Culinary Capital of the Philippines
Heart of Central Luzon
Home of the Festivals
Christmas Capital of the Philippines
Modeling Capital of the Philippines
Home of the Hot Air Balloons
“Mekeni tuki ka. Mamasyal ta Pampanga!”
The Kapampangan slogan above means “Come join me. Let’s travel Pampanga!”
Pampanga tourist attractions are surrounded by the most exciting places and events in the Philippines. Pampanga has what it takes to be fun a province to call one’s home. There will always be stimulation and thrill when you travel in Pampanga. Not considering the season and time, traveling is just astonishing in many ways. It furnishes perspective in life through what you experience during your travel period. Ask any Filipino what he or she thinks of Pampanga-– chances are you would hear the words sisig, beauty queens, lahar (volcano’s pyroclastic material), festivals, giant lanterns, and the sin city of Angeles. While, partly, it does describe some of the facets of Pampanga- the province does have something more than that.
Known as the Culinary Capital of the Philippines, the Heart of Central Luzon, Home of the Festivals, Christmas Capital of the Philippines, the Modeling Capital of the Philippines, the Home of Hot Air Balloons, in the shadow of the majestic Mt. Arayat, is a mixture of a destination-– strange, proud, strong and stunning!
(hover and click the Pampanga Map to view tourism-related establishments and facilities)
Just 70 kilometers away from Manila, is the next trade and industry motivating force of the Philippines– PAMPANGA. This province will be the strongest counter-magnet of Metro Manila in the future. People can access opportunities established in Metro Manila without having to live in a crowded environment. The Pampanga Metropolis Plan is a strategic framework that aims to optimize the use of the province’s key resources: 218,000 hectares of land its 2,600,000 people. A widespread circumferential road that will join the key urban centers and outlying towns will inaugurate soon, reducing travel time substantially. Likewise, the Clark International Airport, the 4,500-hectare Clark Freeport Zone, and the 9,000-hectare New Clark City are rapidly expanding.
Pampanga, 2-3 hours north of Manila, and sits on the wide plains of Central Luzon, got its name from the word “pampang” or riverbank as the early Kapampangans living near the banks of the prominent Pampanga River. Today, Pampanga is known as the Culinary Capital of the Philippines and its cuisine thought to be the most evolved of all Philippine culinary traditions. Kare-Kare (Oxtail in Vegetables and Peanut Soup), Kilawin (Ceviche) and Sizzling Sisig are one of its notable contributions to this tradition. Pampango’s Best and Mekeni Foods are synonymous with producing excellent Kapampangan version of traditional Filipino-style cured meats and sausages – tocino, tapas, and chorizos/longganisa
Nevertheless, choosing your next travel destination can sometimes is difficult, especially when you are not familiar with the place. While it may be true that traveling around the place can be an adventure, knowing where to go is desirable to guarantee an enjoyable trip. Just like when you plan to visit Pampanga, exploring and knowing what to do in Pampanga is one way you can enjoy your trip. Before you travel, let’s have quick trivia about Pampanga!
- Pampanga is located in the Central Luzon region.
- The capital of it is the City of San Fernando, Pampanga.
- Pampanga is near Bataan and Zambales to the west, Tarlac and Nueva Ecija to the north, and Bulacan to the southeast.
- It also lies on the northern shore of Manila Bay.
- Angeles City is classified as a first-class, highly-urbanized city. Although the place is within Pampanga, the place has own government independent of Pampanga.
- Diosdado Macapagal International Airport is located at Clark Freeport Zone in Angeles and Mabalacat City.
- Pampanga has two Philippine Air Force airbases which are: Basa Air Base in Floridablanca and the former U.S. Clark Air Base found in Angeles City.
How to go to Pampanga
Pampanga can be accessed by neither land nor air. For International tourists, you can fly in via Clark International Airport in Clark Freeport Zone. If Clark Airport is not feasible for you, you can fly in at Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila and take a bus going to the province.
Traveling by bus comes easy through several bus lines with stations spread all over Metro Manila. Some routes going to Pampanga are as follows:
- Manila-Pampanga-Bataan Route
- Manila-Pampanga-Zambales Route
- Manila-Pampanga-Tarlac Route
- Manila-Pampanga-Nueva Ecija Route
- Manila-Bulacan-Pampanga Route
- Manila-Pampanga-Dagupan Route
Pampanga is located up north, therefore you need to travel up in order to get there. If you’re driving with your own car or a private vehicle, here are the steps you need to follow:
- Travel up north from Manila
- Drive through the R-8 route, the fastest route of all the available ones despite the congestion
- Pay the toll fees
- Finally arrive in San Fernando, Pampanga
If you aren’t going to be driving via private vehicle, or just prefer public transportation, then here’s how to get to Pampanga doing so:
- Take buses which are passing through Pampanga (Victory Liner, 5 Star Buses, etc.)
- Pay the bus fare (around 150-300 pesos, depending on the bus line of your choice)
- Take the bus and arrive in Pampanga.
Another alternative for those who are coming to places further away from Manila to get to Pampanga is via plane. Here’s how:
- Book a plane ticket heading to the Clark International Airport in Pampanga
- Ride the plane and arrive, driving to other Pampanga destinations from Clark.
What to see in Pampanga
Pampanga is a province up north which known for its rich history, past, heritage and various historical structures which give meaning to what the Philippines really is. As it was considered as the culinary capital of the Philippines, and many often go there to get a taste of the province’s amazing and unique cuisine and dishes. It is definitely a must visit place for locals and tourists alike because there are so many things to do, it’s hard to ever get bored. For those who want to visit and get a taste of what life is like up north, here is a complete guide on what to see and do in Pampanga as well as how to get there.
