CHOOSY KA BA: 10 Reasons to Choose Iloilo (More Than The City of Love)


Choose Philippines
Choose Philippines | Mar 05, 2015

Did you know that Iloilo was an official “Royal City” in the 1890’s?

It was awarded the Perpetual Title “La Muy Leal Y Noble Ciuded de Iloilo” which means “Most Loyal and Noble City.” The town was recognized by Spain’s Queen Regent Maria Cristina through the Royal Decree of 1896 in appreciation of the people’s loyalty to the Spanish crown as shown in an inscription in the Coat of Arms, and consequently earning the moniker "The Queen's City of the South" during that period.

The current Iloilo City Seal.

Iloilo has a lot to offer, our suggested list is just trimmed down to 10 in no particular order. So, keep on exploring the City of Love and tell us about your very own “10 reasons why you choose Iloilo.”


Historical Places and it’s Natural Splendor

1. Walk at the historical streets of Calle Real

The building built in 1922 at Calle Real

It’s like exploring in a museum. You’ll see old buildings that were built during the late Spanish era that survived World War II and have fended off the ravages of time.

VIEW: The Royal Street of Iloilo: Calle Real

2. Enjoy a hot cup of native chocolate at an ancestral house called “balay nga bato” (stone house).

Camiña Balay nga Bato

VIEW: All-in-One: Heritage, Tsokolate, Molo & Biscocho at Camiña Balay nga Bato

3. Take a break and enjoy nature at Damires Hills.

photo from Damires Hills Resort FB page

 It is 40-hectare inland resort for those who would like to escape the busy city-life or just enjoy the rest days, to relax, enjoy and simply breathe some fresh air.

VIEW: Enjoy Life’s Simple Delights This Holy Week in Iloilo's Ecofriendly Resort

4. Take a peek at the well-preserved San Joaquin Cemetery.

The San Joaquin Cemetery

This ancient Roman Catholic cemetery is perhaps the best preserved in the entire Iloilo Province. The cemetery is enclosed by stone walls and wrought-iron grills. The Camposanto also sits on a hill overlooking the sea.

VIEW: Possibly One of Asia's Most Beautiful Cemeteries: The Camposanto de San Joaquin


Recipes and Food Galore

5. Try to cook the specialty of Molo, Iloilo.

Molo Soup; photo from thefilipinofood.com

Pancit molo is an adaptation of wonton soup, and is the specialty of the district of Molo in Iloilo City.

VIEW: Perfect for This Bed Weather: Pancit Molo Recipe

6. Enjoy delicious dinners with Iloilo’s restaurants.

Theses recommended restaurants won't only fill your tummy but also fill your hearts with good vibes.

VIEW: 10 Restos in the Philippines' City of Love for That Perfect Dinner Date

7. Take home a piece of Iloilo with you.

Dagoy Doll

The official Dinagyang mascot, Dagoy, is a friendly Aeta/Ati kid. Standing almost 7-feet tall, it has now a miniature version that you can bring home.

VIEW: Bring Home This Proudly Philippine Made & Adorable Festival Doll!


Merry-making and Lovely People

8. Immerse with the Ilonggos at their famous Dinagyang Festival.

The festival reflects the Ilonggos artistry, craftsmanship and creativity as seen through their costumes and choreography of the participating tribes.

VIEW: Dinagyang Festival: How This Dazzling Event Started

9. Learn how to cook Batchoy with the country’s Ilongga top chef.

Batchoy; photo from en.wikipedia.org

Chef Pauline showed the viewers of "KrisTV" how to cook Iloilo's popular batchoy. This most famous Ilonggo noodle dish started even before World War II.

WATCH: Iloilo's Batchoy: A Top Chef's Famed Recipe Which You Can Make

Don’t want to cook? Know where to get it here.

10. Fall in love with an Ilongga.

Need we say more? Here’s the proof:

VIEW: 5 Beauties from Iloilo: Basta Ilongga, Gwapa!


How to Get There

Iloilo locator map; photo from en.wikipedia.org

From Manila, you can fly to Iloilo (estimated cost of Php3,000++, round trip, one hour). The Iloilo Airport is 30 minutes (approximately 19 km) away from Iloilo City.

You can also opt for a bus trip (estimated cost of PhP875++ per head, air-conditioned bus and boat fare, 17 hours plus).

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