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11 Reasons To Visit Iloilo City

iloilo tourist attractions 2019

Planning to visit Iloilo?  We share to you a quick travel guide to Iloilo, a province in Vizayas that is known for heritage, food, nature and most of all hospitality of the locals. No wonder, Iloilo's tourist spots are some of the most visited in the Philippines. Below is a list of 9 tourist attractions in Iloilo City that you should see when you get there. Again, these are the famous spots in the city of Iloilo - not the ones located farther or around the province.

1. Iloilo City Gallery 
Iloilo City Gallery is located inside Iloilo City Hall's first floor. Here, you'll find the long history of Iloilo including the list of its politicians (with statues) since the earliest year it  has a record. You can even see the many beautiful old costumes of Dinagyang dancers from the famous Dinagyang festival that won awards.
Address: Dela Rama st., Iloilo City, Iloilo Province 5000, Philippines
Hours: Mon - Fri | 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

2. Calle Real 
Calle Real is the equivalent of Calle Crisologo in Vigan. Do not be surprised when you walk here, you'll see many photographers doing prenup or magazine shoots. Of course, not to mention the many people who would go there for a selfie or groufie. Many buildings and old 
houses were built during the colonization period. The families who lived here were the richest in Iloilo. That is maybe the reason why it survived the test of time because these were built by the strongest local materials and well  taken care of.  Today, Calle Real is now a hub for shopping.  Starting from Plaza Libertad to Plazoleta Gay, you're guaranteed to not run of souvenirs or food to buy - only time. 
Address: Plazoleta Gay intersection facing J.M. Basa Street (left) and Iznart Street (right)

3. Museo Iloilo
If there's one museum in Iloilo you shouldn't miss, it is the Museo Iloilo. It's funded and run by the local government designed by Ilonggo architect Sergio Penasales. While this may not appeal to the so-called millenials who are only game for searching Instagrammable shots, Iloilo is for those who love culture and heritage. War relics, sculptures, remnants of burial sites, jewelry, pots and a myriad of crafts from different talented Ilonggos are displayed here. The list goes on like broken statues, santo entiero of Jesus Christ, pre-colonial tools and war instruments.
Address: Iloilo City Proper, Iloilo City, 5000 Iloilo 
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4. Casa Mariquit  
Casa Mariquit is one of the oldest preserved houses in Iloilo and probably in the Philippines. It is a bahay-na-bato (house of stone) type of house. Built 215 years ago, Casa Mariquit has so much stories to share. Like any old houses, it also has its own share of stories you don't want to know while you're there alone and it is dark. This house was orginally owned by the Iloilo's wealthy families: Javellanas and Lopezes. Don't forget to take a look of a painting made by Fernando Amorsolo himself of the owner Don Fernando Lopez which they say the eyes follow them wherever they go!
Address: Sta. Isabel Street, Jaro, Iloilo

5 Camiña Balay Nga Bato
Another old beautifully restored colonial house in Iloilo, Camiña Balay Nga Bato was awarded as an important cultural property because of how it was preserved in exceptional way. Already 150 years old, Camiña Balay Nga Bato is a perfect spot if you want to eat the best of Iloilo's authentic cuisine. It was designed by Molo's first parish priest church Anselmo Avancena. Stepping inside Camiña Balay Nga Bato is like time-travelling to the past.
Address: 20 Osmena Street, Arevalo, Iloilo

Camiña Balay Nga Bato

6. Hablon weaving at the Sinamay House and barquillos making at Deocampo’s in Santa Isabel St., Jaro 
Iloilo used to lead the textile and weaving industry way, way back. Ilonggos use local materials such as abaca, pineapple, cotton and even bartered silk with the Chinese during the pre-colonial times. The local word "hablon" means "habol" or to weave while "Sinamay' means an industry for those who weave using hands. During the 19th century, Iloilo's weaving industry is very well established that this province was once dubbed as the Textile Capital of the Philippines. One of the most requested pasalubong from Iloilo is barquillos. Its basic ingredients are flour, egg, vanilla, sugar, butter, water, cooking oil and milk. The De Ocampo family who started in 1898 is known for selling the best barquillos in Iloilo. Unlike other stores that sell barquillos, they still stick to the original flavor which is for them still the best-tasting of all. 
Address: 46 Santa Isabel St, Jaro, Iloilo (De Ocampo barquillos) & Osmeña St, Villa Arevalo District, Iloilo (Sinamay House) 