There are endless destinations and sights, as well as activities to partake in when in the amazing province of Pampanga. Here are some examples which are well-loved by tourists and visitors as well as locals alike.
- Betis Church of Guagua
- Carmelite Monastery of Angeles City
- Holy Rosary Parish Church of Angeles City
- Immaculate Concepcion Church of Guagua
- Metropolitan Cathedral of San Fernando
- Saint Catherine of Alexandria Parish Church
- Saint Michael the Archangel Parish Church of Masantol
- San Bartolome Church of Magalang
- San Guillermo Church of Bacolor
- San Jose Obrero Parish Church / Floridablanca Church of Floridablanca
- Santa Monica Parish Church / The Minalin Church of Minalin
- Santa Rita de Cascia
- The San Agustin Church / Lubao Church of Lubao
- Archdiocesan Chancery (Dizon Mansion) of City of San Fernando
- Buluyut Bridge of City of San Fernando
- Camel Backbridge of Bacolor
- Capt. Colin P. Kelly, Jr. Monument of Clark Freeport
- Clark Freeport Historical Marker Trail of Clark Freeport
- Consunji House of City of San Fernando
- Crissot Monument of Bacolor
- Cuyugan – Baron of City of San Fernando
- Dayrit – Cuyugan Residence of City of San Fernando
- Dayrit – Galang Residence of City of San Fernando
- Death March Marker of City of San Fernando
- Flag Pole Memorial Marker of Clark Freeport
- Fort Stotsenberg Gate Posts of Clark Freeport
- Friendship Tree of Clark Freeport
- Henson-Hizon Residence of City of San Fernando
- Hizon Residence of City of San Fernando
- Hizon-Ocampo House of City of San Fernando
- Hizon-Singian House of City of San Fernando
- Japanese Memorial Marker of Clark Freeport
- Kamikaze West Airfield of Mabalacat City
- Kelly Theater of Clark Freeport
- Lazatin Mansion of City of San Fernando
- M.A.R.S. Antenna of Clark Freeport
- Macario Arnedo Park of City of San Fernando
- Maj. Harold M. Clark Freeport Memorial of Clark Freeport
- Marcos Santos Residence of Mabalacat City
- Memorial & Kamikaze Peace Shrine of Clark Freeport
- Monumento Fernandino of City of San Fernando
- Museo Ning Angeles of Angeles City
- Ocampo-Hizon Residence of City of San Fernando
- Pamintuan Mansion of Angeles City
- Parade Ground of Clark Freeport
- Parul Ning Fernandino Fountain of City of San Fernando
- Pasudeco Sugar Central of City of San Fernando
- President Roxas Marker of Clark Freeport
- Salakot Arch of Angeles City
- San Fernando City Hall of City of San Fernando
- Santos-Hizon House of City of San Fernando
- Suspension Bridge of Candaba
PAMPANGA: Its majesty and uniqueness
Pampanga does not aim to be another Mega Manila. Its tactic is to dissolve economic opportunities, not leaving any of its barangays or communities behind. Its growth agenda will always be strategic, comprehensive and sustainable.
The hinge of the Megalopolis is the Central Triangle. It is bordered by Angeles City, where the Clark Freeport Zone is located, the City of San Fernando which is the administrative Capital of the Central Luzon Region, and Lubao, the westernmost town closest to the Subic International Seaport.
Industrial parks, live-work-play communities, educational institutions, theme parks, recreation and entertainment establishments, hotels, commercial areas and technology companies would likely gravitate towards Pampanga’s triangle. Radiating around the central triangle are 4 opportunity zones; the Aeropolis, Agropolis, Ecopolis, and the Aquapolis.
The Aeropolis are the twin cities of Angeles and Mabalacat where the Clark International Airport is located. This will be a logistics hub to ship high-value goods to international markets, and host to companies servicing airlines, undertaking aircraft maintenance and repairs. The Aeropolis will also be ideal for convention facilities and recreation because of its convenient access to the airport.
The Ecopolis would take root in two areas of the province; the western portion of Pampanga where the terrain is elevated and the eastern portion with Mt. Arayat as the anchor destination of this tourism circuit. Investments in outdoor sports and adventure facilities, conference centers, artists and craft villages, and boutique hotels shall be encouraged.
The Aquapolis is the Wetlands of Pampanga, located at the Southern portion of the province along Pampanga River, closest to Manila Bay. This produces shrimps, fish, and other seafood products but seeks to diversify into tourism and processing.
The Agropolis concept is intended for the numerous farming communities throughout Pampanga. Today, 60% of Pampanga’s land area is classified as agricultural—mainly in rice, sugarcane, corn, and poultry. The potential for growth lies in its ability to diversify to high-value crops, adoption of higher level food technology and farm tourism.
Pampanga in the future will be 22 smart and sustainable cities… a sprawling chain of urban centers punctuated by wide open, green areas for its people to enjoy. The good quality of life in Pampanga is palpable; fresh air, clean waterways, great cuisine, and peaceful communities that make it an ideal place to raise a family. Pampanga aims to move forward, unafraid of volatile, uncertain and complex world order. It is determined to seize its share of opportunities, openly welcoming investors who share its values and aspirations.
Let us shape our future together, invest in Pampanga. Travel in Pampanga. Invest, Pampanga! Travel Pampanga!
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