Driving along the quiet streets of Philippine provinces is both relaxing and mostly pleasing to the eyes. The endless coconut trees and fruitful banana trees seated along the modernly paved roads is expected. Dominating the colors, green is everywhere in every shade possible.
The 2-3 hour drive from Butuan to Surigao City gave us just that. Nature at its best can be seen from the windows of our van. But being in one position for hours is never comfortable for anyone, though that particular road trip went by like a breeze for everyone. Aside from the scenic views, only one thing can make the time pass by swiftly: Food, in this case, fresh fruits and a variety of kakanin.
It is not unusual to see improvised stores along the streets of provinces that sells anything from fruits to different condiments to tourists who are looking for gifts and pasalubongs to bring home to love ones. In this particular road trip, our group encountered two different kind of Surigaonon food: the unique fruits and their very own variety of rice cakes.
Mariba is a cross between an atis and a guyabano. At first, I thought it was a giant atis and it certainly looked like one, but the taste is super sweet and somewhat slimy.
The Murado is from the banana family. This fruit is larger in width than the regular Latondan variety of bananas. It is also distinctively red instead of the usual yellow.
Ever heard of Sayunsong, anyone? This native Surigao rice cake is wrapped in banana leaf in a cone shape that makes for a interesting presentation. It is not too sweet like most rice cakes which can make you eat more than you intend to.
Biko, on the other hand, is perfectly caramelized and very sweet to the taste. This rice cake can be devoured in one bite and a definite must try for the sweet tooth!
Sayunsong and Biko are only 5php each.
One thing about Philippine road trips is that you can discover a new thing every 100 meters and enjoy delicious food for another 50. It is safe to say that you will never get hungry in this country.
To get there:
There are flights available to Surigao and Butuan everyday via Air Philippines.
By Cebu Pacific, every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday
For further assistance, please call:
SURIGAO CITY TOURISM OFFICE
Luneta Park, Borromeo St., Surigao City
Tel No.: (086) 826-8064/(086) 231-7228
Choose Philippines would like to express its appreciation to the Department of Tourism for allowing us to take part in the Surigao City Media Tour. Special mention goes to Ms Aleli Guevarra of the DOT Office of Marketing Communications, Mr Leo Gerona of DOT Region XIII and the City Tourism of Surigao City for their generous assistance on this trip. Maraming Salamat po!