A Day at the Museum

On my last day of company affairs in Manila, I invited my trusted friend Dominic to join me explore Manila’s National Museum of Anthropology.

Located at the heart of Manila, just nearby Luneta Park, we took the chance to explore what’s kept inside the Museum of Anthropology.

It is located at Agrifina Circle, Rizal Park ,Metro Manila. The museum has been declared free admission for all visitors since January 2016 under a Presidential Executive Order, not the first time for me to say this, but best things in life are really FREE.

We registered and left our bags at the baggage counter before we were allowed to explore the five-storey building. The museum houses the archaeology and anthropology division which serves as a component of the National Museum of the Philippines, in which as of writing is still under renovation.

These are the highlights of our tour:

*Garing Exhibit

Features the history of ivory production in the Philippines, its contribution to religious artifacts, ornaments and its detrimental effects to the sources, the elephant species.

The exhibit’s highlight was mainly about the illegal trade that led to extinction of elephants and its kind due to unregulated exploitation of ivory or garing being used on different purposes in Asia and all over the world. Philippines being at the crossroad of this ivory trade had been taking action to combat the problem.

*Treasures of San Diego

The exhibit counts back to 800 BC. The galleon trade ship that brought in trade and commerce from other parts of the world to the Philippine Archipelago.

The relics are widely composed of history related articles and features more of the ship’s structures, its crew and the treasures/products they brought in. The exhibit focuses on the homecoming of San Diego as she was built in Cebu by Basque, Chinese and Filipino shipbuilders.

*Rice and Biodiversity

Tackles the rice and biodiversity in the Philippine setting, the exhibit presented the different strain of rice, its area of production mapped all over the country, and the ancient tools and rituals performed for rice production and farming.

*Bangsamoro Roots

Showcases the lumad culture, fashion, music, lifestyle, history of land ownership and liberation from foreign oppressors. Lumads are one of the primary occupants of the Philippines but had been denied ownership for ages up until today.

The liberation and the history of Lumad is another unresolved side of Philippine history.

*National Living Treasure

The exhibit features significant individuals who preserved the Philippine culture and trademarks through their field of expertise ranging from clothing, music, art,etc. All purely and proudly Pinoy.


The exhibit presents the basic system and alphabet of the Filipino. Baybayin serves as the basic alphabet of which the modern abakada had been derived from.

Free tours on museums aren’t only a thing for the travelers but for citizens as well.

The Exit

Our tour was cut short by the 2 PM Earthquake drill, there were galleries that unfortunately we weren’t able to visit. Those are for you to explore when you go to The National Museum of Anthropology.

Kindly tag me once you get to experience the tour around the place. This Museum exploration ignited my curiosity about our roots as Filipinos and brought me closer to the history of the Philippines.

Free tours on museums aren’t only a thing for the travelers but for citizens as well, to appreciate our past and somehow learn from it.

How to get there?

The Rizal Park is a famous tourist spot to visit when you are in Manila, and the National Museums are just around the vicinity.

If you go by a tour agency then their service vehicle will take you there, but if not, take a cab and ask the driver to drop you at Luneta Park, from there walk across the street and Voila!

Welcome to the Philippines’ National Museums.

Communication Skills 101

Here are some Tagalog terms to guide you through your journey.

“Good Morning” – “Magandang Umaga”

“Good Noon” – “Magandang Tanghali”

“Good day” – “Magandang araw”

“Good evening” -“Magandaning gabi”

“How are you?” – “Kamusta ka?”

“Where is the…” – “Saan banda ang”

“How much is this?” – “Magkano ito”

“Thank you!” – “Salamat”

“Good bye” – “Paalam”

Don’t forget to smile while doing your tagalog!

(Some of the exhibits mentioned are featured on individual articles. Kindly click on exhibit title to read more… Salamat!)

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