SAVVY SOJOURNS TO PEOPLE'S PARK IN THE SKY

BY PIE RIVERA

The People's Park in the Sky was initially built as an ambitious project. Previously referred to as Palace in the Sky which was constructed in 1979 by the former First Lady, Imelda Marcos. I say ambitious as one of the highest mountains in the province of Cavite was said to be leveled into half. A construction for a presidential guesthouse intended for the former US President Ronald Reagan (who never came) changed Mount Sungay.




Had former President Ronald Reagan pushed through with his arrival, he would have witnessed a majestic spread of marriage between man-made art and natural wonders. The area is surrounded by four bodies of water such as Balayan Bay, Laguna de Bay, Manila Bay and the Taal Lake with the Taal Volcano within.

With the supposed grand plans, it took seven years for this infamous building to be enjoyed by the public under the People Power Administration of the demised former Philippine President Cory Aquino.


 The People's Park in the Sky used to possess a well-maintained Japanese Garden. During our visit though, the garden resembles a flattened Chocolate Hills in Bohol where the vibrant greens turned into brown - bermuda grasses were akin to a receding hairline and there were even tall, sharp and slender grassess (known as ligaw na damo) as seen in the photo above. The garden could use some colors with the addition of blossoming flowers. Such a pity that the abundant rainfall in Tagaytay City could not be maximized with a flourishing garden.


Concrete seating areas can be found in the garden, with some, comfortable enough with thatched roofs and concrete tables.

 

The garden was not the only thing which showed that the People's Park in the Sky is not maintained properly. As you enter the compound, the huge signage "People's Park in the Sky" lacks the letter "E" in the word "THE." Just a small thing, I know, but tourist destinations should be (almost) spotless especially if you are paying for an entrance (Php15 each) - no matter how small it may be. 




OUR LADY MOTHER OF FAIR LOVE
As you ascend to a flight of stairs built from large stones with steel railing, you will see a statue of Our Lady Mother of Fair Love carrying the young Jesus Christ.  A plaque to its right side tells a story of how the statue was brought to this place in December 1974 by Hernan D. Reyes, his four students and two workers. With the construction of the Palace in the Sky, "workers attempted several times to bring down with dynamite blasts the huge rock on which Our Lady is perched but they were unsuccessful. Upon discovering Our Lady, they left the rock intact concluding that Our Lady does not want to leave this place" the scribbling says.



STATUE OF THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS
Just a few more steps to the next floor is a huge statue in white hue of Jesus Christ, arms outstretched, with the Sacred Heart showing. This also serves as another viewing deck, an open one, apart from the guesthouse to the left. 


The statue could have and should have been left to its holy presence but vandalism, writings at the foot of the statue using blue and black pentel pens by various people were abundant and disturbing to say the least. It's not only unethical but down right disrespectful to this holy structure. Walls, much more statues of holy beings are not there for public writings - vandalism is not only a malicious act of destruction but an insult to the intelligence of those visiting this public property. Talk about manners here, it's absolutely irritating and infuriating! Good thing the panoramic spectacle, sprinkled with rainshowers made my temper mellow after seeing this form of defacement.

 
GETTING THERE
How do you get to The People's Park in the Sky?

 
VIA PUBLIC TRANSPORT
Just before the Tagaytay Rotunda, along the Olivarez Plaza where fastfood chains are abundant, jeepneys bound for the People's Park in the Sky can be found. At Php16 per passenger. Enjoy the ride as you will pass by several tourist spots and establishments on your way. People's Park in the Sky is located at the last drop off point of these public vehicles. Word of caution when going back, don't be persuaded or fooled by locals who tells you that no public transportation go up to People's Park in the Sky - during weekends, there are tons of visitors so you dont have to pay more than you should. There are still locals in this area who try to earn by overcharging, so be wary. There are jeepneys that go down at the foot of the mountain - this is another jeepney terminal (apart from the rotunda) and will bring you to various points in Tagaytay City.

 
VIA PRIVATE VEHICLE
From the Tagaytay Rotunda, turn left along Aguinaldo Highway and go all the way the road. You will be passing by several establishments (Loumar's Pies, Keni Po Rooms, etc), you will even see Picnic Grove to your right. Follow the road that leads atop Mount Sungay where People's Park in the Sky is located.    



My sincerest thanks for checking out this site and spending your precious time. Hope you continue to join me as I share my journey to a world of pleasurable discoveries only here at Savvy Sojourns.

I hope you will join me as I explore a larger world. Those who have seen my food blog Eat To Your Heart's Content know that for me, food comes first, but travel is equally rewarding that is part and parcel when in the hunt for delicious eats.

Your comments and suggestions are valuable for the development of Savvy Sojourns. Feel free to write at the comment box or email me at savvysojourns@yahoo.com or pierivera@savvysojourns.net.


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Hope you would also check out my food blog, Eat To Your Heart's Content for deliriously delicious dining discoveries.

Until next time, as I always say, Live Well, Laugh Often, Eat To Your Heart's Content!

Pie Rivera is a food columnist of Republic of 7107 Island Travel Magazine. For subscriptions to the magazine, you may email them at subscription@7107magazine.ph. You can also check their WEBSITE.
 
All photos in this site were captured by Pie Rivera unless otherwise stated.
Information and rates indicated in the articles are accurate at the time of visit by this writer.

4 comments:

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    1. Thank you for dropping by Tina and truly appreciate the inspiring words. This site is still a work in progress and I hope to keep improving. Cheers! :)

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    1. thank you Douglas, so kind & generous of you. appreciate your encouraging words so much. there are tons of well-written travel blogs out there and I am just sharing in whatever way I can to inspire others to visit the Philippines :) happy travels! :)

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