Iskong Bantay Watchtower - Quezon

Located at Barangay Zone 1 -Poblacion in the municipality of Atimonan in Quezon Province, Iskong Bantay Watchtower is the last of the seven Spanish-era structures of its kind built in Southern Luzon.

Iskong Bantay Watchtower

Iskong Bantay Watchtower History

Iskong Bantay Watchtower was built sometime in 1752. It has a good view of Lamon Bay and the island of Alabat. The tower served as an observation and defense tower during the times when pirate raids were rampant in the southern parts of Luzon.

Iskong Bantay Watchtower - Atimonan, Quezon

Iskong Bantay Watchtower also served as a weather observatory, which determines if the fishermen of the town could do their jobs or not.

As seen from the belltower of Atimonan Church

NHI marker of Iskong Bantay Watchtower

My cousin leading the way

Thanks, Eloi for the tour!

Iskong Bantay Watchtower was named after Francisco Tandas, fondly called Isko by the townsfolks. He was the chief defender of the town during the vicious pirate raid of 1872. His courage during the raid earned him the respect of the people of the town. Hence, he was later called Iskong Bantay or Isko the Guardian.

Here's what you'll see on the top - the image of Nuestra Senora De Los Angeles

Years ago Iskong Bantay Watchtower had a steel roof and was frequented by lovers. Sadly, it was locked down due to some cases of indecencies and vandalism. Just recently, a powerful storm blew the roof of the watchtower and it wasn't repaired since. 

Atimonan Church as seen from Iskong Bantay Watchtower

Today, a statue of the town's patron saint Nuestra Senora de los Angeles stands to watch from the top of Iskong Bantay Watchtower. The tower is now once again open to the public. During my recent visit there, I felt a mix of happiness and disappointment when I saw the watchtower. 

The houses beside the tower made it look like an unfinished building.

I was happy that the local government repainted the tower and planted several plants to give life to its once dull landscape. However, I was disappointed in the fact that despite the efforts of the local government to maintain the tower, several people still vandalize it. Aside from that, Iskong Bantay Watchtower seems to have lost its glory because the houses beside it seem to make the tower look like a dwarf among giants. It simply looked like a hanging garden of sorts. I hope that the local government or National Historical Institute could do something about it.

Update: The National Museum of the Philippines declared Iskong Bantay Watchtower a National Cultural Treasure under the Museum Declaration No. 54-2020 last December 28, 2020.

Visit Iskong Bantay Watchtower and meet this carabao.

Iskong Bantay Watchtower Entrance Fee

It's FREE to visit Iskong Bantay Watchtower and explore its grounds.

Iskong Bantay Watchtower Operating Hours

Iskong Bantay Watchtower is open 24/7.

Why visit Iskong Bantay Watchtower?

There might be nothing much to do in Iskong Bantay Watchtower but if you want to visit one of the historic places in Atimonan, then please don't miss this place out

Getting to Iskong Bantay Watchtower:



From Manila, there are several bus lines that ply the route going to Lucena City. From there transfer to one of the minibusses heading to Gumaca. Tell the conductor to drop you off before the diversion road of Atimonan. From there you could rent motorcycles to bring you to the old church.

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Comments

  1. It's wonderful that you are getting thoughts from this piece
    of writing as well as from our dialogue made at
    this place.

    ReplyDelete

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