Marikina is not just a city of quality shoes but a real beauty in itself.
Marikina City, the shoe capital of the Philippines, owes its economic boom to the thriving footwear industry and the skilled craftsmanship of local shoemakers who have been producing fine shoes that can withstand the wear and tear brought about by time since the early 1900s. Shoes made in this city boasts of quality that can compete with well-known expensive international labels. With the largest collection of shoes in the world, a Shoe Museum, located in the heart of the city, is now home to Imelda Marcos’ infamous 2,700 pairs of shoes as well as shoes of world leaders, past presidents, famous celebrities and personalities as well as popular shoes in different countries, etc.
It was this museum that I was so interested to visit and hopefully, lomograph. When I arrived, it was still closed and won’t be open for an hour and a half so to kill time, I strolled around the city photographing murals and graffiti. Then I came back to the museum with much excitement. Unfortunately, I found out that no photography was allowed inside the museum so I was disappointed. I’m not from Marikina and had only been there few times so I was not familiar with the place. After the shoe museum and another museum (Bahay ni Kapitan Moy), which happened to be closed at the time I visited, the next best place based on the little that I knew was the Riverbanks.
The Riverbanks is a bustling commercial hub of department stores, supermarket, restaurants, coffee shops, and an amusement park at the banks of the Marikina River. On my way there, I decided to just walk from the museum which turned out to be a good decision as I noticed the beautification projects going on along the the banks. Parks were built for locals to pass the time while appreciating the clean river. There were sculptures, stone benches, a floating bridge, and huge colorful lanterns in the shapes of flowers, moon and stars. Even if I didn’t get to shoot the shoes inside the museum, lomographing the picturesque sights along the riverbanks was a great plan B.