Philippines Travel Guide

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Siberian Tiger 'Ramses' at Botolan Wildlife Farm, Zambales

Siberian Tiger 'Ramses' at Botolan Wildlife Farm, Zambales

Juvy Zoller - BWF Zambales

Consisting of 7,107 islands (1,000 inhabited), 97 ethnic groups and 101 dialects/languages, the Philippines is known as "The Smile of Asia", due to its people's hospitality and many festivities or 'fiestas'. Spanish and American influences are strongly evident in its culture. Many tourists have described it as 'a slice of Latin America in Asia', or 'the most westernized Asian country'. Stop by and you will never know a more hospitable and friendly place to vacation.

The archipelago is famous for the contrast between huge and modern metropolis like Manila or Cebu, the primitive tribal territories, the deserted islands, the clear sea waters and the smooth white coral sand.

The Philippines is a nice and friendly place to visit. The people speak English, as it is an official language.

The capital city Manila is noisy, gritty, and tough--yet very charming, cosmopolitan, vibrant and exciting (very New York City).  Malling is a favorite Philippine pastime as many shopping centers dot the metropolis.  The old seedy image of Manila nightlife has been replaced with classy restaurants, quaint hole-in-the-wall yet must-see spots, "it" bars, and cozy cafes (very strong cafe culture in the past few years, a night out or "gimmick" usually ends with a coffee nightcap at Figaro, Coffee Bean, Segafredo or the ubiquitous Starbucks). As in most major cities, urban poverty is evident in Manila with its shanties and streetchildren. 

Be sure to visit Baguio City, the summer capital of the Philippines. A long yet smooth 6-7 hour drive from Manila, Baguio boasts of a cool climate (peculiar in the Philippines as it is a tropical country), a lot of sights to visit (Mines View Park, Baguio Botanical Gardens, just to name a few) and lots of stuffs to buy (silvercrafts, plants -- that don't live beyond Baguio's cool confines -- vintage clothes, handicrafts, among others) 

You can't visit the Philippines without visiting the beach.  Whether it's the wild (and slightly seedy) beaches of Puerto Galera, exotic Amanpulo and El Nido in Palawan, relaxing Bohol, Sajorda River Park in Iba, Zambales and its coastal white fine sand & crystal clear water or the place-to-be Boracay, the Philippines has a beach that suits your budget, style, and personality.  Because of the extensive road network and cheap airline fares, going to these places is fairly easy. 

As what they say about the Philippines, "If you dont like Boracay island, you still have 7,107 left to choose from".

Southern Leyte especially Tahusan Beach Hinunangan virtually undiscovered just 5 years ago with its lovely Beach gorgeous views of Mountains and Islands, absolutely perfect for that peaceful, relaxing vacation.

 

Contributors

July 23, 2006 change by bacolodnon (1 point)

November 08, 2006 change by valsace (1 point)

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