7. Magnificent churches (Jaro Metropolitan Cathedral, Santa Ana Parish Church in Molo, Santo Niño de Arevalo Parish Church, Iglesia de San Jose de Placer and many more). 

Iloilo is home to the most beautiful and historical churches in the Philippines. Let's start with Jaro Cathedral. It was finished in 18th century and was placed under the blessing of Saint Elizabeth of Hungary. According to National Historical Institute of the Philippines, this church is officially historical landmark. Molo Church is another church in Iloilo worth seeing. Made of a certail kind of coral rock, Molo Church is also dubbed as women's church for having images of 16 women saints inside including St. Teresa and St. Clara. Santo Niño de Arevalo Parish Church is home to the third oldest and miraculous Santo Niño statue. Sitting on the center of Plaza Villa, this church now looks a bit modern because some parts of it were burned by fire or destroyed by earthquakes.
Address: Jaro, Molo and Arevalo, Iloilo 

miag ao church iloilo
8. Seafood party in Tatoy’s Manokan & Seafoods and Breakthrough Restaurant
There's something about these restaurants that attract all tourists visiting Iloilo. I mean, there are hundreds of restaurants in Iloilo. Why these two are the most featured? Tatoy's best-sellers are native lechon manok that doesn't even need sauce to fully enjoy it. You can eat it as is! They also serve an array of seafood including grilled variety that you normally cannot eat in Manila for a cheap price. Breakthrough Restaurant serves seafood also like aligue rice, managat fish, baked scallop and creamy oysters!
Address: Baluarte - Calumpang - Villa - Oton Blvd, Villa Arevalo District, Iloilo (Tatoy's Manukan)
Address: Villa Arevalo District, Iloilo  (Breakthrough Restaurant)

9. Iloilo River Esplanade
Iloilo Esplanade is a favorite hangout for locals who love to jog, bike or just do nothing. If you want to catch a majestic sunset, you can come here in the late afternoon. There is a viewing deck, playground for children, eco-park, fitness spots plus cafes in this area. It reminds me of Luneta Park, well a bit. 
Address: Senator Efrain Treñas BlvdMandurriao, Iloilo City, Iloilo

10.  Iloilo Dinagyang Festival every fourth Sunday of January
If you don't mind going to a crowded place full of fun and noise but of course in a nice way, you'll have to book your flight way, way early to be able to secure a hotel for Iloilo's top cultural and religious festival. Every Sunday of January, all eyes are on Iloilo for the celebration of Santo Nino. The highlight of Dinagyang Festival in Iloilo is the grand street dance competition where the local participants are covered with ashes and showcase steps and moves you'll that are typical to a Philippine festival.  
Address: Iloilo

11. Iloilo Paraw Regatta Festival
Paraw is the oldest traditional sailboat. Paraw Regatta Festival is the largest sailing event in the whole Philippines.  Held along Iloilo Strait, this is a contest of what boat finishes first in a 30-kilometer long journey. The route goes to the coast of Panay then Guimaras then back to Villa Beach where it started.
Address: Iloilo
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2019 iloilo paraw regatta festival

12. Garin Farm
Garin Farm is one of the most recent addition to Iloilo's touristy spots that are attracting a lot of millenials because it is very picturesque. It is made for pilgrims but it generates interest from all walks of life. Garin Farm is most noted as pearly - white and Catholic-themed farm where you'll see a lot of animals as well. You can click HERE my GARIN FARM IN ILOILO : DIY ITINERARY AND TRAVEL GUIDE.
Address: Brgy. Huna, San Joaquin, Iloilo

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1. How many persons are joining
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