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Long weekends for 2018 (and suggestions where to go!)

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Looking for a vacation? Here’s your list of long weekends this 2018!

It is that time of the year again where people (like us) would look for long weekends to book. This 2018, there are 11 long weekends that would surely awaken your senses. Here is the list of this year and I also put some suggested places on where to go!

Long weekends for 2018 | Turista Boy

 

As a prelude to this year’s list of long weekends, I would start by introducing several famous Sto. Niño festivals in the Philippines. Of course, who would not forget about Aklan‘s ATI-ATIHAN (a.k.a. the “Mother of all Philippine Festivals”) that was held last 15-21 January 2018, Cebu’s SINULOG that was held last 21 January 2018, and Iloilo’s DINAGYANG that will be held on 26-28 January 2018.

Dinagyang Festival Iloilo by John Chavez (www.visitpinas.com) | Turista Boy

Dinagyang Festival by John Chavez (www.visitpinas.com)

See also: Turista Boy’s Best of 2017

February 16, 17, 18 (Chinese New Year)

Turista Boy suggests: BINONDO, MANILA

For the first long weekend of 2018, I suggest that you go to one of the if not, oldest Chinatown in the world – Binondo! Being the celebration of the New Lunar Year, this long weekend is perfect for you to experience everything Chinese! From dumplings to mooncakes, from dragon dances to Chinese fanfares, it is just as good to celebrate the Chinese New Year with your loved ones!

If you want to maximize what’s in store for the month of February, you can visit and experience “the weekend of everything that flies” at the 22nd Philippine International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta at the OMNI Aviation Grounds, Clark, Pampanga on 08-11 February 2018 and experience the chill at the country’s Summer Capital for the Grand Panagbenga Weekend (Streetdance and Floral Float Parades) in Baguio City on 24-25 February 2018.

March 29, 30, 31; April 1 (Holy Week)

Turista Boy suggests: MARINDUQUE

Marinduque's Moriones Festival every Holy Week (photo by www.islandsofthephilippines.com) | Turista Boy

Marinduque’s Moriones Festival every Holy Week (photo by www.islandsofthephilippines.com)

Since this year’s Holy Week falls on the month of March, I suggest that you spend your long weekend on the island of Marinduque. Known as the “Heart of the Philippines,” Marinduque is known for its Moriones Festival. Here, locals reenact the passion of Christ leading to his crucifixion in Mount Calvary. The Morions add spice to the spectacle as they are the main attractions of the event as well.

April 7, 8, 9 (Araw ng Kagitingan)

Turista Boy suggests: SIARGAO, SURIGAO DEL NORTE or HINATUAN, SURIGAO DEL SUR

Siargao Islands, Surigao Del Norte (photo by www.escapejournal.co) | Turista Boy

Siargao Islands, Surigao Del Norte (photo by www.escapejournal.co)

Hinatuan Enchanted River, Surigao Del Sur (photo by Erwin Mascarinas) | Turista Boy

Hinatuan Enchanted River, Surigao Del Sur (photo by Erwin Mascarinas)

Spend the Day of Valor in two of Surigao’s best kept secrets – Siargao and the Hinatuan Enchanted River. Though not now a secret, Siargao and Hinatuan are just some of the many bests the country has to offer. Why not try surfing on Siargao’s Cloud 9 and explore deep into Hinatuan’s Enchanted River.

April 28, 29, 30; May 1 (Labor Day)

Turista Boy suggests: LA UNION or BORACAY, AKLAN

The La Union Welcome Arc (from Sison, Pangasinan) | Turista Boy

The La Union Welcome Arc (from Sison, Pangasinan)

Tambisaan Port, Boracay Island | Turista Boy

Tambisaan Port, Boracay Island

Have you ever heard of “Labor Union” and “LaBoracay?” These two places offer just that every Labor Day in the Philippines. As it is the peak of the Summer Season in PH, these two events is a sure tourist drawer and party just got to a whole new level. Having fun on the beach is just perfect and visiting either of these places (or even both) would make your summer more memorable! As it is also one of the long weekends this year, there would be no excuses for you not to go!

1000-Peso Challenge: La Union Province

Boracay: 6 tips to experience this party island on the cheap!

Travel Guide: Reach Boracay in a snap!

June 9, 10, 11, 12 (Independence Day)

Turista Boy suggests: CALAMBA, LAGUNA or KAWIT, CAVITE

Rizal Shrine in Calamba, Laguna (photo by www.pinoydaytripper.blogspot.com) | Turista Boy

Rizal Shrine in Calamba, Laguna (photo by www.pinoydaytripper.blogspot.com)

Aguinaldo Shrine in Kawit, Cavite | Turista Boy

Aguinaldo Shrine in Kawit, Cavite

What is more interesting when celebrating Independence Day in the Philippines? Go to where it was first declared! Visiting Aguinaldo’s home in Cavite would be an interesting site to visit and paying some respects to Jose Rizal’s hometown in Calamba, Laguna can be a side trip. These two places have a vital role in connection to our country’s independence.

