Landmarks / Monuments Category

Shrine of the National Flag

May 28, 2018

Today, May 28, is the National Flag Day and it is the day that everybody in the Philippines is encouraged to display the flag of the Philippines until June 12, the anniversary of the declaration of Philippine Independence. The reason why May 28 is the National Flag Day is because... (read more)

Rizal Monument in Madrid, Spain

May 25, 2018

Did you know that the famous Rizal Monument found in Rizal Park in Manila has replicas outside the Philippines? One of them is located in Fujian, China, where Rizal’s Chinese ancestors hailed from. The other can be found in the northern part of Madrid, Spain along Avenida de las Islas... (read more)

Sunken Church of Bajaoen

January 10, 2015

I was fascinated when I first learned about the sunken church in Lake Reschen in Italy which was submerged along with many other houses and buildings when a hydroelectric dam was created in the 1940s. What remains above the water is the church steeple which provides a haunting yet picturesque... (read more)

Leyte Landing Memorial

October 20, 2014

Today is the 70th anniversary of the fulfillment of General Douglas MacArthur’s pledge of “I shall return” after being forced out of the Philippines by the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II. On October 20, 1944, MacArthur, together with Philippine Commonwealth President Sergio Osmeña, landed at Palo, Leyte on... (read more)

Punta Cruz Watchtower

May 20, 2014

The Punta Cruz Watchtower is the primary symbol of the town of Maribojoc, Bohol and is found on both the seal and flag of the town. Built by the Augustinian Recollects in 1796, the watchtower served as a lookout against marauding pirates and Moros from Mindanao and was dedicated to... (read more)

Felix Y. Manalo’s Birthplace

May 10, 2014

As you may know, 2014 is the centennial anniversary year of Iglesia ni Cristo or INC, the largest religious denomination founded in the Philippines and one of the most politically influential groups in the country. Today, May 10, is the 128th birthday of the founder of Iglesia ni Cristo, Ka... (read more)

Bataan-Corregidor Memorial Bridge in Chicago

May 6, 2014

Today is May 6 and it is the 72nd anniversary of the Fall of Corregidor when the Japanese conquered the island fortress of Corregidor. This Japanese victory cemented their conquest over Asia and the Pacific. To commemorate this day, I’ve decided to feature the Bataan-Corregidor Memorial Bridge in Chicago, Illinois. ... (read more)

Embassy of the United States in Manila

April 29, 2014

To mark the 2-day historic state visit of U.S. President Barack Obama to the Philippines this week, let’s now visit the Embassy of the United States in Manila (official website, Wikipedia). The embassy’s main Chancery Compound is located at address 1021 Roxas Boulevard in Ermita, Manila near Rizal Park, and... (read more)

Pacific War Memorial Dome

April 9, 2014

Today, April 9, is a Philippine holiday named Araw ng Kagitingan (Day of Valor) also known as the Bataan and Corregidor Day. This day marks the Fall of Bataan in 1942 when American and Filipino troops surrendered to the invading Japanese forces during World War II. Inside the... (read more)

Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar

February 27, 2014

I’ve previously featured two sights in Bagac, Bataan and these are the Friendship Tower and Montemar Beach Resort. I’m now going to feature another sight from this town and this is the popular Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar (official website, Wikipedia). Named after José “Gerry” Acuzar, owner and chair of the... (read more)

Rizal’s Relief Map of Mindanao

February 10, 2014

I guess that many Filipinos know that José Rizal was once banished by the Spanish colonial government to Dapitan, Zamboanga in 1892. In fact, I think Dapitan is probably the best-known town associated with Rizal, even more so than Rizal’s hometown of Calamba. What I think most people don’t know... (read more)

Fort Sto. Domingo

September 9, 2013

Fort Sto. Domingo is in the local Philippine news yet again. Unless you’re hiding under a rock, you should already know that Janet Lim-Napoles, the alleged mastermind of the 10-billion-peso Pork Barrel Scam, is currently being detained within this fort. Prior to Mrs. Napoles, other high-profile personalities that have been... (read more)

