American Retirement in the Philippines


*AUTHOR’S NOTE – Many of us Americans did not save enough for retirement. It’s time for a reality check. If we did not save for retirement, it’s time to make a plan. It’s better to start looking for a retirement place that we can afford AND enjoy. The longer we put off finding the right retirement place for us, the more difficult it will be to retire comfortably…soon.

My husband and I will be retiring in a couple of years. We are doing this research in advance for our own benefit. We are unsure if we will be able to afford a quality retirement life here in the U.S. when the right time comes, so we searched overseas.

We were looking for a country where the cost of living is affordable, where the climate is mild (not too hot/not too cold), where living is safe and secure, where people will welcome us, and where there is no language barrier. Many of the best options for enjoying an enormously enriched retirement lifestyle on even a very modest budget can be found overseas, especially in Asia.

Well, what do you know? We’ve found the country that’s exactly just that – with affordable cost of living, a tropical climate, relatively peaceful, American-friendly, and English-speaking people! We have agreed – our choice for our retirement is the Philippines! This little country seemed to be the best place for American retirement!

Knowing that there are other retirees on the same boat as we are, I am sharing this research with you. With the help of a native, I am presenting the Philippines to you, so you can pick your own location. I am sure anywhere we choose, we will enjoy a quality retirement life that we so deserve!

My posts will help you decide exactly where in the Philippines you would like to retire. We have different outlooks in life – some prefer to retire near the beach, some in the farm, some in the city, some couldn’t care less! You can view my posts about the different places in the Philippines, and find an area that you feel has a certain connection to you. Have a tour of the Philippines and visit that place, and find the connection, before you retire there permanently. I hope I can be of help.






Guimaras is an island province of the Philippines located in the Western Visayas region.

Guimaras is known not only for its mangoes, magnificent beaches and mysterious caves, but also for its very colorful festivals:



 Manggahan sa Guimaras Festival

Manggahan FestivalPhoto from:

Manggahan Festival is the identity festival of the Province of Guimaras celebrated every April 16 – 20 for the sustained promotion of Mango Industry. Varied activities are being showcased depicting the cultural and historical heritage, livelihood, myth and legendary stories portrayed in a cultural showcase, streetdancing and SINADYA (merrymaking). Spread over a weeklong schedule, promoting its products, services and milestones in an agri – trade fair/exhibits, food festival, special events,   nightly shows and entertainments and Search for Mutya Ng Guimaras. Manggahan culminates in a grand showcase of cultural festivals in a bid to show the world that there is more to Guimaras than its sweet, fiber and pest-free mangoes.  See Photo Gallery…


 Ang Pagtaltal

Ang PagtaltalPhoto from:

Ang Pagtaltal is a  Lenten presentation staged by the townspeople of Jordan patterned to Oberammergau in South Bavaria, Germany. It is the final act of play when Jesus was taken off from the cross and laid on his mother’s lap. Backed up by a strong Christian community, Jordan has registered its first festival in Pagtaltal sa Jordan, Guimaras, a Good Friday spectacle. This saga of the sufferings of Christ is enacted with intense spirituality, religious realism theatrical color and mass appeal that outclass other presentation of similar flavor. The ever increasing throng of spectators, both local and foreign, who brave the summer heat to witness Pagtaltal is a proof of its popularity.



 Bulantihan Festival

Bulantihan FestivalPhoto from:

Bulantihan Festival is celebrated every last Friday of January by the municipality of Jordan. The three major source of income of the people of Jordan are farming, fishing and mango production. The products are brought in the market for “bulante” (trade). It is primarily a celebration of the economic endeavor that made Jordan what it is today. Bulantihan also pays tribute to the skillful artisans and the enduring workers in an endearing characterization thru dance drama.



Karosahan Festival

Karosahan FestivalPhoto from:

Karosahan Festival is celebrated every 25th day of April by the municipality of Nueva Valencia. The karosa is a local invention that has helped shape the agri-based economy of the municipality. Made mostly of a bamboo and pulled by the beast of burden, the karosa has transported many products from the farm to the center of population. Before it gets relegated to the history books as things of the past, the karosa has been transformed centerpiece of the celebration, complete with colorful and ingenious display of the bounties of the land. This is the Karosahan, a proud tradition where beautiful maidens compete for attention with the gaily-decorated karosas with their load of goodies. See Photo Gallery…



 Layag Festival

Layag Festival


Layag festival

Barangay Hoskyn is a coastal area facing Iloilo City. It is located southwest of the Municipality of Jordan, popularly known as “Sanao”. For the past few years riding in “Layag de Bela” or “Paraw” is the only means of transportation. To commemorate and to preserve the use of “Layag”, the Barangay organized “Layag Festival”. Various activities were implemented by the people to feel the spirit of the festivity such as Paraw Regatta, mini Paraw Regatta, Pinta de Layag, Street dancing and the highlights of the festivity is the coronation of “Layag Queen”. “Layag Festival” is celebrated every first week of May.



