Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Pampanga Province, Philippines

By James Barcelona
Tourist Attractions
St. Peter's Shrine
St. Peter's Shrine in Apalit, Pampanga. This shrine contains the image of the famous "Apung Iru" (St. Peter), a life-size ivory statue from Spain, which the pilgrims venerate all year-round.

Mt. Arayat National Park used to be the premier tourist spot in Central Luzon but is now being neglected by our government. Let us revive the pristine beauty of this park.

Mt. Arayat National Park
The mountain is very beautiful.  A trek to its summit is a delightful adventure.  You can view the skyline of the whole province.  On its top, one can commune with nature to his heart’s content.  The many colorful florals and faunas, the chirping birds atop the branches on sun-drenched, emerald-green, trees, the swaying grass that dances in rhythm with the gentle breeze are a sight to behold.  The tranquil forest and the serene mountain lake send bliss to solitude.  So, if you want to escape the hussles and bussels of city life, Mt. Arayat is the place to be.  In this mountain, you can have everything that nature has to offer.

Paradise Ranch and Zoocobia
Fun Zoo
Paradise Ranch and Zoocobia Fun Zoo in Clark. This is one of the must see places in Clark. It is ideal for the whole family, friends and adventure seekers. Zoocobia is the perfect place to mingle with the animals and have an educational experience.

Located at the Sacobia Valley, Clark Freeport Zone, Zoocobia is set on a forested foothill that offers visitors a close experience with nature.

Pampanga is a province of the Philippines located in Central Luzon region. The province is subdivided into 20 municipalities and 2 cities, with the City of San Fernando as the capital. Pampanga is bordered by the provinces of Bataan and Zambales to the west, Tarlac and Nueva Ecija to the north, and Bulacan to the southeast. Pampanga also lies in the northern shore of Manila Bay.

The name of the province originates from the word pampang which means river bank. The Spaniards named the province “La Pampanga” when they found the early natives near the river banks. Its terrain is relatively flat with one distinct mountain, Mount Arayat and the notable Pampanga River. The province is home to two air bases under the Philippine Air Force. They are the Basa Air Base in Floridabalanca and the former U.S. Clark Air Base in Angeles City. 

The inhabitants of Pampanga are generally referred to as Kapampangans, Pampangos, or PampangueƱos. Kapampangans take pride in their province for being one of the eight provinces to first revolt against Spain. The province had produced two presidents, three chief justices of the Supreme Court, a senate president and many other outstanding personalities.

The province of Pampanga has two distinct climates, rainy and dry. The rainy or wet season normally begins from May to October, while the rest of the year is dry. The warmest period of the year occurs between March and April, while the coolest period is from December through February. 

The two main industries in the province are farming and fishing. Major crops include rice, corn, sugarcane, and tilapia. Every year during Christmas season, Pampanga becomes the center of lighted lanterns or “parol” industry that displays a kaleidoscope of light and color. 

Pampanga is the culinary capital of the Philippines. Well known food products range from the ordinary to exotic. Specialty foods such as siopao, pandesal, lechon or roasted pig and its sauce are popular in the province. Exotic foods such as butete tugak or stuffed frog, kamaru or mole crickets, bulanglang or pork cooked in guava juice and lechon kawali are mainstay in Kapampangan feasts. 

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