Major Tourism Attractions
Tourist attractions are places of interests that tourists visit and experience. Among the many identified tourist attraction in the Municipality, the following were picked in a workshop conducted to be the “top” tourist attractions:
- Lumang Simbahan in Brgy. San Pedro– Built by the Augustinians (year of construction unknown). It is the shape of a Latin cross 77 meters long and 14 meters wide with 3 gates. According to legend its roof was made of cogon grass and the monkey pet of the priest burned it and since then the church remained unfinished.
Customs and Traditions:
- Tiringbanay Festival– the Municipal festival marking the religious fiesta of the Municipality’s patron St. Joseph. It’s a 3-5 days event featuring various competitions.
- Beach from Madrangca to Funda-Dalipe– approximately 4 km of beach (sand mixed with gravel) featuring beach resorts and the Marine Protected Area (MPA) with 10 hectares of core zoneand 69 hectares buffer zone. Live hard corals represent 37.7% of the benthic coverage in the MPA. With this percentage, the corals are qualified as fair (25%-50%).
- Farmville– LGU-owned demo farm for integrated and organic farming located in Brgy. San Pedro.
Tourist Sites Evaluation
The over-all score of the attractions showed that all the sites identified were “potential” tourist attractions. They attract minimal number of visitors and needs further development through LGU support to turn them into “existing” tourist attractions or sites with significant number of visitors, a product brand/brand identity, capable to attract more investments and have sufficient facilities and services and offer various activities and products.
- Binirayan Festival – commemorates the legend of the arrival of the ten Bornean datus on the island of Aninipay now known as Panay. The event features the reenactment of the arrival of Bornean datus and the barter of Panay, a torch parade, Lin-ay kang Antique pageant, foodfest and trade exhibit.
- Holy Week (Semana Santa) – Starting Maundy Thursday until Black Saturday, religious icons are paraded garbed in their best clothes, in the Poblacion and in Brgy. San Pedro, in caros filled with flowers and lightings. During Good Friday the locals gather the flowers decorating the religious icons’ caros believing that it will bring good fortune. A popular local event related to the Holy Week is the burning of the effigy of Judas Escariot at the plaza of Brgy. San Pedro.
- Karay-a Arts Festival -held during the latter half of October is an event promoting Karay-a culture and intercultural exchange among other cultural groups in Western Visayas. It features art and trade exhibit, creative workshops, and performance art shows.
Other Places of Interest
- EBJ Freedom Park and the Old Capitol Building– EvelioB. Javier Freedom Park was where the former Governor Evelio Javier was martyred. The EBJ brass statues designed and created by National Artist and noted Antiqueño architect and sculptor Jeremias Elizalde Navarro now stands in the parkwith his left hand waving a with a peace sign. Across the Park is the Old Capitol Building constructed during the American Period.
- Binirayan Hills-where the Evelio B. Javier Sport Complex is located. The sports complex hosts major sports event in the province and the region. The complex is also a living monument of the Antiqueno’s bayanihan spiritas the foundation of the sports complex was constructed through voluntary service. This place is also a witness of the first Binirayan Festival. The hills surrounding the sports complex offers a sweeping view of a portion of San Jose de Buenavista.
As of 2015, there were 30 accommodation establishments (AEs) operating in San Jose de Buenavista.
Twenty-nine (29) of the AEs could be classified as “Small” or those with 19 or less number of rooms. There was only 1 AE considered as “Medium” or those with 20 to 59 rooms.
Out of the 30 AEs, there are only a few accredited by the Department of Tourism (DOT). In 2011, only Binirayan Cottages was accredited as a Pension House.
There are a total of 262 rooms available in San Jose de Buenavista.
In 2010, the total number of people employed in AEs totaled to 78. This number slightly increases during the peak season when additional helpers are hired. With additional AEs opening in the Municipality in 2011, employment increased to 92.