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Monday, July 18, 2011

PLAZA CUARTEL: puerto princesa city tour

I have decided to go back to my Puerto Princesa Series as there are still a lot of tourists attractions there worth mentioning. One of which is a historical landmark located at the west tip of city downtown. One could not miss this place because its located just beside Immaculate Conception Cathedral which is one of the most prominent landmarks in the city. I am referring to PLAZA CUARTEL.

Or perhaps it is because it's near the magnificent cathedral that the significance of Plaza Cuartel is overshadowed. . 
bloggers in Plaza Cuartel
I know because it happened to me during my first visit in Puerto Prinsesa. Thinking that the city tour is not worth my 600pesos, we opted to go on a D.I.Y exploration of the city. Of coarse the plaza was one of the places we visited, but due to limited time, the only thing we did was peep inside and take a few photos of its facade. I missed on the essentials, that is, what the place really stands for

Good thing during our Puerto Prinsesa Familiariazation tour last month courtesy of Airphil Express, this was still part of the itineraries. Our guide was quick to call our attention on the historical significance of PLAZA CUARTEL.
It used to be a military installation during World War II . And here is where  the burning of more or less 150 American soldiers who surrendered to the Japanese. It happened in December 14, 1944. While our guide tells us the story, I was imagining that day when those prisoners of war (pow) were forced to go into the small hole near the gate. (see photo below)

Once inside, they were spilled with gasoline which was later on ignited to flames. The Japanese were not even satisfied, grenades were also thrown at them. According to our guide, some Japanese soldiers even went into the tunnel after the burning and bayoneted the American soldiers who were still moving.....
But human beings are resilient indeed, despite the burning and the hand grenades, some of the soldiers survived and were able to escape to nearby Iwahing, a barangay across the bay which is now famous for a prison. There is a small marker erected at the center of the park in memory of the event and the soldiers who lost their lives.

That day is now known as PALAWAN MASSACRE. 
Yeah, while some might see PLAZA CUARTEL as just another open space for kids to play, for couples to date or for families to stroll to, it has in it a rich history. It is a silent reminded of our World War II past and the sacrifices of our American friends in defense of liberty and democracy. It is a tourist attraction in Puerto Princesa City worth checking.

This was part of our city tour itinerary during the Familiarization tour of Puerto Prinsesa sponsored by AirPhil Express.

Full tour summary here : http://www.pusangkalye.net/2011/06/airphil-express-puerto-prinsesa-happy.html
AirPhil Express flies twice daily to Puerto Prinsesa Palawan.


  1. This is a great spot for history buff, another side trip aside from the usual Underground River tour and beach escapade.

  2. ito ang di ko napuntahan sa puerto.

  3. dapat galugarin talaga lahty.yung mga maliliit na spots na ganito andun ang surprises.

  4. that's a very nice place it reminds me of fort santiago here in manila

  5. ohh..i love to visit that place. parang intramuros/fort santiago lang.

  6. waaaa, parang nakakatakot naman dahil dun sa event na palawan massacre. Hindi kaya may mga ligaw na entities pa na naninirahan dyan?

    di ko alam kung mnakakasama to sa itenerary namin sa puerto this katapusan ng july.


  7. khanto--isama nyo. mag-aavail ba kayo ng city tour? coz, it's part of the tour.kung hindi mana.malapit lang sya sa church so you will not miss it kung pupunta kayo sa church.:D


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