[Batac] ► Ricarte National Shrine, Museum & the Father of Philippine Army

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"Now I know how the weapons during World War II looked like before my eyes. In this museum, it will feed your curiosity if ever you bring that."

Whenever I visit a town or a city, the first thing that I always want to know is if there's a museum. I tend to visit museums first before fully exploring a town because it serves as a great teaser about the history of the town. It will educate you and will fill your heart with passion, gives you the desire to discover more and makes you a responsible traveler by learning the importance or value of our heritage, whether it is natural, cultural, etc.

Ricarte National Shrine Overview

I was reading his entry in the Wikipedia and it turned out to be a moving write-up. I am referring to Gen. Artemio Ricarte, considered by the AFP as the Father of Philippine Army who was born in the city of Batac in the province of Ilocos Norte.
Ricarte National Shrine


Exploring the city of Batac in one day, I was able to find two museums in the city, the Marcos Museum and  Ricarte Museum.

The moment I stepped onto the streets of the city, I wasn't aware that a shrine called Gen. Ricarte National Shrine exists. They say this is the birthouse of Artemio Ricarte. I won't be adding his biography here anymore because I believe you want to search it in Wikipedia. If you are curious who is this man and on how he fought the Philippines for it's freedom, better check it out to at least understand better this blog post, here is the link -- Artemio Ricarte Biography.

Ricarte National Shrine is located within the commercial districts of Batac City. It is composed of two elegant looking houses identical in appearance. It has a museum, library and a park where a statue of the latter stands.

Ricarte National Shrine
This Shrine was built in honor of General Artemio Ricarte, a man who is known to have played an important role during World War II in fighting for our independence.

Through a house bill with the help of Ferdinand Marcos, Fidel V. Ramos and the incumbent Mayor and Congressman of Ilocos Norte 2nd District that time, a law was passed creating this area as the General Ricarte National Shrine.

How I Discovered this Shrine?

I went to Batac randomly. I have no itinerary that time. As I walk along Washington Street, I saw an arch with the label "Ricarte National Shrine." Of course, I don't ignore things like this, instead, I become curious.

Ricarte National Shrine
I didn't waste my time and why would I? I immediately entered that area and approached the guard near the door immediately and asked, "So what this shrine is all about?"

Of course I asked him with due respect and all that. The guard started to tell the story and he was mainly telling about the life of Gen. Artemio Ricarte. He was warm. This time, I was the lone visitor. I don't know if tourists ever include this in their itinerary. The museum was empty but never lonely.

Ricarte Museum and the Free Book

I asked the guard if I can go upstairs. He didn't hesitate to say "Yes!" Since I am new in this place and it was my first time to learn about a man named Artemio Ricarte, I requested the guard if he can give me a brochure or any material that will educate me what this shrine is all about.

Hallway to the Museum


Without too much ado, he gave me a book on which honestly until now, haven't read it.

So what the heck I asked for it if in the long run, I won't be caring to read it?

Uhhh, I know I am just lazy to read it but I believe that somewhere in the future, I will read that book! The big problem now is I don't know where I have placed it. Call it misplaced but I know it is somewehre out there. The museum is at the second floor and you'll need to pass by the clean and well-lighted hallway.

Ricarte Museum Batac City
Inside the museum is an amusing old world feel. It has capiz windows wide enough to allow light to naturally kick darkness away.

It has shiny red floor in tiles and at the walls are framed old pictures (some are portraits while some are non-wacky group pics) of Artemio Ricarte during World War II and to some points in his life.

So what to expect inside the Ricarte Museum? Expect weapons-of-war used during, of course, war -- World War II to be exact.

Ricarte Museum

Ricarte Museum

Ricarte Museum
If you are not a fan of history or stuff such as this, you may not appreciate it. But hey! This is a great chance for us to see and learn what the men-of-war used during those times of our history. My curiosity was given an answer. Now I know how the weapons during World War II looked like before my eyes. In this museum, it will feed your curiosity if ever you bring that.

Aside from those rifles, there are also plates from Japan. If you read the biography of Artemio Ricarte, you will learn what is the role of Japan in his life.

Ricarte Park and Statue

In front of the museum building is a park called Ricarte Park named after the latter. Located near the middle of the park is another explosive weapon used during World War II displayed before the public. That vintage weapon looks like a joke to me thinking how the weapons in my generation has turned so sophisticated... and complicated, and one push of the button will cause the life of one city. These weapons will just serve as good subject for research and definitely not for use now, LOL!

But of course I value the history behind that thing. Maybe I am just preoccupied by the things I am living with now like the present technology in this digital age which makes vintage weapon-of-war like this obsolete.

Ricarte Park
Ricarte Statue
At the center of the park is the statue of Artemio Ricarte -- the very reason why this shrine exists.

Indeed, this museum visit was of worth and never have I regret. I was learning, I was enjoying and at the same time feeding my curiosity. /end

Batac #TownExploration Series

Batac City, Ilocos Norte | A Parade of Colorfully Painted CarabaosBatac, Ilocos Norte: Old Houses, New LessonsBatac City | Farmers Festival Caroza ParadeWorld Peace Center Batac | 15 Mins. at Marcos' Giant Indoor MosaicBatac City | DIY Itinerary: One-Day Walking Tour to 5 Historical SitesMarcos Museum and Mausoleum of Batac (Ilocos Norte)Batac Empanada | So What Makes it Special?Ricarte National Shrine | Birthplace of Ricarte: the Father of Philippine Army

Map showing the Location of #Batac

Click this map to view all posts about #Batac

comment 8 #TownFolks Commented :

Bound for Two on August 8, 2012 at 2:51 PM said...

I can't forget his name, the moment quizbee master asked who is the "Father of Phil Army". If wiki was available during that time I should have won. bitter lang

EDMARATION #TownExplorer on August 8, 2012 at 3:06 PM said...

^^ Hehe, Joey, "those quiz bee" times back then, what a good time it was!

On the other way around, I tried winning a quiz bee before because my closest competitor forgot the name of the incumbent DOH secretary, hehe. it was an another story. Elementary days, nakaka-miss :)

Pinay Travel Junkie on August 8, 2012 at 6:19 PM said...

Looks like a well kept museum. Too bad it's overshadowed by the other museum.

EDMARATION #TownExplorer on August 8, 2012 at 10:25 PM said...

@Gay, oo nga eh. Iilan lang talaga ang may alam kasi kay Ricarte, hindi kinaya ang kasikatan ni Marcos. hehe.

juanderfulpinoy on August 9, 2012 at 2:17 PM said...

Nakakamiss ang Batac, grabe 4 years na rin pala ng huling nakapunta ako dito..

EDMARATION #TownExplorer on August 9, 2012 at 11:30 PM said...

Chino, matagal na ah. may mga bagong attractions ngayon sa Batac. :)

Wends of Journeys and Travels on August 10, 2012 at 3:14 PM said...

Looks impressive and museum such as this one has rich cultural heritage is a must for my long-overdue Ilocos trip.

Cheers :)

EDMARATION #TownExplorer on August 10, 2012 at 3:40 PM said...

@DocWends! Ilocos ka na Soon! I Will be glad to tour ya around to some places not yet seen by most travel bloggers :)

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