The Philippines is brimming with over 7,000 stunning islands that never fails to amaze its visitors. Many of these can be seen in the island of Luzon. From Batanes to Palawan, you’ll have plentiful Luzon tourist spots options to choose from. But trust us, it’s going to be a challenge to figure out where to start.

20 Beautiful Tourist Spots in Luzon Every Traveler Must Visit

Planning to explore the Philippines? Here’s a list of all the best places in Luzon that will make a mark the moment you see it in person.

  • Minesview Park – Tourist spot sa Baguio that offers the best view of nature
  • Ayala Triangle Gardens – Perfect to appreciate nature in the city
  • Bangui Windmills – A famous tourist spot in Luzon that has a greater purpose
  • Escolta – Perfect for old souls who want to see old Manila
  • Binondo – Home to the world’s oldest Chinatown
  • Sagada – Famous for breathtaking views of the mountain and sea of clouds
  • Anawangin Cove – A great camping site in Zambales
  • Nacpan Beach – Creamy sand beach in El Nido
  • Mayon Volcano – A perfect cone-shaped volcano in Bicol
  • Taal Volcano – Small but deadly volcano
  • Tinipak River – For hikers and water-lovers
  • Mt. Pinatubo – A beautiful volcano in Pampanga and Zambales
  • Puerto Princesa Underground River – A UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Vigan – One of the world’s best-preserved Spanish colonial towns
  • Intramuros – A historical landmark in the Philippines
  • Hidden Beach – Among the world’s best islands
  • Racuh A Payaman – Breathtakingly beautiful
  • Big Lagoon at Small Lagoon – Popular spots in Palawan
  • Banaue Rice Terraces – Man-made wonder
  • Kayangan Lake – One of the cleanest lakes in Asia

What’s inside this blog?

Read this travel guide featuring tourist spots in Luzon with description to discover the best tourist spot in the Philippines Luzon and make a trip worth remembering. 

Best Luzon Tourist Spots

20. Mines View Park

minesview park baguio tourist spots

No doubt, the most famous tourist spot sa Baguio is Mines View Park because of the great view it offers. In the early 20th century, Baguio was a mining town. Mines View Park sits on a ridge of the northeast side of Baguio where you can see a stunning view of the Cordillera Mountains and Benguet’s old copper and gold mines. While you’re there, you can also try on the Ifugaos’ traditional clothes and take a photo. 

Related: A Complete Travel Guide for a Memorable Staycation in Baguio

How to get there: From Manila or Cubao, ride a bus going to Baguio.upon arrival, you can take a cab or jeep bound for several tourist spot sa Baguio including Mines View Park.

19. Ayala Triangle Gardens

ayala triangle gardens makati luzon tourist spots

Ayala Triangle Gardens in Makati is a must-visit if you want to take a quick break from the hustle and bustle of the city. It’s a huge garden park perfect for chilling, walking, jogging, and even food tripping. If you want to see it at its best where everything goes alive, visit it during Christmas season where Ayala Triangle Gardens MAkati is filled with lights and sounds. Because of its popularity, it becomes one of the most-visited tourist spots in Luzon.

How to get there: From Manila, ride a cap or jeepney going to MRT-3. Take MRT-3 and alight at Ayala Station. Upon arrival, you can take a taxi or just walk to Ayala Triangle Gardens.

18. Bangui Windmills

Bangui Windmills pagudpud beach ilocos

Photo source: Wikimedia Commons

The Bangui Windmills are not just a popular tourist destination in Ilocos but they serve a greater purpose providing sustainable energy. You’ll see around 15-20 windmills in the area along the beach. 

Suggested: Pagudpud Beach Guide: Best Places to Visit in this Northern Paradise

How to get there: From Cubao or Manila to Pagudpud, there are direct buses already. Travel time is approximately more than 10 hours. You can ride a GV Florida bus from Manila directly to Pagudpud. Alternatively, you can book a flight or ride a bus bound for Laoag. From Laoag, ride a van or bus to Pagudpud. From Pagudpud, it’s just a short drive to Bangui where the Windmills are located. 

17. Escolta

escolta manila luzon tourist spots (1)

Escolta is one of the most underrated tourist spots in Luzon. Although it looks greatly damaged and forgotten after World War II, it’s actually those factors that make Escolta so interesting. That’s why it’s easy to see why millennials and photographers love to visit it. Now, Escolta is not just a famous photography subject but also a great place to experience good food, arts, crafts, and music festivals.

Must-read: 8 Amazing Tourist Spots in Manila That You Can Visit for Free

How to get there: Ride the LRT-1 and alight at Carriedo station. Walk along the old BPI building and look for Sta. Cruz Church. Escolta St. is on the right facing Sta. Cruz Church main entrance. 

