Monday, March 31, 2008

Rizal: Art gallery overload in Angono, Rizal

Angono, Rizal is indeed the Art Capital of the Philippines. It's actually the center of an artists haven which includes the neighboring towns of Binangonan and Morong, an area which abounds with art galleries, museums, shrines and studios.

We went around Angono today courtesy of Havila since they wanted to show us the wonderful and conducive environment their communities are built in. So after a brief tour of their various developments, we went to Angono.

Our first stop was the house of Carlos "Botong" Francisco, National Artist for Visual Arts, along Dona Aurora Street. When Botong was still alive, his house also served as his studio. In front of it is the gallery of its current occupant, his grandson Carlos "Totong" Francisco II named The Second Gallery.

Dona Aurora Street is actually famous for its concrete street murals, contemporary works by artists Charlie Anorico, Gerry Bantang and Ebong Pinpino depicting the different paintings of Botong Francisco. Almost every house has at least one mural. And we were lucky to chance upon Charlie Anorico working on a new mural.

At one end of Poblacion Itaas are the busts of the towns national artists namely Botong and Lucio San Pedro, National Artist for Music. At the opposite end, the notes of San Pedro's immortal lullaby Sa Ugoy ng Duyan are inscribed on the walls of one of the houses. Indeed, a walk through Dona Aurora Street in Pobalcion Itaas gives us a glimpse of Botong's paintings.

Part 2: Lunch at Balaw-Balaw Restaurant in Angono
Part 3: Nemiranda and the Blanco Family Museum

Related entries
Viva San Clemente! Higantes of Angono, Rizal
Angono is the Art Capital of the Philippines
Angono Petroglyphs in Binangonan, Rizal

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Cebu: Oslob Church gutted by fire

It was depressing news for me. The 178-year old Oslob Church was destroyed by a fire which hit at dawn today. The church was was a very important element out the Southern Heritage Trail of Cebu. A landmark of the town, it was one of the few churches with an intact clay tile roof convento.

This incident highlighted two things. The first and most obvious is that fire fighters in these remoter parts of the country are ill-equipped and not prepared. Imagine, the fire station was just 50 meters away. But fire fighters and residents had to push the fire truck to the church! Second, it shows the importance and need for architectural documentation for all our heritage sites. In cases like these, if the site was documented, we could easily refer to the diagrams to restore the church.

The Archdiocese of Cebu plans to rebuild the church within the year. I hope that they restore the church to its original form, just as other countries do when their heritage sites are gutted by fire.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Manila: World Pyrolympics 2008 postponed again!

This was supposed to be my first time to watch the World Pyrolympics. I was sure people will be scrambling for tickets. And I also did not want to endure hours and hours of jammed up traffic or looking for a parking spot. Also imagine the crowds and the race to get a decent view of the fireworks display. No way! So I was all set to watch it on a dinner cruise around Manila Bay. But the World Pyrolympics 2008 was postponed again to May! And it sucks big time since it's the nth time they moved it! Since I'll be out in May, I'll have to wait until next year.

Here is the new schedule. The organizers said the dates are already sure since they will be selling tickets next week:
May 3 China and Germany
May 10 Japan and Canada
May 17 Italy and Venezuela
May 24 France and Korea
May 31 Australia and Philippines

Friday, March 21, 2008

Pampanga: Crucifixion rites held in San Pedro Cutud every Good Friday

Just like last year, I found myself in San Pedro Cutud in San Fernando, Pampanga today to witness the Via Crucis, a Kapampangan passion play which has been the heart of the annual crucifixions here in the city, which is more popularly know as the San Pedro Cutud Lenten Rites.

As the crucifixions are highlighted, many fail to recognize that they are part of an old cultural tradition of the barangay, a passion play written in the vernacular, which has been passed on from generation to generation. In fact, it's already in the third generation of the Navarro clan.

I was pleasantly surprised that vehicles are now allowed to enter San Pedro Cutud. And it was even more pleasant when I saw that there was ample parking at the site. In previous years, it was a long 2 kilometer walk from the gate of the barangay under the heat of the scorching summer sun.

