HomeAsiaSoutheast AsiaPhilippinesIloiloIloilo 1-Day Itinerary – City Heritage and Church Hopping Tour 1507 sharesTraveling to Iloilo for a full day? Here’s an easy do-it-yourself itinerary that you can follow to get acquainted with the major cultural and historical sights within Iloilo City and towns that dot the southern coast of the province. By Marcos Detourist. Updated on April 10, 2016.Traveling to Iloilo for a full day? Here’s an easy do-it-yourself itinerary that you can follow to get acquainted with the major cultural and historical sights within Iloilo City and towns that dot the southern coast of the province.Arrival in IloiloYou can start early by taking a morning flight to the sprawling Iloilo International Airport. A shuttle to the city center takes under 30 minutes.After checking-in your hotel, head straight to La Paz Market for a hearty breakfast of La Paz Batchoy, Iloilo’s most famous local dish. Get your caffeine fix a few stores down at Madge’s Cafe, a family-owned coffee shop that brews fresh locally sourced coffee, or indulge in a special dessert treat at the row of “halo-halo” stalls near the entrance of La Paz Market.Iloilo Airport Arrival AreaBowl of Hot Batchoy SoupHalo-halo with Barquillos and Leche FlanSouthern Iloilo TourHop on a jeepney to Iloilo southern coast, where many of the province’s most exquisite centuries-old churches can be found. A morning visit is recommended if you want to take photos of the churches’ facade under the best light. Go the whole stretch to the southernmost town, San Joaquin, or skip to the main course — the Miagao Church, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.San Joaquin Cemetery is one of the best preserved Spanish-colonial cemeteries in Iloilo.Remarkable for its military theme scuptural relief, the San Joaquin Church is a National Cultural Treasure.Miagao Church, Iloilo’s iconic landmark and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.Iloilo is known as a haven for seafood lovers. Grab lunch at one of many beachfront seafood restaurants lining the highway or at Villa Beach in Arevalo District of Iloilo City. The most popular restaurants along Villa Beach to both locals and visitors alike include Tatoy’s Manokan and Breakthrough. There are also smaller stalls along the whole stretch of the beach for cheaper alternatives.Iloilo City TourThe City of Iloilo is home to, not only beautiful old churches, but also other heritage structures like ancestral houses and institutional buildings. Almost all of the city’s districts has a Spanish-colonial church and a plaza because they used to be separate towns before they were merged in one city.On your way back to the city, drop off at Camiña Balay nga Bato for a tour of the heritage house capped with an invigorating taste of native hot tsokolate. Proceed to Molo District Plaza, where you can find Molo Church, and then explore the many sights of Plaza Libertad in the City Proper District.Hot Tsokolate drink at Balay Camiña nga BatoMolo Plaza and the Gothic Rennaisance-style Molo Church.San Jose Church, birthplace of Iloilo’s annual Dinagyang FestivalView from the rooftop of the Iloilo City Hall facing Plaza Libertad and Guimaras Island.View from the rooftop of the Iloilo City Hall facing the Iloilo River.Iloilo Customs House (Aduana) built along the banks of the Iloilo River.From Plaza Libertad, walk down Calle Real, now known as JM Basa Street, for a stroll down memory lane. During the era of Iloilo’s booming sugar industry up until the 1980s, Calle Real was the commercial and shopping center of the city. Many of the city’s heritage commercial buildings and monuments can still be seen along this historic road.Then, ride a jeep to the Arroyo fountain fronting the Old Iloilo Provincial Capitol and walk your way to Museo Iloilo, one of the city’s iconic landmarks.Calle Real, the cultural core of Downtown Iloilo.Arroyo Fountain and Old Provincial CapitolMuseo Iloilo, the first government sponsored museum outside Manila.Lizares Mansion (now the Angelicum School)Casa Mariquit, a heritage house named after the wife of the late Vice President Fernando Lopez, Sr.Continue to Jaro District, where you can find many old ancestral houses in addition to visiting the Jaro Cathedral and Belfry.Nelly Garden, one of the Lopez Family’s grand old houses in Iloilo.Sanson-Montinola Antillian HouseJaro Cathedral, the religious seat of power in Western