Pahiyas Festival, the most colorful summer festival and tourist attraction held every 15th of May in Lucban, Quezon.
I learned about Pahiyas Festival when I was a kid from a TV Show during the late 90′s on Discovery
Channel called ‘Travelers‘ when they featured the Philippines. At that time, my cousins we’re avid fans of anime and I was the only one who’s enthusiastic about travel shows. (I felt I was weird!) Tuesday, May 15th 2012, I’m off from work, I’m eager to experience Pahiyas. Unfortunately, it’s a workday for my friends and travel-mates, so no one was available to join me. However, nothing can stop me from conquering the fun in Lucban, Quezon, so I traveled alone for the first time. I took a bus from Ortigas in EDSA to Lucena. I left Manila at around 5am. The moment we entered Quezon Province, it’s fiesta everywhere! Like Agawan Festival in Sariaya. With the said event, I got stuck in traffic.I arrived Lucena at around 9am and had a quick breakfast then I hopped-in a Jeepney going to Lucban. Lucban is a small town in Quezon Province, 120 km southeast of Manila. It rests at the foot of the Mount Banahaw. It’s beautiful, so I decided to get off the jeepney to take some photos. From there, I just walked myself to the town. Many tourists trekked to Lucban, Quezon to join residents in celebrating the annual Pahiyas Festival. First thing that you’ll notice is these kipings, commonly hanged in a chandelier-like form called “Arangya”, or shaped into huge flowers, or served as wall-paper-like décor. However, kipings are not just a decoration, it is edible! When the festival is over, kipings are cooked and eaten as rice chips. “Kiping” is actually made from ground rice flour which is made into wafer and shaped using “cabal” leaves, then colored brightly. Aside from kiping, residents also use fruits, grain, vegetables, woven palm leaves, grass and even animals to decorate their houses, making the Pahiyas an eagerly awaited event for photography enthusiasts. Lucban is not just all about Pahiyas Festival and it’s Kiping. Though a small town, it showcases itself with their authentic products such as Lucban Longganisa, Pancit Hab-hab, puto seko and fried siopao! After walking around the colorful streets, I started to feel hungry. First thing I tried, Pancit Habhab!
Even if I was traveling by myself, I never felt alone. The warmth and hospitality of the residents made me feel at home. Also, I met a new friend while eating Pancit Habhab in a house along the street. Her name is Kim Barrera and she’s also traveling solo.
After a few conversation, we decided to stick together the entire event. She helped me on taking photos of me, I’m so grateful to know her! I enjoyed every moment of my stay in Lucban. We left Lucban after the parade with a smile on our faces!