Saturday, February 10, 2018

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Learning about a city or town doesn't always need to happen in the great outdoors. When the elements are not cooperating with your itinerary, you can be left with nothing to do. In this case, a museum can come to the rescue and change the way you spend your idle time.

A museum side trip is almost always a reasonable activity to do, rain or shine, and you can also go at it at your own pace. In the Philippines, there are a lot of museums to visit and for less the cost. Plus, there's no discounting the fact that you'll learn something new to mold your perceptions about the place you're visiting.

In my five years of travel blogging, I've always managed to secure a few hours of such educational retreat in every provincial getaway that I had. There were also instances that some of the museums I visited were easily accessible in Metro Manila that spending my random weekends didn't have to be done at a mall.

Here are some museums that are worth visiting as side trips in your next escapade: 


1. The Book Museum Cum Ethnology Center
Location: Marikina City

The Book Museum Cum Ethnology Center
The Book Museum Cum Ethnology Center
The Book Museum Cum Ethnology Center
The Book Museum Cum Ethnology Center is a sanctuary for wisdom in Marikina City where visitors can read books from open shelves and even do necessary research. The 900-square meter establishment is owned by Atty. Dominador Buhain, chairman and president of the REX Group of Companies and someone who had been cited in 2010 as one of the most traveled persons in Asia by the Most Traveled People Organization.

Serving as the establishment's ethnology center are two buildings that welcome visitors from the main entrance gate. At the left side of the property, particularly at the ground floor, is the building that houses the owner's personal collection of well-preserved artifacts from the Northern Philippines. At the property's right side is where visitors can find similarly rare souvenirs that the collector managed to have from the Southern part of the country.

Read more about The Book Museum Cum Ethnology Center.


2. Bataan WWII Museum
Location: Balanga City, Bataan

Bataan WWII Museum
Bataan WWII Museum
Bataan WWII Museum
You'll know that you're standing near the Bataan WWII Museum when you've seen the Surrender Memorial of American Major General Edward P. King at the compound of the Balanga Elementary School. It's a life-sized monument that welcomes tourists in front of the HAS Club-initiated museum.

The structure houses a couple of exciting dioramas of more than 120 dolls depicting the Death March (including a represented aeta), informative displays about the history of Bataan (with one tarp showing the two dormant volcanoes called Natib and Mariveles), a few war artifacts and a video summary. The museum is in partnership with the city government, including the Department of Education-Bataan and the Bataan Tourism Office.

Read more about Bataan WWII Museum.


3. Negros Museum
Location: Bacolod City, Negros Occidental

Negros Museum
Negros Museum
Negros Museum
The Negros Museum is just a three-minute stroll from the Provincial Capitol Building which is a short jeepney ride away from the tourist-favorite Manokan Country. After you've lathered your hands with chicken inasal grease, you can venture on an indoor educational tour of Negros Occidental at this 1925-built structure which used to be the city's Agricultural Building until it was turned into what is now a museum in 1996.

Scattered in unassuming sections of the courtyard under age-old trees are culinary antiques and other vintage possessions that locals might have used in the island of Negros. At the second floor, displays of different kinds from dioramas to personal paraphernalia can be seen to depict stories of the whole island way back when the colonizing Spaniards were still in the country.

Read more about Negros Museum.


4. Destileria Limtuaco Museum
Location: Manila

Destileria Limtuaco Museum
Destileria Limtuaco Museum
Destileria Limtuaco Museum
Just when you thought that you've seen everything interesting in Manila, the Destileria Limtuaco Museum comes along. Located in Intramuros and housed in a bahay na bato, the two-storey company museum is a historical showcase of Destileria Limtuaco & Co., Inc.'s colorful past and present. Visitors are bound to experience walking through time with old displays, including an imposing replica of the distillation still and the big wooden tank that stuns at the entrance. It features five generations of master blending tradition and it even has quirky displays of vintage calendars and undergarments.

