VIGAN CITY — Got free time this week? Head north to Vigan City in Ilocos Sur and join in the city’s celebration of the annual World Heritage Cities Solidarity Cultural Festival. Interesting cultural activities are lined up including Paseo de Vigan where you get the chance to rent period costumes and have your photo taken at historic Crisologo St; heritage walking tour all weekends of September; Zarsuela Ilocana, singing competition, choir competition, folk dance competition, literary competitions at the Vigan Convention Center; trade and food fair at the parking lot behind the Convention Center; and a lot more.
The festival is rooted in Vigan City being part of the Organization of World Heritage Cities (OWHC), an organization founded on September 8, 1993 in Fez, Morocco, to unite cities included in the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage List. The organization aims to bolster support to preserve and promote the member cities’ respective World Heritage.
Vigan City was inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1999 for having the “best-preserved example of a planned Spanish colonial town in Asia”. Established in the 16th century, Vigan City boasts of intact examples of colonial architecture that reflect the coming together of cultural elements from elsewhere in the Philippines, from China and from Europe, resulting in a culture and townscape that have no parallel anywhere in East and South-East Asia.
Here is the schedule of festival activities released by the City government:
And here are some photos taken from the Vigan City official Facebook Page from previous year’s Solidarity festivals: