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Saturday, May 11, 2013

Alluring Pampanga: Getting To Know Guagua

Guagua Municipal Hall

It was a boring Saturday at my house here in Quezon City and off from work. I only spent my time infront of computer playing games and searching internet until one time, I decided to have a day tour. Since Metro Manila has many provinces nearby, I searched for the places that I have been once or never been there from the start. Pampanga came to my mind since I need also to explore the other towns since it has rich in cultures and places of interest. I packed my things including my ever reliable camera. I rode Bataan Transit and went to Guagua, Pampanga. I passed NLEX and Gapan-Olongapo road and after two hours, I reached Guagua.

Source: Wikipedia

Guagua is a first class municipality and 77 kilometers north of Metro Manila. It also belongs to Second District of Pampanga. This town was also damaged during the eruption of world renowned Mount Pinatubo. But Guagua stood up and regained it and become one of the best performing towns in Pampanga. By the way, I rode a jeepney since the town proper was not in the National Highway so I paid PHP8 fare in order to reach the town proper which was only 10 minutes from the Gapan-Olongapo road. The town proper was simple as I expected. But there were several establishments which makes the town progressive.

Welcome to Guagua

Rufino Cardinal Santos Catholic Center

The town was quiet as compared to other cities such as San Fernando (capital) and Angeles but their population was huge, one of the highest in the province. Along my stroll, there were many structures built during Spanish and American era. Among them were the following:

1. Immaculate Concepcion Parish

Built in 1590

It was one of the oldest structures built in Guagua. It was also rebuilt for several years due to fire. The simplicity of the structure and what was more interesting was the inside of the church. It may be looked like a cathedral but this place drawn tourists who were interested to this site.

white church

solo pic

another one

went inside

walk to the aisle

there was christening ongoing

way to the altar

dome shaped inside

2. Rufino Cardinal Santos Catholic Center

Neo-Classical Building

Adjacent to the church was this building who looked like a City or Provincial Capitol in some provinces such as Ilocos Norte and Negros Occidental that I've been to. This place was the office building of the church.


3. Aurelio Tolentino Monument

Located beside the Municipal Building, Aurelio Tolentino was born in Guagua and he was one of the revolutionary hero. He was also a playwright and one of the members of Katipunan. He died in 1915 and buried in Manila North Cemetery but in 1921, his remains were transferred to this monument.

4. Guagua Municipal Building

building edifice

It was built last 1937 and until now this building was a seat of government of Guagua where Mayor and Vice Mayor took their office. The structure was simple the good thing was it retained the structure.

simple and historical

picture at municipal building

another one

There were other places I visited at Guagua. I will post it on separate blog. It was an interesting trip to this town and I was hungry by that time. So I went to look for a place that was proudly Guagua and already spread out across the country. 

Find out on my next blog post! :)

How to get there:

Via private vehicle - From Metro Manila, headed to North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) and exit at San Fernando. Drive along Gapan-Olongapo Road and turn left once your reach Mary the Queen College. Drive along and you will reach Guagua downtown. Travel time is 1.5 hours.

Via commute - From Metro Manila, ride a bus bound for Bataan, Olongapo and Zambales that passes along Gapan-Olongapo Road. Tell to the bus conductor or driver to drop you off to the intersection to Guagua. Fare ranges from PHP80 to PHP100. Once you arrive, ride a jeepney (Guagua-Porac) to go to the town proper. Fare costs PHP8. Travel time is only 2 hours.

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