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Friday, January 08, 2016

Feast of the Black Nazarene 2016–routes, tips and survival guide (coverage part 1)


Tomorrow January 9, 2016 will be the start of the procession or the translacion of the Black Nazarene. Millions of devotees will be there to welcome and join the translacion. And also there’s a fiesta around the street, so it will be a super busy and crowded for the entire day around Quiapo, Manila.

Just take note for the route of the procession this year.
Usually there are times that the official route are not followed, there are many attempts that the devotees wants to bring the Black Nazarene to its older route but the local officials of the procession got an idea to block the road of the old route with an empty truck containers . They prevented using the bridge to Sta. Cruz Manila because the old bridge is already a hazard to heavy load.

I did some Google search and I found this much detailed map from Rappler.


Thanks to for providing a map
more news here at


If you plan to go there to join the hourly mass in Quiapo church, go on a food trip, do photo walk or want to experience the festivity of Quiapo, then read below some tips that can help you to have an enjoyable day at the Feast of the Black Nazarene

These tips is based on my 7 years of experience in covering the procession and also years of attending the mass since my childhood years. Use these tips for your safety and just asked me if you have any questions.

1. Plan your trip first, the procession starts early in the morning, and if you want to attend the mass, go to Quiapo church early morning. Half of the people are at the procession and people usually come in and out of the Church every hour for the mass.

2. There are no public transport within the range from UN Ave and Espana Manila. I usually ride the LRT going to Carriedo. But for my route I always take the D.Jose LRT station and walk my way to Recto and Quiapo Church

3. Wear comfortable clothing
- wear a shirt
- pack an extra shirt
- bring a small towel
- I always bring and wear that sleeve cover bec. I don’t want to get a sunburn on my arm
- jeans

4. Wear rubber shoes, the lightest and the comfy ones. Don’t wear slippers, leather shoes or with heels.

5. Bring your own bottled water. Hydrate always when you are under the sun

6. Apply sunblock lotion to your face and NEVER wear any jewelries in your body.
If you will wear a wrist watch, just keep it inside your bag when you plan to go to the procession. Its hard to loose your small things in the middle of the busy crowd in Quiapo.

7. Put your things in a nicely secured back pack or sling bag. Pack light.

8. I always bring a folding umbrella just in case if it rains. Bring a powerbank for your mobile devices, inform your friends and family that you are scheduled to go to the feast. Let them know where you are by sms or by Facebook posting.

9. I wear also a cap or a fisherman’s hat, just to protect my head from the heat of the sun

10. If you will bring a camera, make sure you secure it in your back pack, if you are an experienced camera user while on travel or covering crowded events, its okay to store them in your camera bag, just make sure you secure it and don’t loose it when you are in the middle of the crowd. There are lots of pickpockets lurking around to snatch your camera, so better mind your things when you go around.

11. After planning your trip and packing your things, you should think where to eat some snack or eat your lunch. There are lots of eatery and carinderia around Quiapo church, but I mostly recommend that you walk going to Ongpin or Chinatown area. Just walk through Carieddo, pass Escolta and walk straight to Chinatown. Look for these resto – Quicknack, Sa Lido, Waiying, Ambos Mundos, and etc. A nice yummy lunch can energize you before reaching the procession.

12. If you will attempt to join the procession and welcome the arrival of the Black Nazarene. The best area to wait for it is near Manila City Hall. Look for the island barrier and you can stay there to watch and wait for the arrival. If its too crowded, use the island barrier at the other side to shield you from the millions of crowd going on a stampede.

13. If you plan to take a photo coverage of the procession, you can position yourself somewhere in the island barrier, don’t use your own ladder or foldable chair or platform, because it will be useless when the millions of crowd came marching, expect a big crowd to push and pull you down.

14. Always keep your mobile devices inside your bag and secure it. I always wear my backpack infront of me when I cover the procession, It’s a good shield when a big crowd will push you back and forth. Its hard to breathe if you stood in the middle of the a sea of people and when they push each other, there are times that your chest will be pressed down, and that’s thousands of people pushing you. Avoid facing the crowd when you are behind the island barrier. Its dangerous!

15. The whole area requires a lot of walking, warm up your legs and foot first before you hit the road

16. Lots of medics and ambulances around the area, if you feel dizzy or sick, go there immediately and postpone your plans right away.

17. ATMs and banks are closed (or maybe some of them are still open), always carry some cash with you when you go here. Bring some smaller bills and some coins.

18. This tip is good for first timers, take note that there are many people in this fiesta, if you feel lost or scared, you can talk to them and ask for assistance, don’t be shy, the people there are friendly and helpful. Everyone is a brother.

19. If you plan to go in a group, that’s better, always plan with the team and assign them some things to do as a member of a support group.

20. Be prepared always.

If you want to read my entire coverage of 7 years, you can surf around and read it, link is posted below.
you’ll see that every year, there’s always a story to tell during my coverages. Fun times, awesome times, adventure time and scarier times (I felt that Im going to die in my first close up encounter with the procession)








MY VIDEO BLOG LAST 2014 - in the middle of the procession


My jeans and Converse shoes
always protecting me from any rugged terrain

One man got injured during the procession


Imagine these people…and you in the middle.

See you guys here…… be safe and let’s pray to Jesus for safety of the procession.
Azrael Coladilla is the blogger and founder of Azrael's Merryland Blog. This blog started as a personal blog in 2003, and then converted the blog into a lifeblog about his interest and reporting about pop culture, lifestyle, entertainment, technology, food, travel, toys, outdoor adventure, internet and social media. Awarded as the 2009 Most Influential Blogger for Luzon, Philippines, awarded by the Philippine Blog Awards. He is the founder of several online communities - Manila Bloggers Network, Philippine Bloggers Network, Oh My Food! community, Cavite Bloggers, Travel and Blog Community, and Philippine ToyCon. Azrael's Merryland Blog is included in a list of top 50 Blogs in the Philippines , ranked 65th in Top 100 Blogs that Matter , 49 must read lifestyle blog in the Philippines. and rank 40th in 100 Top Philippine Blogs by Feedspot.
He loves to travel, explore, discover, eat new food, document and record his life, meet new people, do photography and collects Transformers toys.
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