April 07, 2017

7 Churches in Metro Manila for Your Within-the-City Visita Iglesia

Here’s your Metro Manila Visita Iglesia guide for Holy Week 2017.
SHARE this ARTICLE
Facebook Twitter Google+

Visita Iglesia, or church visit, a Catholic tradition in the Philippines that started during the Spanish colonization years,is still very alive today. Each year, pilgrims, especially the adventurous millennials, become more zealous and visit more than the required seven churches, even reaching up to fourteen churches in all.

This doesn’t come as a problem though as the Philippines has a long list of historical churches that still stand today. But did you know that Manila is a perfect city to accomplish your church visits and get some cultural tour, too? We give you a guide on iconic churches to visit in Metro Manila for your one-day Visita Iglesia, from the first stop to the last.


1. San Sebastian Church (Quiapo, Manila)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

San Sebastian Church boasts of its twin towering spires and grandiose interiors.


First stop is at the Minor Basilica of San Sebastian, located in Plaza del Carmen, Quiapo, Manila. San Sebastian, famous for its twin towering spires and elegant interior design, is the only all-steel church in the country. It was designated as a National Historical Landmark in 1973 and also made it to the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 2006.

According to Filipino historian Ambeth Ocampo, steel parts used in the construction of this structure came from Brussels and were shipped through eight freights from Belgium to the Philippines. Rumor has it that Gustave Eiffel, the engineer behind the Eiffel Tower, was involved in building San Sebastian church. However, this story has not been confirmed up to the present day.


2. Quiapo Church (Quiapo, Manila)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

Quiapo Church is a famous destination for Catholic devotees regardless of the season.


Just fifteen minutes away from San Sebastian Church is the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene or more commonly known as Quiapo Church. Aside from the Basilica being one of the most prominent Catholic churches in the country, it is a famous crowd dweller because of the Black Nazarene that it houses. The icon is said to be miraculous and claimed to heal many illnesses, the reason for long queues of people outside the church, locals and tourists alike.

Quiapo Church has undergone many renovations after past wars and disastrous calamities wrecked various parts of its structure. Still, it has preserved its original façade in exquisite Baroque style.




3. Binondo Church (Binondo, Manila)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

Binondo Church is home to majority of Chinese-Filipino Catholic practitioners.


By traversing either Recto Avenue or Ongpin Street from Quiapo Church, Binondo can be reached within 20 minutes’ walk. There lies the Minor Basilica of St. Lorenzo Ruiz known for its colorful paintings on its ceiling. Same with other churches in Metro Manila, it was ruined during the World War II and was reconstructed many times. What’s left of the original 16th century design is its octagonal bell tower at the side.

By traversing either Recto Avenue or Ongpin Street from Quiapo Church, Binondo can be reached within 20 minutes’ walk. There lies the Minor Basilica of St. Lorenzo Ruiz known for its colorful paintings on its ceiling. Same with other churches in Metro Manila, it was ruined during the World War II and was reconstructed many times. What’s left of the original 16th century design is its octagonal bell tower at the side.


4. Manila Cathedral (Intramuros, Manila)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

Manila Cathedral is the mother of all churches in the Philippines.


Manila Cathedral is the Premier Cathedral in the Philippines. Aside from the fact that it is the very first cathedral in the country, it is also the only church among the Philippine churches that got the rank of a Basilica through a Pope’s initiative (motu proprio). Pope John Paul II (now Saint John Paul II) initiated the elevation of status of Manila Cathedral in 1981, two months after his visit to the country.

Now the mother of all churches, cathedrals, and basilicas in the Philippines, Manila Cathedral welcomes tourists with its grand interiors and magnificent façade that’s picture-perfect day and night.




5. San Agustin Church (Intramuros, Manila)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

San Agustin Church is marked as the oldest church in the Philippines.


A few minutes’ walk or a pedicab ride from Manila Cathedral can get you to San Agustin Church, the oldest church in the Philippines. First built in 1586, it has survived major disasters, earthquakes, and devastating wars. Behind the colossal façade is an ornate interior painted with grisaille and trompe l’oeil, an art technique that uses realistic imagery to produce optical illusions. Cloisters, a museum, and a garden are also open for tourists who want to learn about the history of Catholicism in the country.

The church’s antiquity and alluring embellishments make it an in-demand venue for romantic weddings and other events.


6. Baclaran Church (Baclaran, Parañaque)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

Devotees flock to Baclaran Church during Wednesday of every week.


Located at the Southern part of the metro, the National Shrine of Perpetual Help or Baclaran Church is notable for drawing Catholic devotees during Wednesdays. It is also one of the country’s largest Marian Churches honoring the Our Lady of Perpetual Help. The church can seat up to 2,000 churchgoers and can accommodate around 11,000 standing people on Baclaran Days.

Some of the devotees include famous personalities, celebrities, politicians, and influencers.




