After enjoying the Higantes festival (since we traveled for a few hours just to experience it) I thought that we couldn’t just waste our time in Angono, Rizal after.
Having a rough week, we didn’t plan to cover the whole day at the festival. Since it took us hours to reach our destination, I just thought that we might visit other places before we go back to Bulacan. While having a rest and eating my halo-halo to cool down, I searched for other places in Angono. Most of the nearby places were galleries and museums, hence it is called the Art Capital of the Philippines. However, a very interesting place caught my attention, the Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs.
A National Cultural treasure, the Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs is a place where you’ll find a shallow rock shelter with 127 drawings that were believed (and proven) to be made by the early inhabitants of the area. It was also declared as the oldest rock art in the Philippines (I would say, the creative talent among the people of Angono had been in their genes since the primitive times).
The engravings which were frog-like and lizard-like can be found on the rock wall near the boundary of Angono-Binangonan in Rizal, Philippines. Just to clarify, it is a rock shelter, a shallow cave-like opening at the base of a cliff. The person who toured us said that some people mistakenly thought that it was an actual cave (I did!). It was accidentally discovered by Carlos “Botong” Francisco in March 1965 during a field trip with a troop of boy scouts. He then reported it to the National Museum for proper evaluation.
My (and my fiancé) experience there was unforgettable. Unexpected long walks under the midday sun, hike uphill, almost lost and dehydration was paid off once we reached our destination. Upon entering the Petroglyphs premises (with the help of their sign boards), we went through a man-made tunnel to reach an office where we met a representative (or a tour guide). The place was very simple. There are picnic tables for the students visiting during their educational trips, trees all over, and of course the rock shelter with the engravings. They also placed wooden steps and flooring to the area near the engravings so guests can have more chances of seeing it closer at the same time protecting it from destruction. We went there on a Sunday, making the area clear from other tourists, and it’s a bit quiet in the area.
DISCLOSURE: Sadly, i don’t have many pictures of the place because the memory card that I used to save my photos of the Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs was corrupted and needed a reformat. So some of the photos that I used here were from the internet or from the National Museum Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs Facebook page.
How to get there:
There are two ways (that I know and experienced) to get there:
From Cubao, Quezon City: ride a jeepney going to Antipolo church, near the SM City Cubao. You can also take a van/fx, its terminal is beside the Farmer’s Market nearest to MRT Cubao station. From Antipolo church, ride a tricycyle SAFTODA or AYATODA and tell the driver to take you to the Petroglyphs.
If you are coming from Angono (which what we did), you can also take a tricycle going to Petroglyphs. But it may be a bit expensive because you will need a special trip to get there. You have to make sure that the tricycle could drive uphill because the road is so steep! We had a bad experience with this matter, as the tricycle driver said he could take us there yet after a couple of kilometers, we had to get off and just walked to get to the Petroglyphs!
NOTE: If the tricycle driver is not aware of the name “Petroglyphs”, just mention that it is near the Thunderbird Resort.
In all honesty, I wouldn’t know about this historical rock shelter in the province of Rizal if it wasn’t for the Higantes Festival in Angono. The Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs has a lot more room for improvements. However, I still aim for my fellow Filipinos, especially the young ones, to know more about this historical place.