Some Reasons to Revisit Intramuros

Intramuros Manila 5

October 6, 2014 was a national holiday for everyone but for me and my friends/officemates Fats, Charmaine, and Wendy, it was Philippine History Appreciation Day!  Call it nerdy but we wanted to take a breather from work and spend our holiday touring Intramuros, the walled-city fortress and the “historic core” of Manila.  Intramuros is known as the “Walled City”, because the Spanish colonial government constructed walls around the place in the 1500s to protect it against foreign invaders.

I’ve been here during school trips when I was a kid, but then again (and I always say this), it’s different when you see an old place with more grown-up eyes.  There’s always something new to learn and discover. Here’s why you should consider revisiting and exploring Intramuros, based on the little field trip that we had:

1) Much of our history can be learned by touring the Walled City in one day, thanks to amazingly competent and knowledgeable tour guides. When you visit Intramuros, I suggest that you avail of a guided tour in order for you to appreciate the place better.  We chose Old Manila Walks to tour us around the city and we don’t regret it!  

Intramuros TourOur tour guide, Anson Yu, is very passionate about Manila and fed us with new information and interesting stories about our rich history.

Intramuros AteneoAnson took us to the original site of the Ateneo where our National Hero, Dr. Jose Rizal, spent his days as a student.  Charmaine was coincidentally wearing her Ateneo shirt. :)

San Agustin Church 4Does the name Miguel Lopez de Legazpi ring a bell?  I remember him from history books in grade school but I never really got to appreciate who he was.  Yes, I knew that he was a Spanish navigator, but during our tour (thanks to Anson) I found out that he played an integral role in the development of our country in the early years.  I won’t divulge much (you have to take the tour!) , but he was indeed an admirable person, that’s why there’s a shrine in the San Agustin Church dedicated to him.

Intramuros Manila 2This was taken outside Casa Manila, a replica of an ilustrado house during the Spanish era.  We got a feel of how the ilustrados lived during that time (Anson says it was sort of similar to Downton Abbey) .  No pictures were allowed inside the house, unfortunately.  

Old Manila WalksUs girls with Anson, our tour guide.  Anson is such a nerd and we’re so glad to have learned so much from him!  Please visit the Old Manila Walks website at to book your tour! :)

2) You’ll get to visit one of the six UNESCO Heritage Sites in the Philippines, the 400-year old San Agustin Church.

San Agustin Church 5I didn’t know much about San Agustin Church before — I only knew it as the place where my parents got married.  Inside this church are artifacts from the early years of Catholicism, the very foundation of our culture as a Filipino people.

San Agustin Church 7This church is massive and majestic.  Its medieval atmosphere will make you feel the grandness (i.e., influence, power, and position) of the Catholic Church during the Spanish golden era.

San Agustin Church 9Museum halls.  Too bad we weren’t allowed to take photos inside the museum rooms.  

San Agustin Church 3This church dome is located right above the staircase that leads to the museum.

San Agustin Church 8San Agustin courtyard.  Just beautiful. :)

3) Beautiful structures, hidden gardens, and delicious food!

Intramuros ManilaBlack and white

Manila CathedralIn front of the Manila Cathedral

Intramuros Garden

Ilustrado IntramurosWant to try something new?  Try the sampaguita ice cream for dessert!  Yes, it’s ice cream made from sampaguita, our national flower.  This can be found in Ilustrado Restaurant.  (Photo credit: Wendy Hsieh)

Have you been to Intramuros?  What’s your favorite part of the city?  Feel free to share in the comment box and have a nice week ahead! :)


Old Manila Walks:,

San Agustin Church and Museum: General Luna St., Manila, Metro Manila

Ilustrado Restaurant: 744 General Luna St., Intramuros, Manila, Metro Manila

8 Comments on Some Reasons to Revisit Intramuros

  1. Lauren Ashley
    October 27, 2014 at 4:46 am (4 years ago)

    My last trip to Intramuros was during a school trip in 1st year college. I learned a lot about the history, thanks to the tour guide.

  2. Sherlane
    October 27, 2014 at 5:22 am (4 years ago)

    I also want to try the sampaguita ice cream. Seen it on TV and i’m wondering what it tates like.

  3. Julie (
    October 27, 2014 at 8:55 am (4 years ago)

    Nice photos!! :) makes me want to visit intramuros, haha!
    How much did you spend overall? like for the tour guide, transpo and food for example? :)

    Thanks for sharing this, Carmel :)
    Following you now!

    • Carmel David
      October 27, 2014 at 1:19 pm (4 years ago)

      Hi Julie! The tour costs Php6,000 for 6 pax. This is inclusive of guide fees and museum entrance fees but does not include food and transpo. :)

      Thanks for dropping by and for the follow! I hope you can visit Intramuros soon! :)

  4. Janet De Leon
    October 28, 2014 at 2:20 am (4 years ago)

    very near manila yet often taken for granted… been there during college days because of a requirement to visit different churches in manila. Place is still beautiful until now.

  5. phyliciamarie
    October 28, 2014 at 5:39 am (4 years ago)

    The last time I was in Intramuros was last Holy Week! My family went to visit San Agustin Church as part of the Visita Iglesia, but I didn’t get to sight see because there were so many people in the streets!

  6. April
    October 28, 2014 at 3:32 pm (4 years ago)

    I used to visit Intramuros a lot before when I was a college student and always been on my list to fully tour myself around. I guess your post reminded me of my list! :)

  7. David D'Angelo
    November 11, 2014 at 3:16 am (4 years ago)

    Because of this I find it a must to revisit Intramuros… Thanks for this.


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