. Here, we don't see warriors battling but instead, we'll find them dancing. Their spears are not made to pierce and their shields are not armors but accouterments made to highlight buoyant colors and luridly spirited moves as the essences, of religion, tradition, culture and music are merged to create a calvacade of varied dances bursting with life.The festival is held at the fourth week of January in downtown Iloilo. Crowds, may they be local or foreign, enjoy a day filled with life, music and excitement as the yelling of "Hala Bira" which could possibly mean "move for more" or "Dance for More" souls up the entire event.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

The Ruins of Leon Church

The Church St. Catherine of Alexandria in the town of Leon was planned to become the largest temple in Panay Island. It is a three nave church of Byzantine architecture which is built of limestones possibly quarried from the nearby mountains.
The facade of Leon church is decorated by doors and windows with multi layered arches, typical of a byzantine and Romanesque structure. Two angels guarding an Augustinian symbol of the transfixed heart, possibly inspired by the Spanish Coat of Arms, is carved on the triangular pediment.
The church was never finished and some parts remained in Ruins. The apse, with few 'retablos' left unfinished have neoclassic elements with intricate Corinthian carvings. Though unfinished, the essence of its massiveness can still be seen through the facade and its capacious interior.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

A Mansion in Calle Mabini

A tour of Iloilo will definitely showcase a calvacade of majestic churches and grandiose mansions. But what makes these houses more than the usual? Why are they priced so much even if they look aged and worn out? Well, for an old world province like Iloilo, antiques are considered priceless.
A number of mansions possibly built before or in the early 1900's are scattered all over the city and the province. these are remnants of a colonial past, of a city that is loyal to the Spanish Crown.There is a hidden treasure along Mabini Street in the city. There lies a medieval inspired mansion that has a 'castle-like' appearance. The Classical wholeness of the mansion is reimposed by the renaissance arch windows and the lofty terrace of Neoclassic artistry. Like a medieval castle, battlements are used to crown the walls of the house, thus, giving it a more massive appearance. A closer look and one can see the fine details like tiny rosettes and carved faces used to decorate the window frame. Though worn by time, the mansion still exudes a life in monochrome. Indeed, it is vintage and being one makes it very special.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Dinagyang "can you hear the drums?"

It is January and it means that after a few more naps, it'll be DINAGYANG! The very festival which is noted to be the Best Tourism Event in the country. Dinagyang aims to strengthen it's renowned reputation and make more people caught in amazement.
The opening salvo, a 'teaser' or perhaps an 'appetizer' of the real event, will be witnessed on January 18. The 'Ati contest' is scheduled on January 27 which is followed by the awarding ceremony.
Before the 'Ati Contest', a tribal battle of dance and music will be experienced at the Kasadyahan, a similar competition of tribes from the different parts of Panay Island. The entire event will then be finalized by a thanksgiving ceremony at the San Jose Parish Church.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Lambunao Church

The town of Lambunao is said to be Iloilo's little Bagiuo since it is located in the highlands approaching the mountainous north. It is known as the haven of majestic waterfalls and the mysterious lake "Tinagong Dagat". However, the town is also known for a beautiful 18th century Spanish Colonial Era Church that looks more like it was built of chocolate and caramel rather than limestones. With ornate decorations such as intricate finials, balusters, and massive ionic columns, a light baroque essence grows out of the Neoclassic wholeness of the structure. It was completely finished in 1890 and appeared just like a colonial church in Latin America. In the 1900's the church suffered heavily from the second world war and the 1948 earthquake.
With belfries towering in front of the town plaza, St. Nicholas de Tolentino church is a beautiful structure that can make onlookers appreciate the beauty of classical architecture. It is a priceless heritage that must be preserved and restored.