Tag Archives: travel

Random Photos 2017 – Food from Zambales and Beyond

I cannot attest whether the stomach is the best way to a man’s heart or not. I believe that food is not only a basic human need, it nourishes, eases the discomfort caused by hunger – and stress (that is unhealthy though) – and brings people together.

Food in the Philippines is a fusion of different flavors and influences. I have foreign friends and acquaintances who find Filipino cuisine unique in some ways and how ingenious we are in preparing meals and snacks. We use vinegar in cooking, which is not common in other countries. We eat cashew leaves, bamboo shoots, balut, among others. Nevertheless, similar to other cultures in the world, we have food meant only to be eaten in certain occasions, we prepare food based on tradition and belief, and we have techniques that are passed on from one generation to the next.

Food is good. I love eating, and food is best enjoyed free of charge. I rarely eat outside and when I do, it is more likely because it is free, cheap or it really is that good, or when I am really, really hungry – I am used to my mother’s cooking and somehow, the taste of home food is a standard measure. I dine out with friends and family. I eat street food, so I am not that fastidious in what I eat; unless, of course, if you will let me eat something icky or what they call exotic. I am not a fan.

I am sharing some pictures of the food I have eaten so far, from Zambales and beyond, where I ate (or eat them) and some recommendations. I am not a critic, and my taste buds are not [yet] at par with anyone who has professional, discriminating taste.

Feast your eyes. These photos were taken using my Asus Zenfone Max.


Random Photos 2016 – People

Pictures can certainly paint a thousand words. There are pictures that evoke us, to think, to leave us in awe and wonder and sometimes, to feel.

Pictures tell stories and preserve them.

I have not so much stories to share so I browsed through the files in my phone and found the photos I am sharing with you today.  I am not a professional but a person who likes taking photos.

For now, I have been using my phone’s camera, and I think that it did the job. These photos were taken using my Zenfone Max.

Random Photos 2016 (1)

Being busy at work does not mean not getting the time to have a refresher. Work and work without enjoying the fruits of one’s labor is dull. Taking some time off from work and busy daily routines to breath and smell the roses is not wasting time — it is finding time to rejuvenate from all the stress and worries. It is seeking adventure. It is finding peace and happiness.

I am not a pro when it comes to taking photos but here are some of the photos I have taken so far.  I hope you will enjoy seeing the photos as much as I have taken them. Good day to all!

We found this colorful display in April, before the city’s celebration of their festival.
It was raining lightly during the time this photo was taken; hence, the droplets on the lens. The three-storey building on the right is an old movie house. This is in front of RMTU Main Campus’ entrance.
The best smile. Mango Festival features a street dancing competition each year.

Continue reading Random Photos 2016 (1)

The “Pier” in Cabangan: A New Beach Lovers’ Destination

Biking at Cabangan? Why not try the “Pier”? Or if you are looking for a place to enjoy the sea and take photos, the place is surely worth visiting.

The post-Holiday season in Zambales means cold evenings and warm days although there are still chances for storms and rains. While the water is chilly and the winds can be strong, many people choose to spend time in the province not only because of its accessibility or affordability but also of its laid back charm and hospitable people.

Last year, I started this blog with many things in mind, one of which is to let other people know of the wonders of Zambales.  So far, after writing a few articles (which by far is less than once a month in average and I am thanking you right now for reading), I am back to feature Cabangan.

Cabangan is a town almost at the center of the province. It is a small municipality, which is (by bus) about an hour and 45 minutes away from Olongapo City and almost 45 minutes away from Iba, the capital of Zambales.

Similar to the other towns in Zambales, Cabangan is a destinationfor beach lovers. Resorts are only a few minutes away from the highway and amenities are good as well as affordable. However if you are on a tight budget, there are beach fronts open to the public.

The Dragonfly. A dragonfly rests on a rock during my visit and did not stir while the shot was taken, and surprisingly, at a very close distance.
The Dragonfly. A dragonfly rests on a rock during my visit and did not stir while the shot was taken, and surprisingly, at a very close distance.

Continue reading The “Pier” in Cabangan: A New Beach Lovers’ Destination

When Bucao River dries up, it’s photo time

Hot, dry and dusty like a desert. This is what to expect when you plan on going to Bucao River during the summer season in Zambales. While the Mt. Pinatubo, Lady of Poonbato, ‘Domorokdok’ Festival and their beach resorts may be the most popular reasons to visit the town, you may want to consider checking out their waterfalls, try hiking, or visiting historic sites, such as their Catholic church.

