5.01.2014

Binangonan Rizal

Binangonan is a gem waiting to be discovered by curious travelers. Unlike its neighboring towns of Angono and Taytay, the town is on its primal stages on tourism projects, but with undeniable rustic beauty and old-town charisma accompanied with its rich culture and traditions plus the accessibility from the Metro, this town is definitely a diamond in the rough.

The Municipality of Binangonan is a first class urban municipality in the province of Rizal, Philippines. According to the 2010 census, it has a population of 274,179 inhabitants in 54,836 households in census. It has a land area of 6,634 hectares (16,390 acres).
A thriving fish port and fishing industry is found in Binangonan, having a long coast line facing the Laguna de Bay, including the western part of Talim Island. The plant of Rizal Cement and Grandspan are in Binangonan as well. Their main livelihood are fishing and farming.
With the continuous expansion of Metro Manila, the municipality is now part of Manila's conurbation which reaches Cardona in its easternmost part, although there are efforts underway to convert it into a city.
-Wikipedia

In a good-mood for a weekend joyride with family or friends?
Here is a list of must-visit places in Binangonan...

Sta. Ursula Parish Church

It is a 200-year old church dedicated to the Virgin & Martyr, Saint Ursula. The church is located at the heart of the town and considered as an integral part of life among its townspeople.
Originally a chapel built in the 15th century by Franciscan Missionaries, the church administration where then handed over to Jesuits and then transferred to Augustinians only to be returned by the people to the Franciscans in 1737.
It was built from 1782 to 1800 and renovated in 1853.
This is also the start and end point for the famous Binangonan Holy Week Procession that includes the Giwang-Giwang or Santo Entiero (Dead Christ), 

Giwang Giwang is a local word which means “to sway incessantly”.

The Dead Christ is the center of the Good Friday procession that usually starts around 4PM and ends around 2-3AM the following day. Devotees nab their way to its Calandra or bier carrying the Dead Christ to grab a hold and hope for blessings and forgiveness hence the swaying of the sepulcher.


Mt.Tagapo
A dagger-shaped island at the heart of Laguna de Bay, Talim Island is endowed with mountains and hills such as Mt. Tagapo. Also known as Mt.Susong Dalaga (Maiden's Breast) due to its peak that resemble's a young woman's breast.

The surrounding areas are covered with bamboos which most of the native used for living creating furniture, toothpicks etc. Hence the name Tagapo, from 'taga' which means 'to chop'.
Major jump-off is Brgy. Janosa in Binangonan and will require 2 hours to reach the summit.
PinoyMountaineer.com labeled it as a Minor climb with 2/9 difficulty.
Kalbaryo
Located at Brgy. Libid, it is a 100+ steps that will lead you to the foot of a 15 feet. metal cross resembling Mt. Calvary. It is a popular destination for pilgrims and for curious folks who wants a bird's eye view of the whole town of Binangonan and its surroundings.
It was rumored that a religious man erected the first cross in that hill and that signaled the community to build a chapel in commemoration of Saint Helena and his son Constantine, founders of the True Cross of Jesus' Crucifixion.

Left picture shows the stairway and the right picture shows a ruined chapel.

Puente del Diablo

It is actually a peninsular hill about 20 meters high extending out some 100 meters in to the waters of Laguna de Bay. During summer when it has no vegetation growing from its many crags and cracks, its huge somewhat rectangular rocks give it the appearance of a ruined massive stone-bridge.The story goes that in the early part of the Spanish period, there lived in a sitio of barrio Pilapila (about 2 kilometers southeast of the poblacion or town proper of Binangonan) a beautiful maiden whose hand was sought in marriage by many siutors. The low hill on which their bahay-kubo or nipa hut stood is today still called Pulo though now connected to the mainland, suggesting that the place was once a small island.

The girl was a pious woman who went to church on the poblacion as there was yet no chapel in the nearby barrio of Pilapila at that time.

Among the girl's suitor was said to be a handsome European who in all appearances was a nobleman, he sported a thin moustache, and dressed in a black suit complete with cane and top hat. And while the other suitors had simply tired out in pursuing their quest of winning the girl's afffection, this foreigner kept up his courtship in earnest.

But it seemed the girl was determined to stay out of any romanntic relationship, being devoted to religious and social work. She devised innumerable excuses to stave many suitors. Then, perhaps in keeping woth the ancient courtship custom where a girl does not flatly sa "no" to a man but instead demands the accomplishment of dificult tasks, she confronted the European with a really impossible proposition. SHe asked him to construct a stone-bridge from their place to the opposite bank fo Laguna de Bay, a distance of about 15 kilometers across the lake. And the bridge must be completed overnight! With that, the girl hoped to put to an end his persistent courtship.

But alas! The man took up the challenge. And that very evening as dusk fell, the grating sounds of rocks, big stones and boulders being carved and moved could be heard in the place. People from nearby Pilapila could only wonder what commotion was all about. But the girl and her father and mother knew. As they were the only inhabitants of the Pulo, only they could see through the enveloping darkness that the foot of the stone-bridge was already being constructed.

"He must surely be a very wealthy man," said the girl's father. "Imagine being able to hire all those men to work on such a long bridge. There must be a hundred of them out there."