While waiting for the Via Crucis to arrive, flagellants would climb the hill and pay homage at the foot of the cross ending their annual Lenten sacrifice or panata. Most of the time, silence envelopes the crowd as the bloodied penitents make their way up, giving them time to be "alone" with God. But while most encounters are solemn, there are some under the influence of alcohol (it is said that they down a bottle of beer to speed up the circulation of blood), and a rare few who make a scene up the hill thus eliciting laughter from the crowd to the dismay of local officials who have them escorted down immediately.

This year, the Via Crucis started late. The play arrived close to 2 p.m. And by that time, we had been under the sun for over three hours! It was good though that they were able to keep non-cast members off the hill this time around. The scores of barangay tanod and alalay (assistants) who usually joined the cast up the hill were asked to get down. While some of the stubborn foreign media who would usually force their way up, though they were able to slip into the restricted area, were kept at the middle level, away from the top of the hill.

Before I left, I was told that there were fourteen penitents who were going to be nailed to the cross this year, including two women. But a news article reported nineteen! Anyway, I left at about 3 p.m. for my annual visit to relatives. Since Good Friday is one of those events when San Fernando old families gather (usually to prepare their carroza for the elegant Good Friday procession in the evening), kitchens are busy preparing the best Lenten dishes. We wouldn't want to miss that!

Related entries
Good Friday in San Fernando, Pampanga
Holy Week practices in the Philippines
Visita iglesia to our heritage churches

Related article
Holy Week reflections on culture
This is a must read for tourists who visit areas with penitents. It's simple conduct we must remember. As Robbie Tantingco writes, "What our penitents do is a very personal and sacred act, and we should protect them from media who sensationalize, and tourists who trivialize, this act... Tourists should be treated as, well, tourists, to be accorded the usual courtesy and hospitality and given the necessary amenities. But tourists should not be allowed to distract or interact with the penitents; they should merely watch and observe, with as much distance from, and reverence for, the penitents as possible."

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Bataan: Adopting a sea turtle at the Pawikan Conservation Center

For the longest time, I had been wanting to adopt a pawikan or sea turtle. It took quite a while for me to find the contact number of the Pawikan Conservation Center in Morong, Bataan. And when I finally did, they said there were no pawikan scheduled to hatch yesterday. But they also told me that if it was warm and sunny, some of the turtles would hatch earlier than expected.

Since it's quite far, and I didn't want to risk disappointment, I decided to watch the longest Holy Week procession in the country in Baliuag, Bulacan in the evening. But I got a surprise text yesterday morning from the Pawikan Center saying that sea turtles had just hatched the night before and were ready for adoption. Since it's difficult to time a visit when there are hatchlings, I decided to rush there no questions asked.

We passed by the newly-opened SCTEx on the way to Subic. It's undoubtedly the most scenic highway in the country. After lunch at Meat Plus Cafe in Subic, we drove down to the Pawikan Center in Morong which was about an hour away.

When we got there, were met by Ate Nida who showed us around. The unhatched eggs were buried under the sand in an enclosed area. As soon as the pawikan deposit their eggs on the beach, volunteers collect them and transfer and rebury them in a secure area in the center for incubation.

They brought out the container with the little pawikan ready for release to the sea. And I got to pet some of them while waiting for the afternoon sun to cool down before releasing them. The best time to release the hatchlings are early in the morning or late in the afternoon so as not to stress them out too much with the heat. The adoption cost is PHP200 per turtle and you get a t-shirt as proof that you've adopted.

Anyway, we almost didn't make it back to the SCTEx in time. Since it's on trial stage, they close it at 5:30 p.m. But it's a good thing they still let us in since the sunset amidst the mountains was just surreal.

I tried to catch the Baliwag procession but got stuck in Pulilan and decided to turn back. So I guess I'll have to wait again for next year since I'll be in San Fernando this Good Friday.

Pawikan Conservation Center
+63 928 7185721 (Ate Nida)

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

SCTEx on test run until March 24

If you have not yet tried out the most scenic highway in the country, you have until March 24 to do so free of charge! The Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway is on test run beginning today and is open from 5:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Remember that they close at 5:30 p.m. and they won't let you in after that.

The SCTEx Exit is a few meters after the Dau Exit of the NLEX. There is a short spur road which will take you to the actual SCTEx. What I found amusing is the fact that there were several signs which had the wrong spelling of MacArthur Highway. To the silly person who did those signs, it's "MacArthur" not "McArthur" since the road is named after Douglas MacArthur! That's what we get for having too much of McDonald's.

