Monday, April 16, 2012

Our DIY Legazpi City Tour

One thing I found out during our brief stay in Legazpi City, Albay is that the place is fairly easy to navigate. Though there are some agencies offering packaged Legazpi City day tours, you can save on the cost by exploring the city yourself   Places of interests can be easily accessed through public transportation and one can always ask around since the locals, as I observed, are tourists-friendly. And if you're lucky to come on a cloudless day, the majestic view of Mayon Volcano can also be seen in many vantage points around the city proper.

 Jeepneys and tricycles are the usual mode of transportation around Legazpi City. In the background is the Cathedral of St. Gregory the Great.

From the Cagsawa Ruins in Daraga, Malou and I took another jeepney ride back to Legazpi City. Distance from Cagsawa to Legazpi is about 8 kilometers and jeepney fare is 16 pesos. We alighted in front of the Legazpi City Hall and then walk across the highway to Peñaranda Park. The park is supposed to be one of those vantage points in viewing Mount Mayon. However, since we were not so lucky that day, all we could see are the white clouds that fully covered Mayon's beauty:

 Peñaranda Park, also known as Freedom Park, was built in honor of Jose Ma. Peñaranda, the first Governor of Albay who served from 1834 to 1840. 

The Legazpi City Hall and the Cathedral of St. Gregory the Great can also be seen from the park:

Legazpi City Hall

The Cathedral of St. Gregory the Great (also known as the Albay Cathedral) is the Episcopal Seat of the Diocese of Legazpi

We then boarded another jeepney and went to Legazpi Grand Central Terminal. A modern transport terminal for buses, jeepneys and vans, it is also a great place to buy "pasalubongs".  Locally-made abaca and pili nuts products can be found here at a cheaper price compared to pasalubong center in the malls. 

From the Legazpi Grand Central Terminal, we hailed a tricycle and told the driver to take us to the Embarcadero. We've been there the night before but we wanted to try our luck and see if we can view Mount Mayon's full glory from the Legazpi Boulevard.  The afternoon view of the boulevard was lovely, however clouds were still all over the elusive volcano. 

 A nice afternoon in Legazpi Boulevard--minus the view of Mount Mayon.

A view of the Embarcadero lighthouse with the Kapuntukan Hill in the background.

Tired and hungry from our exploration, we went inside Bigg's Diner to eat some snacks. Dubbed as "The Biggest Food Chain in Bicol Region", it has an American-themed ambiance and offers fast food staples such as burgers, fries, pizzas, chicken and more. Our orders really tasted great though the price is a bit expensive when compared to, say, Jollibee or McDonald's.

We then hang out at the seaside and enjoyed the afternoon breeze while patiently waiting for the clouds to disappear.

 Students hanging out at the Embarcadero de Legazpi

After an hour of waiting, this is the best Mayon view we could get:

 Clouds ready to wrap the whole of Mount Mayon once again

Since it was already late in the afternoon, we gave up our chances of seeing Mayon's beauty that day. Another tricycle ride then took us to the Legazpi Airport Hotel where we stayed. It was a long day and we did have fun exploring Daraga and Legazpi. However, without seeing Mayon's perfect cone shape, the Albay experience was still incomplete.

This is the sixth part of my Chasing Mount Mayon Series. This series chronicles our quest to see the perfect cone shape of Mayon Volcano. Follow this series to know if we were able to accomplish our elusive goal.

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  1. ang hirap talaga makita ng mayon, kami dati, gabi na lumabas yung bulkan. hinto kami sa fields at labasan ng camera at tripod for the photo hehe

    1. @christian: Pakipot talaga.hehehe...Finally, nagpakita din on our last day in Albay. And I was mesmerized by her beauty. : )

  2. A whole other generation is coming up to me now - anywhere from 8 to 22 years old - wanting me to sign autographs. They think Journey was awesome.

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