The one thing on everyone’s mind this Valentine weekend will not be champagne, flowers or chocolate. It will be about how bad the traffic is, with malls, restaurants and hotels offering V-Day specials “this weekend only.”
Instead of stewing in possible gridlock, why not try something different? There will be food, of course, maybe even flowers and sweets, but there will also be art and wonderful views.
Here’s Inquirer Lifestyle’s list of alternative Valentine’s Day activities:
1) Head to Clark in Pampanga at the crack of dawn to experience the Philippine International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta. Gates open at 5 a.m. and grounds close at 10 p.m.
It might be too late to book a ride on one of the hot air balloons but you can always pack a picnic lunch, a blanket and umbrella and simply enjoy the view. If you want to try your luck, contact Aaron Alvaran (email@example.com) for inquiries and to arrange for bank payments.
Don’t forget to bring hats, shades, bug spray and pocket money for the bazaar and food stalls. Alcoholic drinks, use of open flame, or breakable dishes, however, are not allowed.
2) Make a day of it and head to Antipolo for lunch at Crescent Moon Café (Sapang Buho Road, Barangay Dalig, Antipolo City), followed by some curated contemporary art at Pinto Art Museum (Sierra Madre St., Grand Heights Subdivision).
The restaurant and pottery workshop of Lanelle Abueva-Fernando has been there for years but it merits a visit especially by weary city folk.
Take a stroll before lunch and rest your eyes on the lush green gardens and gurgling pools. For lunch you can look forward to tasty and simply prepared dishes. (For reservations, call 0917-8165254 or 0917-5232356.)
At the nearby Pinto Art Museum, guests can view pieces by contemporary Filipino artists, many of whom were “discovered” by art patron Dr. Joven Cuanang.
The property is huge and sprawling but there are many areas where one can sit and rest. There is a P180 admission fee per person for the museum that is open until
6 p.m.; food and pets are not allowed. Call 697-1015.
3) A trick eye museum might not be a romantic destination but it is definitely fun and unexpected.
Art in Island (175 15th Ave., Barangay Socorro, 1109 Cubao, Quezon City) has been open for a while now and is a hit with kids and adults alike.
The area is divided into different 3-D vignettes where visitors can have their picture taken. Tiptoe across a yawning chasm or cower in the maw of a giant fish.
Art in Island is open from 9:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Entrance fee is P500 for adults and P400 for students. Call 4211356.
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