Travel & Leisure

Where To Next: 'Beautifully Rich' Mindanao, As Aspiring Tourism Ambassador Catriona Gray Suggests

Where To Next: 'Beautifully Rich' Mindanao, As Aspiring Tourism Ambassador Catriona Gray Suggests

One of the many things we admire about Catriona Gray is her love for the Philippines. The Miss Universe 2018 takes every chance she can get to promote the country through her outfits, travel photos, blogs, and videos that showcase the beauty of Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. While our homeland is already known for its stunning beaches in Boracay and Palawan, the beauty queen stressed there are a lot more spots in the PH that people have yet to explore and be captivated by.

“When I was traveling around and I was researching for my national costume, I just fell in love with how rich and beautiful our culture is,” Catriona—our first ABS-CBN Lifestyle Inspo—said at her homecoming press conference. “I feel like if people would only know how much we have to offer, they would see how unique the Philippines is and they would have a reignited passion or desire to explore the Philippines not just in a touristy way but to come into full appreciation of what the Philippines is as a nation and what we can offer.”

 
 
 
View this post on Instagram

LUZVIMINDA: "Magdiwang. Lumaban. Pagyamanin." ????? LUZON-- MAGDIWANG" (Celebrate): The island group of LUZON is represented by the world-renowned "PAROL/CHRISTMAS LANTERN" from the province of Pampanga with a BRASS BORDER designed and made in Apalit, Pampanga (inspired by designs from the Philippine Baroque Churches that were declared as UNESCO Heritage Sites) At the back of the PAROL is a PAINTING with INSCRIPTION of the lyrics from "LUPANG HINIRANG", the Philippines’ National Anthem written in Baybayin (Ancient Filipino Alphabet) that literally translates to: "Lupang hinirang, Duyan ka ng magiting, Sa manlulupig Di ka pasisiil. Sa dagat at bundok, Sa simoy at sa langit mong bughaw." The PAINTING also highlighted victories, festivals, events, heroes and national icons with a style inspired by the works of Philippine National Artist Carlos "Botong" Francisco, a native of the Art Capital of the Philippines, Angono, Rizal in Luzon. VISAYAS--LUMABAN" (Fight): The island group of VISAYAS is represented by a body suit with authentic "tattoo designs" embellished with crystals derived from patterns used by the "PINTADOS" who are indigenous peoples found in various islands in this part of the Philippines. The tattoo patterns are authentic and based from the manusript "BOXER CODEX" written in 1590. The tattoos represent an individual’s journey and a public testimony recounting acts of combat, bravery, and strength, that perfectly represents the courageous and resilient Filipino spirit amidst trials we face in this day and age. MINDANAO-- “PAGYAMANIN" (Enrich): The island group of MINDANAO is represented by an authentic "HEADPIECE & BRASS ACCESSORIES" from the province of South Cotabato and customized KNEE-HIGH BOOTS with embroidered designs inspired by different indigenous textile patterns from the southern part of the Philippines, namely: Inaul, Yakan, Maranao, B'laan, Bagobo, Tausug and T'nalak. The woven textiles express a strong belief in "ancestral and natural spirits" and "cultural roots" of indigenous communities that remain well-preserved up to this day. Pilipinas, para sa iyo ang lahat ng ito. ???? @missuniverse ?? @benjaminaskinas

A post shared by Catriona Gray (@catriona_gray) on

When asked what she would do if she were appointed by the Department of Tourism as their newest ambassador for their tourism programs, the 25-year-old declared she will fuel more people to satisfy their wanderlust in the Philippines. “Well, I know they really have interest in our country because of our beautiful beaches, because of how people are so warm and hospitable and very family-oriented and we make everyone feel like they are part of our family but I feel like we have so much to show in our history, in our crafts, the things that we make, that are unique to us that can be found nowhere else in the world,” she continued. “I feel like I would ‘sell’ it or present it in a way where I would encourage people to have their own adventure in the Philippines and not take the beaten path but kind of go off the trail and have their own unique experience of different places in the Philippines and come back with a unique experience that they could share and maybe with a collective conversation, people would find out things about the Philippines that other people would never know.”

 
 
 
View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Catriona Gray (@catriona_gray) on

If there’s any place in particular Catriona would want others to see more of, it would be Mindanao. “I know there’s a lot of hesitancy especially when I was abroad and people are quite hesitant about Mindanao because of recent news,” she admitted. “Although we should take proper precautions in certain areas, there is such a beautifully rich culture in Mindanao that I think people don’t see because it’s overshadowed by all of this negativity but if only it could be shared with the world, it’s such a beautifully unique aspect of the Philippines and I feel like it’s such a pity that it’s going unnoticed.”

 
 
 
View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Catriona Gray (@catriona_gray) on

Check out the gallery above to see more of her awe-inspiring travel photos in the PH!

ALSO READ: #ABSCBNLifestyleInspo Robi Domingo: 11 Years Later, I Still Get Stage Fright Before Hosting

Photographs taken from instagram.com/catriona_gray

Popular

Latest

The Writer

View All

Recommended from Other ABS-CBN Websites