With already so many festivals in the country, why check out the Isla Rancho Festival in San Pascual, Masbate? In a province known mainly for its vast fields for grazing cattle and cowboys overlooking the many ranches of its three islands, it is interesting to see how this cowboy culture is infused with their celebration in reverence to their patron saint San Pascual. The Isla Rancho Festival Streetdance competition was one of the highlights of their 8-day Isla Rancho Festival. This colorful spectacle from performormances from eight groups of the 22 villages in San Pascual creatively showcased the traditional festive atmosphere similar to many popular festivals in the country with a unique cowboy kick twist.
Having my stint in El Nido officially done, I decided to explore more of Palawan before heading home. San Vicente, Palawan has been getting quite some attention lately so I decided to visit that area. I wanted to stay by the vicinity of the famed Long Beach but looking for an accommodation, I noticed that most of them are within poblacion (town) which is 3km away. JuRiSu Resort popped up from my search and found their location amidst the famous beach. It became my home for 3 days in San Vicente.
My curious gaze fell upon a group of people wandering the beach even before the first light of the day came. I was shooting the sunrise but I was wondering what they were doing by the low tide beach. Searching for shells? No. They seemed to be digging through the sand. “Nagsimula na silang maghanap ng wak-wak. (They’re starting to hunt for wak-wak)” I heard from Arvin, a native of Sibaltan and the current tourism officer of El Nido as he called my attention. Wak-wak hunting as he fondly called. I head on to investigate.
Discover East El Nido, the cultural side of this paradise region of Palawan. West El Nido with its dramatic karst islands and stunning beaches in Bacuit Bay may be the main draw for tourist but there’s fulfilment in discovering the quiet side of El Nido East with unspoilt beaches, island and incomparable marine life than the other side. The perfect home base in discovering the wonders of the east is Tapik Beach Park, a rustic, family-run, beachfront lodging in Sibaltan El Nido offering spartan native beach huts accommodation to more sophisticated beach cottages with elaborate designs.
Modern tropical-inspired bungalows and villas widely spaced apart for the guest’s utmost privacy. A private beachfront garden with sand and bermuda grass patterns forming natural pathways where people can pleasantly walk barefoot. A small but scenic pool facing the beach where guest can lounge around and watch the changing hues until dusk. For a pace like El Nido town bustling with development, El Nido Mahogany Beach Resort is a breath of fresh air from the often cold and characterless lodgings in El Nido Town.