16. Binondo

binondo manila historical places in philippines

When in Manila, you can never consider yourself a real foodie until you have been to Binondo. Home to the oldest Chinatown in the world, Binondo offers a great food adventure. From fried siopao, dim sum and roast duck to adventurous eats like frog legs, Binondo has just about everything your tummy could ever crave. Don’t miss the Beef Lamien in Lan Zhou La Mien and Hakaw in Wai Ying Fastfood. They’re not famous to foodies for nothing! So if you want to make the most of your trip, don’t miss this tourist destination in Luzon.

How to get there: You can either ride LRT-1 and alight at Carriedo Station or the LRT-2 and drop off at Recto Station, both stations are near Binondo. You can also take the Pasig River Ferry and alight at Escolta Station. 

15. Sagada

marlboro hills sagada

Sagada, home to spectacular views and breathtaking natural wonders, is a popular tourist spot in North Luzon especially for the backpackers and “soul searchers.”

The place offers sunny but cool weather, lush natural landscapes, and a sea of clouds that will let you think whether you’re still on Earth, making it a perfect setting for a romantic film.

Related article: Sagada Philippines: A First-Timer’s Guide to Traveling Sagada

How to get there: If you want to skip all that multiple stopovers and transport woes, Coda Lines offers direct daily trips from Quezon City to the Cordilleras. From Quezon City, the travel time will take about 15 hours going to Sagada, including the stopovers. This bus is also a great option when you’re traveling from Sagada to Manila.

14. Anawangin Cove

anawangin cove magagandang tanawin sa luzon

Another tourist attraction in Luzon that will delight campers and beach-lovers alike is Anawangin Cove in Zambales. Its crescent shape, fine white sand beach, and secluded island vibe capture its visitors’ hearts. There are no hotels here. You can only sleep in the cove on a tent or by renting a cottage. There’s also no electricity and low signal, that makes your trip to Anawangin Cove perfect—no distractions.

Suggested article: 13 Most Popular Zambales Tourist Spots Perfect for Solo and Group Travelers

How to get there: From Cubao or Manila, ride a bus bound for Iba or Santa Cruz, Zambales, and alight at San Antonio Public Market. Upon arrival, take a tricycle to Pundaquit then rent a boat to Anawangin. Travel time to this tourist destination in Luzon is around 4-5 hours.

13. Nacpan Beach

nacpan beach el nido palawan camping sites in the philippines

Nacpan Beach in El Nido, Palawan is one of the most beautiful beautiful places in Luzon and among the pristine beaches in the Philippines. While it does not have the white sand that Boracay takes pride in, Nacpan Beach offers an equally notable island experience. 

Aside from the 4-kilometer stretch of cream-colored sand, you’ll also enjoy the hundreds of swaying coconut trees, a fishing village, clear aqua water with small surfable waves of Nacpan Beach—it’s the kind of paradise you’ve imagined. Nacpan Beach certainly does not disappoint. What travelers love about Nacpan Beach is that it doesn’t get too crowded. And if you’re lucky, you can have the beach all to yourself. 

Must-read: Nacpan Beach: A Guide to Visiting El Nido’s Most Beautiful Beach

How to get there: Nacpan Beach is a 45-minute drive away from the main town of El Nido. You can reach Nacpan Beach from El Nido town proper by shuttle service, tricycle, or motorbike. The cheapest is renting a motorbike.

12. Mayon Volcano

mayon volcano luzon tourist spots

With the country’s many wonders of nature, it’s not surprising to see another jaw-dropping tourist spot in the Philippines Luzon. Mayon Volcano is one of the most beautiful wonders of nature in the country. It is both a stunner and a killer—renowned for its beauty as it is feared for its destructiveness. Its symmetry and perfect cone shape draws attention across the world but what lies beyond its beauty is its deadly nature: an enormous chamber, churning with molten rock and toxic gas that could blow anytime.

It has erupted over 51 times in the past four centuries, the most destructive of which is in 1814. Nevertheless, it has developed a culture of resiliency among the inhabitants of its vicinity, who always rebuilt their towns and cultivated their fields after each destructive eruption.

Suggested article: Beyond the Beauty of Mayon Volcano Natural Park

How to get there: From Cubao, Manila or Pasay, ride a bus bound for Legazpi, Albay.

11. Taal Volcano

taal volcano luzon tourist spots

Mention Tagaytay and Taal Volcano will automatically come to mind. Even at its most devastated state, Taal Volcano remains as one of the most eye-catching places in Luzon. It has become a must-visit destination for every traveler across the world because of its picturesque features like no other. 

You can see the volcano from one of the Philippines’ most visited destinations, Tagaytay. The city has a postcard-perfect view of the volcano that everyone loves. There are many hotels and restaurants that offer the best view of it while indulging in sumptuous meals.

Related article: Taal Volcano: Everything You Need to Know About This Beautiful But Deadly Volcano

How to get there: From PAsay or Manila, ride a bus bound for Alfonso or Tagaytay. You can alight at Tagaytay-Nasugbu Highway where a lot of establishments with Taal Volcano views line up. If you want to get closer to the volcano, you can book a tour package instead to hike it.

