Marcelo H. del Pilar Shrine. Photo by Kenneth M. del Rosario, using OPPO A74.

To list down all the historical events that transpired in Malolos, one could very well write a pretty thick book. The major events that happened in this town in Bulacan—especially those that revolved around the first Republic—are ones that helped shape the country’s present day culture.

This is why it was such an exciting thing to get to visit some of Malolos’ most historical sites as part of NLEX Corporation’s Lakbay Norte program, an initiative that aims to promote safe and fun travel in the North. As the tourism starts to recover, the NLEX Lakbay Norte hopes that travelers start to make those meaningful trips once more.

Only 42 kilometers off from Manila, Malolos can easily be driven in about an hour through NLEX, which accommodates over 260,000 motorists per day.

Here are some of the historical sites that we visited—and those that you can include in your itinerary in your next trip to this part of Bulacan:

A printing press during the Malolos Republic. Photo by Kenneth M. del Rosario, using OPPO A74.

* Casa Real Shrine (Museo ng Kasaysayang Pampulitika ng Pilipinas)

One of the oldest standing structures in the province, Casa Real Shrine houses the printing press during the Malolos Republic. The site was restored in 1852 and converted into a municipal library. Today, the Casa Real Shrine (under the management of the National Historical Institute) is the home of relics and memorabilia during the Philippine Revolution.

The Don Jose Bautista House. Photo by Kenneth M. del Rosario, using OPPO A74.

* Malolos Heritage District

The Malolos Historic Town Center, also called the Camestisuhan or Pariancillo District, is a long stretch of Spanish and American-era houses and government structures. An interesing stop is the Don Jose Bautista House, a Neoclassical mansion that showcases female sculptures on its facade. Another worthy destination is the Alberta Uitangcoy-Santos House. Also known as the Museum of the Women of Malolos, the 1914 ancestral house exhibits traditional Filipiniana dresses, photos, and some possessions of the 21 brave and notable women of Malolos.

Demonstrating the art of “puni.” Photo by Kenneth M. del Rosario, using OPPO A74.

* Hiyas ng Bulacan Museum

Home to a collection of valuable relics, mementos, articles, documents, and handicrafts of the Philippine Revolution, Museo ng Bulacan is one worthy stop as it encapsulates the province’s heritage and tradition. Located in the cultural neighborhood of Malolos, the museum is under the management of the Provincial Government of Bulacan.

A statue of Marcelo H. del Pilar. Photo by Kenneth M. del Rosario, using OPPO A74.

* Marcelo H. Del Pilar Shrine

Not too far from Malolos is the municipality of Bulakan that safeguards another historical site—the Marcelo H. Del Pilar Shrine. Aside from being the home of the patriot and editor of the La Solidaridad, the property also has a two-storey house that serves as the museum for historical pieces related to Del Pilar and other Philippine heroes.