Camalig, Albay celebrates cultural and culinary heritage | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

ST. JOHNthe Baptist Church
PINANGAT simmered in coconut cream

The laid-back town of Camalig in Albay province comes to life as it celebrates its rich cultural and culinary heritage in the Pinangat Festival, June 10-24.


Regarded as a signature Bicol delicacy, pinangat is an age-old local vegetable dish which put the town in the culinary map of the country with its succulent and spicy taste.


One of the most popular regional dishes, it is made up of shredded gabi leaves, red ginger, tiny shrimps (balaw), or a slice of salted fish or pork, and crushed pepper.


Wrapped in gabi leaves, tied in bundles and cooked in coconut milk, pinangat is a staple on the dining table of most Bicolanos both in the region and in various parts of the country and the world.


Situated by the foot of the legendary Mayon Volcano, Camalig is acknowledged as Albay’s heritage town because of its rows of ancestral houses, inhabited by the local gentry and which have survived the ravages of time.


The most notable among this is the Nuyda House of former Albay Rep. Justino Nuyda, which has figured in various photo shoots and serves as a living museum for visitors.


ST. JOHNthe Baptist Church

In the heart of the town is the postcard-pretty St. John the Baptist Church, whose convent serves as repository of relics excavated from archaeological sites at Hoyop-Hoyopan Cave, is one of the earliest prehistoric settlements in Luzon.


Other historic spots are the Quituinan Tunnels and Tingib Falls in an interior village which became a Japanese hospital and garrison during World War II.


Mayor Carlos Irwin Baldo Jr. said the fiesta will feature sporting, trade and special events, highlighted by a colorful street dance presentation dramatizing the pinangat harvest and cooking process in a grand parade on June 18.


Baldo said that the municipal government is also opening its latest tourist attraction, the scenic Sumlang Lake with the picturesque perfect-cone Mayon Volcano in the background.


The town’s other spots include Calabidongan bat cave, the Quitinday Green Hills Formation Reserve and the all-terrain vehicle rides to Mayon Volcano Lava Trail.


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