UNESCO delists Loboc, Baclayon churches as “heritage destinations”

UNESCO delists Loboc,

Baclayon churches as

“heritage destinations”


Bohol officials reacted differently to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco) move of deleting nominations of potential centuries-old monuments in Bohol from the list of World Heritage  Sites.

Gov Edgar Chatto who was shocked on this development said he will verify with UNESCO the published report in a national daily, Phil. Daily Inquirer.

The report quoted UNESCO source as having delisted the centuries-old churches of Loboc and Baclayon towns, which were damaged during  the magnitude 7.2 earthquake October last year.

Also removed from the list of nominees in Unesco’s world heritage sites is Panglao island due to“pollution and man-made interventions,” the reports said. Included in the delisting under the natural category are the Taal Volcano, Batangas province and Mt. Apo in Davao del Sur due to the same reasons. 

Those retain in the list of nimonations include churches of Boljoon, Cebu; Maragondon, Cavite; Lazi, Siquijor; Tumauini, Isabela; and San Sebastian, Manila.

 The world heritage sites already declared by Unesco include Vigan in 1992; Baroque churches in 1993; Tubbataha Reefs National Park in Plawan, 1993; Rice Terraces, Cordillera, 1995; Puerto Prinsesa Subterranean Rive National Park, 2009; and Mount Hamiguitan Range Wildlife Sanctuary, 2014, the reports said.

Unesco has updated its list as a first step to the world heritage site during a recent gathering of the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines (UNACOM) “Moving  Forward: World Heritage and Buisphere Nomination Workshop” held in Vigan, Ilocos Sur, it said.

For his part, Gov. Edgar Chatto said in a report that he still has to check this out as this “surprised” him.

Mayor Montero said that there’s still a lot to do for her town but short of saying what to do on “man-made interventions” that made the island removed from the said list. She added that raising awareness and educating the people on environmental preservation and protection are her priority now.

Panglao island, including Dauis town, is noted for some environmental violations particularly the coastal 20-meter salvage zone by beach resorts mostly owned and operated by private entities.

In his text message, Mayor Alvin Uy told this writer that they (officials) still have to discuss this week this development since they are not yet in receipt of the delisting.

The Unesco has retain Chocolate Hills Natural Monument under the natural category, the reports said.

The good news is that Chocolate Hills is the country’s natural wonder and one of the top sites visited in the country, the The Huffington Post said in its latest edition. Included in the same sites are the  “the world’s most perfectly formed volcano Mount Mayon in Bicol, 2,000-year-old rice terraces in Banaue and the pristine beaches in El Nido, Palawan with its “magnificent limestone formations and crazy-colorful coral reefs.”

Balicasag island, off Panglao island was also cited as reasons the country is the best tropical destination, Huffington said. It equally mentioned some diving spots such as “Malapascua Island, with four different shipwrecks to explore, the uncrowded and incredible reefs and diving sites Apo island.”

“Nathan Allen, world traveler and creator of the travel blog I Dreamed of This, described Philippine beaches and mountain regions as “nothing short of spectacular” and “still has an element of rugged adventure that is missing from other more touristy destinations,” The Huffington said.

PIC 1 – Baclayon church before the earthquake. (RVO)

PIC 2 – Baclayon church after the earthquake. (RVO)

PIC 3 – Loboc church before the earthquake. (RVO)

PIC 4 – Loboc church after the earthquake. (RVO)

PIC 5 – Ukrainian couple-photographers take shots at Chocolate Hills

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