5 Must See Churches in the Philippines

The Philippines is mostly made up of Roman Catholics and because of this religious practice is strong among the Filipinos. Religious practices and rituals means celebrating festivals, lighting a candle for the saints and for worship, and of course attending a Eucharistic celebration inside the Church. Churches are vibrant and symbolic signs of the people’s faith and loyalty to the One above. It has been standing at many land areas of all regions in the Philippines. Some are historic and some are cultural but almost all are standing old and have been there for hundreds of years.

This shows the architectural tribute from the Spanish colonization and mixed with how many Filipinos prefer to have the Churches built. Most of these Churches are made up of stone since it was years before. Stone and brick are the main materials used to have massive Churches to fit hundreds of faithful Christians every Sunday most especially since this is considered as Sabbath Day.

1. Nuestra Senora de la Asuncion

Situated in Santa Maria, Ilocos Sur. This was built on top of the hill and you have to walk to get to the top of it where you can see the Church. Approximately 82 steps flight. Observe that the Church seem so old and exposed with brick facade. There is also a massive octagonal bell tower.

The construction began in 1765 when Spanish Augustinians first settled in the area of Santa Maria. It was even declared a National Historic Landmark in 1982 and was also declared by UNESCO as a world heritage site. Although there are some damages to the structures of the walls, it had continued to be one of those Churches mostly visited.

2. Church of San Agustin in Paoay

Also known as Paoay Church located in Ilocos Norte. One of those few Baroque churches in the Philippines. It was believed that the Church was made from the knowledge of Augustinian friars in the year 1964 the style and materials used to protect it from earthquakes that occur in the Philippines.

Yes, earthquakes are known to create destruction in the Philippines and because of this, they made it strong and adaptable to natural calamities. See that the Church is almost made up of stone and stands very strong. It is also considered as one of the most romantic Churches in the Philippines. Want to propose? This might be a good idea for the start of romantic days.

3. Santo Nino Basilica

This is for sure more known than some of the Churches. Located in Cebu city. One of the oldest Church in the Philippines and guess what year it was built? You had it correct if you answered 1700's, because it was in 1735 that this Church was built. Every day this Church is populated with hundreds of people passing by, staying for a moment to reflect and pray.

Some light candles for wishes to be granted and there is also a preserved statue of Santo Nino inside the Church where you have to fall in line since a lot of people from nearby islands also come here to ask for prayers and wishes. Because of the number of people, the area is made public and open with the benches at the top and a center place where some could stand while attending the Mass.

4. San Agustin Church in Intramuros

San Agustin Church of Manila, Foursquare.com

Lies inside the walled city of Intramuros in Manila. This church was founded in 1571 and is the oldest stone church in the Philippines. It is also dubbed as the Wedding Capital of the Philippines since a lot ought to have their wedding ceremonies here because of its majestic place and aura.

Declared also as world heritage site in 1993. The Church is so neat and well preserved. The Chandeliers that hang on each corners of the Church contribute to its beauty. There are numbers of statues that are inside and paintings that lets you stay a minute to look at. Definitely a great place to choose to visit!

5. Santo Tomas de Villanueva

It is located in Miagao Iloilo. The Church is really wonderful to see. Amazing stone carvings and all those architectural landscape. Now the inside of the Church is now modernized with art decorative design and more concrete walls. It might not be the widest altar that you can see when you come closer to the Church, but it is beautiful and you will have the urge to look at more the corners of the Church.


Have you picked what Church you want to visit from the above list? Now you know the locations of these sites, it’s time for you to plan on visiting these wonderful, religious, and majestic places. There are a lot more to see. Just search it in Google but these are among my favorite Churches.


Shenna is a registered nurse in the Philippines. She's on her early 20's and have been travelling. She writes articles about travel to share her opinions, experiences, and likes and dislikes about the places that she has been to. She has been working as a freelancer writing articles from USA employers and in other countries. She has been to different places in the Philippines. Her Goal is to travel outside especially in Europe and in USA.