Nine lovely gems of Guimaras

The island province of Guimaras has five municipalities, namely Jordan, Buenavista, San Lorenzo, Sibunag ang Nueva Valencia and each has places and activities that tourists would likely adore.

Now, there are nine lovely ladies who came from these municipalities and who vowed to promote these must-see sites through social media. They are the candidates of the 2016 Mutya ng Guimaras.

During the pageant’s launching and 23rd Guimaras Manggahan Festival opening at SM City Iloilo, these lovely ladies were asked what are the places that tourists should visit in their towns. (Thank you Iloilo blogger Greg Antoine Flores of Café Ilonggo for raising the question). Here are their answers:

Mutya ng Guimaras 2016 candidates Joyce Gayorgor, Dana Mae Diana and Ruth Emily Valenzuela

Joyce Gayorgor and Dana Mae Diana who are from Buenavista, said that their town is home to Navalas Church, the oldest church in Western Visayas.

Diana added that her town’s name Buenavista means "beautiful view", the words uttered by American Gen. Douglas McArthur when he saw the island.

Meanwhile, Ruth Emily Valenzuela of Sibunag said that her town has a nature's trail where one can enjoy some fresh air. Shara Vim Vilchez who hails from the same town, added that the Sibunag River is also a recommended tourist spot.

Mutya ng Nueva Valencia Sheryl Faith Perania, said her town is home to white sand beaches and resorts such as the popular Raymen Beach Resort. Rowena Gandeza, also from Nueva Valencia, added that the Guisi Lighthouse is also a good place to visit. She added that the lighthouse serves as a guide to fishermen who are out at sea.

Mutya ng Guimaras 2016 candidates  Shara Vim Vilchez, Sheryl Faith Perania and Rowena Gandeza

In Guisi, visitors will see two lighthouses - an old, rusty one and a new one. Nearby are resorts such as the Guisi Clearwater Resort and Kenyama Resort where guests can see a breathtaking view of the ocean.

Joanne Porras who hails from Jordan, encouraged tourists to visit the famed Balaan Bukid. Every Holy Week, visitors troop there as a form of penance. They can also witness Pagtaltal (Crucifixion) that takes place on a Good Friday from 1pm to 3pm at the Provincial Capitol grounds.

Meanwhile, Mary Welsen Quezon is from San Lorenzo, home to the 54 megawatt San Lorenzo Wind Farm that has 127 wind turbines that generate power for Western Visayas.

Jell Roses Duga added that San Lorenzo also has beaches such as Playa de Paraiso.

Mutya ng Guimaras 2016 candidates Joanne Porras, Mary Welsen Quezon and Jell Roses Duga

Now let the joy of traveling to Guimaras begin. There are two jump off points from Iloilo City for those who wish to visit these Guimaras gems. One is through the Parola area for boats plying the Buenavista route. Another one is the Ortiz Wharf for boats going to Jordan.

You may also witness these nine lovely contestants as they tour Guimaras for several competitions such as the Best in Festival Costume on April 17 in Jordan, Talent on April 24 in Nueva Valencia, Casual Wear on May 1 in Buenavista, and the Mutya ng Guimaras proper on May 20 at the Guimaras Provincial Capitol Gym in Jordan.

Mutya ng Guimaras 2016 is organized by the Province of Guimaras with Travel and Marketing Experts (TMX). It is co-presented by 2GO Travel and Supercat with media partner, The Daily Guardian. It is also supported by MGW Wellness and Spa, Cherry Mobile, Pitstop, Henry's MJCJ Wines and Liquor, Cafe Panay by PTSI, La Pachira Ocean View Resort, SM City Iloilo, Mozaic Creative Studios and Ian Van Cubing.

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