Ginger Paws Outdoors

Minasa Festival: Bustos, Bulacan, Philippines


I seriously feel bad that I missed this year’s Sinulog Festival! I would really love to visit Cebu and see their well-renowned celebration of Sto. Niño, and again, I missed it! But no worries my dear friends, even so, I still experienced an equally energy filled and exciting day of festivity in Bustos, a town in Bulacan, Philippines.

Minasa Festival

Privileged to witness this annual celebration of Minasa Festival, I left home early in the morning with my friends in photography who were fairly excited to be in this event. We were told that since it is the centennial celebration of the Municipality of Bustos, there will be many participants in the street dance parade. We were also given our photographer’s pass to have a good seat in front during the showdown.

Minasa Festival 2017


What is Minasa?

Minasa means hand kneading; it is called in such name because they had to knead hardly in the making of this delectable treats. It is a type of cookie made by the locals of Bustos. It is made with cassava flour, egg yolk, coconut milk, butter, and sugar. This rich and creamy delicacy is also good for people with gluten intolerance. Here’s a bit of a side note: my mum-in-law loved this during her stay in the Philippines. And also, it is my favorite afternoon snack with black coffee!

Minasa Festival 2017

This mouthwatering gem was invented by the women of Bustos during the time that the stone houses were being built in their town hundred of years ago. Just like in other parts of the Philippines where egg whites were used as a glue for the stones to build a house (or churches) during that period. So they thought of ways not to put the yolks to waste. They combined the egg yolk with the other ingredients I mentioned above and baked them in a wood-fired oven. I heard that until now, there are locals that are still using this type of oven for Minasa cookies.

Here are some of my photos of the street dance parade!

Minasa Festival 2017

Minasa Festival 2017

Minasa Festival 2017

Minasa Festival 2017

Minasa Festival 2017

Minasa Festival 2017

Minasa Festival 2017

Minasa Festival 2017


How to get there:
From Manila, ride a bus going to Baliuag, preferably Baliuag Transit (that’s the only bus that has a terminal there, I think). Once you arrive at the terminal in Baliuag, ride a tricycle going to Bustos.

Minasa Festival is celebrated every January as they also commemorate the feast day of Sto. Niño (The Holy Child).

Minasa Festival

Minasa Festival 2017


About Gracie Gill

A hobbyist photographer enjoying her life through arts, music, traveling and getting fit. A proud crazy cat lady.

34 thoughts on “Minasa Festival: Bustos, Bulacan, Philippines

  1. Only By Land

    Next time I visit Bustos I’m going to find a Minasa cookie and try it. The street parade makes the journey from Manila seem worthwhile. You photographed it beautifully, so much color!

  2. Sky

    Thanks for sharing about Minasa. I’ve got a sweet tooth (especially donuts haha) and can’t wait to try some. Haven’t seen them anywhere around though. Probably will have to go there to try 🙂

  3. Dave Jaques

    Wow, those minasa cookies really looked delicious. But I really love the costumes and outfits that the parade entailed. Hopefully, I will be able to check it out if I ever go to the Philippines. Thanks for including the directions!

  4. Suma Shah

    What a vibrant and colourful festival, love how the street looks alive during the parade! The Minasa cookies look delicious, definitely going to try these when I’m in Phillipines. And interesting story behind the cookies, it’s amazing to know how people used egg yolks as glue to construct houses.

  5. Rhiannon

    The minasa cookie looks delicious! It was nice to read a bit about the process behind making them too. Philippines have so many beautiful colourful festivals! I’d love to experience one first-hand some day, but it’ll be a while so in the meantime I’ll have to make do with your gorgeous photos!

  6. Riely

    How interesting the backstory to the Minasa cookie. I would have never thought egg whites were used to bind together stones back in the day. Unfortunately, I wouldn’t be able to enjoy these cookies because of dairy allergies, but the festival looks amazing! Love the photos of the vibrant festival dances.

  7. Tonya Wilhelm

    I’ve never had a Minasa cookie. But it sounds really tasty. I love coconut. It looks like this is a really grand celebration. Thanks for talking about it. I love all the colors too.

  8. Marta

    I love your post! As we all know it’s more fun in the Philippines 🙂 Your culture is so rich and diverse, and seems that Minasa Festival has a to offer. I have been to Kadayawan festival in Davao City, but I didn’t know about this one. Thanks for the info and great photos!

  9. Lauren

    Wow those cookies look awesome and I would be able to eat them (gluten intolerant) YAY! Thank you for sharing this part of Filipino culture, I love learning new cultures and customs

  10. sophie

    OMG! this is the first time i have heard about this festival! and I certainly want to be part of this fest next year! booking tickets soon! thanks for sharing! Cheers!

  11. Rose Sahetapy

    The colors are so vibrant! The Minasa festival represents the beauty of your culture. Beautiful photos as well. The cookies intrigued me though, will certainly look for the recipe.

    1. Gracie Gill Post author

      Yes, it is safe there. It is located in Luzon and very far from the terrorists that was on the news. They are from a different island. Plus Bulakenyos (locals of Bulacan) are very welcoming and happy people!

    1. Gracie Gill Post author

      There are resorts nearby Bustos. You can try San Rafael Adventure park. They’ve got amazing hotels and a lot of water activities too. They also have glamping!

  12. Megan Jerrard

    Looks like a great parade! I love catching festivals as I’m traveling through a new destination – everyone is always in high spirits and so welcoming to bring you into their culture and join the celebrations! It’s these kind of days you remember the most 🙂

  13. Alice

    Wow that’s a beautiful street dance parade! They celebrate the treats, is that right? That’s really interesting, I had no idea such a festival existed!!

  14. Jade Braham

    Wow! this festival looks and sounds amazing! the photography is outstanding! I’ve never heard of it before but you’ve made me want to go and experience it for myself!

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