Lucban at Last!

Lucban has been on my “must-travel” ever since I’ve seen the colourful leaf-shaped decoration in front of the town’s old houses during the Pahiyas Festival. The vibe on the pictures are so lively and generous. They call Lucban the Summer Capital of Quezon Province because of its cool weather all throughout the year. No doubt because the town is nestled at the foot of Mt. Banahaw. This title made me more excited to visit the town which came true just this month! I was able to find a hotel in Lucban that's very comfortable and perfect for my stay.

I have been to Lucban twice but the heavens were so mysterious during my first two visit. Heaven would always cry though there were no recorded typhoon on my first two visits. We would still wander the town though but with the sad face on a gloomy day.

Just recently the heaven conceded to my plea for a good weather for us to roam around Lucban. Yes! Lucban this time! It was my time to visit this town and experience its cool and vibrant setting.

Lucban is known for their Longanisa which is for me the best in the country along with Vigan Longanisa. It is also a pilgrimage site for the Catholic devotee with the presence of the Kamay ni Hesus Shrine. For most part, I like Lucban because of its old town atmosphere. Everything in Lucban are so innocent and pure. 

Mt. Banahaw
Lucban Town
Lucban has a collection of old houses in almost all of its narrow street. The row of old houses makes Lucban a lovely town for me - very homey and nostalgic place. Walking around the town gives me rest – rest for my weary soul. The vibe is so cool that it relaxes you within. The fact that I’m looking at the decades old house give me an impression that I have a past – a rich past – that it could carry me to my future. And the fact that the mysterious Mt. Banahaw is the backdrop of the town, it’s magical like the mysterious short story on my black and white elementary text book.  

Kamay ni Hesus
This shrine is popular not only among Catholics but also with the tourist going to some beach escapades in Quezon like Borawan or Pagbilao. Kamay ni Hesus is huge complex for religious activities with accommodation and retreat facilities. It also has a church where devotees can attend mass every day. Kamay ni Hesus is famous for its healing mass every Saturday conducted by the healing priest, Fr. Joey Faller.  It also has playgrounds as well as some stores selling religious and souvenir items.   

Kamay ni Hesus is also known as Grotto among the locals. So when you hire a tricycle just simply say grotto instead of Kamay ni Hesus.

The highlight of the 5 hectare complex is the tall statue of Jesus Christ on top of the hill. It can take you 10 to 20 minutes to reach the statue depending on your speed. While going up appreciate the beauty of each layer. You will actually notice the Station of The Cross which depicts the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ all the way to the cross. This is the reason this place is popular among Catholics, here they can show their devotion to Jesus Christ by following his footsteps to the cross.  

When you reach the top, I am sure you’ll be exhausted. The fact that you reached the top looking at the face of Jesus Christ is a relief. Look at your back and you will be rewarded still with the foliage view of the vast coconut plantation and rice fields of Lucban, Tayabas all the way to Lucena City. You will also see there the town of Lucban. Rest for a while and feel the moment while on top of the hill.

Lucban Church
San Luis Obispo de Tolosa Parish Church is a 14th Century Church founded by the Franciscans. Lucban Church is standing as a living testament of Lucban‘s history and rich culture. I like the church so much because of its ornate fa├žade with unintentional vegetation that makes it more alive and eye catching.

Lucban Church is the home of Pahiyas Festival happened every 15th of May.

What to Eat in Lucban

Lucban Longanisa
Lucban Longanisa is a delicacy of the town with a strong garlicy taste. It is very common to see this brown sausage hanging in almost every corner of the town. For a better experience watch the locals stuffing the longanisa. It is a common practice to eat Lucban longanisa with vinegar.

Aside from Longanisa there are many delicacies in Lucban that you can bring home

When you visit Lucban, be sure to bring home a dozen or two of Lucban Longanisa to bring home the experience. 

Pansit Hab-hab
Pansit is a favorite snack or merienda all over the country. In Lucban they have their own version of this snack which is Pansit hab-hab. You eat this delicacy in a banana leaf straight to your mouth. Fork and spoon is not necessary when you eat pansit hab-hab. I tried asking for fork but they did not gave me. Like Lucban longanisa, Pansit hab-hab is best to eat with seasoned vinegar.

There is a row of eateries beside Lucban church where you can taste Pansit Hab-Hab. 

How to get to Lucban
By Bus. From Cubao or Buendia take a bus going to Lucena. Tell the conductor to drop you in the intersection going to Lucban Quezon. Take a jeep going to Lucban. With this route you can visit first the Kamay ni Hesus Shrine or simply Grotto for the Locals. 

Jeep going to Lucena

By Bus and by Van. From Cubao or Buendia take a bus going to Sta. Cruz. Tell the conductor to drop you in SM Calamba. They will actually drop you in front of Waltermart which is a short distance from SM Calamba. At the parking lot of SM Calamba there are UV Express going to Lucban, Quezon. Travel time is around 2-3 hours from Quezon City.

Where to stay in Lucban
Samkara Restaurant and Garden Resort is just 10 minutes away from Lucban town and 20 minutes away from Kamay ni Hesus. When you feel like resting for one or two days, Samkara Restaurant and Garden Resort offers an accommodation that uniquely provided by them. Indulge with nature and with the sound of the stream beside each of Samkara’s room.

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