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Visita Iglesia Manila: Beautiful Churches to Visit in Metro Manila

Manila, Metro Manila, Philippines
visita iglesia manila 2018

The Holy Week is just around the corner. Being a Catholic country, the observation of the Lenten season is a big deal for us Filipinos. That's why I decided to make a post about the churches to visit in Manila this 2018. For those who are looking for Visita Iglesia Manila churches, Visita Iglesia Manila seven churches and Visita Iglesia Manila itinerary, you're at the right place!

Here's a list of seven miraculous and oldest churches in Manila perfect for your Visita Iglesia  Manila route:

visita iglesia manila - san agustin church

San Agustin Church is also called Shrine of Our Lady of Consolacion y Correa. It is one of the oldest churches in the Philippines. Founded in 1571 by the Augustinian Order, this church is proudly a UNESCO World Heritage Site and of Baroque architecture. The design is rich and compelling. Already more than four hundred years old, the San Agustin Church in the historical Intramuros posesses a vintage beauty. There's even a museum that you can also visit within the church for only Php 50 entrance fee. You'll be able to see precious and antique collections of priests and other known personalities who were part of this church.

San Agustin is one of the most coveted churches in Manila for wedding, especially to affluent families. Those beautiful statues and stained glass windows are so old, I think you were not born when these were installed. Every weekend, it is impossible to go there to not to see a wedding going on. I suggest going there weekdays. Aside from the museum, it has

courtyard gardens as well. One of the oldest stone churches as well, it has survived two fires and seven earthquakes already. 

"Many have shed blood within the hallowed walls of San Agustin. It is a labyrinth of passages and rooms that take you on a journey despair, hope, and triumph.  The church is one of the four Baroque Churches of the Philippines, thus officially called a World Heritage Site. It is squat in appearance, the only building to survive the 1945 Battle of Manila in any shape. Made out of stone, it has some Chinese touches on the exterior, a tribute to the Chinese labor that helped to build it. The church itself is fine but the displays inside give you insight into the original Spanish arrival by Magellan, the role of the Santo Nino [baby Jesus] in the colonization of the country and the economic trade modern-day Philippines had with Mexico and Spain. The old rooms like the rectory and sacristy now are filled with old retablos, religious attire and the like." Terry M. Canada via Tripadvisor

Address: Calle General Luna corner Real St. Intramuros, Manila
Directions: Take the LRT bound to Buendia station. Get off at Central Arroceros terminal Walk until you reach the Plaza Lawton in front of Manila Central Post Office. Take a  jeep going to "Pier", and get off in front of the Manila Cathedral. Walk straight ahead along Calle General Luna until you find the church of San Agustin inside Intramuros.
Hours of operation during Lenten season: 
Maundy Thursday: 6am - 2am
Good Friday: 6am - 2am
Easter Vigil: 9pm
Easter Sunday: 3am - 6pm
Salubong: 4am



Known as Manila Cathedral, this is a church dedicated to the Blessed Immaculate Concepcion and the "Seat of the Catholic Archdiocese of Manila". A labor of love and persistence, it was the only church in Intramuros that was rebuilt after the Second World War. This is also one of the most-sought historical churches in Manila where celebrities and famous personalities in the country choose to get married.

Its official name is Minor Basilica and Metropolitan Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. In Filipino, Kalakhang Katedral Basílika ng Maynilà; and Spanish is Catedral Basílica Metropolitana de Manila. One of the most iconic Roman Catholic basilicas in the  Philippines,  it is also a cathedral that serves as the Episcopal See of the Archbishop of Manila.

Located at Plaza de Roma in the Intramuros district of the City of Manila, the cathedral was originally a parish church owned and governed by the Archdiocese of Mexico in 1571, until it became a separate diocese on 6 February 1579 upon the issuance of the papal bull, Illius Fulti Præsido by Pope Gregory XIII. The cathedral was damaged and destroyed several times since the original structure was built in 1581 while the eighth and current instance of the cathedral was finally completed in 1958.

The basilica has merited a papal endorsement from Pope Gregory XIII and three apostolic visits from Pope Paul VI, Pope John Paul II and Pope Francis. On 27 April 1981, Pope John Paul II issued papal bull Quod Ipsum designating the cathedral as a minor basilica by his own Motu Proprio.

