By air, ASIAN SPIRIT has regular flights four times a week to Gasan Airport;
Travel time is approximately 45 minutes by air from Manila
The island of Marinduque is believed to have been inhabited by Malays and Mangyans , governed by the Bonbon settlement in Batangas which was founded by the Bornean datus Dumagsil and Balkasusa.
Legends and stories narrate that the original name of the island was Malindik, describing the gentle sloping terrain of the islands’ highest peak, Mt. Malindik. When the Spaniards came, they found it difficult to pronounce the word so they called the island Marinduc. By common usage, Marinduk became Marinduque.
In 1571, Marinduque was appointed as an encomienda under Dr. Pedro de Mesa. At about the same time Christianity was introduced by Fr. Diego Herrera. In 1590, the island was subsumed under the government of Mindoro. Nine years later, it became a province under the first Philippine Republic. However, in 1902 all of Mindoro was annexed to Marinduque and Marinduque to the province of Quezon. It was in 1920 when the province gained its full provincial stature under Republic Act No.: 2280 authored by then Assemblyman Ricardo Paras.
The marker stands at the site of the bloodiest battle ever fought in the island between the Marinduque revolutionary forces against the Americans. The Battle of Pulang Lupa was the first known major battle won by the Filipinos over the Americans. The area is surrounded by dense vegetation making it an ideal place for camping.
Brgy. Balimbing, Boac, Marinduque A marker that serves as a reminder of the battle on 31 July 1900 between the Filipinos and the Americans. Despite inferior weapons, the bravery of Marinduquenos defeated the American soldiers.
1. Moriones Festival
Boac, Mogpog and Gasan During the annual observance of Holy Week, a biblical character in the person of the Roman centurion Longinus comes alive as the towns of Boac, Mospog and Gasan stage the Moriones.. It is a religious and cultural event that links the story of Longinus with Christ’s Passion and Death. It features masked men garbed in the colorful costume of Roman soldiers. This unique observance is indigenous to the province. The local government, in coordination with local theater groups seek to preserve the custom of the Morion, which is said to be a mix of Christian and pre-hispanic culture. Starting on Holy Monday. “ Morions” roam the streets of Boac, Mogpog and Gasan. They play pranks on the townspeople, serenade ladies, frighten children and sometimes engage in mock sword fights.
The practice has its roots during the Christian conversion of the Muslim locals by the friars during the Spanish period. As a form of penitence, the Muslim converts, during Holy Week, attired themselves in the garb of characters of Christ’s passion and death. Parents of children, at that time, in order to frighten children into submission, pointed to the grotesque figures as Moro’yon. The term evolved into the present day title of Morion . The custom of the “ promenade” or “walk” down the streets of Marinduque every Lenten season prevails to this time and has expanded into the famous Moriones tableau as it is known today.
The climax of the Lenten celebration will be the Pugutan, a Filipino version of the Passion of Christ. The Pugutan depicts the life of Longinus, the Roman soldier who pierced Christ’s side with a spear as He was nailedto cross and was a witness to Jesus’s resurrection. Longinus was arrested for spreading the news of Christ’s resurrection and was later beheahed.
2. Tawak Drinking
Marinduque (Provincewide) This local concoction is prepared during Good Friday. Tawak is a drink made from mint leaves, spices, herbs and local vodka. It is a practice common to the menfolk but some women take a sip too. This potion is prepared by a village healer who empowers the drink by means of a whispered prayer called bulong. The bulong, however should be done before the stroke of 12:00 noon on Good Friday, marking the end of the power of the healer. The potion will keep for a year.
It is believed that the tawak protects the drinker from venomous bites. It takes seven years, however for an individual to become full-fledged healer who will be able to transfer his powers to an heir or successor.
This practice represents another facet of the Marinduqueño’s spirituality.
Town Proper of Boac, Mogpog and Gasan This is Marinduque’s indigenous custom of welcoming and honoring friends and visitors. The ceremony starts with the procession of the mamumutong, which is a group of men and women, chanting greetings before the visitors they regard as deities. The mamumutong sing and dance in quickening rhythm in front of the guests showering them with flowers and coins as signs of affection. Flowers fashioned into crowns, garlands and bouquets are given to the honorees. Shouts of mabuhay and viva end the ceremonial welcome for visitors.
Marinduque ( Provincewide)
A musical instrument unique to the province. The kalutang consists of two pieces of wood, graduated in sizes to produce different notes and ranges, which takes a group of 10 to 12 people to create a special musical rendition.
5. Legend of Mara-Undok Dance Drama
Marinduque Local theater groups stage the dance culled from the Legend of Mar-Undok which narrates the origins of the islands. The dance mirrors pagan belief in natural deities (earth, wind and fire) who created the formation of the island province. The dance-drama incorporates ballet and pantomine with native musical instruments, music and chants.
The presentation can be seen for free as it is rendered by young artist students from local schools and colleges who perform as a kind of a sacrifice to observe of the Lenten season.
1. Bathala Caves
Barangay Ipil, Sta Cruz, Marinduque The Bathala caves are said to be mystical and a repository of psychic power emanating from various points of the universe. It is believed that there are seven caves within complex. Only four of these caves have so far been explored. The first is called the Simbahan owing to the natural rock formation within its church-like interior: Stalagmites forming a rough likeness to an altar, a silhouette of the Madonna and Child, the bell-like stalactites. The second cave, darker and deeper than the Simbahan is occasionally guarded by a python, from the ceiling of which hang hundreds of giant bats. Another cave has an underground river. Inside the fourth cave are human bones, which the people believe to be the remains of World War II soldiers.