Places to Visit in Tacloban: Madonna of Japan

Tacloban's Madonna of Japan is one of the city's most well-known tourist attractions. It is a symbol of friendship between Japan and the Philippines following WWII.

During World War II, Japanese forces were responsible for a large portion of the destruction in the Philippines, and a significant number of Filipinos died fighting to liberate their country from Japanese occupation.

Throughout those years, the people of the Philippines, including those on Leyte, were filled with dread and fear. They were considered adversaries, and anyone who came into contact with one would yell in contempt.

Despite the Filipinos' animosity toward the Japanese, the two countries were able to reach an agreement after the war.

Furthermore, as a symbol of the friendly relationship between the governments of the Philippines and Japan, the Maria Kannon monument was built on the site previously occupied by the camping area of Japanese forces.

The Madonna of Japan Memorial Park was named after the Blessed Virgin Mary, who is also known as Madonna or Maria Kannon in Japan by those who practice Christianity.

This statue is now regarded as one of Tacloban City's most significant historical landmarks. It is also a memorial to the valiant troops who fought and died on the battlefield. The park is one of the nicest spots to visit in the city and is located on Kanhuraw Hill, near Tacloban City's City Hall, along Magsaysay Boulevard.

Even a local urban legend says if you go to the park, you should wear your clothes backward, so Madonna doesn't haunt you. This is to shield yourself from her nefarious presence. The origins of this urban legend can be traced back to locals who don't want their children to play outside for too long.

Since its construction, the Maria Kannon Monument has come to represent Japan and the Philippines as friendly neighbors committed to maintaining peace.

REFERENCE:
iTacloban

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