The old structure alone is a treat to see for complementing the museum's details. Acquired in 1979, the site is intended to show the well-preserved history of the five-generation company that has survived its industry since being established in 1852, making it the oldest distillery in the Philippines and the oldest manufacturing company in the country. The site is only but a glimpse of how distinct the operation of the company really has become from winning numerous accolades abroad to enjoying a loyal following thanks to its product quality, taste, aroma and smoothness.

Read more about Destileria Limtuaco Museum.


5. The E. Aguilar Cruz Museum
Location: Magalang, Pampanga

E. Aguilar Cruz Museum
E. Aguilar Cruz Museum
E. Aguilar Cruz Museum
A visit of Magalang is not complete without a stay at the quaint resort spa called Abe's Farm. As side trip, it's also recommended for guests to visit the E. Aguilar Cruz Museum that's located right next to it in the same sprawling property.

Operated by the resort, the museum is an ode to Emilio Aguilar Cruz who is known as the “Son of Magalang” and a well-known writer, artist and bon vivant. It's where guests can see displays detailing his achievements as LJC Group founder and his contributions to the local hospitality industry, as well as the enduring restaurants he opened in the country.


6. Pinto Art Museum
Location: Antipolo City, Rizal

Pinto Art Museum
Pinto Art Museum
Pinto Art Museum
Pinto Art Museum is starting to be an attraction not just for art aficionados but also lovers of photography because of its well manicured gardens, cobbled pathways, and Cycladic-inspired galleries that have monastic exteriors and industrial-style interiors. The paintings and sculptures being showcased at the museum's galleries range from the contemporary to the indigenous and belonging from various artists. Particularly jarring for introspection's sake are the indoor and outdoor art installations that can be considered bizarre by ordinary eyes. Those who prefer less shock value can appreciate the museum's classic art displays like the bust of Jose Rizal across the museum's chapel.

Owned by Ilocano art patron Dr. Joven Cuanang, it is easy on the eyes but compelling to the soul. Whitewashed cubic structures house the total of more than six galleries with the main one at the entrance next to the museum shop. Some have roof decks that serve visitors expansive views of the whole place. With antique doors and windows sourced from the Ilocos region, the gallery shell borders on the meditative which reflects the sentiments of its designer, Cagayan-native Antonio Leaño.

Read more about Pinto Art Museum.


7. Lucban Municipal Museum
Location: Lucban, Quezon Province

Lucban Municipal Museum
Lucban Municipal Museum
Lucban Municipal Museum
The Lucban Municipal Museum just opened in 2015 at one of the oldest structures in the town, but its collection is nothing like its young age. At the historic Gusaling Escuelapia, the museum houses anything old and remarkable that have been donated by the residents like a vintage kalamay stirrer, a metal pan, and notable World War II relics. It's accentuated at the center by a well-preserved trombone used by a long-departed local musician named Laureano Racelis Elma of the Banahaw Band (Banda Banahaw).

From time to time, a part of the venue (specifically the hallway to the museum floor) is updated to show solo and group exhibits of the creative town's various artists.


Eager for more travel recommendations? Check out the following posts:

16 Must-Try Offbeat Cafes In The Philippines
14 Restaurants With Unique Dining Views In The Philippines
5 Historic Hotels and Inns To Book In The Philippines
8 Cold Climate Destinations To Visit This Christmas In The Philippines
• Farm Tourism Destinations In The Philippines
• Fields of Dreams In The Philippines
• 10 Resorts and Hotels With Attractive Swimming Pool Views
• 7 Charming Resorts and Hotels For Pre-Nuptial Photo Shoots
• 10 Luxury Hotels and Resorts To Book For Pampered Vacations
• 8 Less Explored Attractions In The Philippines
• 10 Extraordinary Resorts and Hotels To Book In The Philippines
• 3 Essential Events Place In Metro Manila For Weddings, Birthdays, and More

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