Fort Sta. Isabel

Fort Sta. Isabel

30 September 2015

115th Anniversay of the Civil Service Commission

The culmination of the 115th year founding anniversary of the Civil Service Commission brought joy to a number of loyal and dedicated LGU employees who received cash awards (P1000.00/year of service) from LGU Taytay through Mayor Romy Salvame and Vice-Mayor Christian Rodriguez for the equivalent number of years that they have unselfishly offered their services to the community and the municipal government of Taytay, Palawan. Simultaneously, prizes and certificates of participation were also given to those who joined the AVP-making competition among LGU employees.

05 September 2015

Taytay's most popular and widely visited landmark is Fort Santa Isabel. It's the only early-Spanish era fortress that remains intact and the only man-made heritage site in mainland Palawan that the Taytayanos are very proud of. The whole structure was designed and built right on top of an offshore, massive rock formation by Spanish authorities who were aided by friars to intimidate and force hundreds of locals to gather, carve, and lay the coral blocks that were mainly used for its construction. Work started in 1667 and continued until 1738.  It took 71 years of hard labor for migrant and local workers, mostly from Panay and Cuyo Islands, to complete construction work on the fortress using only lard, egg white, and lime to securely bond the coral blocks together.  With the surrounding sea forming part of a series of protective barriers to prevent a direct assault by pirates and other hostile natives, the only easy access to the fort was over a wooden bridge, a portion of which was probably raised or pulled up during night time for added security for the inhabitants. Within the walls are the ordnance chamber, rebuilt in early 2000 and currently being used as a mini-museum, and chapel, now a special venue for weddings and baptism. Both structures, along with portions of the surrounding wall and the main rain water collection chamber, were damaged because of adverse human intervention and also due to time element and environmental factors.  It was in late-1990 to mid-2000 that the project to introduce major repairs to the damage sections was hatched and implemented by the administration of then Mayor Roberto V. Rodriguez, who assigned the restoration task to Vicente T. Azurin, Jr., Silverio L. Catedral, and a handful of local construction workers. Esther Dacuan was given the responsibility to supervise the landscaping component of the project when the repair work was finished. Although there were logistical problems, substantial repair and landscaping work were finally accomplished. Maintenance work continues up to the present time and with the implementation of the collection of entrance fees (P15 - P30 per person) last October 2012. A thorough and lasting repair and maintenance program  is now being undertaken by  the present administration under Mayor Romy L. Salvame.  For aesthetic reasons, it is also planning to introduce in its land use plan a set-back zone for privately owned properties located directly across the road leading to the fortress, and the creation of an historical park ordinance, not only to ensure the upkeep of the whole park, but also  to regulate activities within the park boundaries.                     

Taytay's Tourism Assets

Malampaya Sound – Malampaya Sound, at 200,115 hectares which includes a big chunk of Taytay’s total land and inland water area and extends well beyond the boundary of San Vicente,  is the biggest protected area in Palawan.  It also presents a pretty and fascinating land and seascape on a clear day and is one of the only three known habitats of the Irrawady dolphin in the Philippines. Fishing is the biggest income source for the inhabitants of many barangays that are situated within Malampaya’s boundaries and it is also fish and crustacean in the sound that provide food for the dolphins. Malampaya is accessible in just a few minutes by land vehicle from Taytay town center via Sitio Agpay where bancas are available to ferry local residents and visitors to wherever their destinations are or whatever activities they wish to engage in. 
Lake Manguao – The biggest freshwater lake in Palawan. With its thick forest cover, it is also home to nearly 160 species of birds and  13 species of fish that are endemic to Palawan, 5 of which are found only in the lake. Monkeys, squirrels, stink badgers, otters, scaly anteaters, and snakes also inhabit the 660 hectares expanse of Lake Manguao.  It is about 12 kilometers from Taytay town center by land vehicle. Activities that are commonly being engaged in are fishing, paddling, swimming, bird-watching, and trekking.
Pabellon Twin Islands (Pabellon Grande and Pabellon Pequeña ) - Islands with serrated dark-colored limestone cliffs and caves where the swallows thrive and breed. It is well-known for producing first class quality edible birds’ nests that the Chinese consider as a kind of aphrodisiac.  Boceadores or nest gatherers show their expertise in climbing the jagged rocks without harnesses and attachments except improvised bamboo poles and rope. The main island features a fresh water lagoon inside a cave for swimming. It also has a fairly wide white sandy area ideal for sun bathing and beach volleyball.  Swimming, sailing, and snorkeling are the main water-based activities.

