Parent's Choice

7 Churches in Manila to Check Out for Visita Iglesia

The city of Manila is one of the best places to do the Visita Iglesia during Holy Week, thanks to the stories behind its creation.

No Holy Week’s Visita Iglesia would not be complete without going to Manila. Many of Manila’s churches have withstood the test of time, especially during wars and natural disasters. Intramuros, which is home to two churches, even has stories dating back from the Spanish colonial era!

As crowded as it can be, Manila is worth going to for these seven churches.

1. Manila Cathedral

The Minor Basilica and Metropolitan Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception or Manila Cathedral is one of the country’s oldest churches. Established in 1571, its structure started with bamboo and nipa until it was constructed to be the cathedral that it is known today.

The Manila Cathedral has become home to many historical moments including Pope visits and funerals of presidents. It also once housed the blood of Pope John Paul II, attracting many devotees to pray for a miracle.

Its design and homage to traditional Spanish architecture have also made it a wedding destination for many celebrities including Dianne Medina and Rodjun Cruz, and Roselle Nava and Allen Tan.

One of the most beautiful churches in Manila that people love seeing for the Visita Iglesia, Manila Cathedral
Photo from the Manila Cathedral website

2. San Agustin Church

The San Agustin Church is also located inside Intramuros. Considered the oldest stone churches, the government recognized it as a National Cultural Treasure in 1973 because of its Baroque architecture. UNESCO also recognized it as a world heritage site in 1993. Within San Agustin Church, there’s also a museum that showcases the many studies and works of the Augustinian friars.

Photo from Guide to PH

3. Malate Church

Established by the Augustinians in 1588, the Malate Church also earned the moniker: the Our Lady of Remedies Parish. Its nickname comes from the image of the lady that Friar Juan de Guevara, OSA, in 1624 from Spain to Malate. The said image is also why Filipinos believe it to be a place of healing, especially for women’s and children’s illnesses.

Photo from Malate Church’s Facebook page

4. Binondo Church

Located on Ongpin Street in Manila, Binondo Church is also known as the Minor de Basilica of Lorenzo Ruiz, named after the first Filipino saint. The church’s structure has undergone renovations through the years and is seen from all parts of Ongpin thanks to its red and gray color structure.

Photo from Minor de Basilica of Lorenzo Ruiz

5. Quiapo Church

Perhaps one of the most popular churches in Manila is the Quiapo Church thanks to the devotion to the Black Nazarene. The statue of the Black Nazarene was brought to the country in 1606 and was enshrined in Bagumbayan (Luneta) first before it eventually found its home in Quiapo.

Photo from Minor Basilica and National Shrine of Jesus Nazareno Facebook page

6. San Sebastian Church

The San Sebastian Church is another church located in Quiapo and also has a school next to it. Recognized as a World Monument, it is now part of a massive conservation project thanks to a partnership between the National Historical Institute in the Philippines and the World Monument Fund.

Recognized as a world monument, the San Sebastian church became a spot for Visita Iglesia in Manila.
Photo from San Sebastian Church Facebook

7. Ermita Church

The Archdiocesan Shrine of Nuestra Señora De Guia, also known as Ermita Church, became one of the most visited churches in Manila because of its housing of one of the oldest wooden Marian images in the Philippines. Although nobody knows how the image ended up in the possession of the Filipinos, many devotees attributed miracles to the image — especially if the intention involved asking for guidance and navigation.

Like the first churches, it was also constructed from bamboo and nipa until it was finally built in 1606 as a chapel.

One of the most visited churches in Manila during the Visita Iglesia, Ermita Church

Photo from the Ermita Church Facebook page

7 Churches to Visit in Quezon City for Visita Iglesia

How Families Can Make Holy Week Fun in Metro Manila

Holy Week Songs: 7 Songs to Listen and Reflect To

Shop for Modern Parenting's print issues through these platforms.
Download this month's Modern Parenting magazine digital copy from:
Subscribe via [email protected]