Beneath the Modern City: Tunnels of Fort Bonifacio | Taguig

Fort Bonifacio Tunnel-0

This month’s theme of blog carnival is all about “Dark Tourism” which means act of travel and visitation to sites, attractions and exhibitions which have real or recreated death, suffering or the seemingly macabre as explained by our host ThePinay Solobackpacker. This includes cemeteries, century old churches, war memorials, mausoleums and other related places. It also includes stories which are supernatural, unexplainable and horrifying which obviously attracts tourists despite the fact that seeing this still made you experience goose bumps and weird feelings.

I can say that joining this carnival is indeed “bloody”. Bloody not because I literally mean it but due to the fact that researching about my topic requires effort and accuracy. It’s very frightful in my side that I might commit mistakes which may not be acceptable or might seem offensive to the people who has an idea of what would I discuss. And so I decided to just write about what I had experience.

I was intrigued when someone mentioned that there were tunnels discovered under Bonifacio Global City (The Fort) in Taguig, part of the former American military base camp (Fort McKinley) which was then renamed Fort Andres Bonifacio after our country gained its political independence from the United States. This part called BGC is now converted into a real state where high rise condominiums and high end commercial establishments are being built

Fort Bonifacio Tunnel-3

I can still recall how excited I was while listening to their experience inside the tunnel. So when I was invited to check the place, I didn’t think twice and I just said “YES”. I haven’t been to any barracks/tunnel made and destroyed during the war. That’s the reason why I would want to visit one, particularly Corregidor.

“What!?” I almost dropped my jaw when I found out that the tunnel is just under where I always walk to work every day.

They said that this tunnel was made by Americans; others claimed it was built by Japanese. Until now, it remains as one big question left by our history, so I will just leave it to you dear readers to discover it for yourself.

Fort Bonifacio Tunnel-6

The tunnel’s door is in the ground covered with a heavy and pure metal door. It is accessible by a very long staircase, which based on my estimate is around 3 storey high. The stair is very steep and you need to be extra careful in going down for the railings used as guide were already gone. There were traces that it was already been removed by people (maybe they sold it) and there were vandals of names around its walls made by those careless people who do not care about its purpose and its importance in our history. The tunnel is dark and you need a good source of light. Metal halide lit the staircase as we can go down. Upon reaching the last step, we were opt to choose from which way to go, whether to go left or right. There were rooms in every 5 steps in both side. One room also has a deep well which I think serves as the source of their drinking water. I was fascinated because the water remains clear because I can still see its bottom when the guard pointed his flashlight down. The tunnel seems never ending so our guide decided to go back and it’s getting darker because the floodlight wasn’t that enough to cover the whole stretch. They speculated that its end might be in Pasig River but we’re not sure though. We then walk to see the other side. There was a part which seems to be dug but remained unfinished. That stretch was also long and dark so we decided to go back, besides is getting hotter inside. That is the only time when we decided to totally go out of the tunnel.

Fort Bonifacio Tunnel-4

Some security guards and medics assisted us. Definitely, it is not the place for claustrophobic. It was really hot inside, no flowing air, no phone signal. There are thoughts that keep on running in my head like how it was built, where is the start and where does it end, how many people exerted their effort to built this kind of shelter. While walking along its long corridor, I was also thinking how the soldiers survived the kind of life underground. Well I guess, they prefer to live underground rather than experiencing a brutal death in the hands of their enemies. There is no option for them to complain if they want to be alive and safe.

Fort Bonifacio Tunnel-2

Below are some of the information I have found during my research.

“This is regarding the tunnel in Fort Bonifacio whose entrance was behind the old Philippine Army museum. It was a tourist attraction in the 90s; I went there several times. It is deep underground, accessible by a very long staircase. It was reputed to go all the way to Villamor Airbase. It seems that it was dug by the Americans, occupied by the Japanese, then recaptured by the Americans, as evidenced by several bullet holes and a wrecked area where the Japanese set off explosives.

However, the Fort Bonifacio I know in the 90s is long gone, after the bulldozers were finished. The museum and its exhibits have been transferred. My question is, does the tunnel and its entrance still exist? It would still make for a very good tourist attraction.”
CatsMeow

“In 1972, before the diggings happened, Marcos’ men discovered a vast tunnel “within the Pasig River” along what is now the Napindan flood control project, underground tunnels from the Fort Bonifacio military reservation up to Villamor Air Base and Bicutan-Taguig via Fort Bonifacio Army General Hospital..”

“The huge tunnel origin or who constructed it was still unknown and not confirm but have speculations that it was quarry tunnel back then by [Japanese??] which is quite lame. For how can the Japanese built a very huge tunnel at the height of war against America then? Perhaps, the Japanese just already found the tunnel already build at the time they occupy the Philippines. it is either the Americans, the Spaniards or the Malay-Chinese natives of the Philippines back then have build the tunnel as passageway which was only buried at the passage of time and war.”
Lazy D.Makuha

Fort Bonifacio Tunnel-1

darwin

darwin

a frustrated journalist-and-teacher-turned-engineer who is making his dreams into reality by following his designed style of traveling. Email me at thetreasuretracker@gmail.com.
darwin

47 Responses to Beneath the Modern City: Tunnels of Fort Bonifacio | Taguig

  1. EDMARATION says:

    Interesting post. What makes it more interesting to me is the mystery who made it. I love visiting places with unsolved puzzles. yey!! Thanks to PTB, I have seen a great blog such as yours.