 Bugtong Bukid – Is an extinct volcano and probably the only one of its kind in the province. It is believed to have erupted with such violent force hundreds of thousands of years ago and its eruption caused the damming of Lake Danao and scattered volcanic rocks over several thousand hectares of area that now hosts Barangays Bantulan and Calawag. It is located 3 km from Lake Manguao and is suitable for trekking, volcano climbing, nature/wildlife watching.  Additional features are its cold springs where locals bathe for therapeutic benefits  and cosmetic rejuvenation.  Agriculture is the main industry considering the area’s fertile, volcanic-type soil.

Sader Cove and White Sandy Beaches – It is one of Taytay’s best kept secret for many years. The vast expanse of fine, white sand beach during low tide is great for board skimming, beach ball games, kite flying, aerobic activities, and of course, walking.  This area is about 19 kilometers by land transport from Taytay town center. Another option is to take an hour and a half banca ride from the jetty near Fort Santa Isabel . The boat ride offers a nice and enjoyable water-based viewing platform for those who prefer this option.   

 Canique Waterfalls – situated just 30-40 minutes away by land transport from Taytay town center, this spectacular body of cascading water that continually pounds the small pool at ground level from a source nearly 80 feet above, is a highly popular picnic and nature-related activities site for the villagers and their visitors. Squirrel, snakes, seldom-seen birds  and  insects  inhabit the forested area surrounding the waterfalls and some of these creatures may be seen by those who are lucky,  patient enough,  or have the time to wait till they appear.
Minapla White Sandy Beaches and Coves - Long stretches of white sandy beaches, lush vegetation, rare endemic  wildlife, unique white rock formation known as Conical Island,  giant, smooth boulders of different shapes and sizes scattered along the length of a portion of its shoreline. Area is good for sailing, swimming, kite-boarding, trekking, and camping. It is accessible from Taytay town center by land and takes  45 mins– 1 Hour to reach Sitio Kauban, then  30 minute boat ride from Sitio Kauban to  Minapla, or 2 ½ hours banca ride from Agpay River.

Taytay Bay Underwater Attractions – Scuba Diving and snorkeling are just some of the many enjoyable and exciting activities that water sports enthusiast can engage in while visiting Taytay. There are still many fairly decent coral reefs  and fish life in Taytay Bay. There are now some Taytay bay tour operators who offer island hopping tours that feature such activities as swimming, snorkeling, and picnic at one of the many white sandy beaches like, Quimbaludan, Dinamayan, and Pabellon Twin Islands that are situated in the Bay.  Best time to consider Taytay bay as a tour option is during the Habagat season from around mid-May till September, although activities can still be done during the Amihan  (Northeast Monsoon) when the prevailing wind conditions are just about right.
 Biton Island- It is the only place where the unique and lovable white squirrel can be found. It also has a colony of thousands of fruit bats that thrive on a forested area on the island. Facing east are found white sand beaches where visitors can simply laze around or swim. Nearby is black rock, a marine protected area that offers good snorkeling and scuba diving

 Accommodation establishments in Taytay, Palawan:

 Casa Rosa                09208950092       Dilis Beach Resort           09304083024
 Pem’s Pension          09173007660       Apulit Island Resort         09178437903
 Tay Lelong’s             09053865249        Seacret Lodge                 09198799533
 Bebs Ann Apartel      09286054969       Polaris Pension               09178510143
                                                                Tubog Forest Lodge        09178510143      


27 August 2015

The Third Week of August, 2015

Three very important events unfolded this week. On August 26, Atty. Minerva Morada, Regional Director of the Department of Tourism Region 4, arrived with her DPWH counterparts to discuss with Mayor Romy L. Salvame and Vice Mayor Christian Rodriguez details of the eventual turnover of two major road projects under the Tourism Road Infrastructure Project (TRIP) being undertaken by DOT in tandem with DPWH to improve accessibility between points with important tourism attractions. The two road projects are the Taytay to El Nido Road which covers about 65 kilometers and the Taytay Poblacion to Sandoval CLRodriguez Airport Road that is nearly 40 kilometers long.

Then on August 27/28 came the celebration of the Feast of Sta. Monica, the patron Saint of Taytay 's Catholic community. There was a night time procession on the main road leading to the church before the mass and cultural show which featured songs and dances as performed by people from different age groups and associations.

Early this morning, the PNP Municipal Police Station, under the command of Senior Inspector Analyn A. Palma, with full support coming from the Provincial Command under Senior Sup. Benjamin Acorda, Jr. who came all the way from Puerto Princesa City to attend, conducted the yearly Kontra Droga (Anti-Illegal Drug) Unity Run and Hataw activity. The municipal government officials and employees, headed by Hon. Mayor Romy L. Salvame, participated along with residents coming from the academe and other private and non-government groups.