In the height of all the preparations the being done for the Lunar New Year, my fellow communications students and I went on an educational trip to Binondo, Manila (China Town), to soak in the rich Chinese culture right in the heart of Manila. Binondo was established by the Spaniards as the confinement of the Chinese immigrants in Manila during the Spanish rule in the Philippines. But it is said that the Chinese were already living in Binondo before the Spaniards came. Binondo is apparently the oldest China Town in the world and it is home to authentic Chinese culture. It was once the business and financial district of Manila up until World War 2. After the war, most establishments relocated to Makati City. The street is the center of Binondo life as this is where people sold their products, this is where they socialized, and etc. And the streets of Binondo were festive just in time for the new year. We could have never chosen a better time to visit Binondo than right before the Lunar New Year.
Binondo Church where the famous Philippine hero, Andres Bonifacio, got married
China Town feels
One of our tour guides, Anson
The famous Ongpin Street
“bakpia” or more popularly known as “hopia” is a pastry filled with purple yam or red mung bean
Jenni posing with this cart of oranges…
gingers tied with red ribbons…I’m not entirely sure why they do this but it made everything seem more festive… The streets were filled with these.
Aey in front of A.E.Y General Merchandise Store LOL
ARM CANDY!!!! HAHAHAHA! Lucky charms for the new year!
Binondo OOTD lol
Inside a Taoist temple
prayers to the god of the Arts and Literature
The perfect ending to a perfect histo-cultural walk… A full-on lauriat lunch at President’s Tea House, one of the oldest Chinese restaurants in Manila
A walk through the historical streets of Binondo was such a memorable and enriching experience. Kung Hei Fat Choi everyone!
Photos by: Myself and Tal Ybarola