7. St. Joseph Parish/Las Piñas Bamboo Organ Church (Las Piñas)


Visita Iglesia guide Manila

The church has been a witness to numerous concerts with the bamboo organ at the center of the celebration.


The world-renowned Bamboo Organ Church in Las Piñas is just 30 minutes away from Baclaran. Completed by Father Diego Cera, the unique organ pipes was originally made out of bamboo which is a staple product of the city during the Spanish era. It was declared as a National Historical Treasure in 2003 for being the oldest and largest bamboo organ in the world.

Visitors can take a glimpse of the church’s history through the Antillan House which serves as the entrance to the Bamboo Organ Foundation, Inc., with a museum on the side, the Adoration Chapel and a souvenir shop.


Visita Iglesia is a good opportunity to repent and, at the same time, recognize these relics of the bygone times which played big roles in our country’s early history. Start preparing your guide and tick off the list, one church at a time.


Click the names of the churches to see their exact addresses and contact numbers.


Photos/Images are from the official websites and Facebook pages of featured Churches except for the Bamboo Organ Church which is from the Lumang Simbahan Facebook page.

Karen Grace Libao

Karen is passionate in everything about art and literature. A graduate of Communication Research, she enjoys incorporating research ideas into writing while sipping coffee to survive. She is enthusiastic in trying new things because doing so means living her life to the fullest. Her dreams include, foremostly, writing for film and publishing a book of poetry. She finds her genuine self in the amusingly chaotic city of Manila, but has pledged to be always a proud taga-isla.

Karen Grace Libao

Karen is passionate in everything about art and literature. A graduate of Communication Research, she enjoys incorporating research ideas into writing while sipping coffee to survive. She is enthusiastic in trying new things because doing so means living her life to the fullest. Her dreams include, foremostly, writing for film and publishing a book of poetry. She finds her genuine self in the amusingly chaotic city of Manila, but has pledged to be always a proud taga-isla.

Disclaimer: All articles in the Consumers Magazine of ShoppersGuide.com.ph (SG) are for general information and entertainment purposes only. Although careful research has been made in writing them, SG does not make any warranty about the completeness and accuracy of all information presented in our articles. Our content is not intended to be used in place of legal, medical, or any professional advice.

Sending feedback. Please wait...

Your comment has been sent.

Your comment is important to us. ShoppersGuide is now notified and will review the comment you sent.

An error has occurred!

Sorry for the inconvenience. ShoppersGuide is currently fixing this.

April 07, 2017

7 Churches in Metro Manila for Your Within-the-City Visita Iglesia

Here’s your Metro Manila Visita Iglesia guide for Holy Week 2017.

Visita Iglesia, or church visit, a Catholic tradition in the Philippines that started during the Spanish colonization years,is still very alive today. Each year, pilgrims, especially the adventurous millennials, become more zealous and visit more than the required seven churches, even reaching up to fourteen churches in all.

This doesn’t come as a problem though as the Philippines has a long list of historical churches that still stand today. But did you know that Manila is a perfect city to accomplish your church visits and get some cultural tour, too? We give you a guide on iconic churches to visit in Metro Manila for your one-day Visita Iglesia, from the first stop to the last.


1. San Sebastian Church (Quiapo, Manila)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

San Sebastian Church boasts of its twin towering spires and grandiose interiors.


First stop is at the Minor Basilica of San Sebastian, located in Plaza del Carmen, Quiapo, Manila. San Sebastian, famous for its twin towering spires and elegant interior design, is the only all-steel church in the country. It was designated as a National Historical Landmark in 1973 and also made it to the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 2006.

According to Filipino historian Ambeth Ocampo, steel parts used in the construction of this structure came from Brussels and were shipped through eight freights from Belgium to the Philippines. Rumor has it that Gustave Eiffel, the engineer behind the Eiffel Tower, was involved in building San Sebastian church. However, this story has not been confirmed up to the present day.


2. Quiapo Church (Quiapo, Manila)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

Quiapo Church is a famous destination for Catholic devotees regardless of the season.


Just fifteen minutes away from San Sebastian Church is the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene or more commonly known as Quiapo Church. Aside from the Basilica being one of the most prominent Catholic churches in the country, it is a famous crowd dweller because of the Black Nazarene that it houses. The icon is said to be miraculous and claimed to heal many illnesses, the reason for long queues of people outside the church, locals and tourists alike.

Quiapo Church has undergone many renovations after past wars and disastrous calamities wrecked various parts of its structure. Still, it has preserved its original façade in exquisite Baroque style.




3. Binondo Church (Binondo, Manila)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

Binondo Church is home to majority of Chinese-Filipino Catholic practitioners.


By traversing either Recto Avenue or Ongpin Street from Quiapo Church, Binondo can be reached within 20 minutes’ walk. There lies the Minor Basilica of St. Lorenzo Ruiz known for its colorful paintings on its ceiling. Same with other churches in Metro Manila, it was ruined during the World War II and was reconstructed many times. What’s left of the original 16th century design is its octagonal bell tower at the side.

