Marikina Riverbanks Park

p2110522 It is to marvel! I’ve seen very little props about the Marikina Riverbanks Park as being one of the best places for running here in Metro Manila.  I could not believe my eyes how they transformed this once neglected, dirty, stinking river into one very clean, green and scenic recreational park when i joined a 5k race in April of last year (“The Marikina River Run) which was run in the narrow cemented running lanes along the banks of the river. “The people have to touch and smell the water” is a popular cliche among the locals who reside within the area especially during former Mayor now MMDA Chairman Bayani Fernando in 1993.  No wonder, it has won many international awards for its rehabilitation as the biggest and cleanest sports and recreational park in the country in a natural setting.

Since that race last year, i have re-visited the place quite often to enjoy running the 11k loop in quiet solitude and take in the scenery along the banks of the river. This morning, i decided to bring my running buddy and partner-in-crime June Santiago as he has heard about the transformed river and nice scenery of the place. We started at about 5:45am running first towards the northbound (San Mateo) running path.

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Starting from the south bound lane going towards San Mateo


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The view at Ground Zero


p2110492p2110493June (left) as the sun was coming up. Me (at right)


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Daybreak along the riverbanks, one finds various vendors selling their freshly harvested produce like petchay, lettuce, camote tops, corn and the above squash flowers which i suspect is used in cooking “Dinengdeng”, an Ilocano vegetable dish.


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Running along the untilled portion of the banks.


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Along a wooded area


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The river offers a nice soothing backdrop 8k into the run


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June still going strong unmindful of the lovers past him


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Near one of the 7 connecting bridges


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So near, yet so far.


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Going into the last kilometer of the run


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Ahhh..finish at last! Another 11k completed

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making time for the usual warm-down stretch


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The Marikina River has been proliferated by the “janitor fish”  considered a ‘pest’ which multiplies very quickly, feeds on algae and deprives other fish of nutrients. However, the local government may soon be using janitor fish skin as accent for footwear and other products, if not as an alternative to alligator and snake skin.


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Thanks to the lady who offered to take our picture! And thanks to Marikina for a nice, warm run. We’ll be back again soon!

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4 responses to “Marikina Riverbanks Park

  1. dennis- try nyo dito tumakbo if you haven’t yet.

    vener – oo nga, na taon lang yung pag suot ko ng singlet na ito. since you noticed, i/m sure you ran the same race i did.

    natz – since you asked, ito, medyo sinumpong na naman kanina. nakaramdam ako ng slight twitch in the middle of a 15k tempo run with some fast runners. right when you’re feeling good these past few weeks, bigla na lang susumpungin. i had to stop after 12k and walk. talo if i force the issue. it’s back to icing and stretching. we’ll see if i can recover back on saturday.

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