Catch A Series Of Festivals In June With This Tacloban Itinerary
As we bid adieu to the golden sun, it’s time to prepare for the rainy season. It’s time to store away those summer outfits and finally get to snuggle into our oversized sweaters. But just because summer is ending, it doesn’t mean you should stop your wanderlust! There are way too many islands to explore in this beautiful country of Philippines—and you may want to give this Tacloban itinerary a try!
Tacloban City, located in Eastern Visayas, is a place that you just have to visit. Did you know that it was once declared as the capital of Philippines? It was not for long, but there’s a lot of fascinating history and culture you have to explore behind this amazing city. For the love of travel, we’ve prepared this Tacloban itinerary just for you!
Best time to travel
The best time to go to Tacloban is during latter part of June. The weather is generally rainy all year round. It would be wise to prepare a light jacket, raincoat, and umbrella especially if you plan to do outdoor activities.
How to get to Tacloban from Manila
Cebu Pacific, Philippine Airlines, and AirAsia have regular daily flights going to Tacloban City. Catch the earliest flight to Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport and you might just complete this Tacloban itinerary over the weekend!
Day 1: Historical and Leisure Tour
Before we burn up all our energy, let’s settle down by exploring the city first. Find out why people keep returning to the beautiful city of Tacloban!
Explore Santo Niño Shrine and Heritage Museum
History buffs would love to drop by this rest house of former president Ferdinand Marcos. For PHP 230*, you can go on a 30-minute guided tour for a group of three. It houses a beautiful shrine that’s dedicated to the city’s patron saint Santo Niño. Inside the heritage museum, you get to explore a maze of themed rooms (21 bedrooms to be exact!). It holds a large collection of artworks, priceless objects from all over the world, and even the family’s personal memorabilia.
Pay a visit to MacArthur Landing Memorial National Park
One of the most popular sites on this Tacloban itinerary is none other than the Leyte Landing Memorial in Palo. This memorial reminds us of the arrival of General Douglas MacArthur and his companions at Red Beach. It was a time in World War II when the Americans were prying the Philippines from the hands of the Japanese. It is one of the most iconic events in Philippine history.
Melt your worries at Paruparong Bukid Nature Conservation Center
Ease all your worries in the most tranquil part of Leyte. Paruparong Bukid Nature Conservation Center is a nature and wellness center that has a scenic background. Play with the butterflies in the garden or go birdwatching and fishing by Lukay River. You can also enjoy an organic selection of greens found in their garden. They have a tilapia pen so you can expect your meal to be fresh too!
Day 2: City Tour and Religious Festivities
We hope you got a good night’s sleep because now’s the time to get the party started! June is the month of festivities for Tacloban City. You wouldn’t want to miss out on that, right?
Cross the San Juanico Bridge
You have the chance to cross something off your bucket list! Use this rare chance to see the longest bridge in the Philippines. Built right over the San Juanico Strait, this 2.16-kilometer long bridge connects Leyte to Samar. This monumental feat was built in 1973 as a token of love of Ferdinand Marcos to his wife, a Leyte native. You can even book a cruise that goes directly underneath the bridge!
Trek up Calvary Hill
With a large statue of Christ overlooking the city on Calvary Hill, you’d want to ignite your faith at this place. This place is indeed for spiritual travelers who plan on doing a quiet reflection. It’s a bit of a walk to the top so make sure you have a pair of comfortable walking shoes. On your way up, make sure you visit the Stations of the Cross and catch the sunset during late afternoon. At Calvary Hill, there is no better view of Tacloban City (including its seaport) than here.
Join the Sangyaw and Pintados-Kasadyaan Festivals
A mesmerizing parade of lights breathes life into the night of every June 29th. The Sangyaw Festival is a precursor to the Señor Santo Niño fiesta. Tattooed warriors known as pintados steal the spotlight of Pintados-Kasadyaan Festival.
These festive dancers are covered in body paint from head to toe in the brightest colors. This tradition has been traced to the cultural roots of body painting that was practiced by the island’s earliest inhabitants.
Explore the nightlife on Burgos Street
It’s hard to believe that Tacloban was once affected by a great catastrophe. Burgos Street’s nightlife is alive once again. Cap off the night with some grub and down it with your favorite local beer. Choose your kind of night amongst the bars, cafes, and restaurants. Show off your singing chops with karaoke or go dancing at one of the local bars.
Day 3: Fiesta and Park Adventure
Crossing off two festivals on the list. Better be pumped up for the third and final one! Also, we should be prepared when our loved ones ask us for their share of pasalubong.
Attend the Sto. Niño Leyte Fiesta
June is a special month because it’s when the patron saint of the city is celebrated. Once damaged by Typhoon Yolanda, the repaired Sto. Niño Church emerges better than before. Here, it was where the image of Senor Santo Nino miraculously appeared. The celebration is culminated on the last day of the month.
Discover Sohoton Natural Bridge National Park
Tacloban isn’t just about the city. Adventures like kayaking, spelunking, and trekking are something you can explore at Sohoton Natural Bridge National Park in Basey, Samar. You can even discover natural rock formations, a natural stone bridge, and several caves.
Try the local delicacies
What’s a trip without trying the local food, right? Dig into binagol (taro cake with coconut), chocolate moron (sticky rice cake), and sagmani (cassava and sweet potato rice cake). Add suman tinambiran (black and white sticky rice), sarungsong (milk and cheese-flavored sticky rice), and tuba (coconut wine) to the mix. Bring home some of these pasalubong staples because your family will enjoy them so much!
OPTIONAL SIDE TRIP: Kalanggaman Island
Stretch your long weekend by making a short but sweet side trip to Kalanggaman Island. This untouched paradise consists of sandbars made of ivory sands and glassy waters. Facilities are very basic and you can even go camping overnight on this island. Choose your adventure by going diving or snorkeling at this marine reserve.
The title “City of Hope” fits Tacloban after it was hit by one of the strongest typhoons in history. Its resilience can be seen among its structures especially among its people. Now is the perfect time to put this Tacloban itinerary into action. Better book that airplane ticket asap. See you guys there!Tacloban itinerary
When are you heading to Tacloban? Share your adventures with us by using #Philihappy and tagging @Philihappy on Instagram.
*Rates are subject to change