It’s International Museum Day on Thursday, May 18! This is a great opportunity to finally hang out with the barkada after many attempts of planning, or bring out your crush on a date and show off those random facts you got from the internet. or you can just spend this day on your own for a cultured type of soul-searching–you never know what you can pick up from museums!
Whatever the reason is, this year’s International Museum Day is definitely the best day to appreciate our very own museums and learn more about the Philippines, its history, and the Filipino culture. So, for this list, we rounded up our top picks for the top historical museums you should visit right here in the Metro.
Here’s our list:
6. Casa Manila
Photo from Manila Daily Photo
Located in Intramuros, the Casa Manila Museum takes us back in time right to when the Philippines was being colonized by the Spaniards. This heritage-house-turned-museum showcases the social history of Manila when we were still under the Spanish rule. The Casa Manila houses beautiful antique furniture and impressive artworks that a wealthy family in the 1800’s would’ve enjoyed.
Walking through this museum would definitely give you a glimpse of what it was like to live in the olden times. The simple appliances would show you how they would painstakingly do tasks that have been made simple by technology–such as ironing clothes, cooking, and even just cooling themselves.
This historical museum is a real immersion into the lives of our ancestors and will make you appreciate what we have today.
Address: Gen. Lopez St., Intramuros, Manila
Rates: PHP 75
Hours: Tuesdays-Sundays, 9AM-6PM
5. Bahay Tsinoy
This museum is dedicated to showcasing the contributions of the early Chinese that became a huge influence on Philippine society today. It was built as an avenue to promote cultural identity and understanding between the Filipino and Chinese communities–and I believe that it’s a perfect way for Filipinos to thoroughly understand the part of Tsinoys in the local community.
The Bahay Tsinoy shows the emergence of the Filipino-Chinese community–from the arrival of the early Chinese up to today’s influential Tsinoys of society. This museum will definitely open your eyes to a new cultural perspective and make you appreciate our intercultural community.
Address: 32 Anda St., cor. Cabildo St., Intramuros, Manila
Rates: PHP 100 for adults; PHP 60 for students
Hours: Tuesdays-Sundays, 1PM-5PM
4. Museo ng Katipunan
Photo from NHCP Website
The Museo ng Katipunan focuses on the revolutionary movement that fought for Philippine freedom and sought to overthrow the Spanish colonial regime. The Katipunan played a tremendous part in the fight for the nation that we have today, and this museum will let us understand what the movement was truly like in those days.
The museum showcases archival documents, amulets, cryptic messages, and bladed weapons used by the Katipuneros themselves! How cool is that?!
There are also artworks and interactive features such as a holographic image of Andres Bonifacio and an audio recording of the poem Pag-Ibig sa Tinubuang Lupa. You can also learn a whole lot more with the in-house library, an e-learning room, and 19th-century photographs.
Address: 29 Pinaglabanan St., Corazon de Jesus, San Juan, Metro Manila
Hours: Tuesdays-Sundays, 8AM-5PM
Photo from Quezon City Website
The Quezon City Experience or QCX is one of the more technologically advanced historical museums that we have in the Metro today. Just opened in 2015, the QCX offers an interactive experience as it showcases the history and culture of the city. It’s dubbed as an ‘experiential’ museum that makes it a far cry from traditional museums that only allows you to look at whatever is displayed in front of you. Here, you can take advantage of all the selfie opportunities in the many interactive galleries. The museum definitely boasts of the many things that the city offers.
The QCX also has an in-house theater and a cafe right inside it! This museum is definitely a must-visit.
Address: Quezon Memorial Circle, Elliptical Rd., Quezon City
Rates: PHP 100 for QC resident; PHP 150 for Non-QC resident; PHP 80 for Students with ID; FREE for children 6yo below; discounts are available for bigger groups
Hours: Tuesdays-Sundays, 9AM-5PM
2. Rizal Shrine
Photo from NHCP Website
This museum is, of course, dedicated to the life and works of our national hero, Jose Rizal. It is located in Intramuros–right where he spent his last night before his execution. The shrine houses different memorabilia from Rizal’s life–his manuscripts, books, and shell collection from Dapitan are on display here. There are also relics such as the overcoats he wore, and his actual bones. Yes, you read that right. Rizal’s bones are actually in this museum.
A trip to the Rizal Shrine will definitely help you understand the life of the hero a lot better than just reading about him in history books. (Still, reading will always have its own rewards.)
Address: Santa Clara St., Fort Santiago, Intramuros, Manila
Hours: Tuesdays-Sundays, 9AM-6PM
1. National Museum of the Philippines
If you want to learn about all things on the history of the Philippines, the National Museum of the Philippines will definitely give you what you need. There are the National Art Gallery, the Museum of the Filipino People, the National Museum of Anthropology, and the National Planetarium that you and your friends can go to.
After a visit to the National Museum, you’ll definitely be a more knowledgeable and well-rounded citizen and you’ll feel oh, so proud of yourself.
Address: 1000 Padre Burgos Ave, Ermita, Manila, Metro Manila
Hours: Tuesdays-Sunday, 10AM-5PM
Go on, set a date with your friends, family, or even your crush! Take some time to appreciate the history and culture of the Philippines. You can never go wrong with a bit of added knowledge.
Which museum do you plan on visiting? Share it with us!