By traversing either Recto Avenue or Ongpin Street from Quiapo Church, Binondo can be reached within 20 minutes’ walk. There lies the Minor Basilica of St. Lorenzo Ruiz known for its colorful paintings on its ceiling. Same with other churches in Metro Manila, it was ruined during the World War II and was reconstructed many times. What’s left of the original 16th century design is its octagonal bell tower at the side.


4. Manila Cathedral (Intramuros, Manila)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

Manila Cathedral is the mother of all churches in the Philippines.


Manila Cathedral is the Premier Cathedral in the Philippines. Aside from the fact that it is the very first cathedral in the country, it is also the only church among the Philippine churches that got the rank of a Basilica through a Pope’s initiative (motu proprio). Pope John Paul II (now Saint John Paul II) initiated the elevation of status of Manila Cathedral in 1981, two months after his visit to the country.

Now the mother of all churches, cathedrals, and basilicas in the Philippines, Manila Cathedral welcomes tourists with its grand interiors and magnificent façade that’s picture-perfect day and night.




5. San Agustin Church (Intramuros, Manila)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

San Agustin Church is marked as the oldest church in the Philippines.


A few minutes’ walk or a pedicab ride from Manila Cathedral can get you to San Agustin Church, the oldest church in the Philippines. First built in 1586, it has survived major disasters, earthquakes, and devastating wars. Behind the colossal façade is an ornate interior painted with grisaille and trompe l’oeil, an art technique that uses realistic imagery to produce optical illusions. Cloisters, a museum, and a garden are also open for tourists who want to learn about the history of Catholicism in the country.

The church’s antiquity and alluring embellishments make it an in-demand venue for romantic weddings and other events.


6. Baclaran Church (Baclaran, Parañaque)



Visita Iglesia guide Manila

Devotees flock to Baclaran Church during Wednesday of every week.


Located at the Southern part of the metro, the National Shrine of Perpetual Help or Baclaran Church is notable for drawing Catholic devotees during Wednesdays. It is also one of the country’s largest Marian Churches honoring the Our Lady of Perpetual Help. The church can seat up to 2,000 churchgoers and can accommodate around 11,000 standing people on Baclaran Days.

Some of the devotees include famous personalities, celebrities, politicians, and influencers.




7. St. Joseph Parish/Las Piñas Bamboo Organ Church (Las Piñas)


Visita Iglesia guide Manila

The church has been a witness to numerous concerts with the bamboo organ at the center of the celebration.


The world-renowned Bamboo Organ Church in Las Piñas is just 30 minutes away from Baclaran. Completed by Father Diego Cera, the unique organ pipes was originally made out of bamboo which is a staple product of the city during the Spanish era. It was declared as a National Historical Treasure in 2003 for being the oldest and largest bamboo organ in the world.

Visitors can take a glimpse of the church’s history through the Antillan House which serves as the entrance to the Bamboo Organ Foundation, Inc., with a museum on the side, the Adoration Chapel and a souvenir shop.


Visita Iglesia is a good opportunity to repent and, at the same time, recognize these relics of the bygone times which played big roles in our country’s early history. Start preparing your guide and tick off the list, one church at a time.


Click the names of the churches to see their exact addresses and contact numbers.


Photos/Images are from the official websites and Facebook pages of featured Churches except for the Bamboo Organ Church which is from the Lumang Simbahan Facebook page.

SHARE this ARTICLE
Facebook Twitter Google+

Karen Grace Libao

Karen is passionate in everything about art and literature. A graduate of Communication Research, she enjoys incorporating research ideas into writing while sipping coffee to survive. She is enthusiastic in trying new things because doing so means living her life to the fullest. Her dreams include, foremostly, writing for film and publishing a book of poetry. She finds her genuine self in the amusingly chaotic city of Manila, but has pledged to be always a proud taga-isla.

Karen Grace Libao

Karen is passionate in everything about art and literature. A graduate of Communication Research, she enjoys incorporating research ideas into writing while sipping coffee to survive. She is enthusiastic in trying new things because doing so means living her life to the fullest. Her dreams include, foremostly, writing for film and publishing a book of poetry. She finds her genuine self in the amusingly chaotic city of Manila, but has pledged to be always a proud taga-isla.

Disclaimer: All articles in the Consumers Magazine of ShoppersGuide.com.ph (SG) are for general information and entertainment purposes only. Although careful research has been made in writing them, SG does not make any warranty about the completeness and accuracy of all information presented in our articles. Our content is not intended to be used in place of legal, medical, or any professional advice.

Sending feedback. Please wait...

Your comment has been sent.

Your comment is important to us. ShoppersGuide is now notified and will review the comment you sent.

An error has occurred!

Sorry for the inconvenience. ShoppersGuide is currently fixing this.


Copyright 2013 ShoppersGuide Marketing Inc. All Rights Reserved
Follow Us On:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Copyright 2013 ShoppersGuide Marketing Inc. All Rights Reserved