Colorful History of Higantes Festival, Angono Rizal

Higantes Festival
Higantes Festival is an annual festivities held every November 23 in Angono, Rizal; its main purpose is to honor San Clemente, patron saint of the fishermen. His image is carried by male devotees during the procession, followed by the street dancers and participants. Higantes (Giants in English) is made up of paper mosaic handcrafted by the artistic minds of the people of Angono.

The event started from St. Clement Church in Angono, Rizal passing on several roads. While waiting at the gate of the church, I noticed that the cameras of many photographers were covered with transparent plastic. No idea but I didn't pay attention to those, instead I focused on the gorgeous, stunning and elegant costumes of the street dances.

The street dancers were all tireless and were still fierce even the sun was hot. Instead of following the routes of the Higantes, we walked on the streets nearby and talked to the residents about Higantes Festival and its history. It was mentioned by the residents that the procession of the Higantes will proceed to Pagoda – a place where the fluvial parade usually started.

As what I mentioned above, without any idea about Higantes Festival, we were just holding the words from the residents about the preparation, we continued walking the streets to Pagoda. While en route, I and Mae were shocked when the residents threw water on us then explained that it’s part of the Higantes celebration – like the basaan during San Juan fiesta. Explanation accepted! Lesson learned! Instead of feeling horrified, we embraced it and continued walking to Pagoda.

We arrived at the Pagoda at around 10AM and locals there mentioned that it usually takes few hours before the arrival. So instead of waiting, we decided to leave the area and proceeded to the highway to witness the colorful procession. Paintings and other hand crafted work of arts can be find everywhere. We were both starving, so we looked for a place to dine. Out of curiosity, instead of having an international taste, we chose something exotic at Balaw-balaw Restaurant, just by the highway.

After the tiring but unforgettable experience with the Higantes, it's time for a sumptuous meal. More information, click BALAW-BALAW RESTAURANT