This Week in Iloilo (January 16 to 22, 2017)

Iloilo celebrates Dinagyang Festival!

By: Hyacinth Bangero | January 16, 2017
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Philippine dinagyang festival

See, Feel, Love is this year’s theme for Dinagyang Festival (Image: Dinagyang sa Iloilo Festival)

This is definitely the best week to visit the City of Love. That’s not a promise, but an assurance. Almost everything that tourists ask for in terms of entertainment, food, culture, the arts, and heritage can be found during Dinagyang Festival season. Among the many events during the festival expected to draw in many attendees include a dance party, cultural competition, beauty pageant, processions, parades, and fireworks shows.

Dinagyang Festival Traffic News

Philippine Dinagyang festival 2017

The public can expect traffic to be affected by the Dinagyang street parade. (Image: Dinagyang sa Iloilo)

Tourists and locals might find it challenging to get around by foot because of the road closures and traffic rerouting for the Dinagyang Festival. This will affect Bonifacio Drive (fronting Gaisano City Iloilo), Calle Real to the Freedom Grandstand, and Luna Street to corner Jalandoni Street, where there will be parades with street performances from January 21 to 22.

Despite the crowded streets, the best way for people to experience the Philippines’ best festival is to join the procession of Sto. Niño’s worshippers who come from all walks of life.

Aside from street dancing, there will also be fireworks shows, including Luces in the Sky: A Fireworks Display on January 20 and Glitters in the Sky on January 21.

Dinagyang Love Dance 2017

Philippine Dinagyang festival 2017

Partygoers can dance the night away in Love Dance 2017 (Image: Head Rush Bacolod)

One major event in Iloilo is Dinagyang Love Dance 2017. The event is anchored on the main theme of Dinagyang 2017 which is See, Feel, Love. Love Dance will be held at the open grounds of SM City Iloilo on January 20, 4:00 PM.

The event will be jam-packed since both general admission and VIP tickets have been sold out prior to the event.

Where to Buy Tickets

Tourists who want to sit comfortably while watching the highlight events of Dinagyang Festival 2017 can get their tickets at the Iloilo City Tourism and Development Office located at 2nd Floor COA (Elizalde) Building, J.M. Basa St., City Proper, Iloilo City. On the other hand, those who want to watch Miss Iloilo Dinagyang 2017 can buy tickets at Alta Moda in General Luna St., Iloilo City. The pageant will be held on January 18 at the University of San Agustin Gymnasium.

Travel Adventure around Iloilo Heritage Sites

Philippine Dinagyang festival 2017

The Arroyo fountain and the Casa Real are among the many heritage destinations in Iloilo. (Image: UrbanScape Philippines - Iloilo)

Because of the bulk of tourists flocking to Iloilo, most hotels within the city are fully booked. Thus, it is more practical and wiser to stay in the Mandurriao district to witness the best of Iloilo City at night, watch the extravagant fireworks display from one’s hotel room window, and avoid the long walks caused by road closures and traffic rerouting.

Tourists may explore the newly opened hotels in the city such as Grand Xing Imperial, District 21, and Richmonde Hotel.

While waiting for the parties at night to start, one might be interested in exploring Iloilo City’s most photogenic places. A selfie pod or a GoPro camera lets one capture the entirety of Iloilo’s scenic and historical landmarks such as Calle Real de Iloilo (Iloilo Heritage Village), Yusay-Consing Mansion (Molo Mansion), and Casa Real de Iloilo (Old Iloilo Provincial Capitol), to name a few.

Travelers with kids may go to the newly opened Water Park, Play Hub in Esplanade, Iloilo River Ride, Bike Lane, or Laser Tag. Those who are fond of trying their luck in casinos may visit Casino Filipino Iloilo at Amigo Mall.

Dining Adventure: Tasty Oysters in Iloilo City

Philippine Dinagyang festival 2017

Oysters can be found in most seafood restaurants in Iloilo. (Image: Jed Patrick Mabilog)

Iloilo City is a major destination for those who crave good food with excellent presentation. Aside from batchoy (pork and beef noodle soup), there are a lot of delicious foods which have earned the approval of most Ilonggos.

Next to Capiz, the seafood capital of the Philippines, the tastiest oyster or talaba can also be found in Iloilo. Tourists may find them in most, if not all, seafood restaurants in the city. In food festivals set up within the city proper, the supply of talaba is abundant in the Mandurriao district and the Iloilo Capitol area.

However, if one wants to dine where oyster is the most ordered dish, foodies can go to Tatoy’s Seafood Restaurant, Griller’s Oyster House, and Samurai Talabahan.

Shopping Adventure at Tinukib

Philippine Dinagyang festival 2017

Tinukib Iloilo, a one-stop shop for Ilonggo souvenir items (Image: Tinukib Iloilo)

Visitors who want to shop for pasalubong (take-home gift) may visit Tinukib Iloilo at Mali-ao, Pavia. The place is a one-stop shop for Ilonggo delicacies and souvenir items . Food products include barquiron (wafer with toasted wheat filling), biscocho principe (twice-baked sweet bread), and pasencia (drop cookies), while non-food products include souvenir shirts, woven products, handicrafts, and bags.

Prelude to the Dinagyang Festival Golden Anniversary

Iloilo Dinagyang Festival 2017 is a prelude to the grandest Dinagyang Festival celebration next year, when the festival will commemorate its 50th anniversary.

Grander competitions and events have already been lined up in 2018 for the golden celebration of the Philippines’ grandest festival.

Click the store names to see their exact addresses and contact numbers.

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About Hyacinth Bangero
She is a young broadcast journalism professor and marketing officer of the University of San Agustin. She's a proud volunteer of the Girl Scouts of the Philippines. Hyacinth is geared to educate, experience, and explore.
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Disclaimer: All articles in the Consumers Magazine of Yoorekka are for general information and entertainment purposes only. Although careful research has been made in writing them, Yoorekka does not make any warranty about the completeness and accuracy of all information presented in our articles. Our content is not intended to be used in place of legal, medical, or any professional advice.
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