Photo courtesy of Joy Cuales
Holy Week is the time for us to remember Christ’s sacrifice and reflect on ourselves. It’s also a long holiday and you would want to make the most out of it. So, here’s a list of things to do to keep you active and productive during the Holy Week. It’s also important not to forget and celebrate the real meaning of the season.
1. Yoga and meditation
This is the perfect time to free your mind and body from all the stress of school or work through yoga. Try out basic routines for a starter. You can find several websites that offer free yoga lessons such as www.doyogawithme.com and www.myfreeyoga.com. There’s also YouTube where you can find thousands of yoga tutorials.
If you want a more active stress-reliever, bring a friend or two and go jogging. Since a lot of families go out of town for the holidays, you can take advantage of the spacious running spots in the city. Some of the best places are Roxas Boulevard, Filinvest City in Alabang, and Quezon Memorial Circle. If you want to take your track a little farther, try jogging at UP Los Baños Freedom Park or at Tagaytay City Track Oval.
3. Catch the sunrise
Catching the sunrise is a magical experience every morning, which a lot of us who are glued in bed miss. This holiday, go to bed on time and commit to waking up early. Trek to a nearby hill or climb to your rooftop. You’ll find a brief sense of intimacy with nature as you greet the sun, together with chirping birds and the morning breeze before the rest of the town awakes.
4. Camp at an unspoiled beach
Connecting with nature is priceless. Instead of going to commercial beaches that are more expensive, visit a hidden beach and pitch a tent. If you don’t have a tent, some beaches have tent rentals and cooking services. Borawan in Quezon, Burot Beach in Calatagan, Batangas, and Potipot Island in Zambales are some of the many unspoiled beaches that are near Manila.
Hiking is also a perfect exercise for your body, mind, and spirit. If you are new to hiking, there are mountaineering clubs that hold group hiking that are open to everyone. Travel Factor , a team of young adventurers, will hold Conquer Pico De Loro on March 27, where you can join for only PhP1,750.
6. Bonfire with the family
Gather twigs, leaves, and fuel wood on a shallow pit surrounded with stones. Light it up with a matchstick and prepare your marshmallows. Lay on the ground and count the stars. Play a guitar. Sing songs. Catch up on some stories with your parents and siblings. You can do all this with an inexpensive bonfire party.
7. Dinner party
There is a great chance that everybody in your family loves eating. Since you have a lot of time this Holy Week, explore new recipes and cook with the family. Experiment on your favorite dishes and turn them into Lent-friendly meals. All recipes and The Healthy Fish also have recipes that are appropriate for the Lenten season.
8. Clean and redecorate your room
Less mess means less stress. A clean room leads to a clear mind. You can only truly relax this holiday if there’s no tangle of shirts or crumpled papers that distract your view. Give your general cleaning a twist of redecorating. Rearrange your furniture. Exchange decorations with other rooms. Add some plants. After you’re done, you’ll feel a great sense of achievement for clearing your life of all the unnecessary clutter.
9. Hit the couch
After the tiring clean-up, it’s time to bury yourself on your warm and comfy couch or bed. Set aside work or school and catch up on some quality sleep. If you feel too energized to sleep yet, grab some healthy snacks and have a movie marathon. Or get the book you never got to finish and read it now.
10. Scrapbook project
There are many ways you can treat your scrapbook project. It can be a recollection of your most memorable events and milestones in your life. Or you can write your goals in life, sort of a bucket list but more artsy-craftsy. Or treat it as a gratitude journal where you write (or draw) all the things that you are thankful for.
11. Go through Walkway 2016
Walkway is an interactive art exhibit by Church Simplified at BGC High Street throughout Holy Week. It lets you follow and immerse in Christ’s way to the Cross with a fresh perspective. Different artists also perform every night, the most anticipated of which is Switchfoot’s performance at the High Street Amphitheater on Easter Sunday.
12. Visit beautiful, historic churches
Visita Iglesia is a common Holy week tradition wherein people visit 7 churches to pray. This is also a chance for you to explore and appreciate the beauty of old churches in the country. Try visiting Malate Church, Manila Cathedral, Quiapo Church in Manila; Saint Padre Pio Church in Sto. Tomas, Batangas; St. John the Baptist Church in Liliw, Laguna; Sto. Tomas de Villanueva Church in Iloilo; and Our Lady of Candelaria Parish Church in Silang, Cavite.