On the way to Subic from Clark, the only open exits in the SCTEx are the ones in Dinalupihan and Subic. The SCTEx ends right at the entrance of the Subic-Tipo Tollway so it's really convenient for those going to Subic.

We tried it out on the way to Subic today and it was worth the trip. Imagine arriving in Subic from Clark in just 35 minutes! I still remember the days having to pass through all the traffic in Sta. Cruz, Lubao, Pampanga and other busy intersections along the Gapan-Olongapo Road (now Jose Abad Santos Highway). Finally, smooth travel all the way!

I hope they finish C6 - Lakeshore Expressway soon. The proposed expressway will connect Cavite City to Marilao, Bulacan as well as the SLEX to the NLEX so that you need not travel through chaotic Metro Manila.

Add to that the fact that the highway is so scenic. It passes through the untouched countryside in Porac and Floridablanca, Pampanga. The drive itself is an attraction you should not miss! Enjoy it while it lasts because I could already foresee development creeping in as the different exits are constructed and opened.

And if you make it just in time for sunset (we were almost not allowed inside since we were a few minutes late) the views are nothing but surreal.

North Luzon Expressway
(02) 35000

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Batangas: Around Taal Lake

I visited several towns around Taal Lake yesterday. Our first stop was Club Balai Isabel in Talisay, Batangas. It's probably the best residential resort by the lake.

Club Balai Isabel has one of the best views of Taal Volcano. At the moment, many parts are still under construction. But the reception area, club house, and several hotel rooms are already complete and ready to accept visitors. We had lunch there as well and ordered some bulalo, fried tawilis (tawilis is now an endangered species, don't eat it), ginataang kalabasa and fried chicken.

We then headed off to Tagaytay en route to Taal. But we stopped by Bag of Beans to check out their bread shop. I had a chicken and mushroom pie.

As soon as we arrived in the heritage town of Taal, we went straight to the Taal Basilica to check it out. Since we didn't have much time, we made a quick drive around town to check out the wonderful heritage houses.

Although relatively intact, there seems to be a lack of continuity in the town since the new structures stick out like sore thumbs in between the charming heritage homes. The local government should do something about these newer structures.

Our last stop was the Church of Caysasay and the miraculous well of Sta. Lucia also in Taal. We didn't stay too long since we wanted to be back in Tagaytay before dark.

On the way back, we made a stopover at Sonya's Garden. I was tempted to have a meal there since I simply adore their salads and pasta. But we'll have to save that for another day. Dinner was at the garden restaurant of Bag of Beans. Then it was back home for us.

Club Balai Isabel
Brgy. Banga, Talisay, Batangas
Mobile +63 918 8473619
Manila +63 2 7761521
Batangas +63 43 7280307

Sonya's Garden
Buck Estate, Alfonso, Cavite
Mobile +63 928 5073302
Landline +63 46 4132081

Monday, March 17, 2008

Visita iglesia to our heritage churches

As Holy Thursday draws near, Filipinos are planning their annual visita iglesia. I've always been asked what are some of the best heritage churches to visit in, around and close to Metro Manila. Here are my picks:

City of Manila - Manila Cathedral, San Agustin, Binondo, Sta. Cruz, Quiapo, San Sebastian, Malate and Sta. Ana
Metro Manila - Malabon, Concepcion (Malabon), San Pedro Makati, Guadalupe (Makati), San Francisco del Monte (QC), Pasig, Redemptorist Baclaran (Paranaque) and Las Pinas
Pampanga - Apalit, Bacolor, Betis, San Luis, San Fernando, Lubao, Angeles City, Sta. Rita and Minalin
Bulacan - Barasoain (Malolos), Malolos, San Rafael, Angat, San Miguel, Calumpit and Pulilan
Laguna - Pila, Longos (Kalayaan), Paete, Pakil, Mabitac, San Pablo, Nagcarlan, Majayjay and Luisiana
Rizal - Tanay, Baras, Morong and Boso-Boso (Antipolo)
Quezon - Lucban, Tayabas, Sariaya, Pagbilao, Atimonan and Gumaca
Batangas - Lipa Cathedral, Carmelite Convent (Lipa), San Jose, Immaculate Conception Basilica (Batangas City), Taal Basilica, Caysasay Shrine (Taal), San Juan, Balayan, Calaca and Ibaan
Cavite - Maragondon, Silang, Kawit, Tanza, Gen. Trias and Naic

For several churches in the nearby provinces, we can cluster them together into convenient routes. Here are my favorites:

Pampanga Day Trip
First stop would be the church in Apalit which is the silver dome you see from the North Luzon Expressway. To get there, exit at San Simon and backtrack towards the town of Apalit. From Apalit, you could choose to go to either San Luis or Minalin. San Luis is a bit far but worth the visit but Minalin is along the route. From both churches, the route is the same. Visit the San Fernando Cathedral, and the churches of Bacolor, Betis, Guagua and Lubao. If you still have time, you can visit Sta. Rita and Angeles City.

