The Babaylan Festival of Bago City, Negros Occidental is celebrated every month of February.
This 2013, it is also the 47th Charter Anniversary of Bago City, Negros Occidental.
Babaylan Festival is based on the rituals performed by the Babaylans, like rituals on marriage, baptism, healing, harvest and others.
The Babaylan is a doctor, herbalist, artist, medium, adviser, agriculturist and more, all rolled in one very interesting character. It is believed that Babaylans get their healing powers from the unseen spirits. The Babaylan is the keeper of rituals and spirit agents in normal world. He inspires awe and fear.
The Babaylan Festival was conceived to highlight a unique brand of Filipino heritage, one that dates back to the pre-Spanish period. It is based on the rituals performed by the Babaylans like rituals on marriage, baptism, healing and harvest.
The festival aims to rediscover the Bagonhon indigenous music, literature, dances, rituals and other artistic endeavors.
How to Get There
Bago City is located 21.5 kilometers south of the provincial capital of Negros Occidental, Bacolod City. It is a 30-minute drive away from the center of Bacolod, and an hour drive from the Bacolod-Silay Airport.
From Manila, you can fly to Bacolod (Php2500++, round trip, 45 minutes). From Bacolod-Silay Airport, you can take a shuttle (Php75-100 per head), or a cab and ask to be dropped off to the nearest station for buses/vans that will pass through Bago City.
photos: Babaylan Festival 2013 photos by Billy Lopue (Camera Club of Negros)