Willy’s Rock

August 19, 2013

No first-time visit to Boracay’s White Beach would be complete without taking at least one picture of the famous Willy’s Rock. You can either just take a photo of the intriguing rock formation from afar, or up close (like at the Marian grotto), or with yourself in the picture either... (read more)

Grand Mosque

August 9, 2013

Today the Muslim world marks Eid ul-Fitr, or the feast of the end of the holy month of Ramadan. To mark this occasion, I’m featuring the Philippines’ largest mosque, the Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Masjid, also known as the Grand Mosque (Wikipedia). Located along the banks of Tamontaka River in... (read more)

2 Rednaxela Terrace

March 18, 2011

To finish off my series on Philippine-related sites in Hong Kong, let’s visit 2 Rednaxela Terrace which is located in the Mid-Levels part of Central District on Hong Kong Island. This address is historically significant because this was where José Rizal and his family lived from 1891 to 1892. His... (read more)

1 D’Aguilar Street

March 15, 2011

To continue my short series of Philippine-related sights in Hong Kong (started last week with 535 Morrison Hill Road), I now present 1 D’Aguilar Street located in the Central District of Hong Kong Island. This location is special since it was where Dr. José Rizal practiced medicine while he was... (read more)

535 Morrison Hill Road

March 7, 2011

I came from a Hong Kong family vacation this weekend, and to share my experiences—the Vista Pinas way—I will do a 3-part series about three Philippine-related sites in Hong Kong (similar to the 3-part series I did for Cory Aquino). The first site I will feature is 535 Morrison Hill... (read more)

EDSA Shrine

February 26, 2011

Today is a milestone for the Philippines as the country celebrates the silver anniversary of the 1986 People Power Revolution. Twenty five years ago, Filipinos took to the streets and staged a peaceful protest on EDSA to support the defectors of the Marcos dictatorship. The nearly bloodless mass action led... (read more)

Sunken Cemetery

October 5, 2010

Just like White Island, which I blogged last year, Camiguin’s Sunken Cemetery is one of most popular tourist attractions in this island province. The sight of a concrete cross rising from the sea is one to behold and this view has provided plenty of photographers with amazing shots. And because... (read more)

Cape Bojeador Lighthouse

August 8, 2010

It’s been a while since I last featured a lighthouse, and it has also been a while since there’s been a sight that was a superlative in some respect. So let’s now fix that by visiting the highest lighthouse in the Philippines, the Cape Bojeador Lighthouse, also known as the... (read more)

Hyatt Terraces Hotel Ruins

July 16, 2010

Today, July 16, 2010, marks the 20th anniversary of the devastating 1990 Luzon Earthquake. One of the cities most devastated by this disaster is Baguio. Plenty of buildings in the resort city collapsed and landslides left Baguio isolated for a few days. One of the famous destroyed buildings in Baguio... (read more)

Mt. Cabuyao Troposcatter Dishes

July 11, 2010

If you’ve ever been to Baguio and looked around at the surrounding mountains, then I’m sure you have already seen the Mickey-Mouse ears pair of radar dishes nestled on a mountain peak to the south of the city. Well, that mountain is called Mt. Cabuyao and those dishes are for... (read more)

Kutang San Diego

January 31, 2010

Kutang San Diego (Fort San Diego) is a really small fort built by the Franciscans in in the town proper of Gumaca, Quezon in the latter part of the 18th century. This fort, equipped with at least one canon (shown below), is meant to repel sea pirates from Lamon Bay... (read more)


December 1, 2009

Today, November 30, is the 146th birthday of Andres Bonifacio who founded the Katipunan and is considered as one of the Philippines’ greatest heroes. Act No. 2946, which was enacted by the Philippine Legislature in 1921, declared November 30 as Bonifacio Day and a legal holiday. What’s interesting is that... (read more)

Cape Bolinao Lighthouse

September 19, 2009

I mentioned last year that I once went to Treasures of Bolinao resort in western Pangasinan and that I would’ve visited the Cape Bolinao Lighthouse had I known that it was nearby. Well, Google Maps shows that this landmark is actually quite near, much less than a kilometer east of... (read more)

