In celebration of our national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal's sesquicentennial birth anniversary, the Lakbay Jose Rizal @ 150 Project was launched last May 20, 2011 by the inter-agency led by the Department of Tourism (DOT) and National Historical Commission of the Philippines(NHCP).
The project aims to encourage tourists to relive Rizal's life and retrace his steps through a year-long travel to twenty (27) sites featured in the Jose Rizal @ 150 Heritage Trail.
Blazing Jose Rizal @ 150 Heritage Trail is a historical adventure worth taking! I see it as an opportunity to experience the history, scenery, and the satisfaction of being able to learn more about our national hero Dr. Jose Rizal and meet new people along the way! And though not my main motivation, I also hope to be one of the first 100 pilgrims to complete visiting all the 27 featured sites on the trail map. Tourists who will complete the trail within a year will receive a token, Kalakbay Ni Gat Jose Rizal Certificate and even domestic plane ticket courtesy of Cebu Pacific! Exciting huh!
And as an added incentive for me as part of the Pinoy Travel Bloggers group , the Lakbay Jose Rizal @ 150 Heritage Trail is one of the topics for the month of June 2011 Blog Carnival on the theme Rizal and Travel being hosted by Ivan Henares of Ivan About Town . The compilation can be read by clicking June 2011 PTB Blog Carnival Rizal and Travel .
The first step to commence with this historical adventure is to get my own Rizal Passport from the Department of Tourism in Kalaw Avenue, Manila! I also got four (4) extra passports for any of you who wants one! (just be the first to text or send comment and you'll get it if you live nearby!)). For others, you can visit Room 106 of the DOT (or any Lakbay Jose Rizal Heritage Sites indicated below after June 19, 2011.)
As of today, I already got three (3) stamps on my Heritage Trail Map! Good start! But the trail blazing is, of course, far from over. So for this post, I focus on the six sites featured in the Jose Rizal @ 150 Heritage Trail which I have already visited.
NATIONAL CAPITAL REGION
1. Rizal Park - then known as Bagumbayan was shaped like a small moon (lunette) and thus was later named Luneta.This was the place of execution of Jose Rizal on December 30, 1896 so the park was officially renamed Rizal Park in his honor.
Located along Roxas Boulevard,Burgos, Kalaw and Taft Avenues,Manila, Rizal Park is just a stone's throw away from the DOT building where we got the passports so it is a no-brainer why we (my brother Mike) chose this as the Heritage Trail's kick off site!
2. Rizal Monument - this bronze-and-granite monument serves as the symbolic focal point of the Rizal Park. The National Monument with the statue of the national hero was designed by Richard Kissling of Switzerland and houses the remains of Rizal.It was inaugurated during the 17th Death Anniversary of Rizal on December 30, 1913.
Rizal poem "Mi Ultimo Adios" ("My Last Farewell") is inscribed on the memorial plaque. The site is continuously guarded by ceremonial soldiers, known as Kabalyeros de Rizal (Knights of Rizal).
* Just one stamp for Rizal Park and Rizal Monument.
3. Rizal Execution Site - This is the exact location where Dr. Rizal was executed.
Rizal's execution at the age of thirty five, made him a martyr of the Philippine Revolution so there is a marker called "The Martyrdom of Dr. Jose Rizal" at the execution site.
Behind this marker is a Light and Sound Museum (with P10.00 entrance fee) where you can simulate (almost) the moments before Rizal's execution by a firing squad of native infantry of the Spanish Army through the big scalptured figures. The Light and Sound museum was closed for the day in preparation for the Independence Day on June 12, 2011 so I am using my old picture(2009).
* Got my second stamp
4. Rizal Fountain - This fountain is where Dr. Rizal used to drink while writing the final chapters of his novel,Noli Me Tangere. The fountain was a gift by the people of Germany on December 30, 1964.
