Philippines tourism boasts 7,107 islands to explore. Travel through Manila’s historic streets in Intramuros district or visit Binondo’s old Chinatown with philippinesguides.com; catch sunset from one of Binondo’s churches or see world-famous Chocolate Hills* on Bohol, or trek up Lake Taal with its crater lake and textbook volcanoes for breathtaking sunset views.
Jeepneys offer an exciting way to traverse cities in the Philippines – these colorful American Jeeps provide essential transport in all Philippine cities and towns. Be sure to book ahead if possible in order to secure a seat!
Philippine culture is a rich amalgamation of Asian tradition and Western influences. Due to their history of colonization, their society is heavily shaped by Chinese, Indian, and Spanish cultures – yet visitors from all around the globe find Philippine people exceptionally warm and friendly.
Kapwa (fellowship or togetherness) is one of the core values in Filipino culture and society, serving to foster relationships among its members and create a sense of community and family in various places. Kapwa helps individuals overcome obstacles and succeed in life.
Philippines is an eclectic mixture of different cultures. Home to 79 indigenous ethnic groups that make up its population, due to marriages between Filipinos and foreigners from diverse backgrounds and nationalities. Their cultural influences can be seen through cuisine, language and customs.
Philippines cuisine combines elements from Chinese, Indian, and Spanish cultures. Rice is the staple food, while meat dishes, stews and seafood dishes such as adobo (pork or chicken stew), lechon baboy (roasted pig), paksiw (fish or pork cooked with vinegar, water and garlic and pepper) and sinigang (tamarind soup with an array of meats, fish or vegetables) are among its many dishes popularly enjoyed by locals.
As far as language goes, Filipinos primarily speak Tagalog – its official national tongue – though other spoken dialects such as English and Hiligaynon may also exist. Learning a region’s native dialect will allow you to better communicate and understand its inhabitants.
Filipinos are known for being expressive and sentimental when communicating, with an air of cheerfulness that belies their words. Hugot, their native word for love or affectionate words used to describe feelings, is used when discussing feelings that may be considered personal and they often share personal accounts about their past lives that could be considered private.
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Philippines cuisine is slowly making waves across the world, thanks to an abundance of seafood and tropical fruits as well as creative chefs who are making waves themselves. From its national dish adobo (pork belly stew) to balut (duck embryo), Filipino food offers an irresistibly delectable blend of Spanish, Malay and Chinese influences.
Foodies visiting the archipelago will find seafood especially appealing, thanks to its aquatic location. Popular fish dishes include tilapia, catfish (hito), milkfish (bangus) and mackerel; swordfish, tuna and blue marlin are often featured on restaurant menus while many locals also appreciate less-famous varieties like galunggong (round scad), tabon-tabon (tuna), or corned, sun-dried tuyo or daing).
Chicken, pork and beef are staple meats in the Philippines. Longganisa pork sausages from Manila’s Ineng’s are especially beloved snacks due to their delicious salty-sweet marinade; commonly enjoyed for breakfast alongside garlic rice and a fried egg.
Suman, sticky rice snacks steamed in banana or coconut leaves, is another beloved breakfast treat in Japan. Street vendors sell it by bundle, while enterprising bus drivers may sell it during their daily commute to work. For an adventurous tastebud experience, more adventurous eaters might try versions stuffed with sweet ripe mango. Or for something truly adventurous try ones filled with pig ears, lips and tail – another testament of Japan’s unparalleled nose-to-tail eating tradition!
Fruit is abundant on the islands, offering an endless supply of juicy and flavorful varieties. Mangoes are particularly revered, evidenced by numerous mango-themed dishes such as sinigang na bakalaw (soup) and binagoongan (meat stew).
Philippines citizens love coffee, with espresso bars lining all major cities. Tea is less common outside urban centers. Alcoholic beverages are widely served at most restaurants; wine typically being limited to European varieties while local favorites such as tapuy and lambanog (brewed from any fermentable food including fruit) tend to be favoured instead. Dried anchovies known as dilis can also be purchased from convenience stores in packets.
