SHRINE CITY OF Dapitan: The Perfect Place to Unwind


Dapitan is not an ordinary city. It is incomparable in terms of beauty, tranquility, historical significance and most of all far more distinct from the rest of the modern cities in the Philippines.


The sense of history of the City of Dapitan forms part of the greatness of the country which has been considered as the Philippine history’s gem because it once sheltered our National Hero Dr. Jose P. Rizal.


Tourists from all over the world often wonder when they will ever set foot to Dapitan which is also very well known as the “Shrine City of the Philippines” because of the tranquility of its atmosphere and the opportunity of meeting the friendly Dapitanons.


When in Dapitan, it is most likely that you may feel like you’re going back to the 17th century where local and international tourists can witness and experience the great legacy and contributions of Dr. Jose Rizal, who spent four years of his life in exile.


Its picturesque hills and beaches keep on magnetizing travelers to stay there and hang out for days or weeks.


There are also times that the city is visited by group of students coming from different schools in the nearby provinces and some are from Luzon and Visayas for field trips and roam around the city especially the historical and cultural landmarks of the place. Local tourists are doing the same thing. When they are in Dapitan, they can’t just stand around and not see the beauty of the many tourist attractions, which has definitely draw them to keep on coming back to this glorious city.




One of this is the Rizal Shrine which is considered a major historical landmark in Dapitan and of the Philippine archipelago where hundreds of visitors come and see for themselves the gorgeousness of the 16-hectare sanctuary. It was acquired by Dr. Jose Rizal by purchase during his exile and built several structures like the Casa Cuadrada, Casa Redonda, Casa Redonda Pequena, Casitas Hospitales, Aquaduct, Mi Retiro Rock, Amphitheater and the Rizalina.


Aside from being historic, Dapitan is also known as one of the country’s tourist’s destinations which fulfilled the dreams of its forefathers whose struggles and endeavors had resulted marvelously.


Dapitan is also included in almost every itinerary of tourists who will be visiting some areas of Mindanao because of the famous Dakak Park and Beach Resort, a privately-owned World Class Resort located in Barangay Taguilon, about 30 minutes ride from the heart of the city.


There are also places where tourists love to see when in Dapitan and this most visited attractions include the Relief Map of Mindanao which is located across the St. James Church with a total land area of 900 sq meters created by Dr. Rizal purposely as a motivating device for teaching history and geography to the townsfolk and further beautifying the plaza.


Next is the Ilihan Hill where the “Fort de Dapitan” was strategically constructed on its top by the Spanish Government as a military fortress in order to protect and guard thriving settlements from foreign attacks. At the top of the Ilihan Hill and Foot Trail at Talisay City Square, tourists will be amazed gazing the panoramic view of Dapitan.


The present City Plaza of Dapitan is the very plaza which Dr. Rizal developed and beautified which he planned to make it comparable with the one he saw in Europe in his journey and in front of it is St. James Church and Catholic Rectory which most of the religious individuals and groups also visit in order to witness the architectures which until now was retained and has withstood the test of time.


Visitors are also eager to see the Sta. Cruz Beach which was put up as a symbol of Christianity when Jesuit priest F. Pascual Acuna arrived in Dapitan in 1607 and baptized the natives. This is also the place where Rizal first set his foot in Dapitan. The Sta. Cruz Beach is part of a clean stretch of beaches of the famous Dapitan Bay also known as the Sunset Boulevard nestled on the northern section of the poblacion.


With these tourists destinations in hand as their arsenal to certain comfort and gratification, Dapitanons are inviting tourists from all over the world to come visit their beautiful and serene city and experience the ecstasy of the preserved town Dr. Jose Rizal fell in love with.