<

There are 18 National Museums in the Philippines. Here’s Where You Can Find Them

When the National Museum of the Philippines is discussed, the three structures in the National Museum Complex come to mind. To be fair, they are the three central museums that according to its website “acquires, documents, preserves, exhibits, and fosters scholarly study and public appreciation of works of art, specimens, and cultural and historical artifacts representative of the unique cultural heritage of the Filipino people and the natural history of the Philippines.”

There are, however, a total of 18 National Museums spread across the country. Let’s discuss them:

National Museum of Fine Arts

National Museum of Fine Arts

The National Museum of Fine Arts has 29 galleries and hallway exhibitions showcasing the works of 19th-century masters, National Artists, as well as famous painters, sculptors, and printmakers.

Location: Padre Burgos Avenue, Ermita, Manila, Metro Manila

National Museum of Anthropology

National Museum of Anthropology

Photo / National Museum

The National Museum of Anthropology presents the story of the Philippines through ethnographic and terrestrial and underwater archaeological collections.

Location: Padre Burgos Drive, Rizal Park, Teodoro F. Valencia Circle, Ermita, Manila, Metro Manila

National Museum of Natural History

National Museum of Natural History

Photo / National Museum

The National Museum of Natural History has 12 permanent galleries exhibiting the biological and geological diversity of the Philippines.

Location: Teodoro F. Valencia Circle, Ermita, Manila, Metro Manila

National Planetarium

National Planetarium

Photo / National Museum

The National Planetarium showcases astronomical information through shows, lectures, demonstrations, exhibitions, and actual celestial observations. The Planetarium, however, temporarily closed its doors in 2021 and its building was decommissioned. The National Museum of the Philippines said, “We are sad to retire the old building, which has in its own way been a landmark in Manila and a pillar of the National Museum of the Philippines as a whole, but we are excited and motivated to work to deliver a new facility that will breathe new life into the National Planetarium as a beloved institution.”

Location: No new location

Batanes Area Museum

National Museum Batanes Area Museum

Photo / National Museum

The Batanes Area Museum features exhibitions on Ivatan cultural heritage. In 2023, it launched its first permanent exhibition called Inamuhun: The Natual and Cultural Heritage of Batanes.

Location:Old Loran, Itbud, Uyugan, Batanes

Cagayan Valley Regional Museum

National Museum Cagayan Valley Regional Museum

Photo / National Museum

The Cagayan Valley Regional Museum exhibits prehistoric archaeological finds from different sites in Cagayan Valley. It started as a research field station that discovered prehistoric faunal fossil remains and stone tools.

Location: Aggugaddan, Peñablanca, Cagayan

Ilocos Regional Museum Complex

National Museum Ilocos Regional Museum Complex

Photo / National Museum

This complex is made up of three museums. The Padre Burgos Museum is an ancestral house declared as a historical building due to its association with the martyred priest, Fr. Jose Burgos, one-third of Gomburza. Another is the Old Carcel Museum, a former jailhouse where former president Elpidio Quirino was born in. Lastly, the Magsingal Museum was a convent turned church declared a National Cultural Treasure by the National Museum of the Philippines in 2001.

Location: Vigan City, Ilocos Sur

Cordillera Rice Terraces Regional Museum

National Museum Cordillera Rice Terraces Regional Museum

Photo / National Museum

The National Museum Cordillera Rice Terraces Regional Museum is a site museum for the UNESCO World Heritage-inscribed Cordillera Rice Terraces. It also features heritage objects that represent the material culture of the Ifugao. These include an Ifugao native house; the hagabi bench that signifies social status; bulul or rice granary idols; early hunting, farming, and fishing tools; traditionally woven textiles and baskets; and more.

Location: Poblacion, Kiangan, Ifugao

Kabayan Burial Caves Site Museum

National Museum Kabayan

Photo / NM Kabayan Burial Cave Sites Museum

The National Museum Kabayan Burial Caves Site Museum protects the Kabayan Mummy Caves. The National Cultural Treasure is home to more than 200 man-made burial caves that have been found on the mountain slopes of Kabayan, Benguet along with 15 preserved human mummies. The museum houses one mummy and ethnographic objects.

Location: Kuya, Poblacion, Kabayan

Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs Site Museum

National Museum Angono Binangonan Petroglyphs Site Museum

Photo / National Museum Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs Site

The National Museum Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs Site Museum is home to the oldest known artworks in the Philippines. The Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs are a series of 127 human and animal-like figures engraved on the wall of a shallow cave of volcanic tuff. It dates back to 3,000 B.C.