August 18, 19, 20, 21 (Ninoy Aquino Day)

Turista Boy suggests: TARLAC

Ninoy Aquino Monument in Tarlac (photo by www.theurbanroamer.com) | Turista Boy

Ninoy Aquino Monument in Tarlac (photo by www.theurbanroamer.com)

Why not spend one of the long weekends in the Sugar Capital of Luzon! Tarlac is known as the melting pot of Central Luzon due to its geography and undoubtedly this province is yet to be discovered. Also as the birthplace of former Senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino, Tarlac boasts several sites that are lesser known by the traveling public. Some of which are: the Capas National Shrine, Monasterio de Tarlac, and Goshen Resort among others.

August 25, 26, 27 (National Heroes Day)

Turista Boy suggests: BATAAN

Mount Samat Shrine in Bataan (photo by www.bataan.gov.ph) | Turista Boy

Mount Samat Shrine in Bataan (photo by www.bataan.gov.ph)

Pay tribute to our National Heroes and have a visit to the Mount Samat Shrine in Pilar, Bataan. One of the popular sites in Bataan, Mount Samat is one of the must-see attractions. Being one of the long weekends this year, maximize your stay in the province by also visiting Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar in Bagac and the historic capital city of Balanga. There are also numerous resorts in the province’s shores! You can also travel to nearby Corregidor Island!

November 1, 2, 3, 4 (All Saints’ and All Souls’ Day)

Turista Boy suggests: SAGADA, MOUNTAIN PROVINCE

The famous Sagada Hanging Coffins | Turista Boy

The famous Sagada Hanging Coffins

Popular for their hanging coffins and Civet cat coffee, Sagada is now one of the popular destinations in the North. During All Saints’ and All Souls’ Day, too, they have a special way of celebrating with their departed loved ones. A part of their culture, they set up bonfires in front of their loved ones’ tombs. What a more meaningful way to spend your long weekend here is to see Sagada’s most popular tourist spots! (I tell you, spelunking is one of the best things to do here!) Read more on the links below to know what I am talking about!

Travel Guide: Go soul-searching in Sagada

Sagada is more than just finding your ‘Tadhana’

 

November 30; December 1, 2 (Bonifacio Day)

Turista Boy suggests: CEBU – BOHOL

Bohol's Chocolate Hills (photo by www.boholchronicle.com.ph) | Turista Boy

Bohol’s Chocolate Hills (photo by www.boholchronicle.com.ph)

Have a two-province tour in the Visayas on Bonifacio Day! As two of the most popular provinces in the country, Cebu and Bohol are attractions on its own since time immemorial. You can even visit these provinces in a day! As some of the provinces’ main attractions are near to each other, it is quite easy to see these tourist spots. Via speedboat, Bohol and be reached from Cebu in 2 hours or so, and vice versa. I will be revisiting Bohol this February so for the meantime, let me share to you what you can do and visit in Cebu during a layover. 🙂

Things to do in Cebu (during a layover)

December 22, 23, 24, 25 (Christmas Eve, Christmas Day)

Turista Boy suggests: SAN FERNANDO CITY, PAMPANGA

Giant Lantern Festival every December in San Fernando, Pampanga (photo by www.pranxer.com) | Turista Boy

Giant Lantern Festival every December in San Fernando, Pampanga (photo by www.pranxer.com)

To officially kickoff your Christmas holidays, I suggest that you go and watch the Giant Lantern Festival in the Parol Capital of the Philippines – San Fernando, Pampanga! Here, you will witness different kinds of modern lanterns that will surely dazzle your senses. This annual fanfare attracts a handful of locals and tourists in celebration of the Yuletide season. When in Pampanga, why not try different Kapampangan food and delicacies as well? Better try their morcon, camaru, and their sizzling sisig!

December 29, 30, 31 (Rizal Day, New Year’s Eve)

Turista Boy suggests: DAVAO CITY, DAVAO DEL SUR

Celebrate the coming New Year in the biggest city in Mindanao – Davao City! Not only is it the hometown of the incumbent president of the Philippines, but it is also home to the Philippine Eagle, the famous Durian, and the Ilang-ilang orchids. I suggest that you come here to celebrate the New Year as there is an ordinance totally banning firecrackers throughout the City. It is much safer and you can celebrate the New Year in an alternative way. While waiting for that exchange in the calendar year, try to visit some of Davao’s esteemed tourist spots! I recommend that you visit their Crocodile Park, Davao People’s Park, Museo Dabawenyo, D’ Bone Collector Museum, The Philippine Eagle Center, and Matina Town Square (for food!) among others!

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All provinces/places on this long weekends list are just suggestions! It’s still up to you where to go!

We’re born to travel!

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