baragatan festival

Our trip to Palawan coincided with the province’s third year celebration of the Baragatan Festival. Palawan is a big province and thus in itself is culturally diverse. Not to mention the fact that a Vietnamese refugee camp used to be located there. And indigenous peoples can found in the province as well. The festival aims to celebrate this diversity.

baragatan festival

baragatan scenes

We missed the colorful street dancing which happened on the 14th. Too bad because I would have joined the Agfa photo contest just for fun. Who knows, I might have gotten lucky.

The culmination of the Baragatan would have been the world’s longest seafood grill but news reports indicated that it was unsuccessful due to logistical problems and lack of planning. We would have missed it anyway since it was to happen on the 23rd and we were leaving on the 22nd.

What we were able to catch was the baratilyo in the capitol. There were stores that showcased different products made in Palawan, including booths that featured the municipalities of Palawan and their local products. The city boasted their Underground River and the Honda Bay Islands, while Busuanga showed off the Tubbataha Reef. Cuyo Islands was promoting Judy Ann Santos’s Ploning which shot on location there (and thus edged out the Amanpulo Resort). El Nido promoted their beautiful waters and amazing limestone cliffs formation. It was basically a quick tour of Palawan.

I was particularly enthralled by the different kinds of lamps that were for sale. Some that used driftwood and Japanese paper, bamboo and marbles, capiz or rattan or abaca. I’m just glad I’ve always had the willpower not to get tempted into buying such nice-to-have things. I just brought home a bulky picnic basket (intended to be a hamper, now on display instead of in use), a half-kilo bag of cashew nuts (a hit in the office even with all the hypertensive people) and half-kilo dried fish for the house. The bags and dream catchers for friends were joint purchase.

mas maraming nabili si jan. pramis. i like this sand globe. hangkyut. pero madaling gawin e. candid yan. test shot daw e. hehe.

Parokya ni Edgar was playing on the 19th and I wanted to watch. But judging from the size of the capitol and the fact that Francine Prieto and the Sexbomb Girls will share the stage, it was better to have the locals who barely have the chance to see big time celebrities perform enjoy the performances.

It is interesting to note that one of the signs posted in the capitol that acknowledged the people of Palawan dated June 23, 2004. Good job. It’s rare for the government to highlight the people and just footnote the politicians.


While we limited our trip to most of Puerto Princesa, through the Baragatan Festival, we were able to sample most of amazing Palawan.