Laguna de Bay Loop
This is a straightforward route and you simply follow the National Highway along the towns of Laguna de Bay. You can start either in Laguna via the South Luzon Expressway or in Rizal if you go through the Antipolo side. The town churches to visit are Pila, Longos (Kalayaan), Paete, Pakil and Mabitac in Laguna; and Tanay, Baras, Morong and Boso-Boso (Antipolo) in Rizal. You should also drop by Antipolo. Although a new church, the Antipolo Cathedral houses the centuries-old image of the Nuestra Senora de Paz y Buen Viaje.

Mount Banahaw Loop
It's the Viaje del Sol route but not quite since it's a full loop of Mount Banahaw. You start in San Pablo followed by Nagcarlan and Majayjay in Laguna; Lucban, Tayabas and Sariaya in Quezon; and finally San Juan in Batangas

Related entries
Visita iglesia routes for Holy Thursday
Pisamban... the churches of Pampanga
Visita iglesia aroung Laguna de Bay

Metro Manila and its old churches
Visita iglesia Bohol
Holy Week practices in the Philippines

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Holy Week practices in the Philippines

Aside from being one of the most solemn religious events in the Philippines, Holy Week or Mahal na Araw is a colorful display of Philippine culture and religious fervor. Here are some cultural practices you should not miss:

Palm Sunday
Today is Palm Sunday so we won't be able to witness these events again until next year. There were unique palm processions in Sta. Isabel in Malolos, Obando and Baliwag in Bulacan; as well as in Gasan, Marinduque. In Sta. Isabel, an image of the Humenta or Christ on a donkey joins the palm procession as women spread their tapis or traditional aprons as the priest walks by. In Gasan, the priest himself rides a real pony on the way to church.

Holy Wednesday
Many procession are held on this day. Check out the folk Baroque images in the Laguna towns of Pakil, Majayjay and Paete. In Paete, it is said that the images for the Catholic Wednesday and Aglipayan Thursday processions move and speak in archaic Tagalog. In Pampanga, some of the best heirloom carrozas are brought out in Betis, Sasmuan and San Fernando. Also check out the processions in Baliwag, Malolos, Barasoain (Malolos), San Pablo and Molo (Iloilo City).

Maundy Thursday
In churches around the country, the Mass of the Last Supper will be celebrated in the evening. After this Mass, the Blessed Sacrament is enshrined in an Altar of Repose or monumento, and churches remain open for the visita iglesia. But some people do the visita iglesia while the sun is out though in order to see the lavish colonial churches in daylight. I have an old post on visita iglesia suggestions at Visita iglesia routes for Holy Thursday. But I'll have another entry on churches to visit soon.

Around the country, the chanting of the pabasa continues. In San Fernando and Guagua, there are colorful puni or pabasa stations with a fiesta atmosphere. Also check out the cordero or Lamb of God rituals in Betis, Guagua, Pampanga and Morong, Rizal. A lamb sculpture made out of mashed potatoes or kamote (sweet potatoes) is the center of this practice.

Good Friday
There is so much to see on this day. There are public self-flagellations in many towns around the country. In San Fernando, Pampanga; Pulilan and Hagonoy, Bulacan; and Navotas, they use wooden slats attached to ropes to whip their backs. In Hermosa, Bataan; Sasmuan, Pampanga; and Pakil, Laguna, flagellants use chains. In Kalayaan, Laguna penitents wear fronds and flowers. While in Infanta, Quezon, penitents wear hoods embellished with flowers to invoke fertility.

In Magalang, Pampanga and other parts of Pampanga, penitents crawl on the ground or carry crosses made out of banana trunks. In San Pedro Cutud in San Fernando, about a dozen penitents are nailed to wooden crosses after a traditional play called the Via Crusis. Check out the entry Good Friday in San Fernando, Pampanga to get detailed information on Good Friday practices in San Fernando.

