Bell Church: A Chinese Temple in Baguio City

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Hello, everyone! Welcome back to me! First of all, I want to express my hatred for summer season. Every corner of the house feels o warm even the electric fan doesn’t seem to help. Yes, I’m bathing in my own sweat right now. Ugh! Second, I had a fun out of town vacation with my friends last week. Third, only four blogs left for my Baguio City blog series! 

So, without further ado, let’s move on to our next destination—The Bell Church.


(image source: Katsanslimites)
The Bell Church.

The Bell Church is a Taoist temple built on top of a hill for the Chinese.Taoism is one of the religions in China. The temple is also open for non-Chinese visitors making it a unique destination on Baguio City's tourists spots. Having a Taoist temple in Baguio City just goes to show that there is a huge community of Chinese in the area. In fact, Baguio City also has a special celebration for Chinese New Year and Spring Festival every year. Well, the Chinese population is not only huge in Baguio City but across the Philippines too.

(video source: Spirit Studios via Youtube)
A brief introduction about Taoism.

I don't know why it was called Bell Church though. The word church sounded something for Christians, in my opinion. But if the Chinese community had agreed with the name then I have no reason to question it.


The Bell Church is located at the boundary of Baguio City and the town of La Trinidad in the province of Benguet. You can also pass by Bell Church if you are bound to Strawberry Farm and Valley of Colors by riding a jeepney with a Baguio-Buyagan route. You can find the jeepneys with this route at the Rizal Park near Burnham Park.

(image source: Mhaiiiself; edited by Katsanslimites)
The Baguio City and La Trinidad boundary.

The temple is about 4.2 kilometers away from the main city and travel time takes around 15 to 20 minutes. Finding the Bell Church is easy as it is very near the Baguio and La Trinidad boundary arch and the arch of the temple itself is already an eye-catcher to travelers. If you are on the direction going to La Trinidad, the Bell Church is on your right side.

If you are coming from Strawberry Farm like us, take again a Baguio-Buyagan jeepney. Fare costs Php 8.50 and travel time is about 10 minutes.


We arrived at Bell Church around 11:20 A.M. The heat of sun was making us feel exhausted but since the temple was along the way back to the main city, we decided to drop by this tourist spot despite the scorching heat. The Bell Church is a known tourist spot but not as popular as Strawberry Farm, Mines View Park, Burnham Park, The Mansion, Camp John Hay, etc. I think that's because it is located far from the city proper. I assume most of the tourists going here has Bell Church on their side trip list before or after visiting Strawberry Farm. It was not mhaiiiself's first time visiting the temple so she somehow acted as my..tour guide? (Haha.)

An arch with dragons will greet people who enters the premises of the Bell Church. Seeing the arch would already give anyone a feeling that what's inside has something to do with Chinese culture. The Chinese characters on the arch and the dragon statues should let you know that beyond it is a place for Chinese people. Although I was surprised to see stores and houses at the street on the way to the temple. And the residents I saw don't look Chinese for me. It wasn't anything like what I was imagining it to be. I was imagining a path or street with no houses and with only just beautiful landscapes with colorful flowers on the sides.

(image source: Katsanslimites)
One of the archs before the gate to the temple.

But in all fairness, you'll get a vibe like you're in a China town because the houses or stores got some red paint and dragon statues on it. The street was also surprisingly not that noisy even though the street is a bit busy because of the stores and a couple of people around.

(image source: Katsanslimites)
The gate leading to the temple.

Reaching the red gate, you will then be walking on a slightly inclined road to reach the temple. The gate and the walls has dragon statues as well.


(image source: Katsanslimites)
A wall that looks like the Banaue Rice Terraces filled with Chinese names.

First thing I noticed upon reaching the temple was the wall. The design was interesting and has Chinese characters written on it. I believe what's written on the walls were names of people, probably donors of the temple. The stairs leading to the temple's entrance was also interesting. I've seen a couple of photos of this beautiful wall online so it felt amazing seeing it with my bare eyes.

