Sunset at the Taga Beach

TINIAN, Northern Mariana Islands—Just a few meters across from the Tinian Dynasty Hotel & Casino is my favorite beach on the island—Taga Beach. From the ground level, you won’t see any beach but just the rocky ledge bordered with Taga Stone-shaped rocks leading to the jump off or diving point the end which is the … Continue reading Sunset at the Taga Beach

Showers at the Blow Hole

ON calm and peaceful days, there is nothing extraordinary about the long stretch of rugged cliff lines and the wire fence that leads all the way near the water’s edge at the North Field on Tinian. Come on a windy day and it’s a whole different story. Prepare for a special treat—a salty but refreshing … Continue reading Showers at the Blow Hole

Remains of an old church

TINIAN, Northern Mariana Islands--If there is one structure that would never fail to catch one's attention on the historic island of Tinian, it is this old bell tower or what has remained of it at the back of the San Jose Catholic church in the village of San Jose. The ruins of the old bell … Continue reading Remains of an old church

Stepping on Stars

SAIPAN, CNMI—Have you ever heard of star-shaped sand but haven’t actually seen it? Here is your chance and you don’t even have to fly to Tinian’s Star Sands or Chulu Beach to do it. A friend and I went on a jungle tour to Kagman one afternoon some weeks back and we took the short … Continue reading Stepping on Stars

Diving off at Taga Beach

TINIAN—The beach area is just actually a small cove hidden from sight by huge boulders beneath the view deck, but Taga Beach is one of the most popular beaches on Tinian. Located just a stone’s throw away from the Tinian Dynasty Hotel & Casino, Taga Beach is an all-season favorite destination for kids and adults, … Continue reading Diving off at Taga Beach

Pika Festival: Getting hotter each year

THE heat is on as daring contestants take their places and wait for the go signal to chew a hundred pieces of red hot peppers in one minute. At the go signal, the contestants start to chew the peppers one by one while judges keep count. The first three to finish their peppers are declared … Continue reading Pika Festival: Getting hotter each year

Remains of a World War 11 jail

TINIAN—I have passed by this particular spot on Tinian so many times in the past years thinking that it was just an ordinary abandoned structure left by the owners from years ago. I had always been intrigued by the grills and bars and the small rectangular slits for windows but never got to ask anyone … Continue reading Remains of a World War 11 jail

Close call on Tinian’s cliff side

  I thought I have already explored every nook and cranny in this tiny island and have already written about all that it has to offer, but a quick, unplanned drive into roads that are almost non-existent last week proved me wrong. For the past years, I’ve been driving around Tinian from a tourists’ point … Continue reading Close call on Tinian’s cliff side

Stopover on Tinian's Overlook

THE first thing that you will think of when you land on Tinian is that there’s nothing in the small island that can entertain you.From above, the island is just a short stretch of trees and forests bounded by, dotted by a few dilapidated structures.Looking out from the plane window, the beaches and the giant … Continue reading Stopover on Tinian's Overlook

War Remnants on Tinian

TINIAN — Right across from the famous Taga House is an old structure that had often caught my attention, but I never got the chance to explore it when I visited this island previously. It is a bullet-riddled concrete structure that still stands as one of the many mute witnesses to the bloody battles of … Continue reading War Remnants on Tinian

Revisiting Star Sand Beach

TINIAN — An afternoon of aimless driving at North Field a couple of weeks a go took me and two companions to a fork in the road leading to Unai Chulu, or Star Sand, Beach, a popular destination known for its star-shaped grains of sand. We saw a family that included a teenage boy arranging … Continue reading Revisiting Star Sand Beach

A Visit to the White Cross Memorial

TINIAN — Driving around in circles on a hot Monday afternoon proved fruitless as we searched for a particular site which I haven’t been to or even heard of before. My companion was looking for a cliff line with a couple of white crosses which he saw through his telescope on Saipan but we couldn’t … Continue reading A Visit to the White Cross Memorial

The other side of Tinian

HAVE you ever seen or wondered what the other end of Tinian looks like from up in the skies? Airplanes plying the Saipan-Tinian routes only fly above the North Field and into the airstrip, and if you search, you can find aerial images of these areas online posted by thousands of passengers who have flown … Continue reading The other side of Tinian

Crabs out, the race is on!

WHAT do you get when you release hermit crabs inside cramped spaces with nowhere to go but toward the end of narrow alleys? They would all head toward move forward for sure, and how fast each one do it is what counts. Each year, children and adults on Tinian look forward to winning attractive prizes … Continue reading Crabs out, the race is on!

Celebrating a colorful Sto. Niño Festival

CLAD in colorful costumes, the street dancers fell in line at the beating of the drums on a bright Sunday afternoon on Tinian and got ready to celebrate another tradition that has continued to attract locals and tourists each year—the Sto. Niño Festival, or festival of the Child Jesus. As the men who volunteered to … Continue reading Celebrating a colorful Sto. Niño Festival