8 Things To Do in Tacloban City, Leyte, Philippines

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     We decided to promote tourism in Tacloban, Leyte, Philippines which was recently ‘super’ damaged by the super typhoon Haiyan in 2013. We know that the destruction was 5 years ago–  but this typhoon was so powerful that it took few more years before citizens of this inspiring city started to move on. To contribute for   the city’s re-growth, we would love to share 8 things you can do in this place:

1.) Try their creative restaurants

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Ribs pesto by Camto Fresco located in Burgos St., Downtown, Tacloban City, Leyte, Philippines

     There are actually a lot. My friend– Charles Young, who is a local of the city toured me to some of his favourites. I could mention few for now– then I want you to explore this city for various creative tastes it could offer. First on my list was Rovinare by Jose Karlo’s Coffee. The Coffee shop was established by the current Ms. Philippines 2018 candidate no.4 Ana Patricia Asturias, who recycled some typhoon haiyan ruins into artful pieces currently used as interiors or displays in her coffee shop.

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Inside Rovinare by Jose Karlo’s Coffee
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Pesto Cheese Sticks by Camto Fresco located in Burgos St., Downtown, Tacloban City, Leyte, Philippines

 

2.) Visit Price Mansion

     The Price Mansion was once the Philippine President’s official residence after General Douglas MacArthur re-established the Philippine Commonwealth in 1944 in Tacloban with Sergio Osmeña as President.

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The Price Mansion. (In the far right window view are statues of General Douglas MacArthur and President Sergio Osmeña)

 

3.) Traverse San Juanico Bridge

     The longest bridge in the Philippines, San Juanico Bridge, can be traversed starting from Tacloban City. I rented a tricycle for 350 philippine pesos or 7 US dollars to traverse the whole architecture.

 

 

4.) Stay at Yellow Doors Hostel

      This is the only hostel in the city. If you are travelling solo and on a budget (around 500 philippine pesos or 10 US dollars per night), you may try booking at this hostel. The establishment is very well maintained and staffs are very polite. I stayed in a dorm room (co-shared by boys and girls) with 6 beds. On my first day, I only had one roommate– a college girl. We never talked and just acknowledged each other’s presence by a smile when she was about to check out. I got offended at the first few hours we were together in the room (because it seems she was on a hurry to go outside whenever I am moving in my area). I hope she doesn’t think that I am a pervert or a rapist. Anyways, her attitude could have been a blessing in disguise as I have a girlfriend and do not have any intention to be unfaithful.

     On my second day, I only had one roommate again- this time an American NGO worker named Jacob. He was very busy on his laptop that I lost my chance to have an American friend who will invite me someday to America.

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5.)  Visit the Romualdez Museum

Visit the Romualdez Museum which is the ancestral house of the most famous First Lady in the Philippines, Imelda Romualdez Marcos. There is an entrance fee of 200 philippine pesos (or 4 US dollars).

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Facade of the Romualdez Museum
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This dog in the Romualdez Museum has survived the super typhoon Haiyan. I wonder whether its faulty eyes were damaged by the typhoon or old age.

 

6.) Pay respect to the Mass Grave Holy Cross Gardens near San Juanico or MV Eva

The tricycle driver Melvin Eval who toured me in San Juanico bridge encouraged me to pay visit as well to the mass grave where thousands of Yolanda victims lie. In below video, he shared to me that the roads we passed by were full of dead people after the typhoon.

 

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Mass Grave at Holy Cross Gardens
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On November 8, 2013 at 7AM, M/V Eva Jocelyn, which was anchored in the city harbor, ran aground and killed residents of Barangay Anibong. It was pushed by a 7-meter high storm surge caused by winds in excess of 370 km/h brought by Super Typhoon Haiyan. This shipwreck stands as a remembrance of the thousands of lives that perished throughout the City of Tacloban on that day. It marks the genesis of our advocacy for resiliency and adaptation to a new normal that will continue for generations to come.

 

7.) Hop to nearby town Palo, Leyte for Mac Arthur Park

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On this spot, Palo, Leyte- General Douglas MacArthur returning to the Philippines on October 20, 1944 and personally led the swift drive against the Japanese Forces in the Philippines. President Sergio Osmeña and some members of the government-in-exile arrived with General MacArthur and proceeded to reorganize , restore, and administer the government of the commonwealth of the Philippines.

 

8.) Pray at Sto. Niño Church

It is just so wonderful to visit a church in every place that you visit. And I was amazed to the Sto.Niño Church here in Tacloban City.

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Additional Helpful Information:

1.) For tricycle tours, you may contact Melvin Eval +639363993559

19 comments

  1. Despite wars being fought on your soil and the amount of natural disasters you incur, I must say I have always admired the way the Filipinos bounce back, rebuild and carry on.

  2. I’m glad to read that Tacloban is back on its feet. It’s interesting that part of the ship M/V Eva Jocelyn, is now like a monument. I saw it when it was on the road right after Haiyan’s devastation, when I came as a member of a volunteeer medical team. I would like to visit Tacloban again one of these days.

  3. It is nice of you to promote Tacloban in the Philippines. A few years ago my husband went to the Philippines with regard to his work. I also know that he loves the country and would like to go there again but as a tourist and not for his boss. Maybe it will ever happen again, then I will keep your tips in mind. Thank you!
    Best regards, Heidi

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