Kung Hei Fat Choi everyone! Today, I am sharing you an overview of the trip I had with my family yesterday. The original plan was to visit Binondo exactly on Chinese New Year but I realized that it is going to be very crowded on Chinatown so we decided to move it a day before the New Year (Feb 7). I’m sure most restaurants and eateries will be crowded today so to avoid waiting for the never-ending queue of customers, we all decided to have our own Pre-Chinese New Year trip in Binondo.
1. Binondo Church – We started our trip with a mass in Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary Parish (Minor Basilica of Saint Lorenzo Ruiz) or more popularly known as the Binondo Church. I also spotted Mr Ivan Man Dy of Old Manila Walks outside the parish. I was actually planning to avail his tour but I came up with my own itinerary. 2.Plaza San Lorenzo Ruiz – While waiting for my brother, my mom and I had enough time to explore the small plaza in front of the church dedicated to Saint Lorenzo Ruiz, the first ever Filipino saint.
3.Nuestra Señora De la Soledad Parish (Camba) – Finally, i was able to visit the venerated image of Our Lady of Solitude of Manila. An image similar to Our Lady of Solitude of Porta Vaga. I’ve seen here many times during the Grand Marian Procession but never had a chance to visit the chapel where she is enshrined! 4. Cafe Mezzanine – We had our breakfast at Cafe Mezzanine which is also referred as a Volunteer Fireman’s Coffee Shop5. Seng Guan Temple – Rode a Tricycle to Seng Guan Temple only to find out that the place is too near and you can actually walk to reach this fascinating temple in Narra St. 6. Lucky China Town – We took a break and spent time participating in some CNY-Activities in Lucky China Town. They actually have a star studded concert as part of their Chinese New Year celebration and we’re lucky we arrived there early enough before it gets too crowded.7. Sto Cristo De Longos of Binondo – A quick stop to a street-side temple for Sto Cristo De Longos. People can burn incense sticks, make offerings, and recite a prayer to the Sto. Cristo de Longos. 8. Dong Bei Dumplings – We had to wait for almost an hour just to enter this small restaurant that is famous for their dumplings. It is worth the wait though!9. Shanghai Fried Siopao – It took me another thirty minutes to buy Shanghai Fried Siopao. I’m really amazed how much people patronized their product! We were welcomed by a long queue. Good thing Dragon and Lion dance performances were there to entertain us and to keep us away from getting bored haha.10. Kuang Kong Temple – Thought it is going to be hard to locate this Philippine Chinese Buddhist Temple in a very narrow street of Kipuja. Thanks to the very approachable people who welcome us warmly and even guided us to the temple. It was located on the third floor of a small building. 11. Sta Cruz Parish Church – I was mesmerized by this baroque church located on the plaza of Sta Cruz Manila. I’ve always wanted to visit this place and I’m happy I finally got the chance. 12. Sincerity Restaurant – It’s getting dark so we decided to go back to Yuchengko St and have our dinner in Sincerity Restaurant. I had a bad experience with them last year but I decided to give them another try haha. The chicken is undeniably great!13. Ho-Land Hopia and Bakery – Shopped for goodies and pasulubong in Ho-land which is just few walks away from Sincerity. They are known for their great-tasting Hopia and Tikoy. I bought fortune cookies for the first time too haha.14. Eng Bee Tin – Despite of the long queue, my sister is badly requesting for their famous Hopia Ube so I just had to bear standing for almost 30-45 minutes.
It was a very tiring yet fulfilling Binondo Trip for me. I will post more details about these destinations soon! For the mean time, Happy Chinese New Year To all! Hoping for a prosperous year ahead!