I was so bored one Saturday morning so I packed my stuff and boarded a bus to San Pablo. I didn’t have any itinerary at hand. It was another “bahala na si batman” (leave it all to batman) trip, though I already had places to visit in mind. I was planning to check the 7 lakes of San Pablo, the Underground Cemetery in Nagcarlan, the shoe shops in Liliw, etc.
However, when I reached San Pablo City, I had no idea where to start. The 7 lakes of San Pablo were spread out at various locations. It will take a lot of commuting routes, which I wasn’t familiar with. Also, I didn’t have that much fund to pay for a bring-me-everywhere ride. In the end, I decided to do it on my next visit and headed all the way to Nagcarlan.
Prior to hopping on the jeepney, I told the driver to drop me near the underground cemetery in Nagcarlan. I was peace upon kuya driver’s assurance
Unfortunately, he forgot about it. Good thing that the facade of the century-old edifice is quite visible from the highway.
Awed at Nagcarlan Underground Cemetery
The antiquated archway is a stand out among the structures arrayed along the highway because of its unique, classical look. The compound, on the other hand, is adorned with lush vegetation of yellow tops, red santan, and green grasses. The lamp posts add a park-look to the octagonal cemetery.
Opposite the entrance arch is the chapel where the funeral masses were held. Beside the chapel are graves which served as the resting place for the townsfolk. Underneath the chapel is a massive chamber with crypts that housed the remains of the Spanish Friars and prominent people of the society.
I visited the cemetery underground and took some photos. The caretaker, who was stationed at the entrance of the chapel, reminded me beforehand that they prohibit the use of flash. So guys, bring a high-ISO camera when you plan to take photos underground.
It wasn’t creepy at all. I left the underground chamber when I noticed that I was all alone.
Nagcarlan Underground Cemetery Quick Facts:
- The underground cemetery was built in 1845 under the supervision of the French Missionary, Fr. Vicente Velloc.
- During the Philippine Revolution, the cemetery served as a meeting place of revolutionary leaders of the Katipunan in 1896. It was where the early planning of historic Pact of Biak-na-Bato was held.
- The cemetery has 240 apartment-type niches on the wall beside the chapel. Each side of the chapel has 120.
- Declared as a National Historical Landmark on August 1, 1973. Burials were no longer allowed after the declaration.
How to Get There
- Take a bus to San Pablo City, Laguna or any bus bound for Lucena and get off at San Pablo bus stop. The fare is ₱130 and travel time is three to four hours.
- Take a tricycle to the terminal of Nagcarlan-bound jeepneys.
- Board the jeepney and inform the driver to drop you off in front Nagcarlan Underground Cemetery. The fare is ₱26.