Eat, Pray, Play: Things to Do in Bicol

by posted on Mon, 10 Sep 2012 12:00 AM
In Bicol for the Peñafrancia festival happening this month? Check out some of the activities you can do while in this beautiful southern Luzon region.

Eat: Sweet, Spice, and Everything Nice!

Bicolanos are known for their heat-tolerant tongues. Home to spicy fare such as the Bicol Express, pinangat, and laing, this southern Luzon province is a destination for daredevil, spice-seeking foodies.





But aside from these tongue-numbing dishes, there are plenty more to try when in Bicol. Case in point is the kinalas, which is a noodle soup with a gravy-like sauce-- a favorite among the locals.





Not to be missed are Naga Garden Restaurant's Toasted Siopao (best eaten fresh from the oven), rice puto with bucayo sold along Magsaysay avenue, and J. Emmanuel's pili nuts in all its variations.


Toasted Siopao



Puto with Bucayo



Pili Nuts


From restaurants to carinderias, home-cooked goodness to street food faves, there's no shortage of masiram na mga kakanon in Naga.

Pray: Viva la Virgen!

Every third weekend of September, all devotees of the miraculous "Ina" flock to Naga City to celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Peñafrancia. A patroness of the Bicol region, "Ina" is one of the most revered Marian images in the Philippines.


Photos of Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia by Alvin Lo


The religious observance starts nine days (the second Friday of September) before the feast day itself (third Saturday). The first highlight of the festival is the traslacion during which the image of the city’s patroness is transferred to the Naga Metropolitan Cathedral.


Photos of Nuestra Señora de Peñafrancia by Alvin Lo


The festival reaches its climax during the fluvial parade down the Bicol River, where a raft (pagoda) bearing the Holy Image then brings it to the Basilica. Escorting the pagoda are canoes, other bamboo rafts and decorated motorboats. All the while, resounding shouts of “Viva La Virgen” and “Viva El Divino Rostro” meant for the Holy Images (the second being a framed image of Jesus) are heard.

For more information about this renowned festival, check out our Peñafrancia articles below.



Play: It's more fun in Bicol!

Not only is Bicol a destination for foodies and devotees; it's a fun playground for thrill-seekers, too!

Try wakeboarding.

Just a 5-7 minute car ride from the Naga airport is Camsur Watersports Complex (CWC). A haven for extreme sports, CWC is a six hectare complex for wakeboarding and sand dune riding.





But if the water skiing isn’t your thing, you can opt to do lighter sports. CWC also has a pool, clubhouse, restaurant, pro shop (where you can get wakeboards, life vests, helmets, board shorts, and crocs, to name a few items), and an area for beach volleyball.

Swim with the whalesharks.

At the southern tip of the Bicol province is Donsol, Sorsogon-- home of the whalesharks.


Butanding photo by Ivan Henares


The whale sharks or butandings of Donsol, Sorsogon are the rock stars of the province. Each year, especially from February to May, thousands of tourists flock to Barangay Dancalan for a chance to spot and swim with the gentle giants of the sea.

Read Ivan Henares' account on his whaleshark interaction in the article below.



Discover a paradise: Caramoan.

You can have a day trip (pre-arranged) to the picturesque Caramoan Peninsula.



Beach bums will love Caramoan's fine sand, amazing rock formations, and caves scattered in the different islands that comprise it. Andrei Martin Diamante attests so, in his article.



Bicol is a must-see destination for both local and foreign tourists alike. Whether you're a foodie, a devotee, or a thrill-junkee, you would definitely find something worth loving in Bicol.

Getting There

Air Philippines, Cebu Pacific Air, and Philippine Airlines flies daily to Naga Airport in Pili and to Legaspi City. Ordinary and Air-conditioned buses travel the Manila-Camarines Sur Route daily.

Follow us on
  • Instagram
Trending

Download ClickTheCity App
Talk about this article
ClickTheCity reserves the right to delete comments containing advertising, personal attacks, and any other objectionable content.