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The Philippines

The Philippines | An Exquisite Travel Guide

By Alan & Lourdes | A Belgian & A Filipina

Facts | Budget | What to bring | Food | Things to do | Staying for the night | Movies | Car Rental | Souvenirs

Quick Facts

Land Area

298.170 km²

Population

106.651.394 | Estimate 2020

Time Zone

UTC+8

Capital

Manila

# Provinces

81

# Islands

7.641 islands | 2.000 Inhabited

Main Language

Filipino, standardised Tagalog

Currency

Philippine Peso

Your Budget

Accommodation

Budget Hostels | 760 PHP
Budget Hotels | 1.500 PHP
3-star Hotels | 2.600 PHP
Luxury Hotels | 5.400 PHP

Food

Halo-halo | ≈ 80 PHP
Balut Egg | 18 PHP
Penoy | 15 PHP

Transportation

Jeepney | 15-20 PHP
Taxi | 600-700 PHP
Ferry
Bus | 15-20 PHP
Flight

Tours

Fees

Souvenirs

T-shirts | ≈ 500 PHP

Other

Smartphone or Drone Repair
(Hopefully not necessary)
Pocket Wifi Smart | 390 PHP / Day
Local Sim Card | ≈ 50-100 PHP
Globe Traveler Sim
› 4 GB Data for 7 Days | 350 PHP
Code to 8080 = TRAVELALLIN 350
› 8 GB Data for 15 Days | 700 PHP
Code to 8080 = TRAVELALLIN 700

The iconic Filipino bus on the island of Palawan | Aircon has no use, open windows instead

What to bring

The Philippines is a tropical country where the heat quickly rises till you start to sweat, although our experience was a bit differently as we went in August till beginning of September and so we catched a lot of rain during our trip.

Essentials

Passport
Print of all bookings
Phone
Camera
Water-proof bags
Sunscreen lotion
Sunglasses
Shorts or dress
Sweater
Slippers
Strong shoes

Adventure

Hiking shoes
International driver’s License
Long trousers
Raincoat
Mosquito repellent

Extras

Drone
Camera Tripod
Laptop

Filipino Food

Breakfast

Fried Rice
Fried Fish
Hot Dogs with eggs
Pancakes

Lunch

Fried Rice
Adobo
Noodles
Fish, Meat, Bulalo Soup

Diner

Fried Rice
Escabeche
Chicken, Pork Meat, but no Beef
Tilapia with Coconut Milk

Dessert

Halo-halo
Sapin-sapin
Cheese Ice Cream
Buko Pandan (Coconut Dessert)

These tricycles are a Filipino necessity as they can bring you anywhere, fast

4 Things to Do

4 Things are not that much, but there’s a lot more on other posts about The Philippines coming soon! Stay Tuned for more…

We do recommend to visit a couple of cities and from there start with doing some guided island-hopping tours. You can visit many heritage sites in different cities in The Philippines. Intramuros us a stunning colonial-era city in the northern part of Manila which is truly worth it.

If you travel to The Philippines during one of their intriguing festivals be sure not to miss any!

1. Citytripping

Manila

Manila is a very crowded and huge city where every tourist will enter The Philippines. Nickname is Pearl of the Orient, and together with Quezon City the most populated city in the country.

Puerto Princesa

Located in the middle of Palawan, one of the most beautiful islands in the Philippines where the Underground River, El Nido and Coron are located.

El Nido

Translation of El Nido is the nest, and it really feels like it too. Located in the north of Palawan, it is home to many small, inhabited islands where you can travel to with a guide.

Coron

You can get to Coron by either plane from Manila or ferry from El Nido. Coron is known for it’s shipwrecks lying on the ocean floor where you can dive to by organised tour.

Dumaguete

Located on the island of Negros, from here you can travel by either bus or rented car all around the island within a couple of days.

2. Island-Hopping Tours

Lakawon

Lakawon is a island with a beautiful 360 beach where you can even stay for the night, although very expensive and if one wants to share a room with many others, well that’s up to you. There’s also a restaurant to enjoy the local foods. Be sure to bring sunscreen protection as the sand is pure white and the sun bright.

El Nido

Probably the most famous city in The Philippines, hence the amazing name and grand collection of small islands around its bay. Truly a must visit city when travelling to The Philippines.

Coron

This city has an airport to bring you back to Manila or Puerto Princesa, so many tourists include this magical place on their lists, and we cannot disagree more.

3. Heritage

Intramuros | Manila

Created by The Spanish and considered the entire city of Manila. Everything outside its walls was called extramuros. Despite being surrounded by fortifications, Intramuros was flattend to the ground during the Battle of Manila in 1945. Only the San Augustin Church survived the heavy bombings at the time.

4. Culture

Sinulog Festival in Cebu

Done in celebration of Cebu’s patron saint, Santo Niño, in January, Sinulog Festival is a week-long celebration full of dancing, processions, and parades with colourful costumes.

Ati-Atihan Festival in Aklan

The festival starts in mid-January, in honour of Santo Niño in the form of locals dancing and chanting in the streets while dressed up as negritos.

Dinagyang Festival in Iloilo

Hosted by the city every 4th Sunday of January, Dinagyang Festival is held in celebration of the feast of Santo Niño and a pact between Datus and locals through street dancing and feasts.

Masskara Festival in Bacolod

Celebrated every October, locals put on elaborate costumes with masks as they parade through the streets.

© Guide to the Philippines – Festival Santo Niño

Staying for the night

Currently most of the accommodations in The Philippines are closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Do your research before travelling!

Grande swimming pool at Corto Del Mar Hotel Coron

Movies to watch

The Filipinos have an infinite list of TV channels with films and TV shows to fill days, weeks and much longer if needed.

Below collection are those I watched as a non-Filipino from Europe.

Age of Colonisation

1898, Our Last Men in The Philippines [2016]

Rent a car

If one wants to see the countryside, one must take a local bus or van to travel afar, although we recommend, if your budget allows, to hire a car for your ultimate drive-through experience. You can go and stop wherever you like.

Negros | Dumaguete

Rodg Rent a Car

Rice fields in Negros

Souvenirs

As a tourist we love to remember, and at the same time, support the culture and its people by shopping local souvenirs. Just like us, we bought many T-shirts from El Nido, Palawan, Coron and even one with the famous Jeepney. A must to bring home those souvenirs when visiting The Philippines.

T-shirts

The Famous Jeepney on a T-shirt.
What else is more iconic to The Philippines? Probably a lot more.

Price ≈ 520 PHP

Share Our Story.

Share your thoughts!

Capturing old things on camera is one thing, presenting all our footage on this blog is another.

Alan & Lourdes

Travel & Preserving History Bloggers, Twin Rhino

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