THINGS TO DO IN DAPITAN: Historical Walking Tour in Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte

Walking tours are my favorite introduction to a city. It's a great way to discover the place I'm visiting, see its sights, learn about its history, architecture and to meet people. After visiting Dakak Beach Resort and Rizal Shrine, I went back to Dapitan City center to walk around and do a walking tour. Dapitan City is declared a "Heritage Zone" in May 24, 2011 through the National Historical Commission of the Philippines' Resolution No. 03, s. 2011 in commemoration of the 150th birth anniversary of Dr. Jose P. Rizal.

Republic Act No. 10066, or otherwise known as the National Cultural Heritage Act of 2009, provided the legal basis for such declaration. It is the country's first heritage zone which has an undeniable historical and cultural significance as it is where our national hero spent his years of exile from 1892 to 1896.

Strolling around the Old Town of Dapitan is like following the footprints of our national hero. Aside from the Casa Real (the official residence Rizal in Dapitan), there are many other historical landmarks in Dapitan City. This includes Rizal monument, the old Town Plaza, the relief map of Mindanao made by Rizal himself, Town Hall Building (City Hall), Old Rizal Memorial District Hospital, Ilihan Hill, Parochial School, the Punto del Desembarco de Rizal (Rizal's Disembarkation Site), the Sta. Cruz marker, old ancestral houses and the St. James Church.

Casa Real - the official residence and administration building of the politico-military governor, this is were Dr. Jose Rizal lived in exile from July 1892 to March 1893 before he transferred to Talisay, now the Rizal Shrine.

Rizal Monument at Dapitan Town Plaza - located at the center of the town plaza, here, you'll see a snippet from one of his letters in 1893 written in Spanish which reads: "Yo estoy dispuesto a hacer todo lo que pueda en obsequio de este pueblo. No tengo inconveniente ninguno en quedarme para siempre en este distrito".

Dapitan Town Plaza - has a total land area of more or less one hectare, it already existed when Rizal arrived in Dapitan. It is said to be developed and beautified by Rizal with the assistance of Spanish Politico-Military Governor of Dapitan during that time.

Relief Map of Mindanao - One of Jose Rizal's legacies which he used as a way to teach history and geography to the townsfolk.

Old Dapitan City Hall - known as the old municipio during the Spanish times.

Old Rizal Memorial District Hospital - Presently the Sangguniang Panlungsod Building, it was built by the Americans it served the as a hospital for the people of Dapitan and patients from neighboring towns for 75 years until 1991.

Parochial School - located just beside the church, it is considered as the first formal school in Dapitan which emphasizes on the teaching of the Roman Catholic religion.

Adasa House - an old house which now serves as the office of the Department of Tourism.

Corazon de Dapitan - another old ancestral house you'll find around town.

St. James Church - built in 1871 in honor of St. James the Great who is the patron saint of Dapitan.

Interiors of St. James Church

Historical Marker - placed in the spot where Rizal stood while hearing mass on Sundays during his exile in Dapitan from July 17, 1892 to July 31, 1896.

How to Get to Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte

Your entry point will be Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte. Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific Air have daily flights to Dipolog City from Manila and Cebu. From the airport, you could take a tricycle to the city terminal. There are mini buses and vans at the Dipolog terminal that will take you to Dapitan City. Travel time is about 45 minutes from Dipolog City, fare is 25 pesos.

There are also fast crafts that travel daily from Cebu to Dapitan City. Trips from Cebu City to Dapitan City is about 5 hours with stop over in Tagbilaran City and Dumaguete City.

This is part of my trip in Zamboanga Peninsula that happened in July 12-15, 2012. Zamboanga del Norte is the 71st province on my list.


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1 comment :

  1. I have traveled to Dipolog and Dipitan several times but this walking tour is on my list when I go the December.


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