You can experience riding old-world transpo in Intramuros. Here’s how

November 15, 2022 - 7:10 PM
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Intramuros tranvia
Intramuros tranvia in this screengrab of a video shared by the Intramuros Administration on its Facebook page on Nov. 11, 2022 (Screengrab by Interaksyon from Facebook/OfficialIntramurosAdministration)

Want to experience transportation in the early years of 20th century?

Pinoys have the chance to ride the old-world transpo in the historic walled area of the nation’s capital.

Intramuros Administration on November 11 announced that the public can now book the Intramuros tranvia, inclusive of driver, for trips within the Walled City.

It can take a maximum of 25 persons per ride with a route exclusive within the Intramuros district.

Those interested can rent the tranvia by answering and submitting an online form not later than five days before the intended date of the trip.

The tranvia, also known as a street tram, debuted in the city of Manila in 1888 as horse-powered coaches.

It traversed the streets of Intramuros, Tondo, Sampaloc and Malate, including the famed shopping district of Calle Escolta.

By 1905, the iconic public transport became electronic under American rule with the help of the Manila Electric Railroad and Light Company or Meralco.

The company eventually modernized the tranvia, making it extremely popular in the 1920s.

“The upgrade was so extensive that several foreign observers judged that Meralco had the best streetcar system in Asia, besting even Japan, a country which has a long-running affair with trains,” writer Raul Rodrigo was quoted as saying in his book “Meralco: A Century of Service 1903-2003.”

The trams were destroyed during the Battle of Manila in 1945 when the Americans rooted out the Japanese in the city.