If you had to rank the most historically important locations in Metro Manila, Rizal Park would be near the top of that list. Formerly called Luneta Park, the 58-hectare area has been the site of many significant events throughout the country’s history, most notably the execution of the national hero that the park is named after. If you want to find out more about Jose Rizal and the country’s history, then Rizal Park is a must-see!
What to expect
The most famous landmark of Rizal Park is the Rizal Monument, standing tall near Roxas Boulevard and facing Manila Bay. Unveiled in 1913, it features a bronze statue of Jose Rizal holding a book and surrounded by other figures reading and caring for their children. Every day, several officers from the Philippine Marine Corps guard the Rizal Monument, highlighting its significance.
While most tourists are only familiar with the monument, Rizal Park has several other pieces of history scattered throughout its 58 hectares of greenery. Many statues, sculptures, and artworks decorate the park, conveying not only the country’s history but also its rich culture. Only a few steps away from the Rizal Monument, for example, are statues depicting the national hero’s execution, located at the same spot where the actual execution took place over a century ago.
Various museums are also located within the park, most of which are run by the National Museum of the Philippines. Tourists who want to be surrounded by nature will also appreciate the many gardens around Rizal Park, all of which contain unique architecture and picturesque sites.
With its historical landmarks, various museums, and tranquil gardens, Rizal Park has something for every tourist!
Where to experience it
Rizal Park is located in the city of Manila. From the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, it will take you around 30 minutes to get to Intramuros via land. If you’re staying in Makati City, it will also take you around 30 minutes, while if you’re coming from Quezon City, that travel time increases to around an hour.