There is more to Iloilo City than just its Dinagyang Festival.
Junel Ann Divinagracia, head of the City Tourism and Development Office (CTDO), said the city continues to attract tourists with its delicious food, heritage churches and houses, museums and galleries, and commercial districts.
The city is home to the famous La Paz Batchoy and Pancit Molo.
Tourists can also treat themselves with “Queen Siopao” of Roberto’s, native chocolate of Camiña Bahay na Bato, native coffee of Madge Café, cream horn of Marge’s, and butterscotch and biscocho of Iloilo’s Original Biscocho Haus.
Tatoy’s Manokan and Seafood, and Breakthrough are the city’s most sought-after restaurants.
On the other hand, Jaro Cathedral or the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Candles, and Molo Church or St. Anne Parish Church are the most popular churches in the city.
Jaro Cathedral was built in 1874 but it was destroyed by an earthquake in 1948. The church was repaired in 1956.
Molo Church was built in 1831. The neo-gothic church is known as “The Feminist Church.”
Meanwhile, Divinagracia expressed delight over the opening of new museums and galleries in the city.
“These museums and galleries showcase the artworks of not only our artists here but also of the national and international artists,” she said.
The tourism officer also boasted the city’s new commercial districts.
“Our Iloilo Business Park is now considered a tourist destination. Isa guid ni sa mga ginalook forward sang aton balikbayans nga makita,” Divinagracia said.
The number of tourists visiting the city, according to Divinagracia, is increasing.
“Upward ang trend sang aton tourist arrivals since 2013,” she said.
“Makita ta man na sa number sang mga new hotels nga nag-open diri sa city,” Divinagracia added.
Based on data from the Department of Tourism (DOT-6), Iloilo City welcomed 337, 540 tourists from Jan. to June last year.
In 2017, the number of local and foreign tourists in the city reached to 1, 076, 976.IMT