10. Tinipak River

tinipak river magagandang tanawin sa luzon

Craving for quick getaway near Manila? Among the most famous places in Luzon perfect for weekend travelers is the Tinipak River. It used to be a hidden gem but has now become one of the most popular places to visit in Tanay, Rizal thanks to its picturesque beauty. It boasts turquoise waters surrounded by white marble rocks that makes every corner Instagrammable. You can also explore a cavern with an underwater river through a small canoe.

Must-read: 10 Must-See Rizal Tourist Spots for an Amazing Adventure

How to get there: From EDSA Starmall or Megamall in Mandaluyong, ride a van or jeep bound for Tanay. It will pass through different towns of Rizal like Antipolo, Teresa, Morong, Baras and Tanay. This is the easiest and cheapest way on how to go to Tanay Rizal. Upon arrival in Tanay, you can ride a jeep or tricycle. Just tell them where you’re headed to.

9. Mt. Pinatubo

mt. pinatubo magagandang tanawin sa luzon

Often called the “beautiful disaster”, you’ll stand in awe once you see Mt. Pinatubo. To witness its magnificent crystal clear waters of Crater Lake, you will have to ride the 4×4 or an ATV. The ride will be a rocky one but once you see the view, all the bumps you’ve gone through are worth it! What makes this trip even better is that you can interact with one of the oldest indigenous tribes in the Philippines, the Aetas, and experience their culture. Because of its breathtaking beauty, it became one of the most popular places in Luzon.

And since you’re here already, you can also check out other tourist spot sa Nueva Ecija if you want to extend your vacation.

Suggested article: 10 Best Pampanga Tourist Spots Not to Miss for a Fun-Filled Trip

How to get there: Ride a bus from Manila, Cubao or Pasay to Capas, Tarlac (McDonalds Capas Junction). Then, ride a trike to Sta. Juliana Tourism. Upon arrival, register at Sta. Juliana Tourism. They will arrange the 4×4 ride for you to reach Mt. Pinatubo. The ride will take about an hour and at least two hours of trekking.

8. Puerto Princesa Underground River 

puerto princesa underground river

One charming treasure of Palawan that truly stands out is the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park. It is one of the longest underground rivers in the world that outflows directly to the sea, traveling five miles through a subterranean cave system. Inside the Puerto Princesa Underground River, you will see karsts—natural rock formations created by dissolving limestone—loom in every direction. Don’t miss Puerto Princesa Underground River as it’s one of the most beautiful places in Luzon.

Related article: A Detailed Travel Guide to Exploring Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park

How to get there: From Manila, book a flight to Puerto Princesa City Palawan. You will then have to book a tour going to the Underground River.

7. Vigan

calle crisologo in vigan luzon tourist spots

If you fancy exploring historical places in Luzon, Vigan should be on your list. Visiting Vigan City is like traveling back in time because of its preserved Spanish Colonial town that even the world considers it as one of the best. Aside from the magnificent Vigan tourist spots, what makes this North Luzon tourist spot well-loved is its historical and cultural significance that feed not just wanderlust but also a traveler’s mind and soul. 

Must-read: Vigan City Guide: Traveling to The World’s Best-Preserved Spanish Colonial Town

How to get there: There are two ways to reach this tourist spot in Luzon with description: by bus and by plane. From Manila, you can ride a bus bound for Vigan. The travel time will take about 8 to 10 hours depending on the traffic. If by plane, you can book a flight to Laoag City. Upon arrival, there is a lot of public transportation available in the Laoag City Airport that can take you to Vigan. Travel time is about an hour. It’s faster but it’s thrice the price of the bus fare ticket. 

6. Intramuros

intramuros luzon tourist spots

Known as the “Walled City,” Intramuros is a place rich in history and culture. With its cobbled streets and preserved architecture dated hundreds of years ago, it will have you thinking whether you are still in the Philippines or not. Hundreds of years ago, many remarkable events happened here that’s why it’s one of the most historical places in Luzon and in the Philippines.

Suggested article: A Guide to Intramuros Tour: 10 Places That Will Let You Travel Back in Time

How to get there: You can either take the LRT-1 or the jeepney going in.

If you’re traveling by LRT-1, alight at the Central Terminal Station, then walk five minutes to Manila City Hall. From there, walk to the pedestrian underpass that takes you across Padre de Burgos Street. Immediately upon exiting the underpass, you’ll see Victoria Street, which curves right through the Intramuros walls.

The easiest way on how to go to Intramuros is by taxi or Grab; however, it’s pricier than commuting. When inside Intramuros, it will be easy to explore it as most of the sights are within a 10- to 15-minute walk away. You can do an Intramuros tour by riding a horse carriage, pedicab, walking, or bamboo bike Intramuros.

