Intramuros (Latin, "within the walls") is the oldest district and historic core of Manila, the capital of the Philippines. Also called the Walled City, it was the original city of Manila and was the seat of government when the Philippines was a component realm of the Spanish Empire. Districts beyond the walls were referred as the extramuros of Manila, meaning "outside the walls".
nstruction of the defensive walls was started by Spanish colonial government in the late 16th century to protect the city from foreign invasions. The 0.67-square-kilometre (0.26 sq mi) walled city was originally located along the shores of the Manila Bay, south of the entrance to Pasig River. Guarding the old city is Fort Santiago, its citadel located at the mouth of the river. Land reclamations during the early 20th-century subsequently obscured the walls and fort from the bay.
Intramuros was heavily damaged during the battle to recapture the city from the Japanese Imperial Army during the Second World War. Reconstruction of the walls was started in 1951 when Intramuros was declared a National Historical Monument, which is continued to this day by the Intramuros Administration (IA).
The Global Heritage Fund identified Intramuros as one of the 12 worldwide sites "on the verge" of irreparable loss and destruction on its 2010 report titled Saving Our Vanishing Heritage, citing its insufficient management and development pressures.
The fort is one of the most important historical sites in Manila.
Several lives were lost in its prisons during the Spanish Colonial Period and World War II.
Jos? Rizal, one of the Philippine national heroes, was imprisoned here before his execution in 1896.
The Rizal Shrine museum displays memorabilia of the hero in their collection and the fort features, embedded onto the ground in bronze, his footsteps representing his final walk from his cell to the location of the actual execution.
Much has been said about the national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal. We know him as a patriot, physician and eye surgeon, novelist, poet, educator, swordsman, painter, sculptor, farmer, master of 22 languages, and nationalist. His life and works inspired the Philippine revolution against Spanish colonization.
Unsurprisingly - and unfortunately - his numerous accomplishments in various fields eclipse his valuable contributions to science. (Students nowadays may even be more familiar with the names of his girlfriends than the names of his scientific discoveries!)
Thus, in celebration of Rizal's 157 ...
Metro Manila is not exactly the most bike-friendly destination. The city itself, with the urban sprawl, horrible traffic and lack of bicycle lanes is not the best place to explore on two wheels. Sure, you can find areas for urban biking in the city around the Mall of Asia (MOA), CCP Complex, Bonifacio Global City and Circuit Makati, but these are mostly paved and you'll be exposed to the polluted city most of the time.
Our adventure today takes us to one of Manila's historical districts where one can see remnants of the Spanish colonial era Philippines. Join me as we go around Intramuros to check out what it has to offer.
I believe it is imperative for a citizen of any country to know about their rich historical past. As well as the heroes (both men and women) who fought valiantly (either through the power of the pen or the mighty sword) for them to enjoy their rights as a freedom loving population of a democratic nation.
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