Bantay Bell Tower ILOCOS SUR, PHILIPPINES
You are not supposed to miss the Bell tower of Ilocos Sur. Since its just a small town close to Vigan, you really should not miss the Bell tower as it became so famous because its on top of the hill. They also have a beautiful church called The Bantay Catholic Church. It was built in 1530′s . The architecture is designed by the europeans under spanish regime and was built by forced labor during those spanish era.
Locals are mostly Roman Catholics. Since we’re colonized by the spanish people for almost 350 years , many people converted themselves to roman catholicism. Spaniards built numerous churches all over the places. This is the reason why the town or the region is well known as a home for cathedral churches and bell towers and historical sites.
One great thing I learned from the locals is that the tradition still continues to live on. The bell tower still rings according to the locals. I have not heard the ringing of the Bell Tower of Bantay Town at the time. But I think locals still continue to use it to call the attention of people to go to the church and attend the mass. In middle ages , the bell towers in most catholic churches were always ringing on a daily basis (morning and at night) to call everyone’s attention to pray …
The Bell Tower sits on a hilltop (atop the Calvario Hill) overlooking a distinct green vast of pastureland and the mountain view of the province. I was told it was used as a watchtower for invading enemy forces during World Wars I and II. Evidently, the Bantay Church and bell tower are the monumental witnesses to various uprisings and staged revolts.
Do not forget to include Bantay Town as part of your itinerary…