Last October 2011, me and my college friends visited the museum of Olongapo City situated at East Tapinac. We planned to see the museum for 30 minutes only, but because the staff was very friendly and accommodating we decided to roam around the museum.
The statue of the city's legendary chieftain named Apo is placed right at the entrance of the museum. According to the legend, he was beheaded by other natives, his head was placed on top of a bamboo pole.
At the right side facing the statue of Apo is a model ship designed according to the style of a Spanish vessel used by early Spaniards to visit the Philippines.
There is a painting right next to the big vessel which imparts the arrival of the first Spaniards at the place of Chieftain Apo.
As we roamed around to the right, we saw statues of the natives telling us their basic lifestyles such as the hunting of wild animals before the Spanish era.
These two photos show a Spanish officer talking to a Pilipino regarding the construction of a new building in accordance to the desires of the Spanish leaders.
The natives came to meet the arrival of the first floating dock at their port in Subic Bay.
The Battle of the Zigzag Pass during World War II of the Americans against the Japanese conquerors. On the left are the Japanese soldiers and on the right are the American soldiers.
This part of the museum proves that Olongapo City used to be the Sin City of Luzon. A small club in this photo shows Pilipino sexy lady dancers while foreigners were excited to get inside to witness the live shows.
This red door of the other club has a bulletin board on the outside which visibly has plenty to offer other than long happy hours for the Americans and other foreigners.
Let's move on to the other part of the museum where replicas and miniatures of the battleships, armored vehicles and planes are displayed. We were amazed by the FedEx plane that looks new on its place, in which Olongapo is famous for.
|The replica of the FedEx plane because Olongapo City is a FedEx drop-off location in the country|
On the left is a miniature of the US armored vehicle, and on the right is the miniature of the US Naval ship
As we moved to the area where there are displays of the actual size of famous politicians from Olongapo City, there are plenty of pictures of them framed on the walls that entailed their achievements that basically aid the development of the city. The Gordon family are famous in the city.
|This is Hon. James Gordon, Jr., the Representative of the 1st District of Zambales.|
This is the signing between Admiral Mercer and Mayor Richard Gordon turning over the US Facility in Subic to the Philippine Government in 1992.
|People from all walks of life in Olongapo City|
|With a photo of the former Mayor, Kate Gordon|
These are the two qoutes of Dr. Jose Rizal written and displayed on the wall of the museum. My friend really asked me to take a photo of it because the second quote is her favorite.
Outside the museum was an old train of the Victorias Milling Company (VMC). VMC is notable for it being the country's largest sugar refinery.
From the museum, my friends and I went to the Marikit Park, which is just walking distance from the Olongapo City Convention Center. We adored the old Navy aircrafts displayed in the park.
We noticed, there were families, students and lovers at the park relaxing and discussing something while having their afternoon snacks.
|Another Navy aircraft at the park|
Outside the park facing the highway, you can see the elongated nose of the plane or the fuselage. Underneath states "Ang manggagawa ay bisig ng bayan".
We truly enjoyed our visit to the museum and also the park. The staff were very friendly and accommodating to the visitors. We learned new things specifically from the historical point of view of the city and how people struggled to become what they are right now. The city is without a doubt, fast progressing and one of the country's best tourist attractions.
Indeed, our experience with Olongapo City was an unforgettable sojourn! Truly, more fun in the Philippines!