Cry of Pugad Lawin Shrine

August 23, 2009

Today, August 23, is the anniversary of the historic Cry of Pugad Lawin, an event that traditionally marked the start of the active phase of the Philippine Revolution and occurred shortly after the underground Katipunan movement was unmasked. During the 1896 event, about a thousand Katipuneros gathered at Pugad Lawin,... (read more)

Marcos’ Bust

July 19, 2009

Photo by angust. (CC) Before it was blasted in 2002 (an act claimed by the Communist rebels), the Marcos bust was an imposing sight, standing up in the mountains overlooking Marcos Highway in La Union. Travelers going to Baguio City along this highway were greeted by the sight of the... (read more)

The Ruins (Talisay)

June 29, 2009

I’ve heard about the famed The Ruins in Talisay City, Negros Occidental (just north of Bacolod) from various travel and photo blogs (such as this blog post by Byahilo). Well, I got even more interested when Jayvee disclosed that the first owner of the house, Don Mariano Ledesma Lacson, a... (read more)

People’s Park in the Sky

May 24, 2009

Last Saturday, May 16, I, together with other OpenStreetMap contributors, went to Tagaytay City for a mapping party (check out my fellow mapper’s blog post about it to learn more). The area assigned for my team to map was the eastern portion which includes the People’s Park in the Sky.... (read more)

Baguio Convention Center

May 12, 2009

I’ve always gone to Baguio for vacation and not to attend an event or a conference so I’ve never had a reason to step inside the Baguio Convention Center although I’ve seen its edifice often enough. Anyway, the Center, is (or was?) arguably the best convention center of its kind... (read more)

Heritage of Cebu Monument

April 26, 2009

Cebu City is the oldest city in the Philippines and the province of Cebu features prominently in the early history of the Philippine Islands. So it’s quite fitting that the Heritage of Cebu Monument was erected in the Parian district of Cebu City to celebrate the historicity of Cebu. The... (read more)

Mabini Shrine (Tanauan)

April 8, 2009

There is a shrine dedicated to the hero Apolinario Mabini in Manila at Malacañang Park near the Mabini (Nagtahan) Bridge, but the main Mabini Shrine is the one located in his in hometown of Tanauan City, Batangas. Mabini is called the “brains of the Philippine Revolution” having penned several writings... (read more)

Diplomat Hotel at Dominican Hill

March 5, 2009

I’ve been to Baguio several times but I’ve never been to Diplomat Hotel, situated on top of Dominican Hill pretty near the previously-featured Lourdes Grotto. Like the Laperal White House, Diplomat Hotel is one of the popular “haunted” places in Baguio. But unlike the Laperal house, Diplomat’s storied history definitely... (read more)

Lion’s Head at Kennon Road

December 12, 2008

Photo by fadedmilkyway. (CC-BY-ND-2.0) Unless you’re the type who sleeps during the trip, it’d be impossible for you to miss the gigantic Lion’s Head along Kennon Road on the way to Baguio City. This carved monument is one of the most popular tourist attractions of Baguio City and the sight of... (read more)

Cuyo Fort

December 9, 2008

Located very near the previously featured Gapusan Beach is the Cuyo Fort in the town of the same name in Palawan. This fort stands very prominent in the history of Palawan because Cuyo was once the capital of Palawan from 1873 till 1903. This is according to the official website... (read more)

Mabuhay Rotonda

November 25, 2008

Many people have the mistaken impression that the Mabuhay Rotonda marks the boundary between Manila and Quezon City. The whole intersection is actually found around 50 meters from the border and completely within Quezon City. Formerly called the Welcome Rotonda until it was renamed on May 17, 1995, the Mabuhay... (read more)

Familia Luzuriaga Cemetery

September 11, 2008

Now here’s something interesting. Did you know that the Familia Luzuriaga Cemetery in Bacolod is “the only cemetery in the world at the intersection of two highways” according to the Guinness World Records? Well, that’s what many websites say but I could not verify that since the Guinness World Records... (read more)

