The Cheery Christmas Sights to See In and Around Manila (2020 Edition)
There's a familiar holiday tunnel and an illuminated jeepney.
(SPOT.ph) Bright lights and colorful parols often fill Metro Manila's roads as early as September, but we all know by now that 2020 is out of the ordinary. Physical distancing is now part of protocols, gathering is strongly frowned upon, and staying home is encouraged. Just in case you find yourself biking around the Metro or on your way home from a quick grocery run, there are still some spots where you can stop and marvel at Christmas lights for a while—if only to feel the holiday spirit.
Take a look at this year's cheery christmas displays in Metro Manila:
Ortigas East Christmas Street Musical Light Tunnel
Now on its fourth year, Ortigas East Christmas Street Musical Light Tunnel jazzes up the stretch of Ortigas East (formerly Frontera Verde) with a light-studded arch and Christmas-themed music. Tube lights from 2019 were reused and are lit in honor of frontliners. Whether you’re walking past or driving by, you can marvel at the lights and feel the magic of the season.
The Ortigas East Christmas Street Musical Light Tunnel is at Central Avenue, Ortigas East, C5, Pasig City. It runs every 30 minutes from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. until January 3, 2021.
Trail of Lights at Crosswinds
Crosswinds in Tagaytay City is usually fun to explore thanks to its Swiss-inspired residential and resort facilities. Every holiday season, the village is transformed into a Christmas wonderland with colorful lights, cool projections, and life-sized candy canes and gift boxes. Check out this Instagram-worthy holiday attraction if you find yourself taking a roadtrip to Tagaytay City.
Trail of Lights is at Crosswinds, Barangay Iruhin, Central Calamba Road, Tagaytay City, Cavite. It is open daily from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Pasko 2020 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines
The Cultural Center of the Philippines celebrates the holiday season with a display of traditional Filipino parols on the main building's façade. These were upcycled lanterns designed by the Quiwa family from San Fernando, Pampanga, and often used by the art hub. A light projection by GA Fallarme and light-and-sound spectacle by Danilo Villanueva add to the magical experience.
Pasko 2020 is at the Cultural Center of the Philippines, Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City. It runs until January 3, 2021.
Casa Santa Museum
Located within the the popular wedding venue Jardin de Miramar, Casa Santa Museum boasts more than 3,700 items related to Christmas and Santa Claus—from life-sized statues to singing figurines. It was a family rest house that was turned into a museum in 1995, and has since been getting plenty of guests because of its unique collection. For 2020, their newest offering is the Santa's Toy Factory section, where visitors can see Santa's Elves in action and play with toys.
Casa Santa Museum is at 276 San Jose Extension, Padilla, Antipolo City, Rizal. It is open from Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; and from Saturday to Sunday, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Entrance is at P250 per head.
Ayala Triangle Gardens's Virtual Festival of Lights
Since it was inaugurated in 2009, the Ayala Triangle Gardens in the Makati business district is known to transform into a spectacular courtyard of colorful lights, cool lasers, and festive music every Christmas season. But for 2020, the well-loved tradition is going virtual with a 360-degree immersive video that is streamed through Make It Makati's and Ayala Land's Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube pages. In any case, the garden still has a couple of holiday lights adorning the trees, illuminating the open space come night-time.
Parola at UP Diliman
Visual artist Toym Imao once again wows students, professors, and guests with a poignant Christmas display that follows the theme "Abot Kamay, Abot Tanaw." But with the threat of COVID-19, the annual Pag-iilaw was held online on December 18 as the university unveiled "Parola." This collection of art installations is found all over the university with an illuminated and oversized jeepney as its centerpiece.
"Parola" is found in various locations within the University of the Philippines - Diliman, Quezon City.
Mall of Asia Holiday Fireworks Display
If you find yourself at SM Mall of Asia on January 1 at 7 p.m., watch for the MOA Holiday Fireworks Display at Central Park, SM by the Bay. You can also take photos with the larger-than-life inflatable of Santa Claus and his reindeer. Just make sure to follow physical distancing rules and wear your face shield and masks while watching the spectacular show.
Mall of Asia Holiday Fireworks Display is on January 1, 7 p.m. at Central Park, SM by the Bay. The fireworks display on December 18, 19, 25, and 26 have all been canceled as of writing.