Malasimbo Music and Arts Festival 2014: In Instagram Photos
When in Manila, most people have perceived the annual Malasimbo Music and Arts festival to be an exclusively hippie fest – an acquired taste that only select hardcore nonconformists would enjoy. And while this year’s installment was certainly a far cry from your usual urban music fest, it has proved to be one of the most exciting, inspiring, and overall rewarding experiences of mine – and I’m sure anyone would be up for such an experience. So in a similarly unconventional form of blogging, I’d like to present to you one of the chillest and most relaxing weekends we’ve had, surrounded by a procession of towering coconut trees and wonderful music swimming in the air, under a canopy of countless stars, and amid strangers who’ve turned into friends: this is the Malasimbo 2014 Music and Arts festival, as viewed through the collection of Instagram photos we’ve accumulated over the weekend.
We were greeted with a cool tropical breeze as we descended down the main amphitheatre on our first day in the mountains. I can’t emphasize enough how ideally beautiful the mountain was. We walked down a path lined with coconut trees that swayed with the winds and were welcomed by quirky art installations and incredibly chill music by Similar Objects. We spent most of the afternoon admiring the visually stimulating works of art at Malasimbo’s sculpture garden, and checking out the different workshops that were offered on-site.
Our nights were mostly spent just laying on the grass, softly swaying to some sweet music under the most beautiful view of the stars, dancing when the tempo hastened pace and the beat required for it, and roaming around the concert grounds for warm pandesal stuffed with kesong puti (which was practically the staple munchies for this year’s festival) and downing a couple (or 10) cans of beer.
Malasimbo Music Festival was a great opportunity to discover amazing new music. I came to the festival with (embarrassingly) little knowledge on what sort of music to expect and an open mind, and walked away from it pleasantly surprised with the genres of music I found myself wanting to listen more of. We immersed ourselves in the lively and hypnotizing drum beats of Australian Afro-Reggae group Kooii who happened to be a hit with the Saturday night crowd, swooned to the ethereal vocals of Dallas-grown June Marieezy (easily my favorite set for the entire festival), found ourselves drifting into dreamland with Mishka Adams‘ light and airy guitar melodies, and sang along to Jose Gonzales‘ superb cover of the Beatles’ Imagine. Malasimbo was a musical revelation of sorts for all of us.
And when we weren’t up in the mountains, we were at the beach, dozing off under the shade of coconut trees with the hot and humid sun on our backs, with Puerto Galera’s soft and squishy sand on our feet and the vast expanse of sea on the horizon. We stayed a cozy little inn a short walk away from the beach that offered a comfy bed to crash into after the day’s festivities and free breakfast in the morning at a very affordable price we couldn’t resist (special thanks to Agoda for helping us book a room on such short notice! It was such a relief to find a place to stay when we expected Puerto Galera to be SO packed.) . This definitely completed our Malasimbo weekend.
It was overall everything we wanted in our weekend getaway, a bit of peace and quiet up in the mountains, a new and exhilarating experience, an exercise to challenge our creativity and flourish in inspirational energy, and lots and lots of sea and sunshine! If this does not entice you to be at next year’s Malasimbo Music and Arts festival when in Manila, I don’t know what will.
Malasimbo Music and Arts Festival 2014