* earned me my third stamp
5. Prison Cell and Rizal Shrine - Fort Santiago in Intramuros,Manila.
6. Chapel Cell of Rizal - also inside Fort Santiago in Intramuros,Manila.
7. Site of the Ateneo Municipal de Manila - Anda cor. Sta.Lucia Street, Intramuros,Manila.
8. Site of the University of Santo Tomas - Banco Filipino Building, A. Soriano cor.Solana Streets,Intramuros,Manila.
9. Site of the Trial of Rizal - The Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila (PLM) at General Luna corner Muralla Street, Intramuros, Manila.
10. Paco Park - San Marcelino and General Luna Streets, Paco, Manila.
11. San Fernando Train Station - Brgy. Sto. Nino,San Fernando Pampanga
12. Kamestisuhan District - (Women of Malolos Marker/Bautista House)- Sto. Nino St., Malolos,Bulacan.
13. Rizal Shrine - J.P.Rizal St. Calamba City, Laguna
A National Shrine, this is the birthplace of our national hero. The original house , however, was destroyed during the Second World War but was rebuilt in 1948, by virtue of Executive Order No. 145 signed by President Elpidio Quirino.
Architect Juan F. Nakpil in reconstructing Rizal's house used old photos, the written memoirs of Rizal, and the recollections of Rizal's surviving siblings and relatives to come up with a house which looked exactly like the house during Rizal's time. The re-built house was inaugurated in 1950 and opened to public.
At present, the shrine serves as a museum containing some original furniture, books, and memorabilia of the Rizal family. I have visited this shrine a number of times and have taken photographs so let me take you to the entire house.
Inside its walls, one will learn so much more about the early childhood of our national hero.
On June 19, 1861, Jose Rizal Mercado was born to Don Francisco and Dona Teodora, a well-to-do couple who originally came from Binan, Laguna but migrated to Calamba after their marriage.
Jose Rizal was the seventh of the eleventh children of the couple Francisco and Teodora. Those who came ahead were: Saturnina (1850),Paciano (1851), Narcisa (1852), Olimpia (1855), Lucia (1857), and Maria (1859).
The house is huge with daughters' bedrooms, sons' bedrooms, two dining rooms, a master's bedroom, a huge library, a living room, cocina, toilet and bath.
* I was wearing almost identical clothes during these two visits in 2009 and 2011!
There is also a huge backyard where you could see the nipa hut where Rizal's sisters used to play.
* need to come back for the rubber stamp coz visited it a week before the launch of Rizal @ 150.
14. Calamba Church - J.P.Rizal St.Calamba City,Laguna
Located right next door to the Rizal's mansion is the San Juan Bautista Church where Rizal was baptized “José Rizal Mercado” by Fr. Rufino Collantes on June 22, 1861. Young Jose was the first in the family to use the name Rizal in accordance with the 1849 decree of then Governor Narciso Claveria to change the surnames of Filipinos.
*need to come back for the rubber stamp coz visited it a week before the launch of Rizal @ 150.
15. National Shrine of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage (Antipolo Church)- Oliveros Street, Antipolo City, Rizal
16. Rizal Monument - Magallanes and Justo Lucban Streets, Daet, Camarines Norte
17. Molo Church (St.Anne's Parish) and Escolta - Jocson and San Marcos Streets, Molo District, Iloilo City, Iloilo
18. Dumaguete City - Rizal's boat, the S.S. Espana arrived in Dumaguete City and Rizal went ashore, visited Governor Regal of Negros Occidental
19. Fort San Pedro - Pier Area, Cebu City, Cebu
20. Rizal Shrine and Waterworks of Rizal - Barangay Talisay, Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte
21. Dapitan Plaza - Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte
22. Site of the Casa Real - Barangay Talisay, Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte (inside Rizal Park)
23. Dapitan Church - City Hall Drive, Barangay Sta. Cruz, Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte
24. Relief Map of Mindanao - Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte
25. Santa Cruz Beach - Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte
26. Dipolog Cathedral - Dipolog, Zamboanga del Norte
27. Rizal Farm - Katipunan, Zamboanga
Check out the previous blog carnival topics in Estan Cabigas' Pinoy Travel Bloggers Blog Carnival archives
(First of a series of travel to the 27 sites featured in the Rizal @ 150 Heritage Trail from June 19,2011 to June 19, 2012.)