Corregidor is a small rocky tadpole-shaped island located about 48 km (30 mi) inland of Manila. It’s has been the largest city and most seaport in the Philippines for centuries, from the colonial rule of Spain, United States and Japan. Because of its strategic location, it was used to defend the entrance of Manila City and its bay. Corregidor played a crucial role during the invasion and liberation of the Philippines from the Japanese during WW2. What remained on the island post-second world war was converted as a military memorial to both Filipinos and Americans who fought during that trying time. Today, many people visit Corregidor island to pay homage to its history. Corregidor is also now a popular tourist destinations with day tours being offered to visitors.
There were 23 batteries installed on Corregidor, consisting of 56 coastal guns. In addition, Corregidor had 13 anti-aircraft artillery batteries with 76 guns (28 3-inch and 48 .50-caliber) and 10 60-inch Sperry searchlights. During the siege, the island had ample armor-piercing ammunition but very little of the anti-personnel type, which then was of greatest demand for use against land targets on Bataan.
Battery Way and Battery Geary were 12 inch (305 mm) Coastal Guns scattered around the Topside of Corregidor Island. One Such Coastal Gun in Corregidor is the Battery Hearn, which was a 12-inch seacost west-ranged gun that had a maximum range of 29,000 yards (27,000m) and was capable of firing in all directions. It was one of the last major additions to Corregidor’s defense system which was intended to defend the island against enemy naval threat from the South China Sea. Battery Hearn had been in action firing towards Cavite from February 1942 towards Bataan. This gun emplacement was captured nearly intact by the Japanese when Corregidor fell and it was subsequently repaired by them and put back into action.
We went to explore the Spanish Lighthouse which is at the highest point of the island. The top of the Lighthouse offers an awesome view of Manila Bay, the South China Sea and the whole Corregidor Island. It once served as watchpoint for galleons and/or pirates.
Malinta Tunel Light and Show.
It took 10 years for the Americans to build this tunnel. The headquarters as well as hospitals and warehouses were located here. Now, this place has one of the best lights and sound show in the country, the thirty-minute Malinta Tunnel Light and Sound Show is recommended for first time visitors. The tunnel, 835 feet long and 24 feet wide, has numerous laterals serving different functions – office, arsenal, hospital, etc. It is said to be bomb-proof due to its location beneath the Malinta Hill. In this activity, visitors will experience some of the most dramatic events in the ‘life’ of Corregidor during World War II. Every lateral depicts different scenarios of the hardships experienced by the defenders of the island
The Pacific War Memorial.
The PACIFIC WAR MEMORIAL was erected to honor Filipino and American servicemen who participated in the Pacific War. The major memorial structure is a rotunda in which a circular altar falls directly under the dome’s open center through which light falls on the alter during daylight hours.
Said to be the most photographed structure in Corregidor Island, Mile-Long Barracks is actually only 1,520-feet long, but has become known as the world’s longest barracks.
Mile-Long Barracks housed some 2,000 American Officers and it also served as headquarters of Gen. Mac Arthur.