The moriones, with men dressed as Roman soldiers, are held in General Luna, Quezon; Pinamalayan, Oriental Mindoro; and Boac and Gasan, Marinduque. The one in General Luna is said to be the oldest moriones event in the country. There is also amulet hunting and testing as well with shaman assemblies held such as those in Calabanga, Camarines Sur where hooded shamans pray at the Holy Bier at 5 a.m. In Pakil, Laguna, check out the Turumba procession of the Nuestra Senora de los Dolores de Turumba.

In the towns of Sta. Rita and Sasmuan in Pampanga; as well as Tayabas, Quezon and Boljoon, Cebu, the sermons on the Seven Last Words of Christ are followed by the Tinieblas, a theatrical ritual marking the death of Christ with the banging shut of the church doors, the wailing of women and the hammering of church roofs to symbolize thunder. The body of Christ is brought down from the cross by two men dressed as Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea. In Boljoon and Sta. Rita, they are assisted by people dressed as the Marys and St. John who all deposit the image on the lap of a woman designated to be Mother Mary. She wails loudly for several minutes. In Sasmuan, the town orchestra plays the Stabat Mater as a choir sings. This is followed by a public veneration of the image Christ's body or the Sto. Entierro.

Some of the most lavish processions of the Sto. Entierro are held in Lingayen, Pangasinan; San Fernando, and Guagua, Pampanga; Malolos and Baliwag, Bulacan; Binan and San Pablo, Laguna; and Argao and Carcar, Cebu. In Carcar and Sorsogon, Sorsogon, the Soledad procession is held late at night.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Manila: Sunset cruise in Manila Bay

I was on the exclusive Manila Bay sunset cruise of Rogue Magazine yesterday. I most definitely needed this break! Unlike our Asian neighbors, cruises are not that popular here in the Philippines, maybe because the water pollution leaves a bad impression.

But after tonight's cruise, I felt we have a lot to be proud about. It's the first time I saw the Manila skyline. And it does not look like Manila at all! It was just a two-hour cruise but I most definitely enjoyed it.

And it's one of the best ways to enjoy the Manila Bay sunset. I hope we start cruises from Manila Bay to Laguna de Bay via the Pasig River, or Manila Bay to the Pampanga River. During the olden days, people traveled from Manila to Laguna and Pampanga via the waterways and it would be great to revive these historical routes as part of a lunch or dinner cruise package. In fact, I think that commuter ferries from Manila to Pampanga's river towns would be a great idea!

Manila Bay dinner cruises
Although it looks like it was a private yacht which they hired, you could check out Sun Cruises or Prestige Cruises for regular dinner cruises.

Sun Cruises
CCP Terminal A, CCP Complex
Roxas Boulevard, Manila
(02) 8318140 /(02) 8346857 to 58

Sun Cruises has three daily trips beginning at 4:30 p.m. Tickets cost Php550 per head, inclusive of plated dinner.

Prestige Cruises
(02) 8328967

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Manila: Bollywood serves great Indian food!

I'm a big fan of Indian food. So when I found out we were eating at Bollywood in Greenbelt, I did not have any second thoughts. And everything we ate was great. We started with the papadums, which are thin wafers made from lentils, accompanied by mint, ginger and yogurt dips.

There were also stuffed papads, which are papadums stuffed with shrimps, potatoes and fresh herbs; spicy lamb dumpling called momos; and rogan josh which is mutton with a red curry sauce filled with Kashimiri spices.

We also had Star Pizzanaanas which are pizzas with a naan bread crust named after various Bollywood stars. We were served ShahRukh Kham or four-cheese pizza topped with cheddar, ricotta, mozarella and paneer cheese; and Aishawarya Rai which has ham, pineapples and capsicum for toppings. Of course, we had tandoori chicken and biryani as well.

For dessert, we had gulab jamum which are fried milk balls in really sweet rose syrup; and Bollywood mafiosi or pannacotta with fresh mangoes and rose water. They have a daily dinner buffet during weekdays and it's just PHP450 per head! At least I know where to go now when I'm craving for Indian food in Makati.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Manila: More art and architecture from UP Diliman

In the last entry, we mentioned Cesar H. Concio. Once the University Architect, Concio also designed Melchor Hall which houses the College of Engineering; Palma Hall which serves as the home of the College of Social Sciences and Philosophy; and the student center Vinzons Hall.

