Saturday, November 24, 2012

Higantes Festival 2012

Fun fiestas, I easily get fascinated by these fun and colorful events where fellow Filipinos display their unparalleled creativity and rich culture. Whether it is an expression of great devotion or an exhibition of anything that their people is known for, I really find it great, worth spending my time.

That's why when I learned that Angono, Rizal was celebrating their very own Higantes Festival on the 18th of November, I told myself that I must not let the celebration pass without me seeing those "Higantes" (giants) being paraded on streets. Coincidentally I have a climb on a mountain not too far from Angono on that same date.


Sunday - November 18, 2012

I invited several friends and readers to join me in this trip (akala ko lalangawin yung invitational trip ko, buti na lang may joiners pa rin). I have heard that the grand parade of the Higantes will commence at 07:30 AM, hence we went to Angono as early as 06:00 AM. sobrang aga lang namin, wala pa yung mga higante sa assembly area. Since we arrived too early, we had our breakfast first in an eatery nearby.

if you're wondering what's underneath the clothes of the higantes, here it is.
Higantes Festival is a month long celebration (starting from November 4, ends in December) in the town of Angono, the Art Capital of the Philippines. But the highlight of the fiesta (Grand Parade of the Higantes) happens every 22nd of November during the bisperas mayores of the feast of San Clemente. However, the government of Angono decided to move the main events from the traditional date which has fallen on a Thursday (Nov 22) earlier to a weekend (Nov 18) this year. Angono Tourism just wants to cater the tourists who can only be available on a weekend celebration.

More higantes
The tradition of parading the giants on the streets of Angono has started way back during the Spanish colonial time. Some famous individuals and prominent personalities are depicted on the higantes' heads, dressed with colorful clothing then presented on the streets like mascots, some were dancing and doing some crazy stuff. The heads of the giants by the way are made of paper mache.

here's an old photo showing the Higantes Festival in the early days.
photo taken from the Angono Tourism FB page.
Our group headed to where the crowd was heading. The time was 07:20 AM and the parade was about to begin. We saw numerous Higantes, now being assembled on the street, oras na para mag-pose sa tabi ng mga higantes.

the parade was about to start
group shot with the giants
Minutes later, the parade began to move, the higantes are of course the backbone of the parade, accompanied by brass bands and street dancers. Napaka makulay na kaganapan!

Angono's Mayor
I also heard that Higantes Festival is a "basaan" fiesta. So I asked my group to prepare to get wet. Strange though, we did not experience this fun thing, sigh. By 08:30 AM, we have completed witnessing the whole length of the parade. There are still some other events after the parade like the street dance competition, gusto ko pa sana yun panuorin but our group has decided to move on to our mountain adventure in Pililia. Nag-enjoy naman na kami sa maikling panahon ng pagbisita namin sa Higantes Festival kaya ok lang na umalis na kami.

the spectators seemed to be enjoying the parade
street dancers
brass instrument coming
Giant Gangnam Style!

How to Get There

There are jeeps located at EDSA-Shaw Crossing and Cubao (near Ali Mall) that go to Angono, Rizal. Fare is just P35, and travel time is about 45 minutes.


  1. ang bongga ni mayor. may sarili siya :)

  2. Sama ako sa next festival teh! Gusto ko magkapic na rin miisa man lang. Haha



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