The capital of the Philippines can offer you many treasures if you know where to look. If you are visiting this place, do not hesitate to dwell in the various points of interest that make up the city. Enjoy a slice of history during a stopover and visit the many museums in the city. But what are the main things to see in Manila? How do I get there? Today, let’s explore the city in this top 7 dedicated to the pearl of South Asia.
Fort Santiago is a citadel built by the Spanish during colonization. Located in the Intramuros district of Manila, it is currently one of the most important sites of the city. The place contains a large historical slice of the time when the Spaniards still reigned supreme over the Philippines. Here you can find a museum containing many period pieces, a complete tour of the ramparts of the citadel or the prison of the famous national hero José Rizal. To visit this unique place, all you have to do is go west of the Intramuros district and pay an entrance fee of 70 pesos (about 1.20 euros).
Located close to the three major Philippine museums, Rizal Park is a long esplanade lined with busts of Filipino heroes. From here, you can access the Japanese garden, the planetarium or the fantastic map of the Philippines completely recreated in an artificial lake. At the end of this esplanade, facing the Manila Ocean Park, you can find the statue of the famous José Rizal. Wherein you will be able to see the fascinating changing of soldiers ceremony and enjoy the spectacle of raising the Philippine flag.
Near the park previously described, you will be able to see the monument of Lapu-Lapu surrounded by two huge white buildings. These latter ones will welcome you to the Philippine People’s Museum and the National Museum of Natural History. In the first museum, you will have the chance to explore the history of the Filipino people through its customs, its traditional outfits or the tools most used by the local tribes. Inside the second museum, you can find a large number of stuffed specimens that will give you an overview of the fauna present in the archipelago. You can also find a large sample of local flora, witness to the different plants present in the Philippines.
A must-see for any visit to Manila, Casa Manila will take you through history. This place, filled with historical pieces, will literally take you back in time. You will discover the interiors and way of life of the colonials occupying the territory. By sympathizing with the guards present on site, you can learn many ingenious tricks used by the men of that time. You will also be able to take advantage of its beautiful courtyard to take a few selfies. To get there, you will have to head east to the Intramuros district. By following the signs, you will quickly reach the place.
The Malacañang Palace in San Juan district is the equivalent of the Élysée Palace in France or the White House in the United States. Home to the Philippine president, this large building is also home to a museum that you must visit. On site, you can find the presidential museum, wherein a vast bookstore containing the country’s greatest works awaits inside. The venue is open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The Themed Museums
In Manila, there are many themed museums available. If you like eccentricity, you can try your hand at the Dessert Museum. This place brings together many representations of desserts in giant size to allow you to take your pictures. Also head out to the bay, enjoy the Upside Down museum. You’ll also find everyday items of exaggerated size. If you want to scare yourself, go spend some time at Asylum Manila. This huge haunted house will offer you beautiful thrills and a complete horror experience.
Finally, you can take a tour of Manila Bay. It has had many naval battles in the past. The long esplanade that runs along the Mall of Asia is filled with small snack bars. You will be able to snack during your walk. If you want to enjoy a beautiful sunset, you will have to go to the site around 5pm. In the Philippines, with the sun setting at 6 p.m., you won’t be able to miss this magnificent show that will be played before your eyes. By the way, Manila bay sunset is one of the most beautiful sunset you could ever gaze.