11th World Jamboree Scout Memorial

July 29, 2008

Ever wondered why several streets in Quezon City near Timog Avenue and Tomas Morato have “Scout” in their names? It’s because these streets were named after the 20 boy scouts, 2 veteran scouts, and 2 chaperons who died en route to the 11th World Jamboree in Marathon, Greece. The plane... (read more)

Jaro Belfry

June 6, 2008

The first sight we’ll feature from the new satellite imagery added by Google last May 13 is the Jaro Belfry, located along E. Lopez St. in the district of Jaro in Iloilo City. This belfry, affectionately called the kampanario by the locals, is associated with the Jaro Metropolitan Cathedral across the... (read more)

Clock Tower of Baliuag

June 2, 2008

Photo by Circa 1900. (GFDL) In the town plaza of the poblacion of Baliuag, Bulacan stands the Clock Tower, reputedly the only self-supporting clock tower in Bulacan. The clock tower is one of the popular Heritage tourist attractions in this town, and one of the most pictured landmarks in Baliuag.... (read more)

Negros Occidental Provincial Capitol

May 22, 2008

Leandro Locsin, possibly the greatest Filipino architect, supposedly considered the Provincial Capitol Building of Negros Occidental in Bacolod City as the most beautiful capitol building in the country. Well, he may have been quite biased since he grew up in Silay, Negros Occidental, but I would have to admit that... (read more)

Fuente Osmeña Circle

April 12, 2008

Cebu’s most prominent person is President Sergio Osmeña, the fourth president of the Philippines after the Japanese-sponsored presidency of Jose P. Laurel but succeeding Manuel L. Quezon’s term in the Commonwealth of the Philippines. He is also the patriarch of the powerful Osmeña clan which counts in its roster several... (read more)

Capas National Shrine

April 10, 2008

Today is April 9, which is a national (working) holiday called Araw ng Kagitingan (Day of Valor), and we now get to see the 54-hectare Capas National Shrine in Capas, Tarlac. This shrine is built on the grounds of Camp O’Donnell a former American military base that was the final... (read more)

Aglipay Shrine (Batac, Ilocos Norte)

April 1, 2008

Apparently, Pres. Ferdinand Marcos is not the only prominent historical figure who calls Batac City his home. One other such figure is Gregorio Aglipay, a former Catholic priest who, due to his support for the Philippine Revolution, was excommunicated and later on founded the Philippine Independent Church aka the Iglesia... (read more)

Old Capas Death March Monument

March 17, 2008

We’ve featured Mount Samat Shrine last year and this WWII monument is a tribute to all the Filipino and American soldiers that died when Bataan and Corregidor fell to the Empire of Japan and also for those that succumbed later during the infamous Bataan Death March. Well, there is a... (read more)

Lourdes Grotto (Baguio)

February 28, 2008

One of the popular tourist spots in Baguio City among devout Catholics is the Lourdes Grotto which sits on top of Mirador Hill in the western part of the city. The image of Our Lady of Lourdes can be reached by climbing a total of 252 steps staggered into several... (read more)

People Power Monument

February 25, 2008

Today is February 25, 2008, and it is the 22th anniversary of the People Power Revolution of 1986, which saw the overthrow of a dictator by a civilian population and the restoration of democracy in the Philippines. This is one of the proudest moments in Philippine history and Bob Simon,... (read more)

Fort San Pedro

February 24, 2008

If Manila has Intramuros and Zamboanga City has Fort Pilar, then Cebu City has Fort San Pedro (Wikipedia), ordered built by Miguel López de Legazpi in 1565 and only finished in 1738. The fort lays claim to being the “oldest, smallest and well preserved colonial fort” in the Philippines and... (read more)

Pinaglabanan Shrine

February 21, 2008

The Pinaglabanan Shrine in San Juan City, Metro Manila commemorates the very first battle of the Katipunan against the Spanish colonial government during the Philippine Revolution. This is the Battle of San Juan del Monte also known as the Battle of Pinaglabanan. Pinaglabanan is Tagalog for “place of battle” or... (read more)

