Wednesday, August 01, 2007


Most Entries are Google-able..


From within it’s walls Manila springs forth. From Fort Santiago (the former bamboo palisaded fort of Rajah Sulayman) to Casa Manila (Imelda Marcos’ recreation of a 19th century nobleman’s home), from the baroque UNESCO treasure that is the San Agustin Church (the only survivor of World War II), to the ramshackle aesthetics of its sidestreet shanties, one can fully see and experience the history of the Philippines in just one location.
Fort Santiago and the Jose Rizal Shrine
Casa Manila
Bahay Tsinoy (Museum of the Chinese)
The ruins of St. Ignatius
The San Agustin Church and Museum
The National Museum of the Filipino People (Across Intramuros at Luneta)
Ilustrado Restaurant
Silahis Handicrafts
Trade Winds Bookstore

The core of Chinese culture and influence in Manila. Starting from Binondo Church (check out it’s converted pagoda belfry), explore the streets of Paredes, Carvajal, Ongpin, Salazar, and Benavidez until you reach Santa Cruz Church. All along the way you shall find quaint shops, herbal drugstores, and some of downtown Manila’s best Chinese cuisine.
Binondo Church and Plaza Ruiz
The Chinese temple on Kipuja St
Sidestreet markets of Carvajal
The Sto. Cristo de Longos on Nueva Street
Madrid, Barcelona, and Jaboneros Sts. in San Nicolas (old houses)
168 Mall
Suzhou Dimsum
Lailai Palace
Po Heng Lumpia House
Sincerity Restaurant (Nueva St.)
All along Ongpin Street
(mahjong tiles, cheongsams, gold jewelry, hardware, and chinese traditional medicine)
La Resureccion Chocolate Tablea
Eng Bee Tin Hopia
Tai Shing Bakery (Salazar St.)
Salazar Bakery (Ongpin St.)

From Jones Bridge, take a stroll down Escolta street and admire an impressive collection of the city’s remaining pre-war Art Deco architecture. After passing through Santa Cruz church and gazing at the Carriedo fountain, check out all the mid-20th century architecture and discount stores of Rizal Avenue before capping the trip off with a visit to Quiapo Church (be sure to go behind the altar and touch the feet of the Nazarene for good luck).
Quiapo Church,
The Escolta Museum
The San Agustin Church
Herbal Market on Evangelista Street
La Cocina De Tita Moning (Rafael St., San Miguel)
Wah Yuen Restraurant (Escolta)
Polland Hopia Cafe (Escolta)
Rizal Avenue
Carriedo Street
Villalobos Street
Underneath the Quezon Bridge (Ilalim ng Tulay)

This section of Manila reclaimed from the South China Sea was all part of a master-planned complex of convention centers, exhibition halls, and art institutions designed by National Artist for Architecture Leandro Locsin and commissioned by former Philippine First Lady, Imelda Romualdez Marcos. From the galleries of the Metropolitan Museum in the Central Bank Complex, cross Roxas Boulevard and enter the modernist masterpiece that is the interiors of the Cultural Center of the Philippines. Don’t forget to tour the Coconut Palace next door to the Sofitel. With walls made of inlaid coconut and built for the pope by Imelda, it’s a kitsch lovers delight. End the day by choosing your own dinner from a wet market at the Seaside Paluto on Macapagal Avenue.
The Cultural Center of the Philippines
The Coconut Palace
The Metropolitan Museum
Design Center of the Philippines
Star City Carnival and Ballet Theater
GSIS Museum
Hall 6 and 7 Antique Flea Market Philtrade
Seaside Paluto Tiangge Macapagal Avenue
Jumbo Floating Palace
Seaside Paluto Macapagal Avenue