This week’s weather has been bi-polar. It mellows down only to give us a heavy downpour after a few minutes. That is how our weather threw its tantrums this week, drenching Metro Manila and its surrounding provinces and leaving us wallowing in traffic and flood waters.
The rain is not exactly a traveler’s ideal companion during trips and even prior to a trip. The weekend rain almost dampened the mood of a weekend camping trip to Bataan. The unpredictable rains did not give us enough room to walk around parks, explore the city, or to even catch pokemons. The gloomy weather had me thinking on where we could head off to explore when dark clouds threaten to darken our mood for exploration.
Art In Island – Redefining Art In A Fun Way
I have seen a lot of people traveling to the different destinations of the country and showcasing the beauty of the Philippines but I only see a couple of shots that featured museums or artworks. Art appreciation, among Filipinos, is still a subject that needs attention despite the abundance of great artists in the country.
Needless to say, the gloomy days last week had me thinking on alternative destinations to check out during the rainy season. I figured that, in cases when your feet are itchy to wander and the weather would not cooperate, you can always check out museums and art galleries in your area.
Art in Island is one museum that redefines art appreciation. The 3D art gallery, tucked within the confines of Cubao, is a notch higher because it allows interaction with its art exhibits. In fact, these art interactions make the experience. The museum has about 50 artworks done by a team of Korean artists that gives illusions of depth at certain vantage points. These camera angles allow visitors to become part of the exhibit in photographs.
Exploring Art in Island was a first for my family. It was a great way to actually celebrate Asher’s birthday – enforcing her appreciation that there is fun in art. It takes about two hours, at least, to get around the galleries of this interactive museum. The artworks vary from classical works to those that are products of wild imagination.
Since Disney brought to life “The Little Mermaid”, every little girl probably once wished that they were a mermaid. Fret not because now you can become one, in pictures that is. Art in Island opening gallery features everything under the sea. You can sit inside a clamshell, be fish food, or simply hide from a whale or an octopus breaking out of the walls.
You can then play around with wild animals where you can search the jungles of the “island” for leopards or the musically inclined monkey. You can jump out of the mouth of a crocodile or have your picture taken by Polar Bears. All it takes is working on the right angle of the artwork.
Visitors are then given the chance to become part of famous classical artworks. Play hide and seek with Charlie Chaplin, work with peasants, catch a shoe, or try getting close to Michael Angelo’s famous sculpture. You can become alive in these amazing artworks.
Enjoy being part of Egyptian stories or travel the world through these masterpieces. You can also play angel of light and darkness, be a genie in a bottle, or be Santa’s Little Helper. You can also play heroes and villains. Everything wrapped around your imagination.
The great thing about Art in Island is that it allows you to be who you want to be. It allows you to play around with your imagination while it captures these moments in your photos.
Post Travel Notes
Art in Island mixes the artists’ creativity with the creativity of its visitors. It is an art gallery that redefines art appreciation because it allows guests to be part of the art. One can definitely have a touch and feel of art. In the midst of the technological advances that allow us to be able to view these artworks virtually, the gallery allows art appreciation through actual interaction. It is one huge hall where one’s creativity can run free and this is what kids nowadays need. Art in Island is great way to bond with your kids while enriching their knowledge especially on rainy days like this.
Getting There: Art in Island is tucked along 15th Avenue in Cubao, Quezon City. Public transport that passes by Aurora Boulevard and you get down at 15th Avenue where you can take another jeep headed to Alimall. You can ask the driver to drop you off at the art gallery. If you are at the Araneta Center, you can also walk to Cubao Expo where there is an access gate to Art in Island.
I told Asher to move one more step to the left while I moved one step to the right. I was carefully framing our shot to capture a good sunset picture with the island at the background. I ran back to align my Go Pro camera and then positioned myself again into the frame. I signaled for both of us to hold our stance while looking at the sunset. Good shot!
Touchdown: Candelaria, Zambales
It was almost lunchtime when Asher and I arrived at Dawal Beach Resort in Candelaria, our home for the weekend. We were on the road for 7 hours from Manila, with a brief breakfast stopover in Olongapo, and we were just eager to take on the beach as soon as we touched down.
