Faith tourism: 1 million people visited Intramuros during Holy Week

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 02 2018 11:02 PM

DOT handout photos
DOT handout photos
DOT handout photos
DOT handout photos
DOT handout photos
DOT handout photos

MANILA - Around 1 million visitors traveled to the "Walled City of Intramuros" for the observance of Holy Week this year, the Department of Tourism (DOT) said on Monday.

The DOT and the Intramuros Administration (IA) welcomed visitors with Catholic-centered events to promote the Walled City as a "holistic faith destination," DOT said in a statement.
 
This is the first time Intramuros opened its churches and chapels to pilgrims since the World War II in a bid to restore its vibrant religious culture, the DOT said.

“For a predominantly Catholic country like the Philippines, the Holy Week or Lenten season is a perfect time to reflect, repent, and travel. We congratulate the Intramuros Administration and our Faith Tourism sector for the successful reopening of the Walled City for the Lenten season,” Tourism Secretary Wanda Tulfo-Teo said.

Intramuros officials hosted Visita Iglesia in 7 churches inside the Walled City - the Manila Cathedral, San Agustin Church, San Ignacio Church site, Guadalupe Shrine in Fort Santiago, Knights of Columbus Fr. Willman Chapel, Lyceum of the Philippines University Chapel, and Mapua University Chapel. 

A modern interpretation of the Senakulo (Passion of the Christ) was also staged in front of the Palacio del Gobernador.

The DOT is pushing for more faith-based tourism activities for local and foreign Catholic faithful, Teo said.
 
“We aim to capitalize on our unique Catholic festivals and Filipino traditions to pursue more Catholic pilgrims or faith tourists from Brazil, Mexico, United States, Columbia, and Spain among others,” Teo added.
 
The rise of spiritual tourism in the Philippines is anchored on the historic churches and religious sites that are open to the public, the DOT said.