Tag Archives: Sinulog

Color and Tradition at the Dinagyang Festival (Iloilo): Photo of the Day

The Dinagyang Festival (from the Ilonggo word “dagyang,” or to make happy), is a festival celebrated in Iloilo City to honor the Santo Niño (Child Jesus) and commemorate the historical heritage of the place, with the original inhabitants, the Atis, and the arrival of the Malay settlers. It is held every fourth Sunday of January, which is perfect because tourists can still join the festivities right after the Ati-Atihan Festival (Kalibo, Aklan) and Sinulog (Cebu), both held on the third Sunday of of January. It is a celebration, with street dancing and competitive performances in full colors, as we see in this photo during the Dinagyang Festival 2017 by John Chavez (check his Instagram account, @j0hnchavez, for more photos). Click the photo to enlarge.
Continue reading Color and Tradition at the Dinagyang Festival (Iloilo): Photo of the Day

Get into the Spirit of Ati-Atihan, Aklan: Photo of the Day

There are at least two well-known, and well-loved, annual festivals in the Philippines to honor the Santo Niño (Infant Jesus) — the Sinulog of Cebu and the Ati-Atihan of Kalibo, Aklan. The name of the latter festival means “to be like the Atis or Aetas,” a group of Filipinos who were the primary settlers of the islands. Atis or Aetas have black skin, so it’s common for Ati-Atihan participants and performers to color their skin black and wear tribal costumes, as shown in this photo by Atch (check his Instagram acount, @atch.dreams, for more awesome photos). Aklan’s Ati-Atihan, of course, is the festival that inspired other mardi gras, including the Sinulog. Tourists / visitors must wait for at least one year to watch both festivals, as they are simultaneously scheduled every third Sunday of January. Which festival to watch first? That’s a good problem to have. Click the photo to enlarge. Continue reading Get into the Spirit of Ati-Atihan, Aklan: Photo of the Day

Tribu Sinanduloy Reyna Juana, Sinulog 2017: Photo of the Day

There’s no Sinulog celebration without a lovely woman carrying the Sto. Niño, gracefully dancing to the beat of the drums. We’ve explained the significance of this festival character in a previous post, but we’ll summarize it again here. She is Reyna Juana or Queen Juana, the wife of Raja Humabon. They were the first Catholic converts when Ferdinand Magellan came to these islands, later named the Philippines. The story goes that Queen Juana was overwhelmed when presented with the Sto. Niño and she began dancing carrying the image. Her subjects followed suit, a practice we now still commemorate in the annual Sinulog festival. Here’s a lovely photo of the Reyna Juana of Tribu Sinanduloy-Tangub City (photo courtesy of Roel Clenuar, a traveler and wedding / portrait photographer; check his Instagram acount, @welics, for more awesome photos). Click the photo to enlarge. Continue reading Tribu Sinanduloy Reyna Juana, Sinulog 2017: Photo of the Day

5 Things to Remember About the Sinulog Festival (Cebu City)

We’ve had our fair share of Sinulog celebrations in Cebu City, but now our participation is limited to watching this annual festival on tv or reading about it in write-ups. We can’t join them all. Still, we intend to immerse our children in the Sinulog. Here are 5 things that, in our opinion, we must imprint in their young minds as they begin their Sinulog journey (we were actually thinking of 15 things to remember, but that’s too much even for us). Continue reading 5 Things to Remember About the Sinulog Festival (Cebu City)

Photo of the Day: Juana of Sinulog (Cebu City)

One prominent feature in any Sinulog celebration is a beautiful woman carrying the Sto. Nino. She is Queen Juana. Immediately after Fernando Magallanes, better known as Ferdinand Magellan, claimed the islands later known as the Philippines, he presented an image of the child Jesus (Sto. Nino) to the chieftain of the islands, Raja Humabon. He baptized the chieftain, and his queen (Humamay or Amihan), and gave her the name Queen Juana. The Philippines was named after Philipp II, son of Carlos I of Spain (also called Charles V) and Queen Isabella. The mother of Carlos I is Queen Juana, after which the wife of Rajah Humabon was named. This history refresher explains a lot about what guests see during the Sinulog Festival of Cebu. The story goes that Queen Juana was overwhelmed, she began dancing carrying the Sto. Nino. Her subjects followed suit. This is said to be the very first celebration of the Sinulog. This wonderful image, courtesy of Vin (follow his Instagram account, @vin_aranas87), shows a Queen Juana during the Sinulog Festival 2016 (Cebu City). She must have faith. She must be beautiful. She must know how to dance. And she must have the stamina to dance during the whole-day festivity, throughout the city streets, under the scorching rays of the sun. Respect. Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Juana of Sinulog (Cebu City)

Must-Visit Philippine Festivals in 2014

We came across a list of top 5 restaurants in the Philippines, compiled by the It’s More Fun in the Philippines website — KaLui (Puerto Princesa, Palawan), Abe, Chocolate de Batirol (Baguio City), La Preciosa (Laoag, Ilocos Norte), Cafe Juanita (Pasig). We’ve visited all these restaurants (and then some) and we can humbly say that other restaurants should be in that list (Lantaw of Cebu, for instance). So why don’t we have our own list? We can start with the Top 5 Festivals that everyone must visit, see and experience this year, 2014. Continue reading Must-Visit Philippine Festivals in 2014

Revisiting Magellan’s Cross, Mactan Shrine and Basilica del Sto. Nino

We don’t appreciate something until it’s gone, the cliche goes. Sappy, yes, but this drives home the point that we often take for granted places of historical importance that are right in our backyard. Take, for instance, Magellan’s Cross, Mactan Shrine and the Basilica del Sto. Niño. I spent four years in Cebu City, yet it’s only when I came back after 13 years that I took time to visit these landmarks. Continue reading Revisiting Magellan’s Cross, Mactan Shrine and Basilica del Sto. Nino

Travel Wish List: Philippine Fiesta Celebrations to See in 2009

It’s said that travel expense, which isn’t a necessity anyway, is the first to get thrown out the window in times of financial crunch. But while the world is no doubt in a financial storm today, it’s not an excuse not to plan the places to see in the Philippines for 2009, especially now that the 2009 long weekends have been declared. Here’s where (or what?) I want to see in 2009, under the fiesta/mardi gras category: Continue reading Travel Wish List: Philippine Fiesta Celebrations to See in 2009