Vacationing in Manila, Philippines

The Philippines are an up and coming travel destination and anyone who decides to venture to this magnificent country will see not only the beauty, but the heart and soul as well.  Manila is one of the country’s best cities, because it is filled with history, culture, artisan markets, delicious food, and fantastic bars.

People who plan on staying in Manila during their visit to the Philippines will be amazed at how many hotels they can choose from. Just go to online booking sites like to check out the variety of hotels offered in the city. Each hotel is affordable and many of them take luxury to the next level.  The views of each hotel inside and out are spectacular and most of them have a pool where guests can relax at the end of a long day.

Vacationing in Manila, Philippines

While in Manila, guests will find that the locals are very friendly and it is quite easy to meet new people each day.  The locals are the ones who know the best places to visit while in the city as well as the best places to eat and enjoy a tasty Rhum or Red Horse beer, so tourists are encouraged to take advantage of the locals’ knowledge.

There are many places to visit while in Manila, but there are a few attractions that are definite must-sees.  The Rizal Monument is considered a symbol of the Filipino nationhood and is constantly guarded by sentries in full regalia.  The sentries and people who visit are honoring not only the country, but the remains of José Rizal, the country’s national hero.

Imelda Marcos had Casa Manila built as a reproduction of a Spanish colonial house and while he succeeded with the architecture, design, and luxury, some of the items inside are quite unique.  Many people enjoy walking through the inside to see the antique furniture, artwork, and even the double-seated toilet.

Colonial House

One of the best places to see excellent Filipino contemporary and experimental art is at the Metropolitan Museum of Manila.  All of the exhibits on the first floor rotate on a continuous basis, but the upper floors contain permanent collections.  Down in the basement, guests can see precolonial gold ornaments and pottery.  To learn more about the items inside the museum, people can arrange for a guided tour which is offered two days a week.

Fort Santiago continues to guard the entrance to the Pasig River and it is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Philippines.  Everyone can walk the grounds amongst the gardens, plazas, and fountains, before walking under an arched gate to the gorgeous lily pond.

Fort Santiago

The Rizal Shrine Museum can be found on the fort grounds and that is the building where the national hero, José Rizal, was incarcerated while waiting for execution in 1896.  The museum has re-created Rizal’s cell and the courtroom trial.  At the Rizal Shrine inside the museum, people can see a reliquary that contains one of his vertebrae, the first draft of his novel Noli Me Tangere, and a copy of Mi Ultimo Adios.  An original copy of Mi Ultimo Adios had been smuggled out of his cell inside an oil lamp.

Malacañang Palace is near Fort Santiago and the palace overlooks the Pasig River.  The palace was built in the middle of the 18th century and was originally used as a residence for a Spanish aristocrat.  Since then it has been used as an office for the Spanish and American governors-generals and since 1935 has been the residence of the Filipino president.  People can only go through the Museo ng Malacañang, but that area alone is worth the visit, because of the architecture and history available inside.

The Chinese Cemetery is very different than any other cemetery in the world.  This cemetery looks like a wealthy neighborhood filled with magnificent mausoleums.  People visiting the cemetery are encouraged to take a walking tour or hire a guide in order to see the best mausoleums.  Some of the mausoleums have features like chandeliers, air-conditioning, running water, kitchens, and flushing toilets, so that families can pay their respects to loved ones in comfort.

While in the Philippines, everyone needs to try certain foods, because there are some interesting foods that are beyond delicious.  Since there are so many bananas in the Philippines, they have managed to create a delicacy called banana ketchup.  An amazing desert called Halo-Halo is made from milk, kidney beans, fruits, and ice cream.  Pancit is noodles that is made with veggies and meat, Sinigang is a tamarind based sour soup, and Adobo is a dish of chicken, beef or pork that is cooked with vinegar and soy sauce.

The Philippines has been a country that has been immensely ignored in the past when people traveled, but that needs to change in the future.  There is so much to see and learn within this beautiful country and everyone needs to visit at least once.  However, once a person arrives in the country, they will want to return repeatedly so that they can explore some more.


  1. Yes please. I have heard it is very affordable too!

  2. I had never thought about visiting the Philippines before, but it looks simply lovely. I’d love to see the attractions you mentioned, like Imelda Marcos’ house and the monument (there’s something to be said for guards in full regalia!).

  3. I was invited there last year but had to turn it down because it conflicted with another media fam trip that I had booked. Looking forward to being able to do this location some day soon when the schedule permits.

  4. I would LOVE to go there! It is defiantly in my list of places to go as soon as I can get the money together to go there!.

  5. I would be pretty excited to see some of this historical sites like the Malacañang Palace. Trying some different dishes would be a priority as well.

  6. Wow, their skyline is totally beautiful! I would love to explore their gorgeous landscapes.

  7. The Philippines look so beautiful. I will have to add it to my travel bucket list.

  8. It looks so beautiful there. I have always wanted to go here too. I just love all the beautiful scenery.

  9. I am up for travel to just about anywhere. I would love to go to the Philippines someday and see these sites for myself.

  10. I’ve never thought about the Philippines before for travel but it looks like fun! Fort Santiago would be on my list for sure.

  11. The Philippines are on my bucketlist. They look so beautiful, Thanks for the wonderful review. The people sound amazing.

  12. I am from Philippines and I am happy that you enjoyed your stay here. Glad that you enjoyed our food too 😀

  13. I have never been to the Philippines before. I would love to visit and learn more about their history.

  14. I haven’t made it to the Philippines during my travels. The food sounds amazing and there is so much to see.

  15. This is one destination that has been at the top of my bucket list of must have adventures and after reading your post I know visiting there will be in my future! Thanks for sharing!

  16. reesann723 says

    Wow I had no idea the Phillipines was so beautiful! What a great destination!

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