lake lanao

Being a part of the Peace Caravan for Honest, Orderly and Peaceful Elections last February 13, 2016, I had the chance to see many parts of Lanao del Sur that I haven't seen before. I am familiar with Marawi City and nearby municipalities in the 1st District but not with the more remote localities of the so called Masiu and Unayan. 

The experience opened not only my eyes but my mind. Here are the 10 things I learned from roaming around Lake Lanao:


1. The view of Lake Lanao from the cliffs of Binidayan is the most beautiful vista I have ever seen.


2.  The number of mosques in Lanao del Sur is a testament to the claim of the Meranaos that they are the bastion of Islam in Southern Philippines.

There is a mosque in almost every baranggay, some small and some are very grand. My personal favorite is the one along the lake shore in Bacolod Kalawi.

3. There is a stark difference between the 1st and the 2nd District

There are more people in 1st District. I may be biased in my observations because I am a 1st District girl through and through. Passing by 2nd District, the number of houses along the highway are very few.

The 1st District has mostly flatland and river flood plains while 2nd District is up there in the mountains.

The highways in 1st District are wide and go on without much twists and turns. In 2nd District, the highways are zigzagging and are narrower. It is easier to roam around the first District because of better roads, except for a long stretch in Poona Bayabao (I'm not sure but more or less in that area) that is left unfinished.

They have trees in 2nd District, we have rice in 1st District.

There is also an obvious difference in accent

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4. There are tarpaulins even in the most remote areas.

 
5. The distribution of wealth among the people is imbalance.

In Lanao del Sur, there are many municipalities where 99% of the houses I've seen are of the hut type--small and made of wood and other indigenous materials. Among these huts rises a majestic mansion, in the middle of the bukid


5. Much of the land is underutilized

There are wide stretches of land that are left unused, not even for grazing of cows. If we embrace the idea of farming more than 4P's, what a wonderful world it would have been. El Nino has hit the province quite strongly and many rice fields are cracking. Paging National Irrigation Authority!!!


6. Checkpoints

The number of checkpoints around Lanao del Sur in relation to the number of population says a lot about the peace and order situation here.

7.  A considerable part of the Province has no electricity. It's ironic when the biggest source of electric power in Mindanao is a stone throw away from the people's doorstep.


9. The mood, the atmosphere and the climate make Lanao del Sur the most relaxing place in the world.

My sleep is at its deepest, most soul-refreshing when I am in Lanao.

10. There are more things that are left undiscovered.

And that's for us to discover in our next adventures!