5. Hidden Beach

hidden beach in el nido luzon tourist spots

Contrary to its name, Hidden Beach in El Nido, Palawan is not-so-hidden anymore especially since Condé Nast Traveler named it as one of the world’s 30 best beaches. The Hidden Beach hides behind tall natural stone walls, with only a tiny break from which to enter and exit. It’s perfect for swimming, chillaxing, and picture-taking! If these are not enough to convince you it’s amazing, we don’t know what else will. If you’re looking for a beach, this is the best tourist spot in Luzon to see.

Related article: Palawan Hidden Gems: 5 Unspoiled Places You Must Discover Now

How to get there: As of writing, only one airline (Air Swift) flies to El Nido directly but it’s a bit expensive. If you’re on a budget, you can book a flight to Puerto Princesa then ride a van to El Nido. Travel time from Pueto Princesa is around 5-7 hours. Upon arrival in El Nido, book tour C to enjoy Hidden Beach.

4. Racuh A Payaman

racuh a payaman batanes

If we’re to describe Racuh A Payaman in Batanes in one word, it’d be magical. There are rolling hills and knolls everywhere, surrounded by a carpet of the greenest grass you’ll ever see, that you’ll notice even the tiniest grass is swaying as Batanes wind blows. You could almost imagine being in the 1965 film Sound of Music and hear Julie Andrews sing “the hills are alive…”

From there, you can also see Mt. Iraya, Diura Beach, Tayid Lighthouse, and the Pacific Ocean. All in one place. Racuh A Payaman is one of the top tourist spots in Luzon.

Must-read: 12 Batanes Tourist Spots You Can’t Say No To

How to get there: From Manila, book a flight to Batanes. You can rent a van, tricycle, or motorbike to reach Racuh A Payaman.

3. Big Lagoon at Small Lagoon

big lagoon el nido magagandang tanawin sa luzon

Undoubtedly, El Nido always makes it to the top list of beautiful places in Luzon. Don’t miss the Big and Small Lagoons as these are the best tourist spots in El Nido. You can go kayaking, paddle boarding, or swimming in these lagoons while digesting its majestic views. Aside from these lagoons, make sure to also visit Nacpan Beach as it is one of the most beautiful beaches in the Philippines.

Related article: The Paradise on Earth: Glorious Palawan Tourist Spot That Will Make You Fall In-Love With Nature

How to get there: As of writing, only one airline (Air Swift) flies to El Nido directly but it’s a bit expensive. If you’re on a budget, you can book a flight to Puerto Princesa then ride a van to El Nido. Travel time from Pueto Princesa is around 5-7 hours. Upon arrival in El Nido, book tour A.

2. Banaue Rice Terraces 

banaue rice terraces tourist spot in the philippines

One of the places to visit in Luzon that will take your breath away is Banaue Rice Terraces. Locally known as the Hagdan-Hagdang Palayan, this beautiful spot in Luzon is undoubtedly a source of pride not just for the Ifugaos but also for Filipinos across the world. Because of its magnificence, it has been inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1995. 

Suggested article: Banaue Rice Terraces: The Magnificent Man-Made Cultural Heritage

How to get there: From Cubao or Sampaloc in Manila, you can ride a bus bound for Banaue. There are two buses that go straight to Banaue: Coda Lines and Ohayami Trans. The travel time will take about 9 hours at the minimum. Upon arrival in Banaue bus terminal, you can ride a tricycle going to your hotel or just tour the area directly.

1. Kayangan Lake

Kayangan Lake coron palawan

While Palawan boasts its pristine beaches and lagoons, making it the best island in the world, it also has picture-perfect lakes that will make your jaw drop. One of the most famous is Kayangan Lake in Coron.

Surrounded by towering limestone cliffs dotted with greenery, Kayangan is the cleanest lake in the Philippines and one of the cleanest in Asia. The water is so clear that you can see through to the rock formations beneath the surface. It is one of two lakes in Coron (out of 8 lakes) that are open to the public. The lake is 70% freshwater and 30% saltwater, making it ideal for swimming. 

Must-read: Kayangan Lake: Everything to Know Before Exploring Palawan’s Natural Jewel

How to get there: Book a flight bound for Coron. Upon arrival get the Tour A which is the most popular way to visit Kayangan Lake.

Where to stay in Luzon

Whether you explore various tourist spot sa Baguio, tourist spot sa Nueva Ecija, or any other Luzon best tourist spots, make sure to end the day with a trusted hotel that will give you comfort that’s affordable. Here are the best budget hotels in Luzon to book:

Budget hotels in Manila

Baymont Suites & Residences

Price from PHP 800/night

Book now

Budget hotels in Tagaytay

Rachel's Bed and Breakfast tagaytay staycation

Price from PHP 1,000/night

Book now

Budget hotels in Baguio

ZEN Rooms Venus Parkview Baguio

Price from PHP 2,200/night

Book now

Budget hotels in Sorsogon

ZEN Rooms Paopao Hotel Sorsogon

Price from PHP 2,100/night

Book now

Frequently Asked Questions About Luzon Tourist Spots

Q: What are the best Luzon tourist spots?

