The unassuming municipality of Angono in Rizal province is dubbed as the Art Capital of the Philippines. It houses a variety of museums and art galleries and it is the hometown of 2 Philippine National Artists – Lucio San Pedro and Carlos “Botong” Francisco”.
Just a few minutes drive from the bustling metropolis –Manila, one can enjoy the colors, flavors and masterpieces of Angono. Take for example the Angono Petroglyphs, one of the earliest known rock engravings in the continent located in Angono. It was discovered by Botong Francisco himself sometime in 1965. It is now a National Cultural Treasure and included in the list of World Inventory Rock Art and is being manned by the National Museum.
A visit to Angono will not be complete without seeing the art museums. Situated along Pobalcion Itaas Street is the National Artist’s Residence called House of Botong Francisco which houses the artworks and memorabilia of the legendary muralist. NemirandaMuseum owned by another iconic painter and sculptor – Nemesio Miranda Jr. exhiits awe-inspiring relief murals. The BlancoFamilyMuseum owned by Jose Pitok Blanco and his family showcases tons of paintings of the family which typically involves portraits of Filipino indigenous groups and agricultural livelihood.
Contemporary sculptures including wold-famous fiberglass figures can also be found in Angono, Rizal. Yab Designs is a leading maker of massive statues and figures made from polyester resin and fiberglass.
After soaking in the dazzling artworks, indulge on exotic and local food at one of the restaurants in Angono. Balaw-Balaw takes pride in serving exotic cuisines. Some of its best sellers are : bibingkang abnoy (aborted duck eggs cooked in banana leaves), Soup #5 (butt and balls of cow), uok (larva of beetles found in fallen coconut trees), nilasing na palaka (frogs cooked and marinated in wine) and kamaro (crickets found in rice fields). Balaw-Balaw is also a feats to the eyes, this resto is clad by sculptures and art collections.
For some panpering, head to the posh Thunderbird Resort in Rizal, plunge into the seductive pool and try some of its mouthwatering food served at the restaurant.