Address: Andres Soriano Ave. corner Calle Gen. Luna, Intramuros, Manila
Directions: From San Agustin Church, find your way to Calle General Luna corner Andres Soriano Ave. This cathedral could never be unseen because it is the in front of Plaza Roma.
Facebook fan page:
Hours of operation during Lenten season: 
Maundy Thursday: 6am - 12mn
Good Friday: 6am - 10pm
Easter Vigil: 8pm
Easter Sunday: 6am - 8pm
Black Saturday: 7am - 11pm 

Here's my quick vlog about the seven churches to visit in Manila this Holy Week. Please watch on HD mode. Youtube link is

Binondo Church
binondo church visita iglesia manila

Binondo is the Chinatown of the Philippines because this is where Chinese migrants live and operate their businesses (mostly food). Binondo Church is a fine example of Spanish colonial architecture built in 1596 by the Dominican friars. Damaged badly during the Battle of Manila in 1945, Binondo church of Manila was restored in 1972. The patron saint is Nuestra Senora del Rosair (Our Lady of the Rosary).

The style of Binondo church in terms of architecture is of European Baroque. It is known for its octagonal five-tier Chinese style bell tower which wouldn't be a surprise since it stands in a place where many Chinese and Chinese-blooded locals live until today. It was in this same church that Andres Bonifacio and Gregoria de Jesus was married in 1893. 

The first ever declared Filipino saint ,San Lorenzo Ruiz served at the convent of Binondo church as an altar boy. They say, Binondo Church was purposely built in this Chinese-dominated community to convert them to be Catholics. Binondo Church has undergone many renovations due to suffering from different natural calamities. only the Bell Tower is what remained of the original 16th century structure. The altar of the church is loosely based from the St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican and retained the classic architectural design.

Address: Plaza de la Basco, Binondo, Manila
Directions: From Andres Soriano Ave, take a jeepney going to Pier. Get off in front of the Manila City Hall. Take another jeepney to Divisoria and get off in front of Binondo Church.
Facebook page:
Hours of operation during Lenten season: 
Maundy Thursday: 7am - 12mn (masses at 5:30pm & 7pm)
Good Friday: 7am - 6pm
Easter Vigil: 8pm
Easter Sunday: 5:30am - 7pm
Black Saturday: closed 


The church of Quiapo, is for me the ultimate church icon of the Philippines. There's no Catholic Filipino living in Manila that don't know Quiapo Church. Also known as Basilica Menor de Nazareno, the landmark of the Catholic faith in Metro Manila. It is also the home of the famous Black Nazarene religious festival observed every fist month of the year where a parade joined by millions happen.

This unique image of the suffering black-skinned Jesus carved by an Aztec artist was brought here by the Agustinian Recollects in 1606. The church is of Mexican-Baroque architecture and was founded in 1586 by the Franciscan missionaries. One truly feels the spirit of Manila when in Quiapo because - this is where the ordinary Filipinos who have blue-collared jobs reside.

Though we recommend to take care of your belongings or best don't bring very expensive valubles with you, please find time after visiting the church to tour the nearby market, buy for a cornucopia of goods such as herbal medicines, learn about your life's faith by approaching stalls of tarot card readers, have a quick body massage.

Address: Plaza dela Basco, Binondo, Manila
Directions: From Santa Cruz Church, follow the small alley of Carriedo which is just below the Carriedo LRT station. Walk straight ahead until you reach Quiapo.
Hours of operation during Lenten season: 
Maundy Thursday - Easter Sunday: Open 24 hours
Black Saturday - Easter Vigil: 9pm
Salubong: 12mn

visita iglesia manila santa cruz church

Santa Cruz church is another Baroque Catholic worship place located in Santa Cruz which is just 15 minutes away from Binondo. Founded in 1608 by the Jesuits, the parishioners were Chinese immigrants in Manila. It was hugely damaged back in 1945 during the Battle of Manila, restored then completed in 1957. What is unique about Santa Cruz church in Manila is that its altar is shows a "bleeding lamb", a reminder of the love of God, the Father, who offered His Son to redeem the world.

The facade of Santa Cruz church adores the image of Our Lady of the Pillar, the patroness of the church. Her feast is observed every third Sunday of October. It is a precious statue that Pope Francis granted  the Canonical coronation of the venerated image. The first ever Santa Cruz church was only made of stone and wood but over the years through the generosity of the parishioners, it was transformed to what it looks like today.

Santa Cruz church is known for the following: three semicircular arch doorways at the main entrance, a heritage marker on the facade's right side, domed belfry, huge buttresses on the sides of the church, colorful window mouldings and marker of Leon Asuncion.  

Santa Cruz is also known for its old and no longer working fountain called Carriedo Fountain built in 18th century. Though it is not as clean and Instagrammable, you'll see tourists often take photos here because this is already recognized as a landmark slash tourist spot itself in this part of Manila.  

