This is another "let's-see-what-happens" trip that I had during the last quarter of 2011. I really had no plans of exploring Calbayog City, I just intend to make it as an entry point to the province of Samar. Good thing that a few days before my trip, I was referred by Josiah of Lakas ng Trip to DOT region 8 for assistance on this trip. I was contacted by Patrick, a staff of the said office and he told me that he has already endorsed me to the tourism office of Calbayog City.
My plan was to just go to the Calbayog City tourism office and ask for some info on the places worth visiting within the city. I didn't expect that they will be fetching me from the airport and will guide me as I tour the city. Woohoo!!! I am really surprised! I never expected such warm welcome. I was met by Ms. Irene and Ms. Lorna together with Kuya Ben, our driver.
Our first stop was a quick breakfast at Ice Plant Restaurant. It was used to be an ice plant that was later on converted into a restaurant. Nice! We had the traditinal Filipino breakfast composed of longanisa, fried rice and egg. I also had a taste of Calbayog's tinapa (smoked fish), which tastes fresh and really good.
After the breakfast, we headed to the Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary grotto located on the shores of Malajog Beach. I was informed that this grotto was built thru the efforts of the former Barangay Captain of Malajog with the help of numerous locals from abroad.
I climbed up the grotto and enjoyed the lovely sights from the top.
Our next destination is the Mondejares Beach Resort located at Brgy. Saljag. It is a nice black sand beach resort famous for wedding receptions, conventions and other events.
They have rooms available if you plan to stay overnight. They also have a swimming pool, kayaks and speedboat that you could rent for some aqua sports activities.
Next was the St. Joseph the Worker Parish at Brgy. San Policarpo. It is a small church known for its "veneration of saints" built in front of the church.
We then proceeded to the St. Vincent de Paul Seminary at Dagum Hills, Brgy. Dagum Calbayog City. Since it is situated on a hill, it affords a spectacular view of the city and Samar sea. Really lovely! There is also a huge replica of the Our Lady of Fatima built in front of the seminary.
As a seminary school, it offers specialized philosophy and theology degrees leading to priesthood. Upon arriving at the complex, we were greeted by the students. I walked around while having some small talks with them. I learned that the students here came from different parts of region 8.
We then proceeded to the City proper and visited the Calbayog Cathedral or the Saints Peter and Paul Cathedral. Considered to be the biggest church in Samar, it is a combination of new and old architecture as it already went through several renovations through the years.
The old dome, the spire and the thick walls were the ones left from the old Spanish-built church.
I also visited the Handumanan Building which houses the City Tourism and Information Center. There, I met the other tourism officers of the city. Despite being so busy with their work, they were very accommodating and had time to tour me around the office. Salamat po!
Inside the office, you'll see a display of the other spots worth visiting in Calbayog City as well as the whole province of Samar. I hope all tourism offices in the country has an informative and well presented displays such as this. It is noteworthy that this building used to be a jail and was later on renovated as a 2-storey building with a 19th century bahay na bato look. It also houses a museum that tells much of the city’s rich history and vibrant past.
I also went to the old city hall building which was built in 1925. I was supposed to have a courtesy call with
There are still a lot of places to see in Calbayog City. Waterfalls, beaches, caves, hot springs and more. But due to time constraints, I need to say goodbye and continue my journey. I promise to come back soon! 'Til next time!
If you wish to contact the Calbayog City Tourism Office, you may call them at (055) 209-1776 or (055) 209-4041. I'm sure that they would be very happy to assist you with your needs.
Again, thank you to Department of Tourism region 8 and the to the City Tourism Office of Calbayog City.
This is part of my trip to Samar and Eastern Samar that happened last October 14-16, 2011. Samar and Eastern Samar are the 41st and 42nd provinces on my list and it also marks my completion of setting foot on all the provinces in Eastern Visayas (Region 8). Join me as I discover some of the beautiful sights of Samar and Eastern Samar as well as the people I've met as I continue my journey through the provinces of the Philippines!
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