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Information about San Agustin Church

4.8
2681 Google reviews
Type
Religious Sites
Location
San Agustin Church, General Luna Street, Intramuros, Manila, Metro Manila, Philippines
Distance From City Center
0.7 km
High Season
Winter
Family Friendly
No
Average rating
4.8
Number of reviews
2681

San Agustin Church

San Agustin Church

San Agustin Church, situated inside Intramuros walls, is the oldest church in the Philippines. The church, together with the monastery nearby, was the only structure left standing after World War II. The current structure is actually the third version of the church which survived several natural disasters through time.

When the Spaniards came to the Philippines to spread Catholicism, churches were built throughout the country, one of them being the San Agustin Church. The church was built in 1571 under the Augustinian Order. It was then constructed out of nipa and bamboo and was named Iglesia y Convento de San Pablo.

Three years later, the Chinese Pirate, Limahong, conquered Manila, leading to the burning of houses and the San Agustin Church. Because of this, the church was reconstructed in 1575 with the use of wood. Unfortunately, the new wooden church was burnt down for the second time in 1583.

The Augustinian friars, fearing another disaster, chose to use adobe stones for the building of the third church. In 1586, they consulted Juan Macias about the design and construction of the church. It was then officially completed in 1607.​

 

How to get there

San Agustin Church is located at General Luna St, Manila, Metro Manila. You can take a jeepney, taxi, tricycle, or pedicab going to the church. The area can also be easily reached by the Light Rail Transit System (LRT) and the Metro Rail Transit system (MRT).

 

Best time to visit

The church can be visited anytime as it is an indoor location. It is open daily at 8 AM to 12 NN and then closes and reopens at 1 PM through 6 PM.

Frequently asked questions

Is San Agustin Church a heritage site?

Yes, it is. The government and UNESCO recognized the church as a World Heritage Site in 1993. At present, San Agustin Church still holds mass and is most often used for weddings and other ceremonies.  

Is there a museum inside San Agustin Church?

Yes, there is. Visitors can see the San Agustin Museum that displays a large collection of Spanish era artifacts, paintings, church ornaments, furniture, and statues.

What are the features of San Agustin Church?

San Agustin Church is built in a Spanish-Mexican baroque style with the addition of Chinese and Philippines elements. Its wooden door is carved with religious symbols, and the trompe-l’oeil murals painted on the ceiling and walls were made by Italian artists Giovanni Dibella and Cesare Alberoni. Hanging from the ceiling are 14th-century chandeliers which can be viewed from the choir loft upstairs. In the choir loft are hand-carved seats that are made of molave dating back to the 17th century. The church also has 14 side chapels, a pulpit, tombstones on the flooring, and the 18th-century pipe organ.

Why is San Agustin Church well-known aside from being a heritage site?

The church contains the tombs of several influential people like Miguel Lopez de Legaspi, Juan de Salcedo, Juan Luna, Martin de Goiti, Pedro A. Paterno, Trinidad Pardo de Tavera, and other hundreds of laypersons. Moreover, the church houses the image of Our Lady of Consolation which was crowned by Manila Archbishop Cardinal Jaime Sin in 2000.