A: Planning to explore the Philippines? Here’s a list of all the best places in Luzon that will make a mark the moment you see it in person.

  1. Kayangan Lake
  2. Banaue Rice Terraces 
  3. Big Lagoon at Small Lagoon
  4. Racuh A Payaman
  5. Hidden Beach
  6. Intramuros
  7. Vigan
  8. Puerto Princesa Underground River 
  9. Mt. Pinatubo
  10. Tinipak River
  11. Taal Volcano 
  12. Mayon Volcano
  13. Nacpan Beach
  14. Anawangin Cove
  15. Sagada
  16. Binondo
  17. Escolta
  18. Bangui Windmills
  19. Ayala Triangle Gardens
  20. Minesview Park

Q: What are the major activities that can be done by the tourists within Luzon?

A: Luzon is a big island to explore so you’ll never get bored exploring it. Here are some of the most fun things to do in Luzon: 

  1. Island-hopping
  2. Boating
  3. Surfing
  4. Hiking
  5. Swimming
  6. Food tripping
  7. Partying

Q: Where can I go on a road trip in Luzon?

A: Here are the best places in Luzon for road trips. These are just a few hours away from Manila.

  1. Antipolo
  2. Tagaytay
  3. Tanay
  4. Zambales
  5. Pampanga
  6. La Union
  7. Batangas
  8. Cavite
  9. Laguna
  10. Bataan

Must-read: 10 Destinations for Your Barkada’s Next Road Trip Near Manila

Q: Where should couples go in Luzon?

A: For a romantic getaway with your significant other, here are the best places in Luzon for couples:

  1. Batanes
  2. Palawan
  3. Boracay
  4. Siargao
  5. Cebu
  6. Iloilo
  7. Bohol
  8. Vigan
  9. Tagaytay
  10. Batangas

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Being a melting pot of cultures and people, it’s no doubt that the historical places in Philippines captivate not just local travelers but also explorers across the world. 

From century old churches to bloody war zones, the historical sites in the Philippines never fail to amaze its visitors as they let us stroll through history.

20 Most Historical Sites in the Philippines

If you want to understand the country’s past beyond the history books, make sure to include these famous landmarks in the Philippines that will surely take you back in time.

  1. Aguinaldo Shrine – Located in Kawit, Cavite, this is where the first Philippine flag was waved for the first time. 
  2. Bagumbayan – The place where Dr. Jose Rizal was executed.
  3. Fort Santiago – This is where Dr. Jose Rizal was imprisoned before his execution. It’s also where some soldiers were held.
  4. Intramuros – The oldest and the historic core of Manila and built with defensive walls against foreign invasions, hence being called the Walled City.
  5. Dapitan, Zamboanga del Norte – The place where Dr. Jose Rizal stayed for four years for his exile.
  6. EDSA Shrine – Where EDSA People Power Revolution took place to oust the then-dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
  7. Leyte Landing Memorial Park – The place where Gen. Douglas MacArthur landed and promised that he will help in freeing the Philippines.
  8. Biak na Bato – This is the place where Emilio Aguinaldo and other revolutionaries established the Biak-na-Bato Republic to be free from Spaniards.
  9. Barasoain Church – Three historical events in the Philippines occurred in the church.
  10. Mactan Shrine – This is the site of the Battle of Mactan, one of the most historical events in the Philippines.
  11. Corregidor Island – It was once the headquarters of allied Filipino and American forces who fought against the Japanese during World War II.
  12. Calle Crisologo – The famous cobblestone streets in the country and one of the world’s best-preserved Spanish colonial towns.
  13. Blood Compact Shrine – This Bohol tourist spot depicts the famed Sandugo moment, one of the most historical events in the Philippines.
  14. Shrine of Valor – It is a memorial to all of the soldiers who died bravely in the battle against the Japanese forces and those who died during the Bataan Death March in World War II.
  15. Fort San Pedro – The oldest fort in the Philippines.
  16. Plaza Cuartel, Puerto Princesa – It served as a World War II garrison for Filipino and American soldiers
  17. Binondo, Manila – Home to the oldest Chinatown in the world.
  18. University of Santo Tomas – The oldest university in the Philippines and among the most famous landmarks in the Philippines.
  19. Limasawa, Southern Leyte – This is where the first documented Catholic mass in the Philippines was held.
  20. Tirad Pass, Ilocos Sur – It was the site of the 1899 Battle of Tirad Pass during the Philippine-American War. 

Read on to learn more about the Philippines’ history through these historical places.

1. Aguinaldo Shrine

aguinaldo shrine makasaysayang lugar sa pilipinas

Photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Located in Kawit, Cavite, the Aguinaldo Shrine was the home of the first and youngest president of the Republic of the Philippines, Emilio Aguinaldo. It’s a historical place in Philippines because it’s where the first Philippine flag was waved that symbolizes the country’s independence in 1898.

