Visiting the Philippines

 

Visiting the Philippines

  Beautiful faces of the Filipino

The Philippine archipelago is made up of 7,107 islands and boasts of fascinating landscapes, active volcanoes, pristine beaches, coral waters and hospitable people. It is located in Southeast Asia, below Hong Kong / China.

Island Map
Global Map
 
 

CLIMATE:

November to February – cooler climate with no rainfall, average temperature is 26 degrees centigrade in daytime

March to June – summer season, expect temperatures to rise to 34 degrees centigrade in daytime

July to October – rainy season, monsoon and typhoons are expected

Places of Interest

There are over hundreds and hundreds of beaches to choose from when thinking of a getaway. Some beaches are close to the city, Metro Manila, and can be reached thru land in a 2 hours. Some may require a plane ride or a boat/ship ride to reach. Some of the most popular places to visit:

CEBU CITY

Plantation Bay

Mactan Island
 
BORACAY ISLAND  –  white sand beaches

SIARGAO ISLAND

Surfing at Siargao Waves

BAGUIO CITY  –  mountain view with cooler air

SAGADA & BANAUE  –  spelunking and hiking

CORREGIDOR –  couple of hours by ferry from the city, an island of historical importance

PAGUDPUD, ILOCOS NORTE  –  beach on the north most part of the Philippines

ILOCOS NORTE –  sand dunes, sand boarding, ATV, windmills

TAGAYTAY  –  couple of hours by land from Manila, home to the smallest volcano

BALER, AURORA –  surfing close to the city

 
SAN JUAN, LA UNION  –  also a few hours by bus or land for some great surfing

LEGAZPI, ALBAY  –  home of the famous cone-shaped volcano, Mayon Volcano

DAVAO  –  visit the famous Pearl Farm resort

CAGAYAN DE ORO  –  whitewater rafting

There are hundreds more of islands to visit, mountains to trek and beaches to explore and laze in. Most can be reached thru buses, boats or ferries or planes.

CURRENCY:

The country uses Philippine Peso. For updated currency exchange, you may check http://www.xe.com.

LANGUAGE:

The national language is Tagalog but almost everyone speaks English. You wouldn’t have a problem communicating when you get lost or need help! Plus, Filipinos are the most hospitable people in the planet!

FOOD:

With the American influence, one can find almost any western fastfood chain – McDonalds, Burger King, Wendy’s, KFC, Pizza Hut etc. Filipinos are known for their love of food and you will never go hungry! You can find seafood, chicken / beef / pork / lamb dishes everywhere. Vegetarians will also be delighted as more and more vegetarian places are cropping up.

Food costs:  budget – 50 to 100 pesos (US$1 to US$2)

average – 100 to 300 pesos (US$2.50 to US$7)

splurge – you can spend as much as 5,000 pesos in an exclusive place

We cater to all kinds of palates, preferences, dishes, and budgets!

TRANSPORTATION:

Major transportation in the city are buses, jeepneys, cabs and trains. There is a train running from North to South of the city called MRT and East to West called LRT. Most people get by taking jeepney or bus rides for major thoroughfares. If you are within the city limits, you may also hail down a tricyle or a pedicab (similar to a rickshaw) to take you to nearby places.

Bedspace / Dormitory  –  P2,000 to P4,000 per month (US$50 to US$100)

Room Rent – P3,000 to P5,000 per month (US$60 to US$120)

Apartment – P5,000 up depending on area (US$120 up)

Apartelle – usually negotiable if you stay long term

Hotels – variable

OFFICIAL CARRIER:

The country’s official carrier is Philippines Airlines. There are several budget airlines that operate locally and internationally.

Main Airports:  Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Terminal 1, 2, 3)  –  Manila, Luzon

Diosdado Macapagal International Airport  –  Clark, Pampanga

Cebu International Airport  –  Cebu, Visayas

Airlines:   Philippine Airlines

Cebu Pacific Air

Sea Air

Zest Air

Air Asia

Tiger Airways

Jet Airways

Airphil Express

VISA REQUIREMENTS:

Nationals of Southeast Asian countries (Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei, Cambodia, East Timor, Laos, Myanmar) do not require visas if they intend to stay as tourists for less than 30 days.

Most national require a visa if they intend to stay for longer than 21 days.

Please check with your consulate and Philippine Embassy in your country for updated requirements.

As Filipinos proudly say,

It most definitely is!