"They will not be able to finish that bridge till morning", the girl answered, trying to reassure herself.

The work went on into the night, and into the early morning hours. And the noise grew fainter and fainter as the bridge got longer into the lake. The girl could not sleep, worried that the bridge would be finished on time, that she would be compelled to marry the Euopean. Curious, she decided to have a look at the work being done.

She thus went down the hill and behold - in the silvery light of the rising moon, she saw that the workers were not human beings: they had wings like bats, tails like lions, and horns ikle goats! They were demons! Hundreds of them, her European suitor, still in his white frilled shirt, was one of them - a devil! To the girl, he looked like Satan himself - with claws for hands and hoofs for feet, and with eyes burning like red-hot coals.

Trembling with her fear, the girl was momentarily stunned. But after a short while, she ran away from the scene, towards the poblacion.

She pounded hard on the door of the convento where the parish priest stayed. Informed of the situation the priest hurriedly led the way inside the church and after saying a short prayer before the altar went straight to the belfry. There, he pulled at the ropes of the great bell whose sound could be heard for miles around. This bell was rung only in cases of emergencies such as fires, pirate and tulisanes attacks, ti alert the townspeople, and in such instances as this one now in progress.

The sound of the great bell travelled to Pulo, and the demons scampered away in fright. The European suitor - Satan - twisted and growled in defiance, but nonetheless also flew away. The half-finished bidge disintegrated and collapsed, the big stone slabs making loud splashes on the waters of the lakes as they fell, and sending out huge waves to the shore. By now, people in Pilapila and the poblacion, earlier awakened by the ringing of the huge church bell, had gathered on the lakeshore, attracted by the thunderous noise made by the rocks as the bridge collapsed.

And in the breaking light of dawn, they saw the ruins of the foot of what could have been El Puente del Diablo (The Bridge of the Devil), and they shivered with fright as they looked at the ripples on the water, emanating from the spot on the lake where the rest of the bridge had sunk.

Puente del Diablo still stands at Pilapila up to this day - a grim reminder to everyone who shuders at the thought of a devils design that almost succeeded.



Vicente Manansala Historical Shrine
Vicente Silva Manansala (Born January 22, 1910 in Macabebe, Pampangga and died August 22, 1981 in his home at Brgy. San Carlos, Binangonan) was a Filipino cubist painter and illustrator and also a National Artist of the Philippines in Visual Arts.

Manansala developed transparent cubism, wherein the "delicate tones, shapes, and patterns of figure and environment are masterfully superimposed". A fine example of Manansala using this "transparent and translucent" technique is his composition, Kalabaw
Declared by the National Historical Institute as a historical landmark in June, 1978, Vicente Manansala Historical Shrine now houses the memorabilia of national artist Vicente Manansala. It also features some of his well-preserved original paintings and paraphernalia.
Sadly the Museum is in bad shape, click here.

Angono Petroglyphs

Discovered in 1965 by national artist and acclaimed muralist Carlos “Botong” Francisco from Angono, this cultural heritage site dates back to circa 3000 B.C. and is the most prehistoric Filipino work of art. The site is famous for its rock engravings, 127 drawings of human and animal figures. Previous archaeological finds yielded fragments of earthenware, obsidian flakes, and shells.

In 1973, by virtue of Presidential Decree No. 260, it was declared as a national cultural treasure by the Philippine government. During that time, a team led by the National Museum of the Philippines started archaeological site conservation and site development of the petroglyphs in which a mini-museum, viewdeck and stone path among others were constructed. Surveys and a seismographic recording were conducted to assess also the effects of a quarrying operation a few kilometers from the site.

It received the greatest recognition as a nominee for the “100 Most Endangered Sites of the World” by the World Monument Watch List. The preservation and development of the Angono Petroglyphs is a collective effort of the National Museum of the Philippines, the Department of Tourism, World Monuments Fund, American Express and a Philippine real estate company.

Despite its name, the Petroglyphs actually lies between Brgy. Tayuman and Brgy. Bilibiran of Binangonan, Rizal.


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Here are few other places you can visit:
Binangonan Recreation & Conference Center
Estuar Farm
East Ridge Golf & Country Club
Thunderbird Resorts
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the next time you are planning to be a weekend warrior, perhaps you can consider Binangonan to be a place to conquer...

cheers!

(credit goes to the owners of the photos)
thanks to:

binangonan.gov.ph/
binangonankayganda
binangonan tourist attractions

8 comments:

  1. gusto ko akyatin ang Mt.Tagapo, do you have any itineraries you can suggest?

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    Replies
    1. hehe try mo sa pinoymountaineer.com, meron silang itenerary dun for tagapo.
      ako din gusto kong akyatin yan. before end of the summer.. aakyatin ko yan! tara?

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  2. So will you be my personal tour guide Chub?

    ReplyDelete
  3. hmmmm ganda ganda naman diyan...sarap magbakasyon..interesting yung name nung bundok

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. yup, tara jobo, lets conquer Mt.Tagapo also known as Susong Dalaga...

      Delete
  4. And I thought I've already heard it all. And here comes this entry. Very interesting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thanks Mr. Tripster, tara tour ko kayo sa aking hometown,,,

      Delete