8 Fun Ways to Enjoy Pilgrimage to Our Lady of Piat Shrine

Piat is a town in Cagayan province known their miraculous image of Nuestra Señora de Piat enshrined at the Basilica Minore de Piat.


church facade with bell tower undergoing restoration

The jump off point is Tuguegarao city and it is just between 32.8 to 33 kilometers away from the town. On our second day, We took the chance to visit this famous pilgrim center despite our hectic schedule.


tourist center


The souvenir shop, tourist information center is closed and only one store located near the entrance was open. We arrived past 5:00 pm and few people where around the church.


bas relief of Our Lady of Piat and Piat logo


8 Fun Ways to Enjoy Pilgrimage to Piat


Department of Agriculture -Cagayan Breeding Center with giant boer goat

8.) Land Transportation– We took an hour or so travel via private car from Tuguegarao city to Piat. One can rent a tricycle or AUV vans which ply the capital city to the town.


People’s Integrated Agri-Tourism Center ( PIAT with giant corn)

7.) Scenery –  One would enjoy the leisurely travel by marveling both man-made and natural wonders.


6.) Food and Souvenir Items– One must not missed the “Pawa” a type of local delicacy which probably influenced by the Chinese. The steamed ground sticky rice is filled with ground and sweetened peanuts. They are sold in packs of 9 or 10 pieces per pack. They are best eaten when freshly cooked.


two kinds of Our Lady of Piat statue ( 10 inch) made from fiber resin

I was fortunate to have bought one Our Lady of Piat statue made from fiber glass from an old man manning the religious/ sari-sari store. There were t-shirts, key chains and magnets for those interested. This was the only store that remain open during our visit  to the shrine.


According to our tour guide/ companion/ diver for this tour. I was able to get a big bargain for the Our Lady of Piat statute which normally cost between Php 500 to Php 550.00.  I was able to buy the 10 inch statue for just fraction of the quoted price.


Our Lady of Mercy Reconciliation Chapel

5.) Bukal na Buhay – There was a spring located at the back portion of the Minor Basilica according to one of the caretakers of the place.


4.) Basilica Pilgrimage Inn, Museum and Inn – This is like a one stop facilities for those planning to visit the center.




religious / souvenir store located within the church



There is a small museum which features religious carvings, statues and church vestments. The souvenir store which sells religious images, t-shirts, books among others is close. A portion of the sales goes to helping seminarians and indigents.


3.) Stations of the Cross – life-size statues, garden, an area to lit candles and place admire the place.




2.) Santo Domingo Parish -is located within the premises, with centuries-old bell.


Santo Domingo parish with centuries-old bell


Basilica Menor de Nuestra Señora de Piat interior

1.) Basilica Minore of Our Lady of Piat– ( Basilica Menor de Nuestra Señora de Piat ) This is a must visit pilgrim site dates back to 1604 when Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary was brought from Macao to Manila. The image is dark complexion made from paper mache probably originated from Goa, India.


The dark skinned image resemble the Indians of Goa which is also a Portuguese colony. One can admire the church grounds and immediate vicinity.

Place to Stay : Our jump off point is at Hotel Carmelita in Tuguegarao City.

Note: We would like to “Thank” the local lay sister which took the time to welcome the group invited us to stay and tour around. But our group is such in hurry to go back to Tuguegarao.

10 Interesting Places to Visit and Stay in Tuguegarao

Tuguegarao is the capital city of Cagayan province. There are a lot of historical places, museum, churches and natural wonders for any visitor or tourist visiting the place.

The fastest way to visit the city is via air by taking domestic flights. While the most interesting and scenic places can be captured via land routes.


Van Gob statue near Robinson’s Mall -Tuguegarao

We took the exciting 9 hours trip from Cubao, Quezon City to Tuguegarao City with one stopover at San Jose City, Nueva Ecija province.Land travel from Metro Manila may vary from 8 hours to 12 hours depending on how fast or slow the driver due to ( road construction and traffic).

In our short stay in the city, We managed to visit these places.