    • darwin says:

      Thnak you so much Edmaration, Im as well was intrigued about this tunnel, still malaking question mark pa rin sakin asan yung lagusan nito..

      • paulo b. lujares says:

        I can help u on that.its not a big deal u know. When i was young ,my father use to bring me ththere.my father was a col.of phil. Marines on that time. 1988. I saw that.and we entered thdthat beautiful yet scarry tunnel.i was a long walk and deep stairs. We go to a diffrent plawplaces.west rembo,beside pasig river.taguig.i cant remember the other tunnels. I was funfun.we played the tanks.machooine guns but ofcourse there not armed. Anyways. The location of the tunnel is beneath the parking lot of market market .have u been there? At the level parking.believe me bro. Nandun u

        n.kaya kapag nagkagera alam mo n kungp saan ka pu

        • darwin says:

          wow Paulo, thats really interesting! and yes that’s where we entered. the tunnel is under Market market.

          • Russell Torrente says:

            the tunnel system stretch to our barangay too.. i livr in barangay rizal in makati. just below market market. back when i was young you can still go inside those dug up entrances. now i really dont know what happened to it kasi ang dami ng tinayong mga bahay. if ever po may invitation kayo ulit sa iexplore yung mga tunnel ng fort bonifacio i would like to come.. :)

    • darwin says:

      Thank you so much Edmaration, Im as well was intrigued about this tunnel, still malaking question mark pa rin sakin asan yung lagusan nito..

      • EDMARATION says:

        Nakakatakot lang yung mga nasa taas. Baka above these tunnels are buildings. Posible kaya yun?

      • Richie says:

        Hi Darwin, This blog catch my attention., I’m from Brgy.Signal Village since 1980. Isa rin ako sa nangangalap ng artifacts related to this tunnel. Meron din dito sa dating school namin named Fort Andres Bonifacio College Signal Annex (now Signal Village National High School) ang tunnel na ito. Sabi ng mga matatanda nuon, tumatagos ito hanggang Heritage Park at Fort McKinley. Same as yours, gusto ko rin ipreserve ang history nya para sa aming lugar dahil historic site talaga sya na hindi napahalagahan nuon. I’m interested to join kung meron uling expidition or research group about this tunnel, please count me in.

      • Francis says:

        In late 1980’s you will find / see the two caves located in FABC Annex (and now SVNSH) and another cave can be seen on the grounds of the LORONO FAMILY … But the FABC Annex covered the work of a building they built… I proud to be Batang Sigal… Signal Village Taguig City

    • paulo b. lujares says:

      the japanese empire po.

  2. Christine says:

    Wow! It’s amazing how you found this place. I used to run a lot around McKinley hill and work near the area and I never knew.

  3. Tinitingnan ko pa lang ang loob ng tunnel parang hinihingal na ako :)

  4. Parang Blair Witch Project yung photos *cringe*

  5. ay wow! na post na sa wakas! hihi

  6. sobrang interesting.. i wanna explore this place too. puntahan natin ‘to Dar.

    • darwin says:

      Ivan I’m not sure kung pwede na to basta-basta pasukin, kasi as far as i know under na sya ng management ng BGC, pero someone named Paulo posted a comment, pwede raw nya tayo samahan, kasi dun sila madalas maglaro dati..

  7. paulo b. lujares says:

    Swete ko madami kming mga magkakalaro n pumasok dun. Alam mo kung bkit locate n locate ko kc malapit lng ang bahay nmin d2 e.ung pic.dun sa taas madilim pa un.kapag pumapasok kmi dun ang liwanag.kc sagana sa florecentb

    • darwin says:

      wow, samahan mo kami, san ka dun nakatira?

      • paulo b. lujares says:

        Bro. D n kc pwede kc mula nung ginawa ung c5 nacra na ung isang small tunel sa may firing range dti.tinakpan ng mga taga dpwh un.pero alam ko ung location nun.alam mo ung shell sa c5.dun sa likod ng jolibe.kso nga tinakpan n nla un.meron pa sa tbi ng c5 mahahalata mmo na tinakpan ng cmento ang mga adobeng hinukay dun.

  8. carlotta says:

    this is awesome. when will there be another tour of taguig tunnel?
    may tunnel din sa san juan pero mukhang tinabunan na a long time ago due to squatters living around the area. i would have loved to explore it.

