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Baluarte de San Andres

For more than 500 years this large stone fortification has stood watch over the city. Visit to inspect cannons and admire the views over Manila.

Embark on a walking tour of Intramuros, Manila’s walled city to see the fortifications that used to defend its citizens. This was the original Manila built by the Spanish in the 1600s and almost completely destroyed during World War II. Over the years it has been reconstructed little by little to capture its historic past.

One of the best preserved fortifications is the Baluarte de San Andres, named after St. Andrew a patron saint of the city. The thick stone structure was built in the 1600s to protect the old Puerta Real, the gate that’s opposite modern day Rizal Park. The ancient stronghold also shored up the city’s southern defenses and protected a wide expanse of moat, some of which is now a golf course.

Climb up the stone stairs to walk parts of the wall. See the row of well-preserved cannons that once fired on invaders including the Chinese, Dutch and Portuguese. Take your time surveying the bastion to get a feel for its importance to the city. Touch the stones and observe the thickness of the walls. Imagine what it would have been like during the heat of battle.

Go to the bombproof store that once housed gunpowder and look out into the distance from the watchtower. 

Rising up a few meters from street level, Baluarte de San Andres offers good views of some of the city’s landmarks including Manila City Hall. Be sure to bring your camera with you.

Intramuros is located on the southern side of the Pasig River. One of the most convenient ways to reach the walled city and the Baluarte de San Andres is to take the light rail train to the United Nations Station. From there it’s about a 20-minute walk to the gates of the city. Alternatively, take a taxi or ride on a jeepney.


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