Location: Bilibiran, Binangonan, Rizal

Marinduque-Romblon Area Museum

National Museum Marinduque Romblon Area Museum

Photo / National Museum Marinduque-Romblon

The National Museum Marinduque-Romblon Area Museum showcases the rich heritage of the Southern Tagalog islands of Marinduque and Romblon. It also features their role in early maritime trade, its rich natural resources, and religious traditions like Moryonan. The tradition is a week-long festival where local penitents wear full Roman soldier costumes with wooden masks.

Location: Malusak, Boac, Marinduque

Tabon Caves Site Museum

National Museum Tabon Caves Site Museum

Photo / National Museum Tabon Caves Site

The National Museum Tabon Caves Site Museum is made ups of 218 caves. Out of these, 38 have been found to contain archaeological and anthropological artifacts and specimens.

Location: JP Laurel Street, Bgy. Alfonso XIII, Quezon, Palawan

Bicol Regional Museum

National Museum Bicol

Photo / National Museum Bicol

The National Museum Bicol Regional Museum features the geological landscapes of Bicol that underscore the marvels of Mayon. It is right next to the Cagsawa Church Ruins, a National Cultural Treasure.

Location: Purok 5, Busay, Daraga, Albay

Western Visayas Regional Museum

National Museum Western Visayas Regional Museum

Photo / National Museum

The Western Visayas Regional Museum is formerly the Iloilo Provincial Jail or the Iloilo Rehabilitation Center. It is also one of the first American structures built in the Philippines. The museum houses two permanent exhibitions: the Habol Panay: The Woven Artistry of Western Visayas and the Geology and Paleontology Exhibition.

Location: Iloilo Provincial Capitol Complex, Brgy. Danao, City Proper, Iloilo City

Bohol Area Museum

National museum Bohol Area Museum

Photo / National Museum

The Bohol Area Museum is the former Provincial Capitol Building. It was built in the Spanish colonial period and served as a tribunal, prison, and living quarters for their military force. In 2012, the building was declared an Important Cultural Property by the National Museum of the Philippines.

Today, there are three exhibits at the museum: the Pagpauli Gallery Exhibition, which is the first major exhibition of the National Artist for Sculpture, Napoleon Abueva, in his home province. This is also the most extensive collection of the artist’s work. The Pagbanhaw Gallery Exhibition was put up to commemorate the 2013 Bohol Earthquake and its aftermath. Lastly, the Natural History of Bohol Gallery Exhibition showcases the province’s geological and paleontological treasures, and its flora and fauna.

Location: Carlos P. Garcia Ave., Poblacion 3, Tagbilaran City, Bohol

Eastern-Northern Mindanao Regional Museum

National Museum Eastern Northern Mindanao Regional Museum

Photo / National Museum

The Eastern-Northern Mindanao Regional Museum houses archaeological artifacts highlighting Butuan’s prehistoric existence. It also features cultural materials of the ethnolinguistic groups in the region, like the Manobo, Mamanwa, Higaonon, and lowland Butuanons.

Location: Brgy. Doongan, Butuan City

Western Southern-Mindanao Regional Museum

National Museum Western Southern Mindanao Regional Museum

Photo / National Museum

The Western-Southern Mindanao Regional Museum is also the historic Fort Pilar, which was established in 1635 and is currently a National Cultural Treasure in Zamboanga City. It houses the exhibit Filipinas: Photographs by Isa Lorenzo, a series of black-and-white photos of successful women; and All-Out Peace Not War/Kalinaw Hindi Digmaan by Bert Monterona. The latter is a collection of 22 large-scale paintings that depict the artist’s advocacies, like campaigning against war, building a culture of peace, protecting the rights of women, promoting sustainable living, and safeguarding the environment.

Location: Fort Pilar, Valderosa St. Sta Barbara, Zamboanga City

Sulu Archipelago Area Museum

National Museum Sulu Archipelago Area Museum

Photo / Sulu Archipelago Area Museum

The Sulu Archipelago Area Museum exhibits ethnographic materials representative of the culture and traditions of the Sulu region.

Location: Capitol Site, Jolo, Sulu

What do you think? Share your thoughts below!

Do you have a story for the WhenInManila.com Team? Email us at story.wheninmanila@gmail.com or send us a direct message at WhenInManila.com Facebook Page. Interact with the team and join the WhenInManila.com Community at WIM Squad. Join our Viber group to be updated with the latest news!