 Palayag Festival

Guimaras Palayag FestivalPhoto from:

Celebrated every 3rd Sunday of January by the municipality of Buenavista. This cultural festival makes maximum use of the rich cultural tradition of the oldest municipality of the province. The presentation of songs, dances and musical tableau depicts the various influences Buenavista has been subjected to. It is celebrated in honor of the town’s Patron Saint Sr Sto. Nino. “Palayag” marked a new footprint during the 2008 Buenavista Centennial Celebration They defined “Palayag” as to sail through “Layag”-using water vessel. This is really indeed a Kinaradto-form of sea travel. See Photo Gallery…



Balsahan Festival

Guimaras Balsahan FestivalPhoto from:

Celebrated every 20th day of February by the municipality of Sibunag. It is Sibunag’s way of immortalizing the mystical Sibunag River which makes its way thru most of the town’s barangays. It is a major geographical feature of the town’s barangays. The river holds many interesting myths and legends that are sure to tickle one’s imagination, and whet one’s appetite to unravel its secrets. Use of the Balsa in your trek for some satisfying discoveries you will pleasantly rewarded.



Asinan Festival

Guimaras Asinan FestivalPhoto from:

Celebrated every 19th day of February by the municipality of San Lorenzo. Marvel at how the ordinary salt has gravitated the people of the community in an annual gathering with all the delicious trimmings of specialty products. Not everything in the Asinan Festival is salty though, as there is the spicy seafood, the juicy citrus and crispy nuts. With the proper blend of the unique hospitality and the natural smiles of the people and one will hunger for more of the Asinan spectacle.



Padagyao Festival

Guimaras Padagyao FestivalPhoto from:

Held every May 15th, DAGYAO is kind of voluntary, free and reciprocal group service. Seldom solicited, it is always enthusiastically given. It requires no pecuniary payment, but whoever receives the benefit imposes upon him the obligation to return at some future time. Service in one form or another in the spirit of helpfulness and therefore, does not consider it as giving him a right to demand reciprocal action. DAGYAO manifests itself beautifully in such neighborly and collective activities as the building of a new house or repair of an old one, the preparation of rice and cornfields. As a rule, the work is finished in one day; but where a longer time is needed as in the construction of a house, the neighbor takes much of their time. Often the recipient of this gracious act, as a matter of custom and as a means of making light flavors received, would make the last day of work an occasion for indulgences. Bamboo sheds are improvised, from which the appetite- provoking smells of especially prepared foods and the peculiar odor of tuba a favorite local beverage, in seemingly interminable flow-all these served in the afternoon when the work is over in the midst of unsophisticated rejoicing.



Mountain Bike Festival

Guimaras Mountain Bike FestivalPhoto from:

Just 20 minutes from Iloilo harbor via ferry, the island of Guimaras is famous for the orchards that produce, supposedly, the sweetest mangoes in the world. With clear blue waters, splendid white sand beaches, unspoiled coral reefs and island coves, it is considered among the most pristine island destinations in the Philippines. This rugged coral rock formation is also popular among off-road cyclists for the network of world-class trails that traverse through the island. Last March 27-30, riders and enthusiasts from the Philippines and around the world gathered here for the 3rd Guimaras International Mountain Bike Festival. Read More…



Saranggola Festival

Kite flying festival which is participated by barangay folks and neighboring barangays and municipalities of Guimaras. It manifests the ingenuity and creativity of the locals as well as their expertise in maneuvering the kites to fly swiftly and smoothly with the winds.



Rosas sa Baybayon Festival

Activities are celebrated along the beach where guests enjoy the “fun and frolic” with the community during the St. John’s the Baptist Day (june 23rd-24th). It is highlighted with the Search for “Rosas de Baybayon”.


Sakayan Festival

It is a celebration every last week of August showcasing the livelihood of the community in a coastal barangay


Kasadyahan sa Kabukiran

Harvest Festival

Iwag Sang Paskua

Paskua sa Baranggay







Read More on The Mango Island of Guimaras

Read More on The Many Beach and Resorts of Guimaras

Read More on Colorful Festivals in Guimaras

Read More on Mysterious Caves in Guimaras




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