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Laguna Travel Guide - Paete


Paete is a fourth class municipality in the province of Laguna, with a population of 24,696 (2007 censusu). Paete lies at the foot of the Sierra Madre Mountain range on the northeast side of Laguna de Bay. This town is famous for its skilled woodcarvers and fine woodcrafts and papier mache. It is interesting to note that the modern yoyo is widely believed to be invented in Paete. On March 15, 2005, Paete was proclaimed as the "Carving Capital of the Philippines" by President Arroyo.

Aside from woodcarving, the artisans of Paete have expanded their medium - I saw on TV that they are now carving fruits, vegetables and ice sculptures to show off in cruise ships and hotels and restaurants. Shifting from wood to other mediums may be the result of shortage of wood. Seems like the log ban has significant effects on the town's main industry and the way of life of its people.

An ideal time to visit Paete is during the Holy Week - the people of the town re-enact the events that took place at this time. It starts on Palm Sunday when Jesus' triumphant entry to Jerusalem is re-enacted. It ends in "salubong" on Easter Sunday, the meeting of the Risen Christ and Mary Magdalene and His disciples.

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