How do Filipinos celebrate Halloween?
While other countries observe this event with pumpkins and trick or treats, the Philippines does it a different way. We observe Halloween, or All Saints Day here, by visiting dead loved ones in cemeteries in the city or the province. We offer candles, flowers and prayers to show reverence and respect to dead relatives, that we still remember them, mainly because of our strong Catholic background. Though the observance is mainly religion-oriented, some still want to make it a bit celebratory and a one-of-a-kind experience. There are also those who love to travel to look for great, or rather spooky, places to spend Halloween.
If you’re someone who thrives on seeing and feeling strange things, you might want to visit these provinces that can offer a bit of “spook” to your Halloween.
Baguio is known to have various haunted and spooky places like the Diplomat Hotel, Teacher’s Camp, and Hyatt Terraces Hotel, each said to be haunted with unusual scary stories.
Dominican Hill Retreat House, or Diplomat Hotel, is said to be a rest house and a seminary way back 1911 before it became a school and eventually, a hotel. Aside from its ruin, it is known for its most panoramic and picturesque location. During World War II, nuns and priests were supposedly beheaded there, the reason why headless apparitions are seen at night, and strange sounds like crying kids and babies are often heard, apparently those who died in a massacre at the fountain.
Teacher’s Camp, another known haunted place in Baguio, is a 100-year old venue for training of American teachers (Thomasites) and now a training center for teachers. Stories about ghosts and spirits roam the place: a headless priest, spirits passing by and strange sounds of a weeping lady.
The Hyatt Terraces Baguio Hotel is a 5-star hotel destroyed during the great Baguio earthquake in 1990 that killed 100 people and was Baguio’s “in” destination before tragedy struck. Many people believed the victims’ spirits remained in the hotel, where strange apparitions are still reported to this day.