Intramuros: The Heart of Spanish Manila

Asia, Philippines

The Philippines was once a Spanish colony for about three centuries. This has influenced many aspects of Filipinos’ life, including religion (more than 80% of the Filipinos are Roman Catholic), culture and architecture, to name some. Even until now, beautiful old buildings from Spanish era still can be seen throughout the city. However the heart of the Spanish Manila is at Intramuros (literally means “within the walls”) which is an area fortified by walls and considered as Manila itself during Spanish era.

Some highlights of the area are Manila Cathedral, San Agustin Church (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) and Fort Santiago which was used by the Japanese as a prisoner-of-war camp during World War II. Many parts of Intramuros survived the WWII (Manila is the second most devastated city in the world during WWII, after Warsaw).

Rear View of Manila Cathedral

The Interior of San Agustin Church

Chinese Decoration at San Agustin Church

Casa Manila

Fort Santiago Gate

Diorama at The Dungeon

The dungeon is actually closed to public since a long time ago, but the guard that I talked to offered me to go to the dungeon. Only later after we went through the dungeon when I learned that he implicitly asked for tips in return, and I gave him 60 pesos (only about US$ 1).

Inside the fort, there was a statue of Jose Rizal, a national hero who fought against the Spanish through non-violent ways.

Jose Rizal

Here are some pictures of other parts of Intramuros:

A Small Street in Intramuros

Palacio del Gobernador

So, when you visit Manila, this is one of the places that you definitely have to see. Bye for now.

Related Posts: Manila: Where Spanish, American and Asian Cultures Meet; Manila’s Chinese Cemetery: An Extravagant Showcase of The Dead People

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Based in Jakarta, always curious about the world, always fascinated by ancient temples, easily pleased by food.

26 thoughts on “Intramuros: The Heart of Spanish Manila”

  1. Pingback: Manila: Where Spanish, American and Asian Cultures Meet « What an Amazing World!

  2. Pingback: Manila’s Chinese Cemetery: An Extravagant Showcase of The Dead People « What an Amazing World!

  3. You got wonderful photos there, Bama. I wish I could produce something close to their beauty when I’ll make a sort of tour there in the near future.


    • Wow, thanks again, Sony! Thanks for your appreciation to my blog. It’s really a nice thing doing something that I like (traveling, photography, writing) and people actually like it.


  4. Goodness, you’ve been to a lot of places. How did you do that?! 😉 Well, thank you for visiting Manila. Hope you can come back and photograph other tourist destinations in the Philippines. Keep traveling. Keep writing.


    • How did I do that? Hmmm, I guess it’s all made possible by low cost carriers like AirAsia and Cebu Pacific Air 🙂
      I really want to visit The Philippines again because there are still lots of parts of the country that I have yet to go.
      Thanks for your support!


  5. I love the photos! 🙂 Thank you for visiting the Philippines… when will you go back here? We should try to visit Coron and other Philippines travel spots 🙂


    • I would love to go back to The Philippines one day, especially after watching your latest TV commercial “It’s more fun in the Philippines”. 🙂
      Bohol is high in my list!


  6. febrian says:

    Hei, Bama.iseng2 gue search website lo karena didiktat lo udah prnah ke 19 negra. tahun lalu gue 2 kali ke Philippines. tujuannya pengen diving di Puerto Galera tp gagal karena typhoon. kalo mau kesana lagi lo harus ke tagaytay – taal creter. prmandangannya bagus. trs ke Chocolate hills. ive been there. kalo mau yg lbh bagus lgi ke pantai no 1 di dunia versi tripadvisor : boracay.


    • Hey Ryan! Gue sebenernya tadinya ga terlalu pengen ke Philippines (gue cuma ke Manila di awal 2011), tapi habis liat iklannya di CNN jadi pengen ke Bohol sama El Nido juga. Taal tuh yg gunung di dalam pulau kan? Boracay Mas Alex yang udah pernah tuh. Btw thanks for dropping by! Ga nyangka bisa nemu blog gue. 🙂


  7. You should come and visit Cebu, Philippines! Though Manila is the capital city which makes it a lot crowded and sometimes dirty, we have Cebu, the next big city in the country which is rising to be the same like Manile but less crowded and safer to be touring around. You can get pretty much the same things from Manila in Cebu but it a lot easier and relaxed way. ♥ I love Manila and proud of it but I love Cebu more. ♥


    • Thanks for your recommendation. In fact within a few years’ time I will be visiting the Philippines again. Maybe the next time I come Cebu will be one of the places I go. 🙂


  8. Pingback: Intramuros: The Heart of Spanish Manila | JubiladosXelMundo

  9. I am really interested to find out that the Philippines was a Spanish colony! I did know that the main religion in the Philippines is Roman Catholicism, but not that it is because the country was colonised by the Spanish. This is definitely a useful fact for me to know as I am going to be studying French and Spanish at the University of Bristol. Also, I really love the pictures- the city looks wonderful.


    • The Philippines is one of the only two countries in Asia where Roman Catholics are the majority — the other being East Timor which was colonized by the Portuguese for centuries. I guess by learning both Spanish and French and their history you would be fascinated by both nations’ legacy in the world. Thank you for your kind comment, and good luck with your study!

      Liked by 1 person

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