Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Philippines - San Augustin Church, Manila

My last stop in Manila before heading to the airport was San Augustin Church. I dropped by the church, which is right in the heritage enclave of Intramuros, on my first day in Philippines but it was not open. So, I thought I want to try my luck again on my last day with the chances of it opening its doors were higher since it was Sunday and I was right. It was indeed a good thing for the interior of the church was astounding. Definitely among the best I'd seen in the country.

San Augustin Church

San Augustin Church, together with Paoay Church and Santa Maria Church, formed the Baroque Churches of Philippines, protected under the UNESCO World Heritage list. The missing church under the list that I did not visit is the Miag-ao Church in Iloilo. 

Sign of renovation works still ongoing

Renovation works for the church were underway when I was there. It was evident with the half-painted exterior which can be quite unappealing. However, if you looked aside the works in progress, you will be amazed by the craftsmanship appeared in the church. The main door itself is a work of art, with intricate carvings on them.

The main gate

As I mentioned earlier, thanks to the Sunday services, I managed to enter the church and had a peek at its interior. A lot of travellers did the same as well. However, do be respectful while exploring the church as there are locals praying.

The interior

Grand altar

I have yet to visit any European countries, well known for their grand churches, but upon stepping my feet into San Augustin Church, for a moment I thought I was transported to some medieval churches in the continent. Of all the churches I went to in the country - not much, but still - this has to be the most beautiful of them all.

Look at the intricate carvings on the ceiling

The wall is pristine white while the high ceiling has detailed carvings that you should spend at least a few hours to appreciate them. Unfortunately, I can't do what I preached as I was in a rush that day and I barely enjoyed my brief stay in the church. All I did was take a few shots and ran off to catch my bus. A big mistake.

The chandelier

I toured around the church, taking in as many images as I can into my brain, and when the time came, I took the transit to the bus station and began my journey to the airport. One unfortunate aspect of this trip was that AirAsia flies to Clark instead of Manila, which is about 2 hours away. Luckily, the low cost carrier decided to move its hub back to Manila, making my future visits much easier.



  1. The church looks so European!

  2. I know right? Luckily I did go back on my last day. Otherwise, I don't know what I had missed out.