Now, it’s a famous tourist spot and houses some of Aguinaldo and his family’s memorabilia. What makes this place interesting is that you’ll realize how intelligent Aguinaldo was through the architecture of his house, revealing some secret hideouts and passages that were relevant during the time of war.

Highlights: 

  • It houses historic artifacts that are useful for research and educational purposes
  • The many secret passages and hiding places in the house

Entrance fee: Free, but donations are encouraged

2. Bagumbayan

luneta park historical places in philippines

Also known as Luneta Park, Bagumbayan is one of the most historical attractions in the Philippines and national historical shrines in the Philippines. This is because the Philippines’ National Hero Dr. Jose Rizal was executed here in 1896 after he fought for the country’s freedom from the Spaniards through his articles, essays, and novels.

Highlights:

  • The Rizal monument
  • A great place for strolls and picnic
  • A colorful dancing fountain

Entrance fee: Free

3. Fort Santiago

fort santiago intramuros

One of the most notable Philippine landmarks and important historical sites in the Philippines is Fort Santiago in Intramuros, Manila. It was the place where Dr. Jose Rizal was held in prison before his execution. Hundreds of lives were lost in this Philippine landmark during Spanish Colonial Period and World War II. Today, Fort Santiago is one of the major tourist spots for historical places in Manila and in the Philippines.

Highlights: 

  • View of scenic ruins caused by World War II
  • The dungeon of Fort Santiago

Entrance fee: P75 for adults; P50 for students, senior citizens, and persons with disabilities.

4. Intramuros

intramuros makasaysayang lugar sa pilipinas

A walk in and around Intramuros is like a stroll through history where you’ll see amazing cultural attractions in the Philippines, that’s why when talking about the top 10 historical places in the Philippines and historical places in Manila, Intramuros never misses the list. 

It’s the oldest and the historic core of Manila and built with defensive walls against foreign invasions, hence being called the Walled City. Here you can see the preserved Spanish colonial structures from government offices to residential areas and souvenir shops. 

Suggested article: A Guide to Intramuros Tour: 10 Places That Will Let You Travel Back in Time

Highlights: 

  • Lots of preserved Spanish colonial structures
  • Surrounded by other historic places like Fort Santiago
  • Can tour via bamboo bicycle, kales (horse carriage), or by foot.

Entrance fee: Free. But note that some tourist attractions in the area have entrance fees.

5. Dapitan, Zamboanga del Norte

rizal shrine dapitan zamboanga

Photo source: Wikimedia Commons

The Rizal Shrine in Dapitan, Zamboanga del Norte is one of the most historical places in Mindanao. This is where Dr. Jose Rizal spent four years of exile when he was accused of planning the revolution against Spanish rule. Rizal Shrine in Zamboanga del Norte is one of the important landmarks in the Philippines.

Highlights: 

  • The Mi Retiro Rock where Rizal watched sunsets and where he wrote one of his most beautiful poems Mi Retiro.
  • Also perfect for nature-lovers

Entrance fee: Free

6. EDSA Shrine

edsa shrine manila

Photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Located at the crossroads of EDSA Avenue and Ortigas Avenue in Quezon City, EDSA Shrine, formally known as the Shrine of Mary, Queen of Peace (Our Lady of EDSA), is no doubt one of the most historical places in Luzon and among the landmarks in the Philippines that truly made a mark. 

This is where the historic and world-renowned People Power Revolution took place in 1896 to oust the then-dictator Ferdinand Marcos and stop the Martial Law. The People Power Revolution is one of the world’s most historic events because the uprising was peaceful, bloodless, and successful. You’ll see a few notable monuments in the Philippines in and near the EDSA Shrine.

Highlights: 

  • The 35 ft. tall image of the Blessed Virgin Mary
  • Near shopping malls

Entrance fee: Free

7. Leyte Landing Memorial Park

macarthur Leyte Landing Memorial Park

Photo source: Wikimedia Commons

The Leyte Landing Memorial Park, also known as the MacArthur Leyte Landing Memorial National Park is one of the most famous monuments in the Philippines. It is a protected area of the Philippines that commemorates the historic arrival of General Douglas MacArthur in Leyte Gulf to free the Philippines from Japanese occupation on October 20, 1944.

He also became famous for his lines “I shall return” and later on fulfilled his promise to the Philippines.

Highlight: 

  • The statues of Gen. Douglas MacArthur and his troops in the exact location where they landed

Entrance fee: Free

8. Biak na Bato

biak na bato

Photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Another historical place in Philippines is the Biak na Bato in San Miguel, Bulacan. This is the famous landmark in the Philippines where Emilio Aguinaldo and other revolutionaries established the Biak-na-Bato Republic to be free from Spaniards. 