10 Interesting Places to Visit & Stay in Tuguegarao City


Buntun Bridge and Cagayan River

10.) Buntun Bridge and Cagayan River – This is considered as the second longest bridge in the country with length of 1,369 m (4,491 ft) with 15 spans. It also provides panoramic view of the Cagayan river which is the longest and widest river system in the country.


Boy Kanin at the WOW Tuguegarao standee


WOW Tuguegarao standee at night

9.) WOW Tuguegarao Standee–  This is an iconic landmark to get a selfie or groupie when you are within the city. The standee is located near two important fast-food restaurants and mall.



8.) Tricycle and Calesa ride – We managed to ride in one of the colorful tricycles which ply the major streets in the city.


7.) Cagayan Museum and Historical Research Center- This is located within 5 kilometers within the city’s centro district.


Ms. Lorie I. Decena (Museum Researcher I -Cagayan Museum and Research Center)

The museum and research center was conceived by the Provincial Board in 1971 and became operational on its inauguration on August 15, 1973 during the traditional Aggao na Cagayan.


stone age tools and animals found in the province


Homo erectus skull replica

The museum is divided into several sections and theme


primary and secondary burial jars


Homo luzonensis


farming tools


religious statues, ecclesiastical items and vestments


ethnic group


portion of the building which used to be jail


fountain area and outer courtyard

This is one of the few buildings in the country which used to house a jail  with free guided tour service when one visit the city. There is no entrance fees collected in the museum.

Address: Otis corner and Aguinaldo street, Tuguegarao, Cagayan

Operations – Mondays to Friday 8:00 am to 12:00nn and 1:00pm to 5:00 pm

Contact: (078) 846-73-37


6.) Plaza Rizal and Monument- This monument was erected more than 100 years-ago in August 17, 1918 during the incumbency of Governor Honorio Lasam. Dr. Jose Rizal’s had an overcoat and at the foot of the statue had four Filipina ladies in period costume which represents (virtues): Prudence (Katalinuhan), Justice (Katarungan), Fortitude (Tibay ng Loob) and Temperance (Pagtitimpi).


details at the base of the monument

The design was inspired from the design of Mr. Carlo Nicoli. The base of the monument was made from adobe stones.


The monument is erected just in front of the Cagayan Museum and Research Center,Tuguegarao Cathedral, schools, sports complex and important historical areas within the city.

Sources: Cagayan Museum and Historical Research Center, Historical Marker
Cagayan Heritage Conservation Society (Mr. Prince Wilson Macarubbo and Mr. Kevin Domingo) Ms. Lorie Decena.


5.) Tuguegarao Horno– This is a place where bricks kilns are made and fired during the Spanish colonial regime. Most of the bricks were used in the churches and government buildings of the city.


Saint Peter and Paul Cathedral

4.) Tuguegarao Cathedral- Also called Saint Peter and Paul Cathedral. This was built in the mid-18th century with bricks, adobe, mortal and stones.


historical marker



High relief pilasters with alternating smooth and Solomonic/swisted design



The cathedral sustained a lot of damage during the second world war during the aerial bombings by the Japanese forces on December 8, 1941 and during the liberation of the city in 1945.


Address: Rizal Street, Barangay Centro 10, Tuguegarao City


Lighthouse Cooperative

3.) Lighthouse Cooperative and Financial district – Lighthouse cooperative is located within the city ceter, One can buy products made in Tuguegarao or within the province.


Tuguegarao City

2.) Ancestral Houses, Post Modern Mid-Century Buildings -There are few ancestral houses and mid-century buildings located within the downtown area. This is due to many factors, One is the city was heavily destroyed by the Japanese during the second world war, destructive fire and typhoons which destroyed many old buildings and houses.


mid-century ancestral house

According to our tour guide, Typhoon Lawin left a big portion of the province without power for more than two months.


1.) Hotel Carmelita– is located within the heart of the city. The hotel is just beside a bus company and features a restaurant, bar, a shared lounge, garden, convention place, venue place, swimming pool and 24 hour Boy Kanin restaurant.

All of these places are accessible within 15 to 20 minute drive or commute from the hotel premises.  WOW Tuguegarao standee is just 10 minute walk from the place.

Several well-known celebrities like Mr. DJ Durano and other personalities had stayed at the hotel.

