Chinese Cemetery in Manila, Philippines.

© Claudine Van Massenhove/Shutterstock

Chinese Cemetery

Top choice in Manila

As in life, so it is in death for Manila’s wealthy Chinese citizens, who are buried with every modern convenience in the huge Chinese Cemetery. It's far from your ordinary cemetery and instead feels like a residential suburb with streets lined with mausoleums – some of which feature crystal chandeliers, air-con, hot and cold running water, kitchens and flushing toilets (in case the interred are caught short on the way to paradise).

Hire a bicycle (per hour P100) to get around the sprawling grounds and consider hiring a guide for access to the best tombs. Tour guide Ivan Man Dy of Old Manila Walks does an excellent Chinese Cemetery tour.

To get here take the LRT to Abad Santos then walk or take a tricycle (P25) to the south entrance. While you're out this way, you can also visit the offbeat North Cemetery.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Manila attractions

1. North Cemetery

0.12 MILES

If you thought Manila's Chinese Cemetery was different, you clearly haven't made it to its abutting North Cemetery. While significant for being the burial…

2. UST Museum

1.67 MILES

Housed in the superb American–era main building of the University of Santo Tomas, this museum lays claims to being the oldest in Asia (the university's…

3. Seng Guan Buddhist Temple

2.08 MILES

The smell of incense wafts out of the large Seng Guan Buddhist Temple, the centre of Manila’s Buddhist community. It's just north of Chinatown in the hard…

4. Arch of Goodwill

2.44 MILES

One of several ornate arches within Chinatown that distinguish the neighbourhood from its surrounds.

5. Quiapo Church

2.46 MILES

Quiapo Church is a 1933 replacement of an older structure destroyed by fire. One of Manila’s best-known landmarks, Quiapo is the home of the Black…

6. Bahay Nakpil-Bautista

2.47 MILES

Built in 1914, this beautiful ancestral home is the former residence of Perona Nakpil, the widow of Andrés Bonifacio ( father of the Philippine Revolution…

7. Plaza Miranda


Plaza Miranda has some history. This is where the common folk came to watch beauty contests, political rallies, and various events and festivities, until…

8. First United Building

2.53 MILES

Not only is this one of Manila's finest pieces of surviving pre-WWII art deco, but it's also the centrepiece of the Escolta St revival. Inside are…