Enjoy strolling along the long stretch of powdery-white sand beaches of Boracay and discover why it is the prime tourist destination of the Philippines. Find out more in our Philippines travel guide to Boracay.
Historical sights Cebu
The City of Cebu was one of the first places in The Philippines where Spanish colonialists settled. This legacy still can be seen in a few historical buildings that have withstood the test of time. The Casa Gorordo Museum and Yap Sandiego Ancestral house are two sights that show case the life in the old days.
Yap Sandiego ancestral house was built in the late 19th century by a Chinese merchant and is still property of the same family. The building that now houses the Casa Gorordo museum was originally built in 1850 by Alejandro Reynes and a few years later bought by the Spanish merchant Juan Isidro Gorordo. The museums showcase a variety of furniture and every day articles from the past centuries. Entrance prices to these historical sights are very affordable and picture or video taking is allowed. Both of the buildings are located in the Parian District within walking distance of each other. Visit this page for more attractions of Cebu.
The Philippine Eagle Center
Davao is home to the now endangered Philippine Monkey-Eating Eagle or simply Philippine Eagle. It is considered as one of the largest breeds of bird in the world with a wingspan of two metres. To ensure their continuous existence within the Philippine Rainforest, The Philippine Eagle Center was built. The Center is home to 36 Philippine Eagles and other bird species like grass owl and white-bellied sea eagle.
The Philippine Eagles are housed in large aviaries so as for them to continue living in their natural rainforest habitat and for them not to feel imprisoned in cages. Here, they breed eagles and make sure their population will not soon diminish. People may think that it’s easy to breed eagles but the truth is it’s not. The Philippine Eagles only take one partner for life and only produces egg once every two years, thus they also use In Vitro Fertilization or IVF.
- Many Filipino women have “Maria” on their names because during the Spanish occupation, priest would refuse to baptize a child if the parents’ chosen name does not have reference to Virgin Mary.
- Three presidents aced the bar exams namely Manuel Roxas, Diosdado Macapagal, and Ferdinand Marcos. Have a look at the history section of The Philippines travel guide for more information.
- Rafflesia or Uruy is the largest flower in the world and it is found in the province of Antique.
- Following United States and England, Philippines was considered as the third largest English speaking nation in the world.
- Philippines is considered the “text capital of the world”, with the biggest volume of text messages daily.
- The SM Mall of Asia is the biggest mall in Asia with a 5-hectare land area having a total of 550 retail stores, shops, and restaurants
- Former First Lady Imelda Marcos was recorded by the Guinness Book of World Records as the woman with the largest shoe collection with around 3,400 pairs of shoes.
- St. Paul of Palawan is the longest navigable underground river in the world and an unesco world heritage site.
- Next to Canada and Indonesia, Philippines has the third largest coastline in the world.
- The Philippine Tarsier's have huge eyes compared to the size of their body, providing them with excellent night vision.
- Pandaka Pygmaea or Dwarf Goby is the tiniest fish in the world and found in Philippines’ freshwaters.
The Carabao dive center located right next to the Sta Ana Wharf of Davao is one of the cheapest places in The Philippines and possible the world to learn to dive. Their open water courses cost 11000 PHP and introduction dive go for 850 PHP. The equipment used is good maintained and the staf is professional and well trained.
Every weekend fun dives are organized. Certified divers can discover with a local guide the underwater life of nearby dive spots. Most of the dive sites are located around Samal Island, which is an hour boat ride away from the Wharf. Lunch you have to bring yourself and is consumed on one of the beaches of Samal Island. On some of the beaches are a small shop for buying food and drinks plus toilet facilities. The price for two fun dives including the rental of equipment is 2200 PHP. Click here to read more about things to do in Davao.
Diving in The Philippines
The archipelago of The Philippines is located in the Coral Triangle, a triangular shaped area encompassing parts of Indonesia, Malaysia and Papua New Guinea, which is home to the most diverse marine life of the planet.
Diving in The Philippines started in Anilao, 2 hour south of Manila and renowned for its macro life. A few hours north of Manila is Subic Bay, a former US navy base which major attractions are the WW II wrecks beneath the waterline. More wreck diving options can be found in Coron, also dubbed the wreck diving capital of The Philippines, due to the remains of a battle group of Japanese WWII warships resting in its waters.
Puerto Galera in Oriental Mindoro boasts some of the countries prime underwater views and has the cheapest prices for dive courses and fun dives. The waters surrounding Balicasag Island in Bohol are teeming with unusual marine critters and offer stunning visibility to divers. Snorkelers also will not be disappointed at this place as the coral starts at shallow depths.
Tubbataha Reef is an UNESCO World Heritage site located in the middle of the Sulu Sea some 10 hours away by boat from Puerto Princesa. The pristine reefs are festooned with hard and soft corals and home to an impressive array of tropical marine life. Weather only permits live-aboard excursions to these pristine reefs from April to June. Read more in our Guide to Diving in The Philippines.
Climate of The Philippines
The proximity to the equator puts the whole of the Philippines in the tropical climate zone. Local temperature and rainfall patterns however vary widely due to altitude and wind and sea patterns. When comparing for example the rainfall in Davao and Banaue you will notice that the rainfall in Davao is evenly distributed throughout the year, while in Davao there is a clear peak in the months from May till October.
|Rainfall in Davao||Rainfall In Banaue|
The same applies to the temperatures, in Davao temperatures never go below 25°C / 77°F, while in Banaue temperatures can drop to 12°C / 54°F during the winter months. For more information about the rainfall and temperature patterns in The Philippines Check out the travel guide of the destination listed below.
20% rise in Japanese tourists foreseen this year by the Philippines’ Department of Tourism
On September of 2013, the Philippines and Japan had an air-services agreement to increase the flights from Manila and different destinations in Japan from 119 to 400 weekly flights, according to the Civil Aeronautics Board, thus foreseeing a growth of 20% in the number of tourists alone by the country’s Department of Tourism (DOT).
Philippine airline companies Philippine Airlines (PAL) and Cebu Pacific as well as Japan’s All Nippon Airways (ANA) will add more regular flights to several destinations in Japan beginning March 30 of this year. PAL which is currently operating Manila to Narita, Nagoya, Osaka and Fukuoka will also add Manila to Haneda in their route. Cebu Pacific which currently operates flights to Osaka will add Nagoya and Narita in their list of itineraries. Japanese airlines ANA will also add Manila-Haneda aside from their usual Manila-Narita route. Meanwhile, budget airline AirAsia Zest also expressed their desire to launch flights from the Philippines to Japan within this year.
With a total of 403,705 Japanese visitors last year, Japan is the Philippines’ third largest source of market for tourists, with South Korea still on top with 1.2 million visitors and United States as second with 675,00 visitors.
From Japanese tourists alone, the country generated an income of 223.82 million dollars which makes them the most sought-after tourists in the Philippines. The average daily expenditure of a Japanese tourist alone in the Philippines is around 150 dollars per day, with the hotel expenses still not yet included. With that numbers, Japanese tourists spend a lot higher than average tourists from other countries.