Visayas.Interiors of the Jaro CathedralJaro Belfry located across the street from the cathedral.Iloilo NightlifeSpend your late afternoon with a leisurely sunset stroll along the Iloilo River Esplanade and then treat yourself with a nice dinner at Smallville Complex or Plazuela de Iloilo, two of Iloilo’s best dining strips.Sunset walk along the Iloilo River EsplanadeDinner spread at PunotOverviewTimeDetails5:00am to 8:30amArrival in IloiloIloilo Hotel Check-inBreakfast at La paz Market8:30am to 1:30pmSouthern Iloilo TourSan JoaquinMiagaoSeaside Lunch1:30pm onwardsIloilo City TourArevalo and Molo DistrictCity Proper DistrictJaro DistrictMandurriao DistrictMap [pueblo_map googlemap_engine_id=”zSPINj0NvM1g.kkbGPM3PfSWg” label=””]Do It Yourself (DIY) NotesArrival in IloiloFlight to IloiloEarliest flights from Manila:Cebu Pacific Flight 5J451 – Departs Manila at 4:20am and arrives in Iloilo at 5:25amPAL Flight PR2939 – Departs Manila at 4:30am and arrives in Iloilo at 5:40amEarliest flight from Cebu:Cebu Pacific Flight 5J162 – Departs Cebu at 5:55am and arrives in Iloilo at 6:50am6:00am – Arrival at Iloilo International Airport6:00am to 6:30am – Transport from Iloilo Airport to Iloilo CityRide shared van (shuttle) from Iloilo Airport to SM City Iloilo Mall (P50 fare; you may have to wait until the van gets full until it departs from the airport)Iloilo Hotel Check-in6:30am to 8:00am – Hotel check-in and rest (Find hotels in Iloilo; Find Iloilo Hotels on Agoda)Taxi fares within the city usually costs from P70 to P150.Breakfast at La Paz Market8:00am to 8:30am – La Paz Market TourBreakfast at La Paz Batchoy stalls. Take your pick from Ted’s or Deco’s located on the roadside, or Netong’s found inside the market (P55 to P80 for one bowl of Batchoy)If you feel lost navigating the inner pathways of the market, just ask the vendors how to get around. The locals are almost always willing to help.Halo-halo dessert (P20 to P35 per bowl)The halo-halo stalls are located near the Rizal St. entrance of La Paz MarketCoffee at Madge’s Cafe (P20 to P40 per cup; found within the market)Southern Iloilo TourSan Joaquin Tour8:30am to 10:00am – Transport from Iloilo City to San JoaquinCross the street from the Rizal St. entrance of La Paz Market and ride a “Jaro Liko” jeep to University of San Agustin along General Luna St. (P8 fare). Then, ride a “Villa/Arevalo” jeep and drop off at the jeepney stop near Iloilo Supermart Molo (P8 fare).Ride a “San Joaquin” jeep to San Joaquin town (P60; 45 minutes)Drop off at San Joaquin Cemetery10:00am to 10:40amSan Joaquin CemeteryRide tricycle (motorized rickshaw) from the cemetery to the town proper (P7 fare; less than 5 minutes).San Joaquin ChurchMiagao Tour10:40am to 11:00am – Transport from San Joaquin to MiagaoWalk (5 minutes) or ride trisikad (cycle rickshaw; P7 fare) to highway intersection.Ride a “Miag-ao” or “San Joaquin” jeepney to Miagao town (P10 to P15 fare; 15 to 20 minutes)Drop off at Miagao Church11:00am to 11:30am – Miagao ChurchSeaside Lunch11:30am to 1:30pm – Lunch and transport back to Iloilo CityRide jeepney to Iloilo City (P50 to approx. P70 fare depending on how many stops you make).While on your way back to the city you can grab lunch at one of the many seaside restaurants and make a few stops to visit more churches that you will be passing by. All jeepneys bound towards the city follows the same route, so you can hop on and off easily.Once you reach the city boundary you will be dropped off at Mohon Terminal, where you can ride a “Villa/Arevalo” jeep to the city.Suggested places to eat (mains from P50 to P300):Miagao: Doming’s TalabahanGuimbal: South Park GrillOton: Allan’s TalabahanVilla Beach (Iloilo City): Tatoy’s Manokan and Seafood, Breakthrough, Erning’s LechonTo get to Villa Beach. Ride a “Villa/Arevalo” jeep from Arevalo District Plaza. The jeepney stop is located on the other side of the plaza, beside the Iloilo Supermart Arevalo Branch or the covered gym. You may ask the locals if you are having trouble finding it.Optional photostops:Guimbal ChurchGuimbal PlazaTigbauan ChurchIloilo City TourArevalo and Molo Tour1:30pm to 2:00pm – Camiña Balay nga Bato TourCamiña Balay nga Bato is located a couple of meters away from the Arevalo District Plaza, along the highway.Tour rates:P150 per person (Includes house tour and tsokolate)P200 per person (Includes house tour, tsokolate, and pancit molo)2:00pm to 2:30pmRide “Villa/Arevalo” jeep to Molo Plaza (P8 fare)Molo PlazaMolo ChurchCity Proper Tour2:30pm to 4:00pmRide “Villa/Arevalo” Jeep to General Luna Street (P8 fare). Drop off at University of San Agustin Jeepney Stop. Ride “SM City Proper” jeep to Plaza Libertad (P8 fare).Plaza LibertadSan Jose ChurchIloilo City HallEnter the city gallery on the first floor of the Iloilo City Hall building and request a tour of the rooftop to get a nice overlooking view of Iloilo City and Guimaras Island.Walk along JM Basa Street to The International Hotel Building (corner of JM Basa and Guanco Streets) or walk all the way to the Plazoleta Gay (rotunda with the obelisk monument in the center).To view the Iloilo Cusoms House (Aduana) along the Iloilo River, you may take a short detour and follow the street beside the Freedom Grandstand.Commercial buildings along Calle RealRide “Jaro CPU” jeep to the Arroyo Fountain located infront of the Old Iloilo Provincial Capitol building (P8 fare)Arroyo FountainIloilo Provincial CapitolMuseo Iloilo (P30 entrance fee)Jaro Tour4:00pm to 5:30pmRide “Jaro CPU” jeep to Jaro PlazaOptional stopovers:Nelly Garden (Lopez “white” house)A tour of the house needs prior reservations. You can only take photos from the street.Sanson y Montinola Antillian HouseNot open to the public but you can also take photos from the streetJaro Cathedral and BelfryRide “Jaro CPU” jeep from the jeepney stop located on the other side of Jaro Plaza, in front of Andoks (P8 fare). Drop off at Lizares Mansion (Now the Angelicum School).Lizares MansionRide “Jaro CPU” (or any) jeep and drop off at the Shell Gas Station near PRC Regional Office (P8 fare)Casa MariquitYou can find it by following the narrow street beside Shell Gas Station.Go inside and look for the caretakers of the house. No entrance fee is charged but tipping the caretakers is expected after the tour.Mandurriao Tour5:30pm to 6:30pmRide “Leganes” jeep to the Benigno Aquino Avenue (Diversion Road) entrance of Iloilo River EsplanadeIloilo River EsplanadeThe best views are at the middle of the esplanade.6:30pm onwards – Dinner Smallville or Plazuela de IloiloSuggested restaurants serving Filipino and Ilonggo food:Punot (Riverside Boardwalk, Smallville Complex)Ramboy’s (Riverside Boardwalk, Smallville Complex)Oceancity (Ayala Technohub, Smallville Complex)Bauhinia (The Avenue, Smallville Complex)Ponsyon (Plazuela de Iloilo)Samurai (Diversion Road; Beside Diversion21 Hotel)Cheaper alternative.The area in and around Smallville, Plazuela de Iloilo, and SM City Iloilo offers a wide variety of dining options from the local flavors to international cuisines.Don’t leave yet. There’s more!Iloilo and Guimaras 3-Day Itinerary with Injap Tower HotelNature’s Eye Resort — A Relaxing Getaway in Guimaras6 Things to do in Roxas City & Capiz with Las Islas1-Day Ho Chi Minh Itinerary — Saigon DIY Walking TourDiscover more blogs and travel tips in:IloiloSoutheast AsiaPhilippinesAsia See all placesFind more posts about:ItineraryLeave a Reply Cancel replyYour email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *CommentName * Email * Website Comments Sammy saysSeptember 4, 2014 at 7:05 amThanks, very informativeReply Jane saysJune 17, 2015 at 10:38 amVery Helpful, Thanks for sharing. :) Are tourists allowed to go up the city hall to take pictures of the city?Reply Marcos Detourist saysJune 20, 2015 at 11:37 amYes.Reply Abarri saysJanuary 26, 2016 at 4:13 amhi marco how can i get to san joaquin from iloilo airport via public transport only pls.thanks Marcos Detourist saysJanuary 27, 2016 at 5:34 pmFrom Iloilo Airport, ride a shuttle to SM City Iloilo, then a jeep to the Iloilo Market Terminal, where you can find the jeep to San Joaquin. The market is found beside Robinsons Place Iloilo. You can hop on an SM Manurriao jeep to get there from SM City Iloilo. Neil saysMay 7, 2016 at 2:18 pmGood afternoon po Sir Marcos. Aside po sa pag commute, meron po bang ibang paraan – like motorcycle to be hired for the whole day (with driver)?Reply Marcos Detourist saysMay 7, 2016 at 9:24 pmMotorcycle taxis are not common in Iloilo. If you want a private tour, you have to rent a car/van.Reply Hilda saysSeptember 20, 2016 at 5:42 amHow much po yung car/van rental para sa private tour? Regina saysOctober 18, 2016 at 4:40 pmThank you for the very informative blog post. ☺️ReplyAdventure Starts HereDiscover travel guides and blogs about the Philippines and beyond.