Highlights: 

  • A hanging bridge
  • A clear river
  • Several caves including the exact place where the revolutionaries secretly established a republic

Entrance fee: P20

9. Barasoain Church

Barasoain Church makasaysayang lugar sa pilipinas

Photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Barasoain Church is not just an ordinary place for worship but also one of the most historical attractions in the Philippines because three significant events in Philippine history occurred in the church: the convening of the First Philippine Congress on September 15, 1898; the ratification of the Malolos Constitution on January 21, 1899; and the inauguration of the First Philippine Republic on January 23, 1899. This is perfect if you’re looking for historical places in Philippines near Manila.

Highlight: 

  • The Museo ng Republika ng 1899 where you can enjoy several galleries that feature the historic events in town and the country.

Entrance fee: Free

10. Mactan Shrine

Mactan Shrine cebu

Photo credits to Gary Todd via Flickr

Mactan Shrine in Cebu has played a huge role in Philippine history. This is the site of the Battle of Mactan where Datu Lapu-Lapu defeated the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan in 1521. The Mactan Shrine is one of the famous Philippines landmarks and was built in honor of Lapu-Lapu.

Highlight: 

  • The 65 ft. bronze monument of Datu Lapu-Lapu

Entrance fee: Free

11. Corregidor Island

Corregidor Island makasaysayang lugar sa pilipinas

Photo credits to cisc1970 via Flickr

Corregidor is a small rocky island located at the entrance of Manila Bay. It was once the headquarters of allied Filipino and American forces who fought against the Japanese during World War II, and a witness to the braveries of these soldiers. While the Japanese had occupied lots of places in the Philippines, they avoided Corregidor because of the fear of the huge canyons surrounding the place. This is definitely one of the must-visit cultural attractions in the Philippines.

Highlights: 

  • The beautiful and historic ruins like Middleside Barracks and Batter Way
  • You can also see here Corregidor’s Longest Gun, Battery Hearn

Entrance fee: P200

horse carriage at calle crisologo in vigan

The list of famous historical landmarks in the Philippines isn’t complete without Vigan in it. And among the things that Vigan is well-known for is the Calle Crisologo where you can see cobblestone streets, intricate architecture, and horse carriages commonly known as kalesa. It’s one of the few Hispanic towns surviving in the Philippines and one of the best-preserved Spanish colonial towns in the world.

Must-read: Vigan City Guide: Traveling to The World’s Best-Preserved Spanish Colonial Town

Highlights: 

  • Cobblestone streets
  • Preserved Spanish colonial town
  • Many antique shops
  • Great food spots

Entrance fee: Free

13. Blood Compact Shrine

blood compact shrine bohol

The Sandugo or Blood Compact Shrine monument in Tagbilaran is a landmark at the site of the first international treaty of friendship between Spaniards and Filipinos. This Bohol tourist spot depicts Sikatuna and Legazpi at the famed Sandugo moment. 

Highlight: 

  • The iconic statue of men performing the traditional sandugo with an ocean view

Entrance fee: Free

14. Shrine of Valor

shrine of valor bataan

Photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Also known as the Mount Samat National Shrine, the Shrine of Valor in Bataan is a memorial to all of the soldiers who died bravely in the battle against the Japanese forces and those who died during the Bataan Death March in World War II. Don’t miss this place as it’s one of the most beautiful Bataan historical places.

Highlights: 

  • The shrine consists of a large memorial cross and a colonnade
  • Accessible to and from the popular Las casas Filipinas de Acuzar

Entrance fee: P20

15. Fort San Pedro

fort san pedro cebu

Fort San Pedro is the oldest fort in the country and one of the most visited Cebu City tourist spots. Similar to Manila’s Fort Santiago, Fort San Pedro served as a military defense structure during the 17th century. Spanish conqueror Miguel Lopez de Legazpi, who founded the earliest settlement in Cebu, had the initiative to put up this. At Fort San Pedro, you’ll discover the history of Cebu, the Spanish government, and well-preserved Spanish artifacts. About 14 cannons can still be found in what has become a leisure park today. Make sure to visit Fort San Pedro as it’s one of the historical places in Philippines you’ll enjoy exploring. 

Must-read: Cebu Itinerary Guide: Best Places to Go & Must-Try Activities

Highlights: 

  • There’s a museum inside
  • Near other famous Cebu tourist spots

Entrance fee: P30

16. Plaza Cuartel, Puerto Princesa

Plaza Cuartel Puerto Princesa historical places in philippines

Photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Aside from being one of the world’s best islands, Palawan is also home to some famous landmarks in the Philippines like the Plaza Cuartel in Puerto Princesa. 

Then, it served as a World War II garrison for Filipino and American soldiers and now, the landmark serves as a memorial for prisoners of war who were burned alive in an underground tunnel. 

Highlights: 

  • Spots where soldiers were suffered and killed
  • A huge park perfect for a good walk

Entrance fee: Free

17. Binondo, Manila

binondo manila historical places in philippines

If you want to go on a food trip while seeing historical places in Manila, go to Binondo. Not only Binondo offers a great food adventure but it is also home to the oldest Chinatown in the world. From fried siopao, dim sum and roast duck to adventurous eats like frog legs, Binondo has just about everything your tummy could ever crave. 

