Monday, September 12, 2011

Other things to do in Bagac, Bataan

Mt. Samat

When you spend for gas and toll to get to Bataan, you try to maximize and do whatever you can there. When Karl and I were still dating, I bought him the Lonely Planet Philippines version book.  I figured, since we would travel alot together, might as well get that book as a handy resource- good investment for people like us.

That book has gained layers of dust.  As I unearthed it for this trip, I discovered that it barely had anything on Bataan.  It did not even have anything about Bulacan which was my other idea for a quick historical getaway.

Anyways, most of these places we ended up in were accidental, but if you want to hit quota and never come back here again(but I'm sure you'd still want to come back), these are the places you should go to or at least take pictures of:
Km. 0 of Death March
1. Km. 0-  I actually started noticing it at Km. 21.  Karl being Karl did not notice anything until I told him. We waited for Km. 0.  It's really hard to imagine they walked this more than 65 years ago.  The terrain is pretty intense.  Considering they did it for more than 300 kilometers is crazy!  We wanted to take a picture of Km. 300+ but since we're not history buffs, we had no clue it was in Tarlac.  The guard in Mt. Samat Shrine was kind enough to point this out.  We need a refresher on our history class!

Filipino-Japanese Friendship Shrine
2. Filipino- Japanese Friendship Shrine- We couldn't go down since it was showering, so we took a picture instead.  There was a gate but it was closed.  Plus, there was a little shed where tambays were.  No effort to get down the car.

Battle of Tool Pocket
3. The Battle of Tool Pocket Memorial- This looked like a high school project, seriously, this was hand painted but I took a picture of it anyways.  I don't really know what happened in this battle but I'm sure if I zoom this picture, I will find out.
Mt Samat Shrine- Foggy version

Inside Mt. Samat Shrine

4. Mt. Samat Shrine-  Last but not the least, Mt. Samat Shrine. It's P20 per adult to get in.  The guard charged us P60.  I didn't understand the sign if he was charging an extra P20 for Mia or for the car, because the car was part of the list for charging.  This place looked really nice.  If you want to see how a US memorial looks like and you can't afford to leave the country, visit this place.  Karl went around the museum (air conditioned at that!) and he said it was really nice.  I stayed in the car because Mia was napping.

Another picture inside

The base of the cross- Built during Marcos regime
Remember the picture of Mia and Karl during the start of this post? This picture above is part of the cross in the mountain.  I would have walked around some more but it was really foggy.  It felt like a Dawn of the Dead moment where the zombies were about to show up and pounce on me.  Yes, I just scare myself. Quite valid, if I say so myself.  This is the Death March province and the last battle before we surrendered to the Japanese.  Good thing I don't see dead people!  Another cool part, there's an elevator inside the cross!
War fanatics, people who just want to know more about World War II, know someone who was alive during this period?  You guys should bring them here.  Considering the state of most of our museums, this is easily in my top 5 in the Philippines.

That's it! That's Bagac, Bataan in a nutshell. Go go go.

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