Candelaria is a municipality that sits along the foot of the Zambales mountain ranges. It has created a niche in the tourism market as it serves as the jump-off point for travelers heading off to Potipot Island. Its coastline, facing the West Philippine Sea, is lined up with a number of resorts that offer accommodations for those intending to stay a night or two in Zambales.
After a nice lunch of chicken and shrimp at the resort, we headed for the beachfront. Our destination was Potipot Island but since we were too tired to take on the short trip to the island, we decided to just enjoy the beach and wait for the sunset by the sandy shores of Candelaria.
The dark brown sandy shores of Candelaria has its own charm. I think that the tourist pull of Potipot Island had downplayed the beauty of Candelaria’s beach. It is the typical rural shoreline where you see locals taking a nap under bamboo huts. It is very laid back.
Asher and I had the beach for ourselves. We enjoyed the strong waves hitting its shores while trying to build sandcastles. Every now and then, a motorized banca docks along the shore to bring back resort guests from the island.
Candelaria is also a good spot to catch the sunset. We were lucky to enjoy viewing the sun as it sank into the waters of the West Philippine Sea. It was amazing to watch the sky turn into different colors, highlighted by different cloud formations. It was a great show to end the day.
Potipot Island: My Birthday Treat
I make it a point to travel to a new destination to celebrate my birthday. This year’s destination was Potipot Island – a destination that has been on my list for quite some time. This 7.5 hectare island off the coast of Candelaria boasts of powdery white sand and clear turquoise waters. So imagine my excitement as I woke up on my birthday to explore the island and the best part of it was having Asher with me on this trip.
It only takes 15-minutes via motorized boat to cross from the mainland to Potipot Island. There are boatmen along the shore who can bring you to and back from the island for Php500. These boats are allowed to dock on one side of the island preserving its shorelines. Guests are free to roam the island after paying the Php100 entrance fee.
There are cottages for rent for those who intend to spend the night in Potipot Island but the best way to enjoy a night’s rest in the island is by pitching a tent. The island have very basic facilities. In our case, we chose a spot close to the beach where I installed my AluyanPH hammock.
Potipot beach is a great destination for those who want to just chill. There is always a silent spot where you can lay down to sleep or read a book. Walking the beach is highly suggested as the island is small that you can walk around it in 30 minutes. You will be treated with the different facets of the island – the powdery white sand, the rough “coral” shores, and its turquoise blue waters. The beach is a perfect spot to beach bum. Asher and I enjoyed taking a dip and enjoying the sun and sand.
Post Travel Notes
I must say that Potipot Island is an underrated beach destination. Its white sand shores and clear waters are comparable to the other great beaches in the country. The Potipot experience is enhanced by the rustic and untouched vibe of the island. I think that if the owners invest more on improving its facilities while keeping its “raw” feel, Potipot Island can attract more tourist that can eventually generate business and employment opportunities for the community.
Despite the gruelling 7-8 hours travel to Potipot Island, it was one of those trips that I enjoyed. It was a perfect destination to just chill. Its beach bumming at its finest. If you are in the mood to travel for hours just looking for a good beach spot then Potipot Island is our suggested destination.
I guess I could say that I spent my birthday… chilling like a boss.
Getting There: Victory Liner have direct trips to Sta. Cruz, Zambales. These buses pass by Candelaria. However, direct trips are limited. Another option is to take a bus bound for Olongapo or Iba and then catch a bus bound for Candelaria. Just ask the driver to drop you off at your preferred resort or at the town proper where you can take a trike to your resort.
Where to Stay: Asher and I stayed at Dawal Beach Resort. Potipot Island is just 15-minutes away from the resort. Dawal offers great accommodations, swimming pool facilities, a restaurant, and boat transfers to Potipot Island. You can reach Dawal Beach Resort at (0919) 5730952.
For those who are on a tight budget or who prefers camping out, you can go directly to Potipot Island and pitch a tent. Potipot Island has a Php100 entrance fee per person.
Marc del Rosario
I believe in education, entrepreneurship, and caring for the environment.