May 13, 2012

The Historic Watchtowers in Boljoon, Cebu

It is a sad fact that this part of history is not included in our study of Philippine History in elementary until college. Correct me if I’m wrong please!

Many centuries ago, a warrior-priest, named Julian Bermejo, decided to build watchtowers (baluarte in Spanish) in Boljoon, Cebu, Philippines. These were built some time in the 1880s with the sole purpose of communicating warnings and signals to the people of Boljoon and its nearby towns about the coming Muslims in their raids on the southern part of Cebu.

The largest baluarte in Cebu, now known as a Kampanaryo

Padre Julian Bermejo successfully designed a remarkable network of watchtowers that run along the coastal towns of southern Cebu particularly in Santander, Oslob, Boljoon, Dalaguete, and Argao. These watchtowers have prevented the “moro” raids in depleting the natural and manpower resources of southern Cebu.

These are now the watchtowers (and its ruins) in Boljoon.

1. El Grande Baluarte
It is the largest watchtower in southern Cebu (and maybe even in the Visayas). This served as the main headquarters of Padre Julian Bermejo.

2. The Baluarte on top of Ili Rock
It is strategically located on top of Ili Rock in order for the locals to see the coming enemies.

3. Baluarte sa Fuente
This watchtower is situated near the seashore.

I still have to explore the last watchtower in Boljoon. They have 4 watchtowers actually.

Isn’t it a new experience to know a little history of the place you are exploring?


  1. Boljoon has a lot of heritage sites that yet to be discovered. Actually, that is part of my list, heritage sites. Nice post phraim.:-). Tsada.

    1. Sir, thanks for dropping by. You are correct sir, Boljoon and the southern towns of Cebu has many undiscovered history and heritage! You must explore these places too. Salamat sa tsada!hehe :)