Every day, I commute to work and one of the rivers I pass by is the Bucao River. Its bridge, one of the longest in Zambales, collapsed after a strong typhoon hit the province a few years ago, which, sadly, also destroyed roads, facilities and other infrastructures. Today, another bridge was built but a section of the old one is still standing, reminding the people of the devastation.

Now, back to the present, there are some things to remember when crossing the Bucao Bridge.

Continue reading When Bucao River dries up, it’s photo time


Hectic – that is the single word that explains the first quarter of my year. I am a workaholic but this first quarter had been the most busiest first quarter I have had at work. In the previous companies I have worked at, there had not been the same amount of headaches, deadlines and calculations (read: taxation and statistics) to be done.

This job topped those two others plus the on-the-job training I have had.

So when a friend asked me to go to the Philippine Merchant Marine Academy on a weekend, which was within the celebration of Zambales Dinamulag Mango Festival, I immediately grabbed the opportunity to enjoy the weekend (meaning no overtime falling in a weekend) for a bit.

The invitation was for an Observation Tour at the PMMA. The activity was part of the Mango Festival, which is an annual event (April 25) in Zambales that celebrates the harvest of its main fruit product, the Dinamulag Mango, also known as ‘Kinalabaw na Mangga’ (Carabao Mango). The said variety is known as the sweetest mango in the world.

It was a hot sunny day. Summer in Zambales has always been about hitting the beach, or any places where one can bask under the sun and swim. To be different and in support to local tourism, the PMMA opened its doors to local and foreign tourists. Part of the tour is the silent drill performed by batch 2015.

The students are the epitome of the core values of PMMA: “Kawastuhan,” Kababaang Loob,” and “Kagitingan” [Righteousness, Humility, and Valiance (Integrity)].There is no wonder that many people look upon PMMA graduates with high respect and regards.


CLRAA Meet in Zambales is for Shoppers Too

The 2014 Central Luzon Regional Athletics Association Meet has already ended as of writing this article, however, it is pleasing to know that the province of Zambales, particularly in Iba, which was the venue of most of the contests, had once again hosted the sports event.

Although CLRAA Meet is all about friendly athletic competition and display of sportsmanship, the event also gave local businessmen and school districts an opportunity to participate in a bazaar. This year, many teachers contributed to the event not only as coaches but also as merchants and promoters of the local products found in each municipality in the province.

Continue reading CLRAA Meet in Zambales is for Shoppers Too

Cabangan Christmas Tree Lighting Beckons More Than a Month-long Merry Christmas Celebration

In Zambales, many people look forward to the Yuletide season. The province is home to creative and resourceful people and throughout the year, these attributes are showcased in many occasions, such as Christmas and festivities.

Of the towns, Cabangan, Zambales is one of the places worth visiting during the Holidays. Many people are excited every first of December because it beckons the lighting of the gigantic Christmas tree in front of the municipal hall.

The activity has been done for a couple of years now and so many people are awestruck with the effort the town’s officials and folks are putting in to the display of lights and colors. Continue reading Cabangan Christmas Tree Lighting Beckons More Than a Month-long Merry Christmas Celebration

‘Balin Zambali’ is a Christmas Sight to See

If there are any places where Christmas is a big deal, the Philippines is one of those. The Yuletide Season begins in the “-ber” months or September and ends in the celebration of the Three Kings, which is days after the New Year.

It is beginning to look and feel a lot like Christmas everywhere. Festive lights, colorful lanterns are displayed in many houses, along the streets and other public places, and joyous carols are filling the air.

Fortunately, in Zambales, there are lots of wonderful places to see during the long Christmas Season.

The last time my friends and I passed by the Zambales Sports Complex, its main building, called Balin Zambali (not pronounced as Bali that of Indonesia), has been decorated with colorful and lively Christmas lights and being prepared for an upcoming regional sports event, which is either CLRAA or SCUAA.

The Balin at Night
The Balin Zambali (sometimes, Sambali) or “Zambales House” now glitters in the night after the Christmas lights were installed on its facade.

The sports complex is located right beside Zambales National High School. It has a stadium, a gymnasium (which houses the basketball court), a pool, tennis courts, track, a football field, and volleyball courts. The complex had been used in different local, regional and national events, and had been hosting regional athletics meets consecutively.

Its prominent building is its dormitory, Balin Zambali, which in local dialect means Zambales House (coarsely translated). The infrastructure has a front grass lawn, with palm trees and some plants, and outdoor chairs. It has a stone path leading to the main entrance of the building (I never get to see inside, but I’ll try next time). It has three main colors, following the Philippine flag’s palette — red white and blue. Continue reading ‘Balin Zambali’ is a Christmas Sight to See