a statue in Father Blanco’s Garden, San Agustin Museum
General Luna Street, Intramuros, Manila

Father Manuel Blanco, an Augustinian, built this garden to attend to his botanical studies. He published Flora de Filipinas, a book about his observations. And being the first to do such studies in the Philippines, he earned the title Father of Philippine Botany.

World War II ruined the garden but a slight restoration in 1991 enabled the area to function as a garden. The ruins of the walls enclosing the open area are still standing. These ruins add to the romantic flavor of the garden, which is now a favorite venue for wedding photography and receptions.

The statue in this picture is a little creepy though. From the first time I saw it up to my last visit (which produced this photograph) it still gives me that uneasy feeling. The wild plants surrounding it adds something to the freaky factor. But I love it.

Father Blanco’s garden is accessible to everyone visiting San Agustin Museum. I don’t see a reason one can skip this on a tour in Manila. It’s in the historic district of Intramuros, within the lot of the most preserved and richest Catholic church.