Philippines is an enigmatic island country with a background of rustic barrios, coconut groves, iridescent sea, and mist-shrouded mountains. Over the years, the region has enamored diverse cultures that have left treasured cultural imprints. The vestiges of Spanish culture can be witnessed in the country with a predominantly Roman Catholic population.
The Republic of Philippines comprises of over 7000 islands. Each island is a paradise of its own, blessed with lush flora and azure beaches; they are the seventh heaven for travelers. Its scattered islands are broadly divided into three regions, Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. Here are some of the most popular tourist destinations you must include in your itinerary.
- North Luzon
- Manila City
Formerly known as the ‘Pearl of the Orient’, Manila has emerged as a buzzing capital of heritage lanes turned cafes, boulevards, and skyscrapers.
A city within a city, Intramuros is the perfect destination for history enthusiasts. It features San Agustin Monastery, Fort Santiago, Casa Manila, American Memorial Cemetery, and many more destinations.
Rent a bike to visit Tagatay near Manila. It is renowned for the Taal Lake and Volcano Island, and pineapple and coffee plantations.
- Sumaguing Cave
Experience an eerie thrill as you visit these mystical unadulterated caves in Sagada. Further, you may come across the unusual practice of hanging coffins by the Igorot tribe.
Boracay has received critical acclaim for its quaint beaches. With hotels at both the ends of the price spectrum, you can chill out in the dazzling white sand beaches.
- Chocolate Hills
The Bohol Island offers diverse cultural and geographical experience, ranging from rolling hills, quaint beaches to gothic cathedrals. The chocolate hills get their name from the scorched brown grass atop these hills in the dry months.
Take the road less travelled and visit the sparsely populated Palawan. Go island hopping, snorkeling, and diving from the nearby El Nido.
- Festivals and Carnivals
Culture-lovers should schedule travel to check out the unique festivals infused with a dash of the Spanish era. Ati Atihan festival of Kalibo (held annually in the third week of January) is one the most-awaited festivals of the year.
- When Traveling to Philippines
There is more to Philippines than beaches and landscapes. Almost every island offers trekking and cycling facilities that are a sweet escape from the hustle-bustle of the cities. Some places like Bukidnon also offer ziplining. You can also explore jungle-smothered peaks, mystical tribal villages, islands and coves. The locals are friendly and the streets offer a potpourri of culinary delights.
However, this beautiful haven is marred with frequent typhoons that can result in delayed or cancelled flights. Further, the relentless monsoon can make you indisposed and you might need a visit to the OPD or even hospitalization. Consider investing in a comprehensive travel insurance policy that can hold you in good stead in case of an emergency that can otherwise strain your finances. So pack your bags to visit the Pearl of the Orient Seas and say goodbye to worries!