Walking up the stairs, you will be welcomed by another arch painted in red with dragon statues on top and a lion statue on both sides. Entering the grounds of the temple felt like you were suddenly teleported to China. Most structures inside were painted red, a color that is greatly attached to the Chinese culture. Colors green, yellow, and white were also present around.

The grounds of the temple was quiet even though there were a couple of tourists around taking photos. Of course, people have to lessen noise as much as possible because they are within the premises of a sacred place. You don't want to be rude and disturb those who are praying and meditating, right?

We didn't try to enter the temple itself because we don't want to bother those who were praying inside. Visitors are allowed to enter but taking photos and videos are not allowed. There are also other rules you should follow aside from no snapping and recording. One rule I could remember is that caps are not allowed inside the temple. However, you can try to burn incense sticks if you entered the temple. Some people who have gone inside the temple said they have tried burning some.

(image source: Mhaiiiself; edited by Katsanslimites)
In front of the temple with the guardian lion statues on my both sides.

Since we haven't entered the temple, we just took photos with the guardian lions in front of the temple instead. I think these lions are the same as the ones we usually see on Chinese New Year? I'm not sure but the statue and puppets used for the lion dance during the Chinese New Year parade looks similar to each other.

(image source: Katsanslimites)
One of the guardian lion statue up-close.

The guardian lion are believed by the Chinese to bring protection in their life. They look cute and quite terrifying at the same time. 

(image source: Mhaiiiself; edited by Katsanslimites)
Me in front of the pond. I hope you can see the water lilies behind me. (Hehe!)

Across the temple's entrance is a pond filled with water lilies. I must say, it looks beautiful. The water lily leaves and its white flower floating on the still water just gives me a calming and serene vibe.

(image source: Katsanslimites)
A huge Bell Church signage.

The temple also has a beautifully landscaped garden. Of course, who would miss the huge Bell Church signage on the grasses at the side. I've also seen these huge letters on photos from my friends. By the way, it also has Chinese characters on top but I can't decipher what it means. (If you can read the characters, I would be thankful if you can translate it for me. Hehe!)

(image source: Katsanslimites)
One of the gazebos and statues inside Bell Church.

There were also a couple of gazebos around but we didn't went up to those located on the higher area as we were not sure if visitors were allowed to enter that area because the gate leading up was closed. The one on the photo above is just near the arch and the only gazebo we had went near to. It has a statue of a man (I don't know who he is because I am not familiar with the history of China and their Taoism religion), probably an important person in the Chinese history. Maybe the man is a military general since he is wearing an armor and holding a spear.

Loitering and making noise is prohibited on the temple so we only spent a few minutes on the area. Before we finally went down, we took a short time to check the view of the surroundings from the temple. The Bell Church is on top of a hill, so standing at its edge will give you a good view of what's around the temple. Well, we were glad to see a mountain nearby but sadly, they were filled with houses. (Yikes!) Seeing the houses on the slope of the mountain gives me anxiety.

When we reached back the red gate, I wondered why it was closed. And as we walked closer to the gate, I saw a signage that the temple closes from 12 to 1 P.M. It was around 11:45 A.M. when we finished strolling at the temple. Lucky we made it to the Bell Church before lunch break, otherwise, we could've dropped this on our list because we can't waste our time to wait an hour for it to open again since we still have another destination on our list.


(video source: Jerric Maxx via Youtube)
A short video around Bell Church.

Bell Church is a nice place to visit if you wish to be in a peaceful and quiet environment. It's not among the top travel destinations in Baguio City but I recommend that you see this place at least once because it's different from the rest of the tourist destinations around. It has a calm environment which I like. Although the heat of the sun is quite disturbing as there were not enough structures for you to take shelter from if you don't plan to enter the temple. (Hehe.) I guess the best time to go here is in the afternoon. It's a place of tranquility, sacredness, and a good place to be familiar about the Chinese culture and religion.

Thanks for reading!

✧ Katsanslimites

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