Looking for some local flavor in GenSan and want to get closer to the Tuna Festival action? Here are some suggestions if you're there to catch the annual Tuna Festival and you're looking at other things to do for the rest of your trip, we did this while waiting for the Tuna parade to start. You don't have to go very far but you can also visit Lake Sebu, South Cotabato for a whole day trip. To see and create your Lake Sebu Itinerary, read Heights of Ecstasy in South Cotabato.
Here's Mang Gamay overseeing the orders.
Balbacua's main ingredient is ox feet. The soup is rich and best paired with calamansi.
You can also try their eel, another Gamay Eatery bestseller.
If you can't stomach it, just feel the eel...
2. Ride a tricy when going around GenSan. Taxi's can't compete with the P8 (8 pesos) fare.
3. Try Beestop and order their signature chicken (ask for gravy and pour to your rice). You'll soon hear the staff sing and dance to their jingle.
It's like eating in Jollibee/Chowking, only the food is cheaper.
4. There's a local restaurant called Asian Tongue if you're not up to #1 and #3.
5. Go do some Ukay-ukay and have a lowest total bill contest. There's one near Dolores Hotel. I bought 3 tops and 1 dress for less than P200 or P300. Thanks to blogger Ria and Donna for the company. I had a great time!
6. Find where the floats are parked and judged, usually at a mall. The companies really take the parade seriously.
7. Find the dancers, we found them in an area (they closed this road for vehicles on the day of the parade) near the park and Sydney Hotel. These are doctors by the way.
8. Walk around the wide closed roads and the fiesta area. There are lots to buy haha. These accessories for example.
We also got Anton, our foreigner friend, to try out the balut! This may be the time to try out local Pinoy street food if you haven't or if you really like to eat isaw and stuff.
9. Be on top and look for the best float. We went away from the people scene for a while and went up the Sydney Hotel to eat and listen to music.
It's nice to stay in a place like this when the parade starts.
You get to see the whole picture.
10. Pick a spot or spots. Get to see stunts and do a stunt yourself.
We saw these motorcycles perform stunts over and over (by going from one side of the Sydney Hotel to the next). Of course, the camera can only capture them in light streaks with their speed (see below).
My friend and I climbed the stairs to the roof. It's my first time on a roof and it's a very cool experience. I picked my spot near the ledge and quickly took in the view of GenSan.
Here's the view from the safer side with railings.
Mischief managed! I came down the same way cold (because of the breeze on top) and with shaking legs. This was undoubtedly the most exciting part of the evening.
10. By the end of the night, we were back again at Cafe Firenzo to hang out. I had fun hanging out with blogger Don and Fitz (almost every night haha).
And to get our nails painted by nail blogger Rina if time permits. Too bad I didn't make the cut due to overtime and exhaustion. These little piggies were blogger Cai's companions for the trip.
11. If you have the time and resources, the Manilay ancestral house is a wonderful place for dinner. Click here to read all about it. It's in the heart of GenSan.
12. If you're looking for pasalubong, drop by The Big Glory Bay Salmon and Seafood Company. Click here to read all about their Hot-Smoked Salmon and Cold-Smoked Salmon. It's in GenSan.
13. If you want tuna, go to the GenSan Fish Port. I'm not sure if you can enter some areas though. Click here to read all about my experience. If not, try a tuna all-you-can buffet in one of the restaurants during the Tuna Festival.
14. Head to Mt. Sabrina Restaurant Resort to eat different parts of tuna or ask them to cater for your group. Click here to read all about my experience. Have some grilled tuna panga (jaw), tuna face or tuna belly.
15. If you've got half a day to spare before your flight, explore with a friend on a motorcycle. This is a preferred and faster way of going around the city - to ride at the back of a hired motorcycle. Wake up early, hold on and watch the skies change with sun rise while you ride to Sarangani Province! Click here to read all about my experience. Go with your friends and ride one Habal-Habal each?
Ready to explore GenSan and meet the Generals?