If you're traveling to the Philippines and in need of a bit of historical escapade, then making a visit to Intramuros is a good idea. This walled fortress is an iconic part of the Philippines' history, particularly during the Japanese-American war, and although major parts of the whole place were destroyed, what's left is preserved so that future generations could get a glimpse of the country's historical culture.
Here are five of the best things to do in Intramuros, Manila:
Learn about the complex history between the Chinese and the Filipinos. The Chinese have been trading goods with the Philippines way before the Spanish colonized the country, and today, the Filipino-Chinese Community is a vital part of the Philippines' identity. In Bahay Tsinoy, guests can take their time looking at wax figures depicting the life of the Tsinoys during the early days, and other historical memorabilia.
Walk on the walls of Intramuros. It may not be as grand as the Great Wall of China, but Intramuros is fascinating enough being kind of a walled city inside Manila. Walk on its walls and take in the sights-the experience is quite similar to walking through the Passetto di Borgo. The walls used to be a defensive structure of the Spanish during their reign in the Philippines.
Visit the shrine dedicated to the Philippines' national hero. Rizal shrine is inside Fort Santiago, the oldest Spanish fortress in the country. Basically, the whole area commemorates the death of Dr. Jose P. Rizal, the Philippines' National Hero. Guests can recreate the steps Rizal took on his way to his execution, and you can also see the cell where Rizal was imprisoned.
Enjoy a free leisure stroll at Intramuros plazas. You don't have to pay every time you visit a historic site in Intramuros. There are tons of plazas you can actually visit for free! Places like Plaza Roma, Plaza Mexico, Plaza España, Plazuela de Santa Isabel, Memorare Manila and Puerta Isabel II are free to visit, and their historical ambiance makes for some of the best photo ops ever.
Search for all the QR codes in Fort Santiago. The place might be historically preserved, but for a bit of fun to the guests, several QR codes are scattered all around the labels in Fort Santiago, where you can scan it with your phone and receive a fun fact about the place. Try searching for every QR codes in the area, it can be quite a fun activity.