Crowd-Source & Curated Progressive Pinoy Perspectives

Lynette Eugenio

Blog / Blogger / Own site

I am not a true Mindanaoan, I hail from Paranaque in Metro Manila...a graduate of UST (The University of Sto. Tomas) in  Manila. My previous work in public affairs and as a production control planning analyst equipped me to make the big leap in migrating to this very controversial island Mindanao --ok that was part of it, but mainly since I was asked to relocate here by my ex-BF who is a true blue Mindanaoan. I fell in love with this very misunderstood island and you can say that the rest is history...

I am also a doting mom to my cute and oftentimes hyperactive little girl. And I blog about being a mom in my other blog –mommy journals.

Often, I am asked what is it about this island that made me decide to relocate here, leaving a promising corporate career and all my friends and family behind. Despite the qualms and negativism surrounding this island, this is where I found peace and a place perfect for raising a small family of ours. It is where my fairy tale “ever afters” began. Let me show you around and take you around my beautiful island and other travels we might embark upon.

The title of my blog "Pinay Travelogue" for me stems from the obvious..well me being Pinay (and mighty proud of it mind you) and Travelogue - a dialogue and log of all the beautiful and interesting places we've ever been to. If you are a traveler yourself and haven't been to my native Philippines then I will try to orient you on interesting sights, things to do and tips to the best of my knowledge. The travels i intend to put here are not solely limited to my country..I will try to include foreign lands --that is, wherever our pockets might allow us to go. But most of them will be around our beautiful island Mindanao, since there are a lot of undiscovered and majestic views and spots here crying out for someone to blog about :)

Often, there are a lot of misconceptions about our island Mindanao that you can read about here. This blog aims to clarify those misconceptions about our island by bringing you to places here that are just screaming for someone to blog about.

Misconstrued Mindanao >> A positive travel advisory

  • Sept. 7, 2011, 7:03 a.m.
  • = Responses

Note from P3 Curator:  This article is in reaction to today's article in the Philippine Daily Inquirer entitled 'US cable likens Mindanao to Afghanistan'. As Filipinos, we have a duty to defend our Mindanaoan brothers and sisters. Negative PR affects them greatly through tourism employment, investments, and basic self-esteem. Do not allow foreign entities to speak ill of such a beautiful region of our country. Uplift them and spread positivity.

Support, a group of Mindanaoan bloggers with an advocacy to re-brand Mindanao from the negative image it receives from both local and international press.

Enjoy this article by Lynette Eugenio.


For most people who want to travel and see Mindanao for the first time, I understand your anxiety and concern. I have always lived my entire life in mega-Manila up until ten years ago and I also have the same connotations about Mindanao as you have. So let me share with you my thoughts on those misconceptions…

Nalus Falls, Kiamba, Saranggani Province
• First off, Mindanao is an island as diverse in religion, people and sceneries as it is in Luzon or the Visayas. There are places here with constituents who are purely Muslim in religion but that does not cover the whole island entirely. It’s funny when you refer to the island as “Muslim Mindanao” when people here are not only classified according to their beliefs. There are a number of Ilokanos, Ilonggos, Kapampangans, Cebuanos among others who also live here. Some are Catholic Ilonggos, some Protestant Ilokanos and some Muslim Manilenyas to mention a few.

• One funny question someone asked me in Manila was “Do I need to wear a burqa?” A burqa or burqua is an enveloping outer garment worn by women in some Islamic traditions for the purpose of hiding a female's body when out in public (from the wikipedia). It is an attire for women usually worn by the conservative Muslim believer. If you are not Muslim, then I don’t think you need to be seen in a burqa when you tour the island.

  A T'boli boy fishing in Lake Sebu, South Cotabato

Lake Sebu • Often the news tend to “generalize” referring to the entire island as chaotic. Like I said earlier, it is a big island so there might be places that are indeed not suitable for tourists but please spare the rest of the other towns and cities here since most are generally peaceful. (PM me for places you shouldn’t wander off to- there are just a few of them promise)

Harvest time at Kiamba, Saranggani Province
• Kidnappings that happened here are isolated cases and can happen anywhere else in the world if you are a highly “kidnap-able” person yourself. If you are a foreigner visiting Mindanao for the first time, it’s always best to tour the island with a local or hire a qualified tour guide so you don’t accidentally go to the places that are classified “hot spots”. Other than that, relax and enjoy your time here. 

• Bombings are works of terrorists in any given place in the world. Its just sad for us if it happens to any of the peaceful places here. After all, the reason these terrorists are so called is because they want to spread a feeling of “terror” thereby instilling an atmosphere of fear among the people living in the area. Sometimes it is a form of “economic sabotage”. So unless you want them to succeed, then I don’t see why you should get scared of these acts. It’s time for us to put more trust in our local police force. For them to do their job to prevent these kind of events to happen. Mindanaoans are not happy when these things happen here as well. So please spare us the tag “bombing capital of the country”. I don’t think Mindanao deserves that. 

• You don’t need to bring your firearms or bulletproof vests when you visit Mindanao. Don’t worry, the news reported a military encounter that happened in a place here in the island, but did you take note where exactly that is? Did you also hear about a military encounter in a province in Luzon laden with NPA rebels? Or a siege in the Gaza strip? Unless you are going to those exact places, then I think the only thing you should arm yourself with when you go here is your camera packed with extra batteries.

Lake Sebu Falls No. 2
If you are a fellow countryman, don’t you think it a bit odd, that foreigners seem to know a lot more about this beautiful island Mindanao than you do? Don’t you think you should come visit and see for yourself first what this deep rooted misconception is, about an island you’ve never even set foot on? Its just a bit disheartening hearing a lot of these misconceptions coming from people you share the same nationality with.

Disclaimer: P3 is a crowd-sourced point-of-view and opinion platform to showcase viewpoints of diverse individuals. The claims, opinions, and statements of freelance contributing writers do not reflect the viewpoints and opinion of P3. P3 is a hub and collective space for bloggers, writers, and people with a cause of disseminating awareness on any topic they feel is worth spreading.

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