In front of Vinzons Hall is the first reinforced concrete monument in the country. People often mistake it for a monument of Bonifacio, but the Grito de Balintawak actually depicts a nameless Katipunero. It was transferred here in 1968, saved from an imminent demolition.

Beside Vinzons Hall is the College of Business Administration (CBA). Inside the CBA Lobby is a very important work of Jose Joya, National Artist for Visual Arts, known as The Barter of Panay. In front of the building is an artwork of Napoleon Abueva called The Spirit of Business.

Abueva actually has numerous works scattered around campus including: the Nine Muses at the UP Faculty Center; the Crucifix with Two Corpora at the Parish of the Holy Sacrifice; the University Gateway; Diwata at the Faculty Center; Alma Mater at the lobby of Ang Bahay ng Alumni; Three Women Sewing the First Philippine Flag, also known as Tres Marias Plaza, at the UP Donors' Garden; and the Tribute to Higher Education at the entrance of University Avenue.

Vinzons Hall and the College of Business Adminsitration stand in front of the Sunken Garden, an important center of campus life in UP Diliman. So many memories, both good and forgettable, are linked to this open field. It played host to old forgotten traditions such as the “Cadena de Amor” and the grueling ROTC Sunday trainings; to today’s UP Fair. It’s a perfect afternoon hangout, great for football or Frisbee practice, and infamous for its evening escapades. And it was wonderful the Sony Ericsson K850i Cyber-shot camera has a really useful panoramic shot feature which allowed me to capture the place in its entirety.

Part 1: UP Diliman is a showcase of art and architecture
Part 2: UP Chapel and the Church of the Risen Lord

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Manila: UP Chapel and the Church of the Risen Lord

If you remember, I've already featured three campuses and their chapels namely the Ateneo and the Church of the Gesu, La Salle and the Chapel of the Most Blessed Sacrament, and FEU and its chapel. Now I'm featuring UP Diliman and its two chapels.

The Catholic church of UP Diliman is the Church of the Holy Sacrifice or the UP Chapel. It is a National Historical Landmark and was designated an Important Cultural Property by the National Museum owing to the fact that it stands as a testament to the creativity of not one, not two, but four national artists!

The dome-shaped structure, a fine example of Modern architecture in the Philippines, was designed by Leandro Locsin. Around the UP Chapel are fifteen large murals painted by Vicente Manansala depicting the Stations of the Cross. The marble altar and the large wooden cross above it were sculpted by Napoleon Abueva. And finally, the mosaic floor mural called the “River of Life” was designed by Arturo Luz.

Another renowned architect, Cesar H. Concio, was responsible for designing the neighboring Protestant chapel, the Church of the Risen Lord.

Part 1: UP Diliman is a showcase of art and architecture
Part 3: More art and architecture from UP Diliman

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Manila: UP Diliman is a showcase of art and architecture

The University of the Philippines is celebrating its centennial this year. I have always wanted to rediscover the Diliman campus and appreciate it in a different light. So I took time out one afternoon to take a stroll around.

Few people realize that UP Diliman is actually a treasure trove of architectural delights and works of art. Around campus, masterpieces of many renowned artists and architects go unnoticed. So I had my Sony Ericsson K850i handy to document my trip around the Diliman Republic.

I started my walk in Quezon Hall, the administration building of UP, designed by Juan Nakpil, National Artist for Architecture and a pioneer of Modern Philippine architecture. He is also credited for creating landmarks around the Academic Oval such as the Carillon which continues to bring music to the Diliman campus after 50 years of existence and Gonzalez Hall, the university’s main library.

Benitez Hall
, home to the College of Education; and Malcolm Hall which hosts the College of Law were designed by another renowned architect Juan Arellano.

In front of Quezon Hall is an immortal masterpiece and an undying symbol of the University of the Philippines, The Oblation by Guillermo Tolentino.

From there, I proceeded to another prominent structure, the UP Chapel. And thanks to the decades-old acacia trees which lined the Academic Oval and the cool afternoon breeze, walking to it was refreshing and relaxing.

Part 2: UP Chapel and the Church of the Risen Lord
Part 3: More art and architecture from UP Diliman
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