11
Feb
19

Manila Bay and Chinese New Year

The Chinese New Year holiday gave me a chance to revisit the city of Manila, particularly Chinatown and the surrounding area.  But first, I had to see what the recent fuzz is with Manila Bay.  Here’s by brief adventure.

Sunset at Manila Bay on the Chinese New Year.

My first stop during this trip is at Roxas Boulevard near the US Embassy.  This is the only place I know near Manila that actually has a beach that you can see.  I arrived just in time to see a spectacular sunset going on.

It seemed like a lot of people had the same idea as me to visit the bay on the holiday as there was practically no free area fronting the bay!  I guess a lot of people are curious as well as to how the cleanup drive was going.

Needless to say, the garbage that are usually seen around the area was indeed nowhere in sight!  I remember vividly this area near the US Embassy years ago when I stopped to take a photo of the sunset and I had to crop it before sharing as the beach was covered with trash.  Now, you can see the sand but sadly bad habits are hard to break as if you look closely, you can still see food wrappers, cigarette butts, and water bottles scattered all around, often inserted in between the nooks and crannies in the rocks by the bay.  But I guess some folks are already satisfied with how “clean” the bay is that they are confident enough to take a dip (despite a lot of discouragement from the government!).

So many people came out that day to enjoy the bay.

As the darkness of night started enveloping the skyline, I started my pilgrimage to Rizal Park for a quick visit.  It’s only now that I noticed that they are using RGB lighting to light up the monument and the historical marker.  I’m puzzled as to why Rizal’s monument would need to be light up with the colors of the rainbow.

Should we really put RGB lighting everywhere?

Next on my agenda for the day was to go through Intramuros on the way to Manila Chinatown.  This is always a pleasant experience for me as I pass by historic old buildings and I found some cheap good food at a night market.

Eventually, I reached the oldest Chinatown in the world.  As you may expect, it was so lively!  There were so many people, a lot of them queuing at popular Chinese bakeshops like there’s a shortage of tikoy!  There were also lion and dragon dances all around so it was quite festive.  I ended the day with a few packs of hopia to take home as pasalubong.

The very festive Manila Chinatown!

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