The Philippines is an archipelago consisting of over 7,000 islands, and is a must-visit destination for all travelers, especially those who are new to the country. The country is known for its stunning beaches, lush tropical forests, rich culture and history, and vibrant cities. Whether you are interested in outdoor activities, adventure, or just soaking up the local culture, the Philippines has something for everyone. Here are some of the best places to visit in the Philippines for newbie travelers:
Boracay Island – This small island located in the Visayas region is known for its stunning white sand beaches and crystal clear waters. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Philippines and is a great place to relax and soak up the sun. You can also go snorkeling or take a island-hopping tour to discover the surrounding islands.
Palawan – This beautiful island is home to breathtaking landscapes, including the famous Underground River, El Nido’s towering cliffs, and lagoons. There are also plenty of opportunities for adventure, such as island-hopping, kayaking, and rock climbing. Additionally, Palawan is home to several indigenous tribes who still live in the area, offering visitors a glimpse into the rich culture and history of the Philippines.
Siargao – This is a surfer’s paradise, with a famous wave known as Cloud 9 attracting surfers from all over the world. Siargao is also a great place for beginner surfers, as there are several surf schools offering lessons. When you’re not surfing, you can explore the island’s lush green forests, waterfalls, and mangrove swamps.
Chocolate Hills – These geological formations in Bohol consist of thousands of symmetrical hills made of limestone. They are one of the most unique and recognizable natural wonders in the Philippines and are a must-visit for all travelers. You can also see other interesting sites in Bohol, such as the Tarsier Sanctuary, where you can see the world’s smallest primates, and the ancient ruins of Baclayon Church.
Vigan – This well-preserved Spanish colonial town located in Ilocos Sur is a must-visit for all history and culture lovers. It is one of the few remaining Spanish colonial towns in Asia and is a great place to explore on foot. You can also see the famous Calle Crisologo, a street lined with ancestral houses and cobblestone streets, or visit the Vigan Cathedral, which dates back to the 16th century.
Mayon Volcano – This is one of the most active volcanoes in the Philippines and is known for its near-perfect conical shape. If you’re brave enough, you can hike to the summit for a stunning view of the surrounding areas. Alternatively, you can also see Mayon from a distance, such as from the Cagsawa Ruins, which were once a church and convent that were buried by the volcano’s eruption in 1814.
Tubbataha Reef – This UNESCO World Heritage site is a world-famous dive spot, known for its diverse marine life and corals. The reef is located in the Sulu Sea and is one of the best places in the Philippines for scuba diving and snorkeling. Visitors can also see several species of birds and mammals that call the reef home.
Mount Pulag – This is the highest peak in Luzon and is one of the most popular hiking destinations in the Philippines. The mountain is known for its stunning view of the sea of clouds, which is especially spectacular during the sunrise. Visitors can also explore the surrounding areas, such as the Benguet.
Intramuros – This is the oldest district in Manila and is known for its well-preserved Spanish colonial architecture. Visitors can explore the historic walled city, visit the San Agustin Church, which is the oldest stone church in the country, and see the famous Fort Santiago, a former military prison during Spanish colonial times.
Cebu City – This is the second largest city in the Philippines and is known for its rich history and culture. Visitors can visit the Magellan’s Cross, which marks the spot where the Portuguese explorer planted a cross in the 16th century, or the Basilica del Santo Niño, which houses the Santo Niño de Cebu, one of the oldest religious relics in the Philippines.
Tagaytay City – This city is located just a short drive from Manila and is known for its cool climate, stunning views of Taal Volcano, and scenic lakes. Visitors can also enjoy a variety of outdoor activities, such as horseback riding, ziplining, and hot air balloon rides.
Iloilo City – This city is located in the Visayas region and is known for its well-preserved Spanish colonial architecture and vibrant local cuisine. Visitors can explore the Jaro Cathedral, which is one of the largest cathedrals in the Philippines, or the Molo Church, which is known for its Gothic architecture and is the only all-female saint church in Asia.
Davao City – This city is located in Mindanao and is known for its lush green forests, vibrant culture, and delicious cuisine. Visitors can explore the Philippine Eagle Center, which is dedicated to preserving the endangered Philippine eagle, or the People’s Park, which is a popular spot for picnics and outdoor activities.
Bacolod City – This city is located in the Visayas region and is known for its vibrant local culture, delicious cuisine, and lively festivals. Visitors can explore the San Sebastian Cathedral, which is one of the oldest stone cathedrals in the Philippines, or the Negros Museum, which showcases the history and culture of the region.
These are just a few of the many incredible places to visit in the Philippines. Whether you are interested in history, culture, outdoor activities, or just soaking up the local atmosphere, the Philippines has something for everyone.