The Philippines are fast becoming the new hottest destination in South East Asia. And it’s easy to see why. The vast natural beauty, tasty seafood, cheap activities and helpful locals are enough to convince anyone. And now with cheap flights from Sydney to Manila direct with Cebu Pacific, the Philippines have never been more affordable or accessible for Australians. Are you dreaming of somewhere warm to head to this Winter? Here are 15 reasons why the Philippines should be your next destination.
#1. Beautiful white-sand beaches
The Phillys are famous for their crystal-clear water and perfect beaches. Throw a bomb fire together on the beach and you have the perfect holiday.
#2. Endless, gorgeous sunsets over the water
Chill out in front of your beachfront cottage with a cocktail or go for a joyride on a local fisherman’s boat. Every evening will take your breath away with an impressive display of light and colour.
#3. Amazing limestone karst formations everywhere!
Weather its the Underground River tour in Puerto Princesa or an Island Hop tour from anywhere, the limestone cliffs are the eye-candy of the Philippines.
#4. Beautiful natural waterfalls to explore
Sick of the beaches? Chances are there’s a waterfall a short trek away.
#5. Sweaty, steamy hot springs
If you can’t get enough of the heat or just want to rejuvenate with naturally healing mineral-water make sure you pop in to visit a natural hot spring.
#6. Hammocks and swings to relax in on beaches everywhere
Filipinos are very much into relaxation and have created what is possibly my favourite style of hammock. It’s made of weaved grasses and looks like a cradle.
#7. Quaint, gorgeous small-town streets
The Philippines are full of cute little seaside towns that have everything from supermarkets to BBQ’s on the beach.
#8. Tasty, cheap, fresh food made to order
After a smorgasbord of seafood for a mere $10USD? Try Boodle Food. If you’re craving a $1 Fresh mango shake, easy. How about anything you can think of put on a stick and grilled in a delicious sauce? Food in the Phillys is underrated but amazing! Check out What to Eat in the Philippines by Anna from Adventure In You, before you go!
#9. Secluded, deserted island paradises to camp on
It’s pretty common around the Philippines to hire a fisherman and his boat to take you to a deserted island for the night. Usually they will provide a tent and food, but make sure you discuss everything you want prior to leaving.
#10. Interesting local markets to explore
I urge you to explore an underground local market. The sights, colours and atmosphere of these markets are sure to inspire. In the least you’ll get some amazing photos out of it.
#11. Tuk-tuks that look like spaceships to ride around in
Each island has a slightly different style of Tricycle but they are all fun! I’m always impressed by how many people can fit into these things, some are like mini-trucks!
#12. Crazily decorated jeepneys to ride on top of
These funny-looking buses are jeeps left over from the war that have been refurbished and decorated. Make sure you go for a ride on top of one.
#13. Catch a local fisherman’s boat to just about anywhere!
These cool, spider-like boats are readily available on most beaches to hire for day trips. Have a chat to a friendly fisherman and he’ll be happy to take you to your very own secluded beach for a very reasonable price.
#14. Sunken warships and reefs to dive in and snorkel around
Coron in Palawan has got to be one of the best places in the world do wreck penetration diving. If you don’t dive, then there’s wrecks and reefs to snorkel as well.
#15. Happy, friendly people to make friends with
Just look at these smiles, they’re everywhere!
Language: Many; officially Filipino, but also Tagalog and English
Currency: Philippine Peso
$1 USD = ₱44.65
I was there: May 2015