It’s a popular tourist spot because of the amazing food spots in the area and affordable shopping places. 

Aside from the Chinatown, Binondo is also home to the historic Binondo Church built in the late 1600s. It was destroyed during World War II, in which only the facade, including the belfry and the Ongpin Street side, remained standing, and was reconstructed after the war.

Highlights: 

  • Lots of great food spots
  • Authentic Filipino and Chinese food
  • Instagrammable spots
  • Binondo Church
  • Chinatown 

Entrance fee: Free

18. University of Santo Tomas

University of Santo Tomas historical places in philippines

Photo source: Wikimedia Commons

The list of old historical buildings in the Philippines is never complete without the University of Santo Tomas in Manila. Founded on April 28, 1611, the University of Santo Tomas is one of the oldest existing universities and holds the oldest extant university charter in the Philippines and in Asia. UST has produced four Presidents of the Philippines, namely Manuel L. Quezon, Sergio Osmeña, Jose P. Laurel, and Diosdado Macapagal; produced three Philippine Vice Presidents and six Chief Justices of the Philippine Supreme Court; and of course, the Philippine National Hero Dr. Jose Rizal where he studied medicine.

Highlights: 

  • The Arch of the Centuries
  • The UST Church

Entrance fee: Free

19. Tirad Pass, Ilocos Sur

Tirad Pass is not just a great spot for adventure-seekers but it’s also one of the most  historical places in Philippines as it was the site of the 1899 Battle of Tirad Pass during the Philippine-American War. 

Highlights: 

  • Amazing mountain views
  • Lush hills 

Entrance fee: Free

20. Limasawa, Southern Leyte

The town of Limasawa in Southern Leyte is one of the historical sites in the Philippines you shouldn’t miss. The first documented Catholic mass in the Philippines was held here on March 31, 1521 officiated by Father Pedro de Valderrama.

Highlights: 

  • Magellan’s Cross
  • Dakdak Beach
  • Limasawa Island Lagoon

Entrance fee: Free

They say past is past but we can’t and shouldn’t forget the past that shaped our present. The historical places in the Philippines show us how life is then and teach us how to shape the future through the learnings they have left.

If you want to have a staycation near these historical sites in the Philippines, make sure to book budget hotels at www.zenrooms.com to enjoy quality accommodation at an affordable price.

Frequently Asked Questions About Historical Places in Philippines

Q: What are the most historical places in Philippines?

A: If you want to understand the country’s past beyond the history books, make sure to include these historical buildings in the Philippines that will take you back in time.

  • Aguinaldo Shrine
  • Bagumbayan
  • Fort Santiago
  • Intramuros
  • Dapitan, Zamboanga del Norte
  • EDSA Shrine
  • Leyte Landing Memorial Park
  • Biak na Bato
  • Barasoain Church
  • Mactan Shrine
  • Corregidor Island
  • Calle Crisologo
  • Limasawa, Southern Leyte
  • Blood Compact Shrine
  • Shrine of Valor
  • Fort San Pedro
  • Tirad Pass, Ilocos Sur
  • Plaza Cuartel, Puerto Princesa
  • Binondo, Manila
  • University of Santo Tomas

Q: What are the historical events in the Philippines?

A: Here are some of the most important historical events in the Philippines:

  1. 1542 – Spanish expedition claims the islands and names them the Philippines after the heir to the Spanish throne.
  2. 1872 – Execution of GomBurZa (Gomez, Burgos, Zamora-the three martyrs)
  3. 1889 – Founding of La Solidaridad
  4. 1896 – Dr. Jose Rizal was executed
  5. 1897 – Pact of Biak-na-Bato
  6. 1898 – Proclamation of Philippine Independence
  7. 1902 – Philippine-American War formally ends as US civil government replaces military rule
  8. 1941 – Japan seizes the Philippines
  9. 1942 – Fall of Bataan
  10. 1944 – US forces retake islands
  11. 1946 – Islands granted full independence and renamed Republic of the Philippines
  12. 1972 – Marcos declares martial law. 
  13. 1977 – Opposition leader Benigno Aquino sentenced to death, but Marcos delays execution
  14. 1983 – Aquino returns to the Philippines, but is shot dead as he leaves the plane amid suspicions of official military involvement
  15. 1986 – People Power Revolution to oust Marcos and stop the martial law

Q: What is famous in the Philippines?

A: Philippines is famous for its pristine beaches that led them to being named among the world’s best islands. The country is also known for the historic places, wonders of nature, and man-made creations.

Q: What is the oldest place in the Philippines?

A: Cebu is said to be the country’s oldest city. It was the first Spanish settlement and the first capital of the Philippines and the city is considered the birthplace of Christianity in the Far East.

Q: Who really discovered the Philippines?

A: Portugese explorer Ferdinand Magellan discovered the Philippines in 1521 and colonized by Spain from 1565 to 1898.

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