Metro Manila · Malacañang Palace
Originally the summer house of a Spanish aristocrat and now the residence of the Philippine President, the Malacañang Palace has its fair share of colorful history.
The Palace was built in 1750 as a summer house, called Posesion de Malacañang. During the Spanish-American War, the palace was used as the residence of the Civil Governors. Today, the Malacañang Palace serves as the official residence and primary workplace of the Philippine head of state. The Palace looks grand thanks to its location near a river and its structure.
But the times have not always been kind to the old house. When the country was under martial law, it became a symbol of the people's hatred. The Palace has been seized by rebels a number of times – from the People Power Revolution to the coup attempt of 1989, to the Manila riots of 2001 and Mayo Uno (May 1) protests.
The place got is name from the Tagalog phrase "May lakan diyan" which means "There is a nobleman there." The Palace, as it is often called by many Filipinos, has 10 existing halls including ones restored from historical times.
Location And How To Get There
Located at barangay (district) San Miguel in the Philippine capital, the best way to get to the palace is by taxi. You should enter Arlegui Street and then stop at Mendiola. J.P. Laurel Street, where the palace is located, is just a short stroll away from Mendiola. Keep walking until you get to the Kalayaan Gate.
Guide for Megacitizens
Malacañang is open to the public daily from 9 AM to 4 PM. You would have to pay an entrance fee ranging from PHP 200 to PHP 500 depending on the areas of the palace you want to access. There are strict security measures and you will be accompanied by presidential security personnel.
Entry to the Museum
There is a need for visitors to send a letter or a fax to the director of the museum stating passport details as well as the desired time and date of your tour. Your contact details will be required by palace personnel. Your request must be sent seven days in advance and the tour coordinator will contact you then. A small entrance fee will be charged. You can take photos only within the museum, for video footage a special permit would be needed.
Send the letter to: The Director, Malacañang Museum, Kalayaan Hall, Malacañang, Manila; Fax: (63) 2 7844 286.
The traffic when going to the palace is not as bad as when going to other areas of the city.
The main palace houses the Bonifacio Hall, offices of former presidents, the Mabini Hall, the Kalayaan Hall and the New Executive Building. This part of Malacañang also houses the the Presidential Study and the grand staircase that can be see on many photographs. Right across the Pasig River is the Malacañang Park, which has a golf course, a guesthouse, and a garden.
Kalayaan Hall is the most visited part of the Malacañang Palace because it houses the Malacañang Museum, the touristic heart of the place. Built during the American times, it showcases the legacies of each president from the 1860s to the recent past.
The Presidential Museum and Library in Manila is one of the oldest structures in the country. It displays a number of art pieces connected to the country’s former executives and their first ladies.