Marcos Museum and Mausoleum

February 7, 2008

Probably one of the, um, interesting (and creepy?) places you can visit is the Marcos Museum and Mausoleum in the heart of Batac City, Ilocos Norte. The mausoleum is where the glass-entombed, preserved corpse of the deposed president Ferdinand Edralin Marcos is found. The dictator died in exile in Hawaii... (read more)

Ramon Durano Foundation Compound

February 4, 2008

Located in the northern outskirts of Danao City in Cebu is the Ramon Durano Foundation Compound. This is one of the last legacies of Ramon Durano, the powerful patriarch of the Durano Clan in Cebu (of which Department of Tourism Secretary Joseph “Ace” Durano is a member). We’ve also featured... (read more)

Christmas Trees of Session Road

December 26, 2007

A very Merry Christmas to all of you! I would’ve wanted to feature a really Christmas-themed sight today but since the City of San Fernando in Pampanga, the Christmas Capital of the Philippines1, still doesn’t have any high-resolution satellite imagery, I’m settling instead for the Christmas trees of Session Road... (read more)

Bood Promontory Ecopark

December 5, 2007

The Bood Promontory Ecopark is a wooded area located at a bend in the Masao River (also known as the El Rio de Butuan) in Butuan City. This site, containing a large cross, is claimed by the Butuanons to be the place where Magellan celebrated the first mass in the... (read more)

Sinking Bell Tower of Laoag

December 3, 2007

The Sinking Bell Tower of Laoag City in the province of Ilocos Norte is one of the first things you may spot upon entering the city proper. It’s a massive 45-meter bell tower said to be one of the tallest bell towers in the Philippines and was built by the... (read more)

Apo Lakay-lakay

October 30, 2007

What we’ll be featuring now is one of the more intriguing places I’ve come across since I started Vista Pinas. Apo Lakay-Lakay is a large rock jutting out of the sea at the western edge of the beach that defines the town of Claveria in the province of Cagayan (that’s... (read more)

The Mansion (Baguio)

October 28, 2007

The first presidential residence we’ve featured here in Vista Pinas is the Balay ti Amianan in Ilocos Norte (unless you consider Aguinaldo Shrine as belonging in that category, too). This time, we’ll be featuring the official summer residence of the President of the Philippines. This is The Mansion, which is... (read more)

Friendship Tower of Bagac

September 17, 2007

The Friendship Tower in Bagac, Bataan was erected by the Risshō Kōsei Kai, a Japanese Buddhist lay organization, as a sign of friendship and peace between the Philippines and Japan. The tower was inaugurated on April 8, 1975 on the day the Japanese celebrate the birth of Buddha. This day... (read more)

Lignon Hill

September 6, 2007

Lording it over the Legazpi cityscape is the venerable Mayon Volcano, whose 1814 eruption devastated the town of Cagsawa. One of the best places to view Mayon Volcano and Legazpi City is the Lignon Hill (also spelled as Ligñon Hill and pronounced as /li-NYON/). This 143-meter high cinder-cone hill located... (read more)

Crucified Christ and the Map of Leyte

August 26, 2007

When the artist Nemesio R. Miranda, Jr. (popularly called Nemiranda by his peers) saw the shape of Leyte island, he saw the image of Jesus hanging on the cross. And to prove his assertion, he created the 45-foot tall Crucified Christ and the Map of Leyte Pilgrim Monument, located in... (read more)

Philippine Center in San Francisco

August 24, 2007

The San Francisco Bay Area in California is definitely one of the places where many Filipino Americans and Filipino expatriates work and live. Well, located in downtown San Francisco, just one block away from the famous Union Square, is the Philippine Center (official website). The Philippine Center is composed of... (read more)

Angono Petroglyphs

August 21, 2007

Did you know that the Philippines has prehistoric art dated 5,000 years ago? Well, just take a short trip outside Metro Manila to Binangonan, Rizal and see the Angono Petroglyphs. The Angono Petroglyphs1 (pronounced /ang-GO-no/, not /a-NGO-no/) is the oldest known work of art in the country. It features stylized... (read more)

Quezon Memorial

August 2, 2007

Here be Quezon Memorial, the monument dedicated to the memory of Manuel L. Quezon, who died 63 years ago today. Quezon, the Philippines’ first internationally-recognized president, died of tuberculosis while in exile in the United States during World War II, and was briefly interred at Arlington National Cemetery before being... (read more)

