A small archipelago in Southeast Asia abundant with rich natural resources, the Philippines lay claim to 7,641 islands spread throughout its 300,000 square kilometers land area. Famous for its long stretch of beaches and coral islands, the country had already welcomed more than 2 million tourists during the first quarter of 2018.
The country is best described by the famous tourist destinations found by travelers to be at par with the world’s best. Boracay’s white-sand beaches, Palawan’s underground river, the Tubbataha Reefs, the Ifugao Rice Terraces, and the list can be pages and pages long.
The country has world-class diving and snorkeling sites – Coral Triangle in Palawan or at Puetro Galera in Mindoro. Not to be left out are some great wreck dive sites at Gato Island in Malapascua, a little island off Cebu’s northern tip, with amazing underwater treasures, the famous top rated diving spot in Bohol, or the great ocean adventures for kayakers at Caramoan Islands in Camarines Sur; jungle trekking in Camiguin in Mindanao, offer unparalleled holiday experience to most travellers. Slowly gaining popularity is Coron’s towering mountain cliffs, magnificent coves and lakes and rock walls exquisitely shaped by nature undisturbed in its splendor.
The Philippines is proud to have World Heritage Sites like the City of Vigan in the Ilocos region – reminiscent of Spanish era, the Tubbataha Reefs in Palawan – with the preserved diverse marine life, Rice Terraces of the Cordilleras – manually carved steps of rice along the mountain slopes of the Cordilleras, Puerto Princesa’s Subterranean River- with rock formations believed to be of the aborigines and the baroque churches spread across the country – all representing historical and cultural landscapes originating from the country’s forefathers.
For the less adventurous travelers, the laid-back beach resorts in Siquijor will be a good option with pretty good dive sites, too, at Paliton, Salagdong beaches and Tongo Point. Maybe a backpacking adventure at the chilly and tranquil Sagada mountains will be worth your while, or
simply enjoy the famous sunset at La Union in the Ilocos region where some famous surfing beach resorts are found.
Traces of the Spanish colonization of the country are still evident in many traditions and customary practices of the people in the Philippines. The country hosts many religious and colorful cultural festivals which one will eternally etch in their memories for its uniqueness and exceptional grandeur. Some of the famous regional festivities include Kalibo’s Ati-Atihan, Iloilo’s Dinagyang Festival, Bacolod’s Maskara Festival, Cebu’s Sinulog Festival, Penafrancia Festival in Bicol, Marinduque’s Moriones Festival.
Participation in these grand festivities can highlight the travelers’ holiday spree as they are treated to a one-of-a-kind cultural enchantment, upfront.
The Philippines is home to more than 94 million people, defined by their regional cultural diversity. More than all the beautiful sceneries one can find in the Philippines, no traveler or visitor will ever fail to mention the country’s friendliest, warmest and most hospitable people. A rare gem in what could be considered predominantly impoverished lot. Despite poor living conditions, the people of this country are amazingly cheerful and totally unmindful of the economic disadvantage over other neighboring countries.
The people – big reason why travelers troop to the island every chance they get. The Filipinos have mastered the art of captivating the hearts of the travelers with their friendly and welcoming smiles and genuine hospitality, nowhere seen but in the Philippines.