Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

Back in summer, I got privileged to be invited to explore the beautiful island of Corregidor. I’ve been reading and hearing stories from old folks about Corregidor Island especially about the old war days and I am literally intrigued. It was a really fun and educational day tour around Corregidor Island, and I will share the stories on many different blog posts. The island has its unique beauty and I think I want to come back to capture more stories.

During our day tour, we’ve visited the only museum on the island called the Pacific War Memorial Museum.

Disclaimer: If historical war wasn’t your kind of topic, and gives you anxiety or maybe trauma, or causes depression, I suggest you click back and visit my other travel stories here.


Okay back to the memorial museum.

One of the main attractions on the island is the Pacific War Memorial. It was built by the United States Government to honor American and Filipino servicemen who participated in the Pacific War. It costs approximately $3,000,000 and was completed in 1968.

Truly the word “war” is a very sensitive topic, and for many people of the new generation, this sounds a quite boring topic.





Inside the Museum

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

It just happens that I’m the type of person who has interests in history, and old things like antiques, etc., and anything that exists many decades ago because I find it a blessing to get a glimpse of that life today.

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

It was truly admiring that some concerned citizens have managed to secure these many remains, like maps, photographs, soldiers’ pins and badges, clothing, newspaper clippings, etc. During those hard times, I understand that keeping them would be the last thing on their minds, moving from place to place and try to survive and defend the island from many invaders. For the contributors of these remains, thank you for your great efforts!

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island
Portraits of many American Generals and officials. Like seriously, there are f**king good-looking officers! Our military men always this good-looking?

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

Together with the group of Filipino war veterans, we toured inside the memorial museum. I noticed the some of them are very quiet staring blankly at the photographs, some are even flowing in tears (maybe remember their comrades from the photographs). I couldn’t help noticing their gestures and took a few photographs of them, carefully not bothering them during their silence.

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

There are times that I felt my teardrops flowing down my cheeks seeing those remains inside the enclosed glass cases while observing these many brave war veterans and I admit it is quite hard to take photographs during those moments. I have to take a deep breath, and took some courage to understand these things in front of me… war days are tough, and indeed I can’t say if I can make it.

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

If you are into airplanes, you will definitely appreciate these old war airplane models proudly displayed on the wall. I wonder if the museum has a plan to create a replicate of one of these warplane. The production of a replica would cost more, but I think it would be a wonderful addition to the museum.

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island
More small souvenirs of war such as this old telephone, bottles, padlocks, and photographs news clippings.





Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

These might have no value to some but their existence narrates the story of the disastrous events during the Pacific War.

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island
The Corregidor Flag, which as you’ve noticed has a resemblance to the United States flag.





The Pacific War Memorial Grounds

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island
Aside from the museum, part of the Pacific War Memorial is the beautiful open garden, which also stands the old remains of the building next to the museum.

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island
This is quaint structure next to the museum, which I think is the remains of the hospital building.

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

You’ll also notice this huge round-shaped structure with a skylight over its dome apex which serves as a shrine. It is believed that for three consecutive years on the 6th of May, the sun shines down directly on the altar. It is also the day when Corregidor was retaken from the Japanese Army.

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

The pathway going to the Eternal Flame of Freedom, a sculpture made of steel which is designed by Aristides Demetrios stands near the place where General Douglas MacArthur celebrated Corregidor’s retaking from the Japanese. Those walls have engraved names of fallen Filipino and American servicemen.


Editor’s Observations

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

Although the whole grounds is spacious and beautiful, I couldn’t help noticing that there are a lot of improvements needed to keep this place more attractive to visit. Just like this pathway are from the Eternal Flame of Freedom sculpture going to the altar dome – both pool sides are so dry, and depressing to view. They should clean this area and reinstalled the water pipe, and maybe add some lights to make it more attractive even at night time. Or they could turn these pools into koi pool gardens, just like those in Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

Pacific War Memorial at Corregidor Island

Staring at this area makes me feel sad and cold – a depressing sight, which I believe shouldn’t be. War is over and it is good to remember, but it isn’t good to carry the burden of the past. At least make this area a little festive to remember how great our servicemen are.

Overall, the experience is remarkable and will help to awaken your sleeping patriotism to the country. What I’ve learned back in school isn’t enough, and visiting this place helps to solidify my understanding of the Pacific War. I thank our fallen servicemen for their bravery, for their love for our country.

