Maganda ang ilog at ang dagat sa kanilang bayan sa Laguna. Kulay bughaw na dulot ng kalangitan at may paminsan-minsa’y luntian na dala ng mga nakapaligid na kawayang tila sumasayaw tuwing naiihipan ng hangin. Nariyan ang mga bangkang may layag na tila mga puting paru-parong naghahabulan. Malaking tulong hindi lang sa pangingisda ngunit pati na rin sa mas mabilis na paglalakbay patungong kabilang mga bayan.
Sa isang araw na pamamagka ng batang si Pepe, nahulog ang isa nyang tsinelas. Sa sobrang bilis ng agos ay hindi na niya ito makukuha pa. Maya-maya, kinuha niya ang naiwan sa kanya sa pares ng tsinelas at pinaanod na rin sa ilog. Tinanong siya ng nagsasagwan kung bakit pati ang isa ay pinaanod. Ang naging tugon, walang magiging silbi sa kung sino mang makapulot ng isang naanod. Wala din naming magiging silbi sa kaniya ang naiwan. Pinaanod na rin niya ang natitira, para isang pares ng tsinelas ang magagamit sa kanyang paglakad ng kung sino mang makakita nito.
This is just one of the anecdotes in the life of our national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal. As the country commemorate his 153rd birth anniversary, let us once again relive these stories and know Pepe more, through the places he once stayed. The Restless Pinoy Traveler lists eight places that are significant to Jose Rizal.
Dipolog is a relatively small city that can be explored in a day. This third class city is the capital of Zamboanga del Norte and serves as gateway to Zamboanga Peninsula and the rest of Western Mindanao. Dipolog is famous for its wild orchids as well as its bottled sardines that’s why it is known as the ‘Bottled Sardines Capital of the Philippines’.
Dipolog City Airport. Terminal Fee is now 75 pesos
Dipolog can be accessed from Manila the fastest way via airplane. The airport is currently undergoing improvement constructions. Upon arrival, tricycles and habal-habal going to downtown are already waiting outside the airport. Fare usually is 60 pesos per ride for the habal-habal and 10 pesos per person if you choose the tricycle with a capacity of 6 persons, or you could just pay the full amount for special trip.
The Restless Pinoy Traveler Tip: Bottled sardines and the likes, the usual pasalubong from Dipolog, are not allowed to be hand carried in the airplane.
The downtown area is best explored by walking. You can start with the Our lady of the Holy Rosary Cathedral or the Dipolog Cathedral, which its altar was designed by Jose Rizal himself. Pattern was based on that of San Ignacio Church in Manila. Waiting for guests outside the church, is the Plaza Magsaysay located in the heart of Dipolog.
Our lady of the Holy Rosary Cathedral or the Dipolog Cathedral
The church interior
The church altar that Jose Rizal designed
I’ve been to a lot of places that has significance to our national hero, Dr. Jose P. Rizal. There’s Rizal Park in Luneta, Rizal Shrine in Calamba, and Fort Santiago in Intramuros to name a few. But this destination gave me the most intimate experience of knowing him more – Dapitan.
The Landing Site
On the 17th of July 1892, at seven in the evening, Rizal first set his foot on the shores of Sta. Cruz beach where he was exiled, accompanied by Captain Delgras and three artillery men. Guided by a farol de combate or a lantern, the group walked to the Casa Real which is almost a kilometer away from the landing site, where Pepe will stay.
Dapitan was designed as any other typical Spanish town plaza, the park at the center surrounded by the Casa Real or the Royal House that served as the seat of government and the St. James Church, where a relief map of Mindanao was built in front by Rizal himself. The cathedral is the most prominent structure in the city boasting its huge and centuries-old pillars and walls. On the left side near the main entrance facing the altar, a marker was installed declaring the spot as where Rizal stood every Sunday to hear the mass.