Contact: 0917 572 2777 / (078) 844-1024

Address: # 9 Diversion Road Balzain, Tuguegarao City, Cagayan 3500

Eyeball of Bottle Collectors Philippines at Calvo Memorabilia and Bottle Museum

It was an overcast weather last September 15 when members of Bottle Collectors of the Philippines ( Mga Lumang Bote) FB group have their eyeball and informal meet at the historic Calvo Memorabilia and Bottle Museum within the historic Escolta street in the heart of old downtown Manila.


part of the collection


Halili beer bottle and wine bottle collection

The group had about a thousand members who collects different kinds of bottles ranging from soft drink brands, milk, beer, wine, medicine among others.


Calvo building


historical marker

Eyeball and Meeting

The assembly started around 12:00 noon time when members arrived at the mezzanine area of Calvo Memorabilia and Bottle Museum. This is a private collection from the Teotico family.


members Mr. Joel Bernardo Tempongko, Mr. Miguel Delfin, Mr. Lee Delmo and Mr. Mark Claudio

The informal meeting was presided by Mr. Mark Anthony Kyle Gianan aka Krazy Kyle but more popularly known as “Pinoy Picker“.

Unfortunately some members left before having a group photo. It was a wonderful experience meeting fellow bottle collectors.


photo courtesy of Mga Lumang Bote fb group by Mr. Anthony Kyle Gianan

Note: the author would occasionally conduct heritage tour in this museum as part of the extended postal heritage guided tour.

How to Commute:

1.) via LRT line 1 north bound take off at ( Carriedo station), One can walk toward Escolta street. ( 15 to 20 minute walk)

2.) Blumentritt -Plaza Santa Cruz jeepney

3.) Baclaran to Blumentritt jeepney

4.) Blumentritt to South Pier jeepney route

5.) Malanday, Valenzuela via Avenida Rizal, Plaza Santa Cruz to South Pier jeepney route

6.) San Nicolas to Escolta jeepney route

7.) via Plaza Lawton aka Liwasang Bonifacio – one can take jeep going to Divisoria

Calvo Memorabilia and Bottle Museum ( Mezzanine area)

Address: 266 Escolta Street, Binondo, Manila

Operations: Monday to Saturday

Donation/ Entrance fees: Php 50 general public, Php 30 for students and senior citizens with valid ID’s

8 Fun Facts of Museo Desteleria Limtuaco in Intramuros

8 Fun Facts of Museo Desteleria Limtuaco

1.) Oldest Liquor Distillery in the countryDestileria Limtuaco takes pride of having established in 1852 or 167 years ago.

Lim Tua Co set up a distillery at 135 Gov. Gandara street ( now called Sabino Padilla street) Binondo district, Chinatown, Manila.

Sioktong -one of the well-known liquor

2.) Destileria Limtuaco is known different kind of liquor among the famous ones are White Castle whisky, Napoleon VSOP brandy, Sioktong ( originally spelled : SIOHOCTONG) herbal wine now under two different brands-Vino de Chino and Vino Kung Fu. Other brands includes Palawan Rum, Manille Liqueur de Calamansi, Imeldific and Intramuros. Over 30 known brands of liquor are tucked under this company.

photo courtesy of : Mr. Allan Pardilla Martinez

3. ) Bahay na Bato – The family purchase an ancestral house in 1979 with the intent of opening it to the general public. It was realize when the museum open its doors to the general public on February 9, 2018.

family memorabilia, office equipment, awards and magazine feature

The museum houses family memorabilia, wine bottles, office equipment, oak barrels and distillery equipment.

Disteleria Limtuaco Museum facade ( Photo courtesy : Mr. Allan Pardilla Martinez)

The architecture is a combination of hybrid styles of Bahay na Bato, Californian mission style and post- war architecture with adobe stones walls, Chinese granite pavement, tiled roofs, high ceiling, iron grills and large windows which allows maximum amount of light inside the premises. It also have a small patio with several potted plants.

Philippine blended liquor

4.) Internationally Awarded – The company garnered several international awards and accolades. The company was accredited by TUV as an ISO certified production plant.