Without their sacrifices, we aren’t benefiting from its worth today.

My gratitude is quite hard to tell in words… all I could give is a thankful prayer and a moment of silence.

Thank you for the Corregidor Foundation team for inviting me for this tour. This is just a small part of the entire tour, and will share more stories soon!

Visiting the island is totally worth it!

WATCH MY VLOG HERE!



Book your tour at Corregidor Sun Cruises Tour where they offer a day tour and an overnight tour.
(includes tour package)

Visit their website at www.corregidorphilippines.com for tour booking!


Have you visited the Pacific War Memorial in Corregidor Island? Share your memories here!


xoxo, Blair


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38 comments :

  1. We salute our brave heroes. Their undying love to serve our country are immeasurable.

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  2. Seems like this was a very educational experience. I've visited war museums and memorials while traveling as well. These types of experiences can really have an impact on you but I love learning about the world's history. Even if that history is hard to hear sometimes.

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    1. That's true. But the reality is, we need to feel the pain and sadness in order to fully appreciate the story.

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  3. I keep learning a lot of the world history when I travel, same like you. This memorial looks like a huge piece of inormation, which surely is interesing. Would love to visit one day.

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    1. That would be great. Also you will enjoy the beauty of the island and the sunset!

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  4. I don't think I can get enough of museums and markets in this life. War museums have this sad feeling attached to it that kind of puts me down. Salute to the brave heroes.

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    1. War museums are still great to visit and remember what they have done for us to enjoy the present.

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  5. What a beautiful tribute to all those brave heroes! I feel very low visiting at these kinds of War Memorials. I visited 9/11 Museum in NYC a few years ago and couldn't stop my tears for an hour. It was absolutely heartbreaking!

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    1. One tip I could give before visiting war museums - bring some paper tissues or hanky to wipe-off tears.

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  6. I love visiting things like this when I travel because it really give you a feel for the history of the area. I agree with you, it is depressing to look at but a great reminder to say a thank you to our servicemen.

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    1. Without their sacrifices, we wont reached the present.

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  7. I visited a war memorial recently on my trip to Hawaii. It truly helps you connect with the times and the harsh reality of things that people had to go through then.

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    1. Everyone should pay a visit to any war memorial. This will help us to be grounded and humble.

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  8. I would definitely love it here considering I'm a scale modeler who loves to build World War 2 replicas. My boss visited Corregidor last year, and he says there's a different "feel" to it. Like you can actually hear ghost cannons, feel the courage of soldiers, etc.

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    Replies
    1. Yeah that's true. They also offer a night tour which I find much creepy that's why I didn't join the pack.

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  9. What an interesting museum. I love discovering fascinating historic museums while I travel and I would definitely love to check this one out someday.

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  10. They said there are tunnels there that you can crawl in and out. That would be fun...and claustrophobic. I told Sheila that Corregidor Island should be on our list the next time we visit Luzon.

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  11. I am glad you are bringing up historical memorial like that. I learn a lot about hisotry from my trips and love to visit places like that. They are like a history lesson.

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  12. I like visiting this kind of place. It's somewhat commemorating what the heroes had done to fight for peace and country.

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    1. That's true and it is always good to remember and pay tribute for our brave heroes.

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  13. This is the first time I heard of this island, looks very historical. I’m into history so I would definitely like to visit.

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    1. Oh that's nice, please visit this historical island! And experience its night tour :D

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  14. These photos are amazing. So much history. Thanks for sharing.

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  15. I haven't been in Corregidor Island. I know it's a really historic place. I hope I can visit soon.

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  16. Kristine Nicole AlessandraMay 21, 2019 at 10:51 PM

    My husband is such a history buff and he would love to see this place. I hope my husband would regain his strength and be able to walk again unassisted. When he gets a little stronger, we will tour Corregidor.

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  17. I've always been fascinated with WWII history. I really got into reading up on the subject, most notably, the Pacific theater, when I read Flags of our Fathers, and watched the HBO series The Pacific. I would love to see this memorial some day

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  18. Tiffany La Forge-GrauMay 22, 2019 at 9:06 AM

    I would really love to see that museum. Having a place to go and learn about our history is always a learning experience.

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  19. What an amazing place to visit. these pictures are so great. Thank you for sharing in this history with us.

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