7 Churches To Visit in Metro Manila for Visita Iglesia
MANILA, Philippines – Visita Iglesia is an annual tradition observed by Catholics during the Lenten season. It is one of the most popular sacred vows during the Holy Week, where devotees spend time visiting at least seven different churches on Maundy Thursday.
Beautiful churches come aplenty all over the country, but traveling from one church to the next during this season can become a challenge, especially with the heavy traffic and number of devotees spending time outside their homes.
Metro Manila is actually a nest of several churches with rich history and heritage while at the same time boasting stunning architecture and design. Here’s a list of seven (7) churches you can visit around the city capital without the long hours of driving:
Nuestra Señora de Gracia Church
Address: 7440 Bernardino Street, Guadalupe Viejo, Makati City
In the middle of Makati’s skyscrapers stands this authentic Renaissance-Baroque church founded by the Augustinians in 1599. The Nuestra Señora de Gracia Church is one of Manila’s most popular churches with a simple yet striking vibe because of its features, furnishings, and iconography that gives off an Old World feel.
Address: 2000 M.H. Del Pilar St. Malate, Manila
First built in 1588, the Malate Church is considered one of Manila’s most iconic churches as it has been destroyed and rebuilt many times throughout the years. Overlooking Plaza Rajah Sulayman and the Manila Bay, this church has an interplay of Muslim design and Mexican baroque that most churchgoers adore.
San Agustin Church
Address: General Luna St., Intramuros, Manila
The San Agustin Church is the only church considered a UNESCO World Heritage site in Manila and was also named a National Historical Landmark in 1976. Built in 1907, the church has detailed trompe l’oeil murals on its walls and ceilings, a two-dimensional art that amazingly gives the illusion of a three-dimensional space.
Address: Plaza L. Ruiz, Binondo 1006, Manila
Considered one of the oldest Catholic churches in Metro Manila, the Binondo Church is known for its octagonal bell tower, reflecting its parishioners’ Chinese culture. It was founded by Dominican priests in 1596 with a façade comparable to those of Italian High Renaissance churches.
Sta. Ana Church
Address: New Panaderos cor. Pedro Gil St., Santa Ana, Manila
Constructed in 1725 under the Franciscans, the Sta. Ana Church has been designated as a Historic Building in 1936. It houses two National Cultural Treasures declared by a presidential decree – the Santa Ana Site Museum and the Camarin de la Virgen (The Dressing Room of the Virgin), a chapel room. It also has a small chapel, the Capillita de la Virgin del Pozo.
San Sebastian Church
Address: Pasaje del Carmen, Plaza Miranda, Quiapo, Manila
Considered as a National Historical Landmark and a National Cultural Treasure, the San Sebastian Church is a Gothic-style Roman Catholic minor basilica located in Quiapo, Manila. It was completed in 1891 and is the only all-steel church in the Philippines. Its 52 tonnes of prefabricated steel sections were imported from Belgium.
Address: Beaterio St, Cabildo St, Intramuros, Manila
The Manila Cathedral is a 444-year-old historical site with an area of almost 3,000 square meters. It is one of the most beautiful churches in the Philippines, decked with beautiful black marble flooring, beautiful brickwork, and a vaulted ceiling encapsulating classic Spanish architecture elements.
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