Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Negros Occidental : Smiles at the Ruins

Say Chess!

Touchdown Bacolod. It's two hours after noon and after a quick check-in at a local lodge with late lunch of Chicken Inasal in a famous Manukan Country, I headed to Talisay City's popular tourist destination - the Ruined Mansion aka The Ruins.

Mini Golf Course

Going there is really easy for The Ruins is just around i5 minutes away from Bacolod City Proper. I took a jeepney going the route of Bata and asked the driver to drop me-off the corner heading to The Ruins. Then, at the drop-off point, Bangga Rose Lawns, I hired a tricycle for Php 30 to take me to the Ruins. After paying an entrance fee of Php 50, I was free to roam around the vast vicinity of The Ruins.

The Ruined Mansion

The first thing I checked was the interiors of the ruins. It wasn't that big and you can go around the place probably in twenty minutes. I was traveling solo so I have the luxury of staying in one particular spot without the annoyance of catching-up with others. Most visitors there are in groups and there is a guide there that tells them the history of the place. Eavesdropping, I heard the tour guide telling the group about the story of the burnt mansion while they were walking through what used to be the hallways and corridors of the ancestral house.

Nearing Dusk in the Park at the Mansion's Back

I almost didn't notice then how I unintentionally follow the group as the guide narrated stories. The Ruins was owned by Don Mariano Ledesma Lacson, one of the richest sugar barons in the island of Negros Occidental. According to the tour guide, it was a gift of Don Mariano to his beloved wife, Maria Braga. The mansion even had Maria Braga’s initials carved in the walls, perhaps to preserve the memory of the baron’s ultimate love for his Portuguese wife.

The Ruined Mansion at Night

The guide continued that the mansion served as the Lacson family’s safe haven for several years until the World War II. The family, along with the Filipino guerillas, chose to burn down the mansion so that it will not be used by the Japanese soldiers as headquarters.

Fountain Fronting the Ruins

And that was how The Ruins came about. From a family haven to a tourist site – the mansion has had a very colorful history of being a gift of love to being a sacrifice for the sake of patriotism. I even asked the guide a question forgetting that I was not in a group. The guide didn't mind thou as he answered my question as gay and jolly as he can.

At the Top of the Ruins

After the informal guided tour at the mansion and while waiting for the sunset, I went to a strip of mini commercial establishments fronting the Ruins. There is a small restaurant/cafe that serves Italian Meals, a souvenir shop and a few stalls that serve cold shakes and drinks. I take-out one sugar cane juice with lots of ice. FYI, Negros is a large producer of sugar cane.

Sunset

Sunset came so shoot I go, and stayed for few more hours into the night. It was a relaxing, no-hurry experience with a nostalgic aura where the surroundings were scenic and everything was picturesque.


P.S. I am sharing this post to the weekly meme, My World Tuesday. To see other amazing photos around the globe, please click the link.

17 comments:

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    1. Thanks Reydan. Just trying to vary shots and show some angles not yet found on the net :)

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  2. Such a beautiful, majestic place it is indeed and your captures are superb as always, Oman! The sunset and skies are breathtaking!! Such an interesting visit!!! Thanks for sharing! Hope your week is going well!!

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    1. Thanks Sylvia. It was a magical place with beautiful history too. Hope your weekends went well.

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  3. i've seen a lot of posts about the ruins but only now did i learn how it became a ruin. thanks for the very informative post. the photos are spectacular as usual.

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    1. thanks photo cache. sometimes, the urge to tell a story bites me. so other than the usual photos, I try to tell a story in this post :)

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  4. This post has the humor and the facts I love. I just don't know which is which. But the photos are awesome.

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    1. haha hulaan mo na lang kungb alin. thanks allan.

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  5. my mom if from Bacolod and I never thought that they have a place like this. All i know is the mascara festival, Mt. Canlaon and victorias lolz

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    1. hi rix, i hope to experience masskara festival soon, but for now, the ruins will suffice for me :)

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  6. I love the night shot of the fountain.

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  7. This is one beautiful place I would like to visit sometime.

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    1. do visit it Mhela, you won't regret it. beautiful place and delectable food :)

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