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TRAVELER’s NOTEPAD: In Depth Look at the Philippines’ Welcome Arches

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Welcome arches are considerably the most noticed landmark of a certain place. It is a common structure that welcomes the people upon entering the town, city, province, barangay and even a sitio.  Arches are mostly photographed by tourists/outsiders, it is somehow an achievement once you reached for it! Now, we look up close and personal on our country’s note-worthy arches!

Also, may I remind you that the Burgos, Ilocos Norte welcome arch has been destroyed. (you know, the one with two lighthouses at the side) The local government destroyed it to make way for the huge new windmills brought by trucks. =(


The Oldest Chinatown Arch that welcomes you at the Oldest Chinatown in the World!

The Manila Chinatown Friendship Arch

The Manila Chinatown Friendship Arch

The Filipino-Chinese Friendship Arch in Manila is the oldest of it’s kind which is constructed around the year 1595, a year later after the actual Chinatown was founded at Binondo District in Manila, also the oldest Chinatown in the World! The arch was constructed to commemorate the close ties of Filipino and Chinese not only in the Philippines but even in China as well. Before the Spanish came to the islands, the Chinese already traded with Filipino locals thus making a strong bond in two different races.

Every boundary of Batangas Province, welcomes you to the Land of the Heroic & The Brave

46189_429410957120041_1947841606_nIf ever you’re coming from the provinces of Laguna, Cavite, Quezon and even the city port, you will be welcomed by this arch once you entered the province of Batangas, stating; “Maligayang Pagdating sa Lalawigan ng Magigiting” meaning Welcome to the Province of the Heroic. No wonder! A Dozen of  heroes, politicians, famous artists, actors & actresses was born from this province by the likes of General Miguel Malvar, former President Jose P. Laurel and many more! Living up with their moniker, the ‘Batangenos’ often described as the brave ones among other Filipino ethnicities.

The Most Photographed Welcome Arch is located at Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte

DSC03807The photo of the Welcome Arch above is the most Photographed Welcome Arch in the Philippines! With an estimate count of 1,089 photos on regular weekdays, 2,463 on regular weekends and an astonishing 6,785 photos per day during Summer Season, Pagudpud’s boundary arch between Bangui, Ilocos Norte is one of a kind! Even the local government could not believe it so they widened the road nearby the arch for vehicles can safely park and during the night, they open two strong spotlights to highlight the beautiful Welcome Arch.

The Arch that say Farewell as if you’re leaving for another Country!

46189_429410957120041_1947841606_nObviously, you’re not leaving for another country but for another main Region or group of Islands known as Visayas! Matnog’s farewell Arch is so famous that is somehow one of the most photographed arches as well. Stating that you’re about to leave the island of Luzon after a 646 kilometer long journey from Manila, you’re about to enter the island of Samar.

The Largest Salakot in the World happens to be an Arch

46189_429410957120041_1947841606_nYou know what is Salakot? A Salakot is a traditional Cwide-brimmed hat usually worn by our local farmers. It originated from Panay Island and since Central Luzon is one of the biggest producer of Rice all over the country, Angeles City, Pampanga (which is part of Central Luzon), built the largest Salakot in the world as paying homage to the sacrifice and hardwork of our beloved farmers. Today, you could still see the Salakot Arch near the Clark Freeport area of Angeles City.

The Forgotten Arch of Pasay-Makati

46189_429410957120041_1947841606_nThis is not the actual photo of the so called “Forgotten Arch” of Pasay-Makati boundary since no source, records can provide such photo but it literally looks like this, the Manila-Makati boundary arch. Why forgotten? Since the Construction of Skyway, I recognized when I was a kid that they used the arch as a pillar of the said highway system. They just reconstructed it to look like the pillars of Skyway nowadays, but still, hidden beneath the thick concrete is the original pillar of the infamous Welcome Arch with a soaring ‘Monkey Eating Eagle’ on top. =)


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About the Author
Mount Kinabalu is my dream Climb. Gonna Explore 81 Provinces of the Philippines!