Showing posts with label landmarks. Show all posts
Showing posts with label landmarks. Show all posts

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Quiapo Church and some thoughts for Good Friday

Today is Good Friday and I just wanted to post this photo I took recently of Quiapo Church, which is dedicated to the Black Nazarene. It is always said that Fridays are the worst time to be traveling in the area of the church because Friday is the day of devotion to the Black Nazarene. This is similar to the notion that Wednesdays is usually a bad day for traffic around Baclaran.

Quiapo Church with Plaza Miranda

I haven't been to Quiapo on a Good Friday but I can imagine that a lot of people flocked to the church this week and particularly between Maundy Thursday and Good Friday as part of their Visita Iglesia route. Of course, there are many who are "namamanata" or have "panata" (vow or promise to pray or hear Mass at the church) as thanksgiving or perhaps asking for a specific blessing. Pilgrim or tourist, the church probably attracts more people during Good Fridays compared to the average it attracts on normal Fridays and Sundays. Of course, we cannot compare this to the number of people (estimated to be in the millions if not hundreds of thousands) during its feast day in January.

I hope we all have a prayerful Holy Week. I pray that we are able to reflect these days on what is happening around us and that we will do our part to make this world a better place for everyone.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

On Visita Iglesia and overlooked churches

It is now the Holy Week and many people are likely to go on a Visita Iglesia this Holy Thursday and Good Friday. Visita Iglesia literally translates into 'church visit' and is an annual tradition for many and entails going to seven (usually) churches where people pray; often a novena on the stations of the cross (remembering the passion of Jesus Christ).

In recent years, this has become somewhat a touristy thing and many people from Metro Manila now roam around nearby provinces targeting the old churches in these area. The result can be traffic congestion in places where there usually is less traffic due to the sudden increase in the number of private vehicles generated by churches.

Metro Manila doesn't lack for old churches and among those that will probably be included in a Visita Iglesia list would be the following:
- Malate Church
- Manila Cathedral
- San Agustin Church
- Baclaran (Shrine of Our Lady of Perpetual Help)
- Quiapo Church (Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene)
- Sto. Domingo Church
- Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine

And there are many more including those in Marikina, Las Pinas and Malabon that are often not considered; overlooked by those who go for the "major" churches for their Visita Iglesia. Taguig actually has an old church located in the old part of the town that's probably unknown to many outside of Taguig. We usually pass by the church as its along one of the alternative routes to get from C-6 to BGC. I personally have not been in this church but based on the information you can get about it (, it is definitely one to consider for Visita Iglesia.

The Church of St. Anne in the old center of Taguig is actually an Archdiocesan Shrine and founded in 1587.
There are many more around Metro Manila that should be in one's list for this Holy Week but I believe that people should be more focused on prayer even at a single church rather than go around like a tourist (taking selfies or posting about the experience). Perhaps among the sacrifices to be made here are minimizing taking photos and refraining from uploading 'at the moment/ atm' posts. Many people take it for granted that Visita Iglesia is supposed to be a pilgrimage where you renew your faith, and not a tourist experience where you indulge in food and drink.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Another look at the San Juanico Bridge

I was back in Tacloban last week and was able to try out a new restaurant but in the nearby island of Samar. I will post about this dining experience in a future post. Meanwhile, here is a photo of the San Juanico Bridge from the restaurant, which is located at the top of a hill with a great view of the San Juanico Strait dividing Leyte and Samar.

View of the San Juanico Bridge from Pasqualino's, which is in the island of Samar

I was fortunate to be able to take a clear shot of the bridge as the weather was not cooperating last Friday when it was mostly raining and the bridge was usually shrouded by rain or mist.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Ho Chi Minh City landmarks

I am currently in Ho Chi Minh City, attending an international conference. The city that was formerly but still popularly named Saigon is a vibrant one with a city center that's practically walkable. There are lots of motorbikes, which are still the main mode of transport. Even Uber and Grab have motorbike features in their apps and it is surprising that you don't see road crashes involving motorcycles quite frequently given their riders' behavior and maneuvers in traffic. Following are a few photos of landmarks that I took during our free time from the conference.

Panoramic photo of the replica of Notre Dame cathedral and surrounding areas.

Replica of Notre Dame
City hall and a statue of Ho Chi Minh
Opera House
More on Saigon soon!

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Saturday Bazaar at The Rocks, Sydney

It's Saturday and a month ago, I had a great one going around Sydney with a good friend. One of the highlights of that trip to Australia was the opportunity to walk around a great city. It helped that the weather was also quite splendid that July 29 and it wasn't difficult to go around to enjoy the outdoors. After our trip to Cockatoo Island, we walked around The Rocks and chanced upon the outdoor bazaar in the area. We decided to check out the shops at the bazaar and I ended up getting a few items here and there including some artwork from a local artist, which I will post about soon. Here are a few photos I took of the bazaar.

People were enjoying the good weather
These sausages were really good!

There were also buskers around and their music was a welcome background to our walk around

We had our lunch under the bridge near some of the tents selling really good food. We had sausages and some soda though we were tempted to also try out the pasta offered by another tent.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

ANZAC Memorial, Sydney

One of my uncles from my father's side of the family was a Korean War veteran. He used to tell us a lot of stories about his stint in Korea from 1950-51. Among those were his experiences fighting with and against soldiers from other countries. Among those he fought with were Australians and New Zealanders (Kiwis?). They were collectively called ANZAC, short for Australia and New Zealand Army Corps. I recall his tales about their fighting together to hold the line against wave upon wave of North Koreans and Chinese and their success in doing so despite the high price they paid for their gallantry.

The ANZAC memorial is devoted to the memories of fighting men from Australia and New Zealand who sacrificed themselves in many theaters of war including those in Europe, North Africa and the Pacific.

The ANZAC memorial across a reflection pool
A sculpture that represented the sacrifices made by the men and women of ANZAC
View of the reflection pool and Hyde Park from the memorial building

I wanted to take more photos inside the memorial but I thought and to me it would have been disrespectful to the people to whom this landmark was built for. Inside the building are several memorials to ANZAC troops for the major engagements they fought in. For details, one can check out their website here. War is never a good thing but then these have to be fought in order for good to confront and ultimately triumph against evil. And this requires much sacrifice. Memorials such as this reminds us of how much sacrifices fighting men have had to make so we could live in peace.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

The Sydney Opera House at night

I just could not travel to Australia and not have the chance to see one of the architectural wonders of the world. I am referring to the Sydney Opera House. I think this is The Highlight of my travels this year despite 5 months remaining in 2017. And this is right there beside the Clairvoyant's highlights from her trip to Barcelona (Sagrada Familia) and Rome (Colloseum, Sistine Chapel, etc.). Following are 'up close and personal' photos I took of the Sydney Opera House the Friday night I was in Sydney.

More photos of my trip to Melbourne and Sydney soon.