Get To Know The Philippines
The island archipelago collectively known as the Philippines is one of Southeast Asia’s less explored tourist jewels. The gorgeous island chain offers plenty to see and do; from lazing on palm-fringed beaches to world-class scuba diving as well as snorkelling sites; and a wealth of great cultural attractions in between.
Did you know, the reality show, Survivor South Africa is set in the picturesque Republic of the Philippines. 18 South African castaways will attempt to outwit, outplay and outlast one another in the game of Survivor.
Visitors to the Philippines can generally be grouped into two categories: package-tour holidaymakers, visiting one of the Philippines’ excellent beach resorts (found in Bohol, Boracay or Puerto Galera); and independent adventure travellers, keen on criss-crossing the archipelago in search of excitement.
Whichever way visitors decide to experience the Philippines, there are several tourist sights as well as activities that one simply can’t afford to miss. Manila, the capital, is a chaotic yet compelling city, with plenty to keep travellers occupied. Visit Intramuros, the historic walled enclave full of Spanish-colonial architecture, as well as Binondo, one of the oldest and also most vibrant Chinatowns in the world.
In terms of natural wonders, the Philippines also abounds with unforgettable excursions. From the marvellous Chocolate Hills of Bohol and miniature Tarsier monkeys, to the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park (one of the New 7 Wonders of the World), nature-lovers will delight in the Philippines’s lush, captivating landscapes.
Best time to visit the Philippines:
The Philippines has a tropical climate characterised by distinct rainy and dry seasons. Weather-wise, the best time to visit the Philippines is between November and April; however, take note that this is also peak tourist season, and so accommodation as well as flight prices will be higher.
What to see in the Philippines:
- Fort San Pedro offers some fascinating insights into Spanish colonial rule in the Philippines.
- The Chocolate Hills, a vast plain consisting of 1,776 conical hills formed from grass-covered limestone, is a geological marvel.
- The Taal Volcano is a must-see natural attraction, and is accessed from the holiday hotspot of Tagaytay City.
- Explore the enclave of Intramuros, Manila’s oldest district, and be amazed by the thick walls as well as rich history surrounding Fort Santiago.
What to do in the Philippines:
- A trip to the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park, located on the island of Palawan, is a must for visitors to the Philippines.
- Explore the archipelago’s incredible coral reefs as well as rich marine life by going diving at world-class sites in Boracay, Cebu, or Palawan.
- Go shopping in Binondo, Manila’s Chinatown, before eating in one of the district’s famous converted movie theatre restaurants.
- Don’t just settle on one island, see them all by heading out on the numerous island hopping tours.
What to eat in the Philippines:
- Lechon (whole-roasted suckling pig)
- Puchero (beef prepared with banana as well as tomato)
- Kare-kare (oxtail cooked in peanut sauce)
- Adobo (chicken, pork or squid stewed in vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, peppercorns as well as bay leaves)
- Balut – the national delicacy.
Take a look at our Philippines packages here.