By Ma. Portia Micaela Bartolome and Gabriel Farrish Rojo

Note: This is a paper produced under the Internship Program of the IA Center for Intramuros Studies.


Intramuros is a historic walled city that plays an important role in defining the culture and values of Filipinos. Today, Intramuros functions as a historical site and a popular tourist spot. However, despite these wonderful features the walled city is depicting, history tells us that it also has its own dark past. Thus, this opens the discussion for dark tourism, which are sites associated with death and suffering, to be recognized in Intramuros. In this paper, the researchers aim (1) to assess possible dark tourist sites in Intramuros using the Dark Tourism Spectrum framework and (2) to explain the importance of dark tourism and its educational role. After gathering the data, the researchers evaluated three possible dark tourist sites in Intramuros, namely (1) Fort Santiago, (2) San Agustin Church, and (3) Museo de Intramuros. Furthermore, dark tourism plays an important role in deepening our understanding of the tragedies of the past and from there forming new perspectives of our history. This will allow us to strengthen our collective identities, reevaluate our moral compass, instill moral values, and provide opportunities for more emphatic engagements. And by visiting these sites, we are also actually remembering and commemorating those who have fallen, giving justice to their deaths. As this paper has focused more on the demand side of dark tourism, the researchers recommend exploring the supply side that tackles the motivations and perceptions of tourists about dark tourism.

To get a copy of the paper email [email protected]

About the Interns

This research paper was completed in July 2022 under the internship of Ma. Portia Micaela Bartolome and Gabriel Farrish Rojo

Ma. Portia Micaela Bartolome is an incoming senior student of BA Social Siences (Area Studies) at the University of the Philippines – Manila. Her interests are in medicine, behavioral sciences, and the humanities.

Testimonial: “The program was a wonderful experience. Though it is an online internship program, I am still thankful to the Intramuros Administration (IA) for allowing me to participate. It helped me develop as a researcher and a good scholar. During my internship at the Intramuros Administration (IA) for a few weeks, I gained a lot of knowledge about historic and how they also conserve and preserve important historical sites in Intramuros. In my future academic career, I will use what I have learned from my internship experience.”

Gabriel Farrish Rojo is an incoming senior student of BA Social Science (Area Studies) at the University of the Philippines – Manila. His current research interests are in the fields of Psychology and Sociology. He was a University Scholar for the past two semesters and has been a consistent College Scholar prior to that.

Testimonial: “Being an intern here at the Intramuros Administration has helped me a lot in developing my skills and experiences further as a researcher. While on-site work would have been more engaging and thrilling since we get to go to Intramuros every weekday, it did not diminish the benefits that we got, experience-wise. I am very much thankful to Mr. Christian Catahan as me and my co-interns were welcomed warmly. Being an intern meant seeing a glimpse of me, working in the future. It was a bit challenging gauging myself to work eight hours a day and five times a week (minus holidays). However, Mr. Catahan gave his utmost consideration and generosity to help us fulfill our tasks and would always give us the encouragement that we need. Overall, I had a great time while I am performing my tasks and at the same time learning more about the history of the Philippines.”

Mentor: Christian Emmanuel Catahan

Learn more about the Internship Program of the Center for Intramuros Studies

Contact us: [email protected]

Interested in applying for an internship at the IA Center for Intramuros Studies? Email us your CV with cover letter via [email protected].

Note: The opinions expressed by our interns in their papers and presentations during their internships with us do not necessarily reflect any statement, stand, or position of the Intramuros Administration or of any of its personnel. Moreover, inclusion of research papers or project proposals in the online database of the Center for Intramuros Studies or the website of the Intramuros Administration do not necessarily constitute as an endorsement.

For more information contact the Center for Intramuros Studies via [email protected]
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