“At the Malasimbo music and arts festival, there are 5,000 people of about 30 different nationalities. There are Europeans, Americans, Canadians, Japanese, among many others, and like them, I am a foreigner here. I am Filipino yet I do not belong to the community of Puerto Galera nor have I been to the other municipalities of Mindoro.
With the French, the Vietnamese, the Italians, and the Manila-based Filipinos, we are all in the same boat. We all went to Malasimbo for a weekend getaway far from home. Most festival first-timers know little about the culture of the place, and initially came expecting good music and a nice view.
This influx of foreigners during Malasimbo is best explained by the festival’s goal, which is to precisely target travelers to boost the tourism of Puerto Galera. The income boost of resorts and other establishments, jeepney, tricycle, and other transportation services also follow during the festival season.
But things are not what they seem. Peel the festival’s layers and one will see no money, but something else.”
Read more on CNN Philippines.