A Small Fishing Village Called San Jose Gumi in Lubao, Pampanga

January 26, 2024

Sharing our experience when we visited a small fishing village called San Jose Gumi in the town of Lubao, Pampanga.

When we had our mini weekend adventure in Pampanga last October 2023, we decided to conclude our trip with a visit to a small fishing village called San Jose Gumi in Lubao, Pampanga. Now, you might be asking what brought us to this sleepy town or why we decided to make the trip in the first place. Well, it was our yaya who invited us to go to San Jose Gumi because she has relatives who are living there. What’s in it for us? The promise of a sumptuous lunch of fresh grilled tilapia, steamed vegetables, steamed river shrimp, and burong hipon (fermented rice with shrimp), and the possibility of a boat ride in the river if the tide is low. Just the same, we also wanted a change in scenery after two days of hopping from one resort to the next. it was the perfect opportunity to wind down before heading back to Metro Manila.

Miguel looking at a fish pond in San Jose Gumi, Lubao, Pampanga

A Small Fishing Village Called San Jose Gumi in Lubao, Pampanga

    How to go to San Jose Gumi

    If you are coming from NLEX, exit to San Fernando then drive through the southbound lane of Jose Abad Santos Avenue until you reach the town of Lubao. You will pass by a bridge right before Mother Theresa Colegio de Pampanga. Immediately make a left turn to enter the Lubao Bypass Road.

    The village marker of San Jose Gumi

    Drive straight until you reach the forked junction of the road. Take the one that goes to the right and then just drive straight ahead until you reach San Jose Gumi. Along the way, you will be treated to marvelous views of the river, mangroves, shrubberies, and rice fields. I’m used to seeing saltwater mangroves but it was my first time to see them along the riverbanks.

    What to expect in San Jose Gumi

    San Jose Gumi is a small barangay in Lubao town, Pampanga that perfectly personifies the slow-paced life. I also come from a small town so I never thought that something else could be slower than it. What’s unique about San Jose Gumi is that, when viewed from above, it looks like a floating village because it’s surrounded by rivers and fishponds. While there are tricycles that ply the roads of San Jose Gumi, boats are also widely used as an alternative mode of transportation.

    A fish pond in San Jose Gumi

    In terms of livelihood, the residents of San Jose Gumi are mostly into fishing and farming. Some citizens would go to the river daily to catch fish and other bounty from the waters. Others, meanwhile, are into fish farming and would harvest their produce depending on the season.

    Steps leading to the river in San Jose Gumi, Lubao, Pampanga

    Our hosts indeed arranged a splendid lunch on the table. We enjoyed the delicious food that was prepared for us and thanked our hosts for their hospitality. After having our fill, we went outside for a walk to savor the fresh air and enjoy the relaxing view around us. We were told that we could also enjoy a boat ride but most of the fishermen that our hosts knew were out catching fish so we just took a stroll along the riverbanks.

    Houses along the riverbanks in San Jose Gumi, Pampanga

    Our hosts told us that life in San Jose Gumi was simple but they were happy and satisfied with what they had. They wouldn’t trade it for the fast-paced city life although better income would be a welcome treat for them. Nonetheless, life’s good for them.

    Mommy and Rafa looking at the river in San Jose Gumi, Pampanga

    Saying our goodbyes

    After resting for more than 30 minutes, we decided to call it a day and bade our hosts goodbye. We drove through the quiet provincial road as the sunset painted the horizon a bright red-orange.

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