Wondering where to best spend this year’s Holy Week? Don’t waste one of the Philippines’ longest holidays by not planning ahead. Whether you’re up for a spiritual renewal or a grand summer trip, there are lots of amazing places in the Philippines where you can spend this season of Lent.
Below is a list of the most popular Holy Week domestic destinations that you can try this 2017.
Top 7 Holy Week Getaways
Ilocos is an 8-hour drive from Manila where you'll find magnificent century old churches.
One of the most famous colonial churches in the province is Paoay Church in San Nicolas, Ilocos Norte. Because of its grand buttresses and belfry, a lot of people would travel to this far-off but beautiful place. Check out this travel entry from Lakwatsero and his suggested list of churches to complete your Visita Iglesia.
Pampanga is another popular Holy Week destination in the Philippines. Various foreign news sites have featured this province’s penitent procession of devotees and the world-famous reenactment of Christ’s crucifixion.
While the Catholic Church does not endorse this bloody penitence, the tradition has been practiced since the 1960s. The procession happens on Good Friday, in Cutud, San Fernando Pampanga.
For soul-searching and spiritual renewal, head your way to the South.
The Caleruega in Nasugbu, Batangas is just a stone’s throw away from Tagaytay and a popular place to spend quiet time with God. It has a retreat house and a chapel in the middle of a lush green garden where you can pray and attend the holy week mass.
Want to complete your Visita Iglesia in Batangas? There are beautiful and historical churches in this province too! You can also attend the culmination of the Lenten season by taking part in the Salubong, an age-old tradition that is still thriving in Batangas.
Come Easter Sunday, make it a fun day at the beach by visiting Batangas’ most popular beaches. There are world-class resorts in the province that can cap off your reinvigorating holy week getaway.
With the enchanting beauty of Bohol, it still is a top holy week destination for everyone. Aside from the tourist spots that this province is known for, you can experience serenity and the quiet-time you want during the Lenten season in its beautiful churches like the St. Joseph’s Cathedral in Tagbiliran and the Albuquerque Church, which is known for its intricately designed retablo.
If your idea of a Holy Week getaway is spending day at the beach, then Pangasinan is the place to go. The province is blessed with tucked away white sand beaches and pristine seascapes perfect for the hot Lenten season.
For the devotees visiting the province, a pilgrimage to the Bani Calvary Hill, which is the province’s version of the Calvary Hill, is an uplifting experience to try. It depicts the passions of Jesus Christ with its 1,000 steps Via Crucis. Don’t miss to visit the Natividad Sky Plaza and see the grotto of the Virgin Mary and the 40-foot statue of Jesus Christ the Redeemer which is called “Ayat ni Apo Jesus”.
Marinduque is widely known for the colorful Moriones festival held in the province each year. It is a week-long celebration that commemorates the suffering, death and resurrection of Christ through the experience of Longinus, the centurion who pierced the side of Jesus and is one of the first Christian converts.
After attending the Moriones festival, you can celebrate the resurrection of Christ by going to the Tres Reyes Island where you can take a dip and go snorkeling. There are other beautiful beach destinations in the island province to complete your holy week getaway.
There's so much to discover in Davao other than the Garden City of Samal. It’s not just a place for leisure and recreation, but also for finding inner peace and taking the time to commune with God.
Aside from the popular churches in Davao that are perfect for Visita Iglesia, you can go on a retreat at the Dominican House of Prayer in Shrine Hills, a shrine on top of a hill overlooking the beautiful city of Davao. One thing that you'd appreciate is the serenity and tranquility of this place that is shrouded with trees, greens and flowers, allowing you to reflect and have some quiet time.
Did we miss your favorite Holy Week destination? Share us your thoughts by commenting below.