Saturday, August 3, 2013

Travel Filler: The Parola Lighthouse of Islas de Gigantes

Parola is the Tagalog term for lighthouse but it can also be the name of the lighthouse itself. Yes, you read that right! The name of the lighthouse is the tagalog of lighthouse itself - Parola!

Do not be confused if Ilonggos from Northen Iloilo offer to take you to their lighthouse and when you ask what it is called they would answer you “Parola.” They are not making fun of you, they are just answering you.

The parola lighthouse has a set of four stairs that leads to the top from where you can see the magnificent beauty of the island. The sweeping panorama of the Visayan Sea, the neighboring islands of Sibuyan and Masbate, the vast blue sea, and the islets and hills scattered far and wide are just some of the views to behold. The stairs aren't much of a challenge unless you have fear of heights. I advise that you find your way to the top as once you stand in the viewing deck you will see the grand appeal of the place.

Compared to Capones Lighthouse in Zambales, parola is new and thus you can be assured of the sturdiness of the iron structure. It relies on its solar power and works perfectly well, providing a guiding light to sailors at night.

The place where Parola lighthouse stands was formerly a site of one of the 27 major Spanish lighthouses. The ruins of the old lighthouse as well as the brick house beside the tower  reflect the heritage that we already lost and the stories of yesteryears. According to the caretaker, the old lighthouse was destroyed when Typhoon Frank hit hard on Western Visayas especially Panay several years ago. The contrasting two edifice (the new tower and the old brick house) grant every spectator an interesting amalgam of  seasoned and contemporary.

How to get to  Parola Lighthouse of Islas de Gigantes

You can hire a motorcycle or habal-habal going through a paved one-way road for the most part, after which you have to walk for roughly 5 minutes until you reach the tower. The ride costs Php30.00, Php60.00 way and back.  There is a 'mandatory' donation requested by the  caretaker; we gave him Php20.00

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This entry is part of our Islas de Gigantes Epic trip which happened last July 13-17, 2013 (JUST CLICK ON THE LINK TO READ EACH ARTICLE)


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