Catanduanes: The Heritage Church of Bato

Categories Churches, Spots
Bato Church

When the Spaniards came to Catanduanes Island in the latter part of 16th century, they introduced Catholicism, established parishes and built churches just like in any other islands in the Philippines. A legacy that the present day Catanduanes values until today.

Bato Church
The oldest church in Catanduanes

One of the churches they built is the St. John the Baptist Church in the town of Bato, Province of Catanduanes.

Although the parish and its original wooden church was established in the late 1500s, the presently standing stone church is said to be built in 1830 and was finished after 50 years.

Bato Church
The bell tower is accessible through a staircase inside the church.

The old church, constructed from coral stones, is located in northern end of the town proper of Bato and along the highway parallel to the wide Bato River. Locals say that the site is also where the Augustinian Friar Diego de Herrera died.

Today, the St. John the Baptist Church of Bato is the oldest church in the province that has stood the test of time and weathered countless storms, earthquakes and other natural calamities.

Bato Church
The facade of Bato Church

The church can be easily reached from Virac by riding a public jeepney or tricycle to Bato, travel time takes around 20 minutes on a scenic highway of southern Catanduanes.

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3 thoughts on “Catanduanes: The Heritage Church of Bato

  1. Hi Mam, I am a native from Catanduanes but live here in manila and Im proud that there’s someone documented our heritage. Catanduanes is not quite infamous aside from it’s where tropical typhoon forms. I am a mountaineer and Biologist too, herping is one of my hobby who handle snakes and other reptiles and I admire you’re site. unfortunately, I cannot find subcription on your site so as to have an update regarding on your new post. 🙂


  2. WOW! I am in awe! I must visit place! Is this far from the city? Or is this located downtown?

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