    • alexander gonzales says:

      add ko lang po meron din tunnel sa pagitan ng bagong ilog at penida, pasig city sa paanan ng wellington flour mills sa pasig river ang entrance…isang tao lang ang kasya sa entrance…dun kami naglalaro nung elementary pa ako during 60’…sana ma explore din yun…ang tawag namin dun sa tunnel dona geronima’s cave…

  9. Macky says:

    sana makapasok rin ako dyan sa tunnel^_^

  10. thesting says:

    i’m fascinated with WWII stories and relics… tatlong beses na ako nakapunta sa corregidor just to round the island fortress and its gun/mortar batteries, napasok ko na rin ang malinta tunnel and its laterals ng 8PM ng gabi ganun din ang japanese and navy tunnel sa island thru a package tour ng sun cruises tours-magsaysay lines at picc complex… i would love to visit this bonifacio tunnel someday.

  11. Emil Baligod says:

    Sama din ako kung pupuntahan ninyo. Let me know. thanks

  12. Estarsky says:

    I hope maging tourist attraction ito. My collegue (richard) at work already told me the story about the long_tunnel located in Fort bonifacio. Napaka-haba nga daw nito. Dating marine kasi ang tatay nya, sa Fort dati naka-base kaya nun bata pa daw sya, lagi syang sinasama ng tatay nya, para i-tour sa long tunnel na yun. If im not mistaken, ang sabi nya sakin may labasan sa gilid ng c5, sa side papuntang pateros, pero natabunan na ng tinayo ang nanging-U-turn slot ni Bayani.

  13. Earl Robles says:

    Im glad that the remaining portion of fort bonifacio tunnel will be considered a Heritage Site. I tried to locate it last year and luckily, i found one of its entrance beside Market! Market! Half of the entrance is covered with a metal palette but i still manage to go inside. It was really dark and hot inside. I was on the 10th step of the stairs when a security guard of market market called me and ask me to leave the area due security reasons. I hope i could explore it more with you guys. It is truly a heritage site.

  14. Earl Robles says:

    Im glad that the remaining portion of fort bonifacio tunnel will be considered a Heritage Site. I tried to locate it last year and luckily, i found one of its entrance beside Market! Market! Half of the entrance is covered with a metal palette but i still manage to go inside. It was really dark and hot inside. I was on the 10th step of the stairs when a security guard of market market called me and ask me to leave the area due security reasons. I hope i could explore it more with you guys. It is truly a heritage site. (09228239011)

  15. Earl L. Robles says:

    Napa-daan ako ng Market Market last week via C5 road, and i noticed may bagong fly over na naitayo beside one of the tunnels entrance kung saan ako nag try mag-explore. I wonder kung nasira yung entrance. Akala ko ba Heritage site na yung lugar. Publicity lang po ba ito ng Bonifacio Global City or ng Philippine Army???

  16. froilan. says:

    sa school ng Signal Village National Highscul (SVNHS) my tunnel din daw dun sabi ng teacher ko connected daw dun hangganng sa market2x. simula church ng guadalupe hanggang camp. aguinaldo..

  17. Richie says:

    Hi Darwin. I’m from Brgy.Signal Village since 1980. Isa rin ako sa nangangalap ng artifacts related to this tunnel. Meron din dito sa dating school named named Fort Andres Bonifacio College Signal Annex (now Signal Village National High School) ang tunnel na ito. Sabi ng mga matatanda nuon, tumatagos ito hanggang Heritage Park at Fort McKinley. Same as yours, gusto ko rin ipreserve ang history nya para sa aming lugar dahil historic site talaga sya na hindi napahalagahan nuon. I’m interested to join kung meron research group about this tunnel, please count me in. +63*932*740*63*55.

  18. cyfer says:

    I’m already in my twilight zone, meron palang mahaba, malamim at historic na tunnel dyan sa MM? I wish I were young so that I could join you in there. Our government should initiate gathering all the data related to the tunnel: the tunnel as-built plan and put it in map, the historic significance, the dangers it may pose so that it could be prevented while preserving it, and etc…

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  20. jose marie judi says:

    dapat i feature sa underground city b un?? ng history channel ung mga tunnel n yan,, para okey oyeh

  21. valentin chan says:

    sana nga,gawin na lang itong isang alala ng mga hapon at amerikano,,,at gawing tourist spot ito,,,dadami pa ang turista sa atin

  22. RT says:

    Hi! I want to go and visit this tunnel is there anyone that can tour us around?

  23. Day says:

    Watch out for the Cobras and big black spiders.

  24. gigs says:

    I miss the old house that used to be the museum of World War II on top of this tunnel! Sad to say that the tunnel was not preserve. We can actually compare this to Cuchi Tunnel in Vietnam.

    • Carl says:

      Guess the story of the Army Museum wasn’t a legend after all… Whether or not they finish making this place safe, I’m going!

      Plus I think there is also an entrance that was used by Gen. Pio del Pilar in Guadalupe Viejo’s Nuestra Senora de Gracia Parish when they escaped the americans. It was the well in the courtyard, if I remember correctly.

      Now it’s sealed up because of the ghastly smell it gives during summer.

  25. jorge says:

    sabi nila may lagusan daw patungo malacanyang totoo ba?

  26. Samantha says:

    Hello po :) saan po yung exact na lugar na pwedeng pasukan yung tunnel? Atsaka po papapasukin po ba kaming mga students? Kasi po itong underground tunnel yung napili naming topic para po sa history namin eh. Wala po ?aming idea. Salamat po :)

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