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Three Museums In One Day, Manila

Three Museums In One Day, Manila

Well that was a whirl wind but we did it, three museums in one day. Are you looking for adventure? Manila got ya down? Break up your routine by heading down to the beating heart of Manila. If you aren’t able to come back for many frequent visits then fill up the day with as much as you can. I know activities in Manila need to be limited to one per day because of traffic and distance but recently I was able to fit 3 museums and a picnic in one day! How is this possible? Keep reading to find out. 

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the earth and science room at museo pambata

My #3PinoyBoys had field trips to various museums and a picnic at Rizal Park last month. I hopped from Museum Pambata with the littles then off to a picnic at the Chinese Garden located at Rizal Park. After our picnic I kissed the two small ones goodbye as they headed home and I was headed off to meet up with Kuya just down the road. This is a perk to having all three kids in one school! #MomSoHard. Because Kuya is in grade 3 and doesn’t require a chaperone any more I got to squeeze in a solo visit to the National Museum of Anthropology and capped it off with the National Museum of Natural History. Can you even believe it? I was pinching myself. If ever you can visit a museum by yourself I highly encourage it, it was like experiencing it for the first time all over again. So many details presented themselves in a new way or some I had never seen all together because I was mothering three small ones.

Manila is a sprawling city however, the National Museums are almost all within walking distance and nestled in between all of them is a Rizal Park, how fortunate! I suggest planing your day with hitting your priority museums in the morning, having a picnic at one of the gardens in Rizal Park and finishing off with one to two museums more.You could even finish at Musueo Pambata and leave from there. You may be tired but this is absolutely possible! Not only is it possible, it’s almost entirely free. The National Museums are all free and the garden entrances are minimal, around 10php each. Museo Pambata has a small fee as well of 250 php. If you have a student please bring your ID. Please see my map at the bottom of this post for an itinerary idea.

Museo Pambata|

"We could say Museo Pambata (MP) set the stage for other children’s museums to start being put up around the Metro. Despite their appearance, MP manages to remain head-shoulders-and-hips-high over water by staying true to its nationalistic roots." Viella Galvez

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playing outside on the play equipment of museo pambata

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an iconic galleon which is so rich to filipino history

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i love how open filipinos are so open about bodily functions and no less in their museuems. fart noises are natural and always funny.

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under the sea

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a new personal favorite, the space room

Rizal Park & A Picnic|

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The Rizal Monument stands proudly with guards around the clock no less. If you’re lucky you will see the guards switch between duties.

Chinese Gardens|

There are a number of parks and gardens within in Rizal Park. We had a class picnic at the Chinese Gardens and it was very enjoyable. It is Manila so be prepared for a lot of people and there may even be some homeless patrons.

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The Philippines shares a rich history and cultural influence with China, you can see it reflected here in the design and architecture. If you’re curious about their relationship a visit to Binondo is a must!


National Museum Of Natural History|

As you stroll through the galleries, you can’t help but marvel at the building’s Neoclassical architecture and its details. The original structure did not survive the American bombs that levelled the city of Manila in 1945. As a plaque at the entrance tells us, the American government paid for the building’s rehabilitation in 1946, keeping to the plans of the original architect, Antonio Toledo. The same architect also built the nearby Manila City Hall.”

You can read my full post about our visit to the Natural History Museum here.

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since i visited last june more exhibits have opened including the forestry exhibit and the UNESCO movies

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National Museum of Anthropology|

The existence of the National Museum is anchored on the basic philosophy that the Filipino nation is kept unified by a deep sense of pride in its own identity, cultural heritage and nature patrimony. The national identity of the Filipino must be developed and enhanced, while imbibing the spirit of nationalism and strong commitment in the protection and dissemination of its legacy.”

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this basket case loved the humungous basket. i wish i could live inside there

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Map & Itinerary|

I would suggest finding parking at Museo Pambata first then walking across the park to the National Museums as the parking and exit is more convenient from Museo Pambata. The first 4 museums really depend on your interest so I would suggest choosing two and then moving forward.

  1. National Museum of Fine Arts -OR-

  2. National Museum of The Filipino People (Anthropology) -OR-

  3. National Museum of Natural History -OR-

  4. National Planetarium

  5. Picnic at Chinese Garden (or Japanese Garden right next to it) and a stop to Rizal Monument

  6. Start and finish your day at Museo Pambata and then you can leave right from Museo Pambata.

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If ever you wonder where the heart of Manila is please get out of your comfort zone and invest time in Luneta Park, Rizal Park, Intramuros and A L L of the National Museums. You will see Manila and The Philippines in a new light. The more you know your city and the history the more invested and connected you are. 

Kita Kita,


I love museums! You can find my catalogue of museum posts here.

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