Loay Watchtower in Bohol
(Tagbilaran City, Bohol) The National Museum has officially turned over the newly-restored Loay Watchtower to the local government, as part of the reconstruction and restoration of Bohol’s heritage sites.
According to National Museum Assistant Director Angel P. Bautista, who spearheaded the turnover at Villalimpia, the local government unit of Loay has cooperated and gave full support in the completion of the restoration of the watchtower. He added that the National Museum will continue to give support in the preservation of heritage sites in Loay.
National Museum turned over the newly-restored watchtower to Mayor Rochelle Brigitte Imboy-Abutazil. For her part, Abutazil said that this will further strengthen the cultural identity of the town.
In 2011, the Loay Watchtower was declared as a National Cultural Treasure, along with other historical towers in Bohol located in Maribojoc, Dauis, Panglao, Pamilican, and Balilihan.
However, Loay watchtower was among the heritage sites damaged during the 7.2 magnitude earthquake in 2013.
The century-old Spanish watchtower was erected in 1796 and is made up of brick tiles and coral stones.
It served as lookout area against to Muslim intruders who used to attack the coastal towns of Bohol. People are warned to hide in fortresses built within Loay whenever Muslims attack the area.
Since the tower do not have an entrance, it has been said that early settlers may have placed a ladder or attached a rope into the tower.
The watchtowers in other neighboring towns were also built against Muslim invaders.
Aside from the Loay watchtower restoration, a 700-meter bamboo boardwalk was also installed as an access going to the tower. It gives a breathtaking view of the surrounding mangrove forest and the sea.
The turnover was held a day after the inauguration of the National Museum in Bohol.
Meanwhile, Loay’s Holy Trinity Church in Loay was restored last year by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP).
How to get there
AirAsia flies daily from Manila to Tagbilaran City in Bohol.