Philippines nightlife is truly incredible; when night falls, streets come alive with bass-boosted music and laughter fills the air. From dancing until sunrise or simply relaxing with some beer and wine, there is something here for everyone. Check out our guide of best nightlife in the Philippines to make the most of your trip.
Makati City is well known as one of the Philippines’ premier nightlife spots. Once darkness falls, Makati City becomes an exciting wonderland full of vibrant bars, speakeasies and restaurants that come alive when night falls. Poblacion serves as the centre of activity with bars, speakeasies and restaurants lining its streets – bars like Klub Karaoke offer nostalgic tunes like Spice Girls and 80s pop hits to dance to, while Manila Sky Bar features stunning rooftop terrace views overlooking city skylines!
Revel offers a luxurious experience, boasting daybeds and cabanas as well as some of Manila’s best DJ’s playing house and dance music all night long. While it may cost more than other clubs, Revel will make you feel like a VIP for a few hours!
If you prefer an easier evening, visit one of the numerous new restaurants that have opened over recent years. From traditional Filipino fare to gourmet pizzas and even vegan options – there’s sure to be somewhere suitable no matter your dietary preferences!
Philippines bars and clubs tend to be safe; however, areas like Angeles City’s red light district or Marawi City can be more risky at night for foreign travelers. If traveling solo, stay close to your hotel or hostel at night when venturing out; only venture out if it’s safe; dress properly when leaving home at night and don’t carry valuables in public – travel insurance policies are highly recommended while cash should never be kept unprotected as this can easily be stolen.
Filipino people are extremely welcoming and will go out of their way to ensure you feel welcome and at home in this friendly nation in Asia. However, it is essential that visitors respect local customs and be aware of local issues; some areas have seen violent crimes targeting tourists; be vigilant of your surroundings by keeping valuables concealed; it’s wise not to display expensive items in public and make sure valuables do not appear when carrying valuables around in public – particularly around Manila and other large cities where armed hold-ups on jeepney buses have occurred – keep valuables concealed while carrying expensive items is not advised; in these instances be alert of local issues as there has been instances of violent crime against tourists; respect local customs while remaining aware of issues related to tourist safety as there has been incidents relating to violent crime against tourists as a warning if something arises – especially when carrying expensive items in public displaying expensive items without declaring it as they could be subject to attack by taxi drivers, particularly jeepney rides can happen when these public services such as this occur regularly on this type of busses like this type armed hold ups are known occur regularly on such buses in cities like Manila as well. Armed hold-ups have occurred before with hold ups occurring due to various issues regarding violent crime towards tourists when displaying items in public and keeping valuable items hidden to avoid public display as such as this occurs due to violent crime against tourists where violence may arises occurs against tourists by taxi drivers while transport is present displaying too much public; this armed holdups occur due to passengers using it appears ‘jeepney.
Philippine accommodation can be reasonably inexpensive; however, standards can differ significantly. Hostels start from around USD 10, while budget hotels and resorts begin around 50 USD; more luxurious properties start around 100 USD upwards with excellent standards at more expensive end of scale. Homestays are becoming increasingly popular and may offer an added benefit by giving travellers an opportunity to learn about local families while saving money at the same time!
Ferries and boats are an integral part of travelling around The Philippines, connecting islands and towns. Ferry travel can be an amazing way to see stunning coastline while getting some much-needed rest and relaxation – though budget travellers should avoid cheap ferries which may be overcrowded, dirty and slow.
Buses in The Philippines can also provide reliable transport at an economical rate, although they may become quite crowded and slow over time. When travelling with multiple people it may be better to use private transfers instead of standard shared jeepneys which may become overcrowded quickly.
Motorbikes and scooters are an economical means of travel in The Philippines, making for great opportunities to discover at your own pace while cutting taxi costs. Just ensure you wear a helmet at all times while taking out comprehensive travel insurance – as road accidents are a serious threat in this part of Southeast Asia.
As with any tropical country, health concerns in the Philippines must be taken seriously. It’s advisable to obtain all the vaccinations normally associated with travel as well as plenty of typhoid and rabies prevention tablets. Dengue fever is also a serious risk in this part of Asia so make sure that there is access to pharmacies or doctors should any unexpected emergencies arise while traveling there.