Saturday, October 31, 2015

Immaculate Concepcion Cathedral & Plaza Cuartel: 6th & 7th Stop of Puerto Princesa Tour

Posted by Free-Spirited Vixen (Juliefe Cuenca) at 4:05 PM
     We paid only Php1,500 (for the van with driver) for a half day tour of Puerto Princesa. Since our group had around 10 members, it only cost Php150 per person. The tour was already inclusive of the ffg places:

8. The Baywalk


Immaculate Concepcion Cathedral
   Our 6th stop for the day was the Cathedral. Actually, there are quite a number of cathedrals in the Philippines named in honor of the Immaculate Concepcion and one of these is this angular-structured church in Barangay Liwanag, Rizal Avenue, Puerto Princesa City.  
   In 1872, a Spanish expedition proclaimed the Immaculate Conception of Mary as the patroness of Puerto Princesa; and this previously small church celebrated its first mass in the same year, before it was developed into a cathedral in 1961.
     When we arrived, there were petals strewn on the floor, a sign that a wedding ceremony had just concluded.

A "Stop Abortion" sign, and a  life-sized tablet of the 10 commandments

The Plaza Cuartel
     Just on the right side of the cathedral is a historical site, the Plaza Cuartel. Inside the plaza is the memorial marker for the 143 American prisoners of war. The marker serves as "a grim reminder of the realities of war as a price for freedom and the burning to death of 143 American prisoners of war by their Japanese Imperial Army Kempie-tai captors inside the tunnel on this site on the fateful evening of December 15, 1944."
These are the walls and the gate towards the barracks
    As stated below, a few escaped by swimming all thru the way to Iwahig, on the other side of the bay.
     Admittedly, when we first arrived, I didn't have an inkling on the story behind the Plaza Cuartel. So the small statue on top of the marker sort of creeps me out especially since it is the first thing that catches your attention, it being on top. Only after reading the words did it become meaningful, and it was really effective in the sense that the image stuck in my mind for a long time.
      Despite its grim reminder of World War II, Plaza Cuartel is also a park where lovers can date, friends can hold meetings, or just chill and stroll along.



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