Explore National Museum - Free Admission: Discover Treasure of Philippines

Filipinos in Manila have no excuse not to brush up on some history and culture as the National Museum opens its doors to the public for free for an entire month.

Visits to the National Museum will be free of charge for the whole month of October, as the museum administration extends its annual practice of waiving fees during National Museum Week.

"This is to encourage public interest in Filipino art and heritage," the museum's education division told Yahoo! Southeast Asia in a phone interview.

Open to the public will be the newly renovated National Art Gallery, which had been closed in August and September, as well as the Museum of the Filipino People.

The museum, located at P. Burgos Drive in Manila, regularly charges P30 for students, P100 for adults and P80 for senior citizens and are free of charge only on Sundays.

Exhibits at the National Art Gallery include paintings by famous artists such as Fernando Amorsolo, Vicente Manansala and Juan Luna.

Recently opened, meanwhile, was a sculpture gallery featuring works by National Artist Guillermo Tolentino, Graciano Nepomuceno and Isabelo Tampinco, among others.

The Museum of the Filipino people, meanwhile, includes galleries on Filipino history, starting from an exhibit dubbed "Pinagmulan (The Origin)," which displays items dating back to the country's pre-history.

A gallery of archeological treasures called "Kaban ng Lahi" also highlights burial practices seen through excavated artifacts.

Other galleries feature the diverse cultural practices of Filipinos, maritime trade prior to the arrival of colonizers, as well as wreckage of the war galleon San Diego.

The exhibits are housed in the pre-war Old Legislative Building, which was originally designed as a public library.

Upon its completion, however, the second to fourth floors had been occupied by the Senate and the House of Representatives, and only the ground floor was used by the National Library.

"The building was inaugurated on 16 July 1926, and by then had cost P4 million," the museum website said, noting that it was part of architect Daniel Burnham's plan for the development of Manila.

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