5.) 5 Generations of Masters Blenders – The company takes pride of having 5 generation of master blenders. The company is under the leadership of Mrs. Olivia Limpe-Aw.

red bikinis, swiss knife, caps and mugs are among the collectible item on display

6.) White Castle and Company logo – the logo of the famous brand was a product of a dream and the company logo was also designed by Mr. Julius Limpe. While sleeping, he dreamt of a woman in a red bikini, riding a white horse with a white castle in the background, and the rest was history.

Ms. Evangeline Pascual- Miss World 1973 first runner-up

7. ) White Castle Beauties –  Ms. Evangeline Pascual ( Miss World 1973 first runner-up) Ms. Cristina Gonzales, Ms. Glydel Mercado, Ms. Carmi Martin, Ms. Lorna Tolentino, Ms. Angela Velez, Ms.Roxanne Guinoo, Ms. RR Enriquez and Ms. Meg Imperial among others. They were featured in the company’s annual calendar and  television commercials.

8.) Products– One can buy different kinds of products and merchandise when one visits the museum. A lot of their ingredients are locally sourced and proudly Philippine made. These are also exported in several countries.

author together with photo bloggers and participants

Note: A visit to Intramuros is incomplete without a visit to this museum.

group photo at the company logo ( Photo credit: Mr. Allan Pardilla Martinez)

Note: “Special Thanks” to Ms. Mary Ann G. Roque, Ms. Gene Policarpio and Ms. MJ for the accommodation extended to the group )

Entrance Fees: Students and Senior Citizens with valid Id’s – Php 50.00 ( must be at least 18 years-old to avail of liquor tasting)

Php 100.00 general public

Php 100.00 for liquor tasting ( 5 to 6 shots)

Museo Destelleria Limtuaco

Operational Hours: 9:00 am to 6:00 pm Tuesdays to Sundays

Address :482 San Juan de Letran Street, Intramuros, Manila, Metro Manila, Manila, Philippines

Office and Plant Address: Destileria Limtuaco Bldg., 1830 E. Delos Santos Avenue, Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines 1106

6 Important Galleries at Museo de Intramuros

Museo de Intramuros had been officially open to the public last April 29, 2019 with Department of Tourism secretary Ms. Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, former Department of Tourism secretary Gemma Cruz – Araneta, Miss Universe 1973 Maria Margarita Moran among others in attendance.


The museum is managed by the Intramuros Administration (IA), which is an attached agency of the Department of Tourism (DOT), Museo de Intramuros is located in two important reconstructions inside the walled city. the San Ignacio Church and Convent and the Mission House of the Society of Jesus.

The in-house exhibition were curated by Ms. Esperanza Gatbonton, Mr. Gino Gonzales, Ms. Cecilia dela Paz, Ms. Santiago Pilar and Mr. Martin Tinio.

Immaculate Conception statues which dates from late 17th to 19th century

processional carriage

6 Galleries or Exhibition Area

Museo de Intramuros have six sections or galleries : the Immaculate Conception, the Religious Order, the Patronato Real and establishments of Parishes, Religious Colonial Paintings, the establishment of parish and sacred vessels, and The Indio Response. Throughout these sections, you will be able to find different kinds of artwork, including paintings, sculptures, and antique items from hundreds of years ago.

The religious order room


The public is also advise not to sit and touch the statues within the exhibit area. Observe silence and proper guidelines.

Patronato Real and Establishment of Parishes

religious paintings


urna with 4 saint painted on sides


This statue is one of the crown jewels of the Intramuros administration. The statue is taken out during the annual marian procession.

The museum has over 7,500 pieces which were accumulated for 40 years from different parts of the country.

different kinds of silver works and ecclesiastic arts

The Museo de Intramuros is located in the reconstructions of San Ignacio Church and the Mission House of the Society of Jesus in Intramuros.

gallery an timeline of intramuros

Manila Cathedral

Las Casas de Dios

It officially opened last week and the entrance is currently free (and will be free for the first six months).

Address:  Arzobispo street corner Anda Street, Intramuros, Manila, 1002

Operation: Tuesday to Sunday

Operational Hours: 9:00am to 5:00pm

Special Thanks- Mr. Dino Santos ( curator) and Ms. Sandra Martinez ( Intramuros Administration for the accommodation.


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