Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Dambana ng Kagitingan, Mount Samat, Bataan

Without traffic, the place is around 30 minutes' drive from our hotel at Balanga City.

The memorial shrine was built to honor and remember both Filipino and American soldiers who fought side by side against the Japanese Imperial Army during the Second World War.

Driving to the mountain's peak was pretty exciting for my city born kids due to thick bushes along the way. For hikers, you may hire tricycles parked at the base of the mountain in case your legs couldn't make it to the top.

The five of us paid 190 pesos as entrance fee inclusive of parking and museum fee.

inside the museum

After a couple of minutes, the wife and kids hurriedly went out of the museum due to overpowering smell of sweat due to lack of proper ventilation; the only source of fresh air inside was the tiny entrance door. I noticed too that only a couple of air conditioning units were operational, obviously not enough to cool down a large numbers of visitors at that time.

Read: Road Trip to Bataan

Anyway, inside the museum, as expected are war pictures, vintage armaments and other war memorabilia.

My eldest and I decided to climb the summit where a huge memorial cross is located while the rest of the family roamed the main park below; unfortunately, some areas around the museum were off limits to visitors

Stunning views would greet any visitors reaching this point. You can see the mountain ranges when facing west while the east is overlooking several Bataan towns. Sad to say, the elevator to the viewing deck wasn't functioning; the viewing deck is closed too.

The rocky stair ways to the top could be unsafe for careless individuals. You could stumble and injure yourself due to rough and uneven surface.

In a nutshell, the place needs to be rehabilitated especially the museum and the viewing deck's elevator. With proper support from government more local and foreign tourists will flock in this part of the country.


  1. Hi Sir, sorry to comment here about your blog "Dad's Review - Offloading of Filipino tourists by immigration officers". Comments for the said page has been disabled. I am scheduled to go to Abu Dhabi next week for a company interview. Similar to your experience, the company provided my visit visa, RT tickets, hotel accommodation and land transfers in Abu Dhabi. You mentioned in your blog that the lady in the immigration counter ushered you to another immigration desk for a 30-minute interview. I hope you can answer my queries below:

    1. Were you still employed here in the Philippines when you visited Abu Dhabi? Did you present any COE in the immigration counter?
    2. What were the questions and documents asked in the immigration counter?
    3. Did you declare that you will have an interview or a "touristy" visit instead?
    4. In your 30-minute interview, what was asked from you? Can you tell me your experience here?
    5. In the visit visa given to me, the name of the company was indicated as the sponsor. Will I be questioned for this? Should I tell them why the company is sponsoring me and I am going there for an interview and will be back as scheduled?
    6. What other documents I could request from the sponsoring company to support my travel? At the moment, I have the visit visa, RT ticket, hotel reservation. I have also requested for my personal bank certificate.

    I tried travelling to other countries but this will be my first time travelling unemployed and I've never been to the Middle East. I've heard that it is more strict travelling to the Middle East compared to other countries especially if a woman is travelling alone. I am hoping you could give me some tips so that I will not be offloaded.

    Hoping to hear from you soon. God bless! :)

    1. I allowed this comment to help one of our kabayans. This comment will be deleted after 1 week.

      Here are my answers to your questions:

      1. I was still employed in Yemen.
      2. The immigration officer asked me if whether I am going to stay in Abu Dhabi in case I would be accepted. I told her that I need to go back to Philippines to process the authentication of my educational certificates because it is a pre-requisite before a residence visa will be issued. I showed my RT tickets, hotel accommodation and invitation letter.
      3. I declared that I would go to Abu Dhabi for interview though I had a visit visa at that time.
      4. Plenty of questions relating to my work experience.
      5. If your sponsor is a company then you need to be truthful with your answer.
      6. It is better if you can request for an invitation letter, addressed to Philippine immigration authority, stating the reasons of your visit to UAE and if possible an offer sheet.

      Having a bank certificate is okay but show only the document that being asked by the interviewer.

      Sometimes, it depends also on the offered job to the applicant. I am a professional oil and gas worker hence, it was easy to convince the interviewer since human trafficking in oil and gas industries is very nil. In addition, it was obvious that I was merely looking for a better job since I am already a documented worker in Yemen at that time.


  2. Thank you so much sir for replying, you somehow gave me confidence amidst my apprehensions. I thought I will be automatically refused once I declare that I will have an interview. I am more comfortable on telling them the truth rather than making up stories and at the end they will still find loopholes. Thank you again sir and God bless! :)