Rizal Shrine (Calamba)

July 24, 2007

Besides the Canlubang Golf Course and Country Club and Barangay Pansol’s numerous hot spring resorts, Rizal Shrine is one of the top tourist draws in the developing City of Calamba. This shrine is is a reconstruction of the ancestral home of Calamba’s greatest son, Dr. José P. Rizal. The original... (read more)

Philippine Relief Map at Rizal Park

July 11, 2007

Some of you may not know this, but at the extreme eastern end of Rizal Park in Manila lies a gigantic relief map of the Philippines. I believe that this is the largest relief map of the Philippines anywhere. I couldn’t find any information on the Web, but using Google... (read more)

Bells of Balangiga

May 27, 2007

The Philippine-American War is long over and the the two countries have maintained a very long friendship up to now. Yet there remains one last contention between the two nations over the war and it is the return of the bells of Balangiga. The bells of Balangiga are three church... (read more)

Mactan Shrine

May 20, 2007

Just a short walk away from the previously-featured Shangri-la Mactan Island Resort is the Mactan Shrine, which is dedicated in honor of Lapu-Lapu, Ferdinand Magellan, and the Battle of Mactan. Going back to our history, Lapu-Lapu was the native chieftain of Mactan Island, and he resisted the efforts of Magellan... (read more)

Mount Samat Shrine

April 10, 2007

Today is the Day of Valor (in Filipino, Araw ng Kagitingan), a national holiday in the Philippines. On April 9, 1942 during World War II, the Bataan Peninsula fell to the Japanese Imperial Army and the American and Filipino forces were forced to surrender and then the infamous Bataan Death... (read more)

Magellan’s Cross

June 30, 2006

Magellan’s Cross is the symbol of Cebu City, the oldest city in the Philippines. In fact, the chapel that houses the cross (whose roof can be seen at the center of this article’s thumbnail image) is found on the queen city’s official seal. To the south of the chapel is... (read more)

Calle Crisologo (Vigan)

June 29, 2006

Our next stop is in the historic city of Vigan, one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites (earlier we featured another Heritage Site). The city is always cited as “the best-preserved example of a planned Spanish colonial town in Asia,” and is best-known for Calle Crisologo, a half-kilometer stretch of... (read more)

Cagsawa Ruins

June 23, 2006

In Daraga, Albay is the famous Cagsawa Ruins, probably the most photographed location in Albay. On February 1, 1814, Mayon Volcano erupted and buried the town of Cagsawa in lava flows. About 1,200 people perished and many of them sought refuge in the town’s church, thinking they would be saved.... (read more)

P.C. Hill

May 11, 2006

At the center of Cotabato City stands the towering P.C. Hill. The city is actually built around this 90-feet-high stone fort, i.e., kuta wato, from which the city and nearby provinces get their name. This hill, also known as Tantawan (Maguindanaoan for “lookout”) stands beside the Rio Grande de Mindanao, which... (read more)

Philippine Ambassador to Japan’s Residence

March 24, 2006

Who says we can only feature Pinoy sights from the Philippine Islands? I say that there are other equally interesting Pinoy things to see elsewhere in the world. So, I’d like to present the first of the many international Pinoy sights you can see in Google Local online maps, the... (read more)

Aguinaldo Monument (Bacoor)

March 11, 2006

At the end of the Coastal Road (officially, the Manila-Cavite Toll Expressway) in Bacoor, Cavite stands a monument to Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo. This landmark features a statue of Aguinaldo holding aloft a sword and riding a horse atop a marble-cased pedestal looking northeast. The statue is an ubiquitous sight for commuters... (read more)

Aguinaldo Shrine

February 24, 2006

What a better site to show first than the Aguinaldo Shrine in Kawit, Cavite This historical landmark is where the Philippines declared itself independent from Spain. The Aguinaldo Shrine is essentially the ancestral home of Emilio Aguinaldo. The house is now a museum showing memorabilia from Emilio Aguinaldo’s life. To the... (read more)