June is always an exciting time as I get to join and become a part-time guide to a Jim Cline Photography Tour in the Philippines conducted by international photographer Karl Grobl. It’s nice to know that the Philippines is gaining ground as an international photo tour destination. They were telling me it was unexpected that the Philippines Tour was filling up fast. And this year we had a full house so it was an exciting 6-day North Luzon leg from Vigan to Sagada (via Cervantes) then to Baguio and Manila. It’s great to be with different photographers and see their photographic styles and vision.
Corregidor Island is a fascinating destination close to Manila. It’s replete with history in all corners, magnificent ruins as testament to the island’s former grandeur and nature that thrives. I’ve talked about Corregidor Island before as our macabre version of an ancient ruin (like the Angkor Wat) but this time we go deeper in the dark recesses of Malinta Tunnel and learn the story hidden in its pitch-black environs. With our friends from Columbia Sportswear Philippines leading the way to test the cool factor of their Omni-Freeze Zero technology, I found myself venturing to the island again to discover more.
For me Photography is like learning how to ride a bike or driving, once you learn the basics, it should be second nature to you in order for you to speed away and shoot. We invite you to learn the fundamentals in photography and apply them on a weekend in Corregidor Island for Backpack Photography 101. Learn about history while you learn about photography. Explore the Rock while you explore your photographic talents. See Corregidor in a new light.
The Philippines has celebrated “Todos Los Santos” quite differently from other parts of the world. While it is only recent when candled pumpkins, trick or treats and cute-monstrosity items adorn some houses. But behind those masked commercialism, many Filipinos still observe the traditional practice of visiting departed loved ones during All Saint’s Day. I remember our usual visits to clean up the graves of our relative and also the talks of supernatural, the regular horror segments at Magandang Gabi Bayan and even a time when Mananangal (half-bodied flying female creatures with bat wings) flew over Manila. Those were interesting times, but traveling brought me to discover places which somehow exude the feel and connection to the otherworld. Here are some places from my archive which I think would be nice places to visit during the Halloween Season.
I must admit, I’ve been putting off visiting Corregidor for years now. I’ve been to places far-off Manila yet I haven’t been able to set foot on this island which is basically an hour away by ferry. Maybe I wasn’t too convinced seeing island ruins bombarded during the Second World War or even the somewhat high price tag for a destination so near. But my perception changed when I finally got to visit the island. I think the place wasn’t marketed enough as Corregidor Island was more intriguing than I thought it would be.