Address: Plaza Lacson, Santa Cruz, Manila
Directions: From Binondo Church,  ask the locals how to go to Ongpin Street. It is a long, narrow street which ends at the Arch of Goodwill in front of Carriedo fountain and across is Santa Cruz church.
Facebook place link:
Hours of operation during Lenten season: 

Maundy Thursday:6:30am - 12mn
Good Friday: 6am - 5pm
Black Saturday: 7am - 8pm
Easter Sunday: 4am onwards


visita iglesia manila san sebastian church

San Sebastian is the only church in Asia that is made of steel! It was constructed in 1881 and prefabricated in Europe. They say the best time to visit San Sebastian Church of Manila is during sunset because the golden rays of the sun at the backdrop create a spectacular sight and for Instagram addicts, I don't need to explain more. A Gothic church, San Sebastian Church has a resemblance to castles you'll see in fairy tale movies and palaces where royal families live.   

"San Sebastian Church, built in the late 19th century, is the only all steel church in the Philippines. It is Gothic in style and has been declared as a National Historical Landmark in 1973 and a National Cultural Treasure in 2011. Today it is managed by the Augustinian Recollects, who also run a college adjacent to the church.

Visiting San Sebastian Church is like being transported to Europe, with its Gothic architecture and design inside. Its steel columns, pulpit, main altar, and 12-meter high are simply impressive! Outside you'll admire its 32-meter high twin spires.

The place, of course, is not so much a tourist destination as a place of worship. Regular Catholic Masses are celebrated in it, so be sure to observe proper decorum when entering the church. Lately some restoration project was undertaken to save the whole structure (since some parts of it are now being consumed and corroded by rust due to sea breeze coming from nearby Manila Bay). For a while the structure was even included in the watch list of 100 Most Endangered Sites by the World Monuments Fund. Luckily, the restoration project was a success. So the place is now all safe for visit." - CzarEmmanuel of Tripadvisor.

Address: Plaza del Carmen, Quiapo
Directions: From Quiapo Church,  cross the Lacson Underpass located at the side entrance of the church to reach the other side of Quezon Boulevard. From there, find the street sign "Raon" then walk straight for 20 minutes until you find the church. 
Facebook place link:
Hours of operation during Lenten season: 
Maundy Thursday:6am - 2am 
Good Friday: 5am - 11pm
Black Saturday:  8am - 10pm
Easter Vigil: 8pm
Easter Sunday: 4am - 7pm


visita iglesia manila - san miguel church

Do you want to know what it feels like to be part of the classy Manila in the olden times? Go to San Miguel district. This is home to Malacanang Palace, Goldenberg Mansion and more. Just walk along the nearby Pasig river and you'll see many ancestral houses. One prominent religious landmark is the National Shrine of Saint Michael and the Archangels or simply the San Miguel Church. This place is frequented by the presidents of the Philippines for spiritual contemplation because it is too near the official house of the Philippine presidents. Originally built in 1630, the present structure was built in 1913. It showcases symmmetrical twin bell towers and a European Baroque architecture.    

In 1960,  San Miguel became the residence of the Archbishop of Manila and Arzobispado at the same time. Archbishop Rufino J. Santos of Manila who is residing at the San Miguel Parish Church was named Cardinal, adding more prestige to his temporary palace, as well as becoming the Seat of the Prince of the Church. However, in the late 60’s the residence of the Archbishop was transferred to Villa San Miguel in Mandaluyong while the office of the Chancery and the Arzobispado were transferred to Intramuros, Manila in 1987.

February 22, 1986, San Miguel Parish Church was inagurated as the National Shrine of St. Michael and the Archangels. This is the night when EDSA I began. It was attended by Cardinal Vidal of the Archdiocese of Cebu and Papal Nuncio Bruno Torgigliani. and sponsors were Col. Antonio Cabangon Chua and Mrs. Imelda Cojuangco. Henceforth, a weekly Monday Novena to the Archangels is being celebrated at the Shrine. San Miguel Parish Church is now officially known as the National Shrine of St. Michael and the Archangels.

Address: JP Laurel Street corner Gen. Solano Street, San Miguel, Manila
Directions: From San Sebastian Church,   walk to toe foot of Ayala bridge and hail a jeepney bound to JP Laurel Street then get off right in front of the church. 
Facebook place link:
Hours of operation during Lenten season: 
Maundy Thursday:5am - 12mn
Washing of the Feet: 5pm
Good Friday: 5am - 12mn
Black Saturday:  8am - 10pm
Easter Vigil: 8pm
Easter Sunday: 4am - 7pm

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