Much Anticipated Festival in Luzon
In Balayan, Batangas, lechon steals the spotlight during their much-awaited festival. Lechon, or roasted suckling pig, gets its own grand parade in a town in Batangas, at the Southern Region of Luzon.
Every town in the Philippines has their own way of celebrating a festivity. Each barangay or district makes sure that their festivity (usually month-long) is filled with great events that will make the locals and tourists more endeared to the event. In Batangas, a province in Southern Tagalog region, a particular town celebrates a parade of lechon, which is a way of thanksgiving by the locals to their patron saint, Saint John the Baptist, every June 24.
Preparations done at the Parada ng Lechon
The Parada ng Lechon Festival will never be complete without highlighting Balayan’s best lechon. Tourists flock to this town just to get a taste of the lechon’s crispy skin. According to history, lechon has always been served in celebrations in the Philippines even before the Spaniards arrived. Now, locals made the parade more entertaining without losing its traditional sense. Prior to the parade, the pigs are prepared as they are placed on a roasting pit for five hours, while brushing it with water and oil to make the skin crispier.
After the preparations, the lechons are dressed and wrapped carefully as they are sent to the Immaculate Conception church, where the pigs are lined up to be blessed by the priest. A mass is celebrated in honor of the town’s patron saint and after that, the merrier part of the festivity commences.
Just as any other St. John the Baptist feast, the traditional dousing of water is made to commemorate the saint’s baptism at the Jordan River. If visiting this particular festival, expect to get drenched in water as locals splash water even to guests! To make the event livelier, a series of performances of live bands, ballroom dancing, races, magic shows, and sports tournaments are being held in thus fun local festival in June. In this month, expect the town of Balayan to be more colorful than ever; as you witness the way of merrymaking, the Batangueño way.
How to go to the Parada ng Lechon in Balayan, Batangas
Going to Batangas may take approximately 2 to 3 hours from Manila. To go here, board a bus in Pasay terminal going to Lemery , Batangas. Jeepneys are available at Lemery bound for Balayan.