Why I Love To Vacation in the Philippines

Vacation in the Philippines

Treat Yourself to a Vacation in the Philippines

With more than 7,000 islands there is something to do for everybody in the Philippines. You can visit some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, or go snorkeling and see some beautiful views. If you like to hike there are mountains, hiking trails and just something to see for everybody.  For those of us who like to shop, there are several mega-malls to choose from, and let’s not forget the people who are very friendly and hospitable.

Since English is a required subject in school, you will find there is not too much of a language barrier. Let’s take a deeper dive into what activities you can enjoy while on vacation in the Philippines.

Top Places to Visit in Quezon City

The largest city in the Philippines, Quezon City, also called “QC”, and it’s a tourist destination that offers everything from history, grand shopping malls, wonderful food and more. You’ll find a delightful mix of everything city life can offer in QC.  Because I own property in the North Edsa area of Quezon City, I can say first hand there is plenty to do. But don’t limit your journey to what’s in the North Edsa section of Quezon City. This wonderful city has much more to offer.

What to See & Do in Quezon City

You won’t lack for things to do in this city of 2.8 million! Here are some of the top places to visit and enjoy in this beautiful city, including nature preserves, national shrines and more.

Quezon City Memorial Circle

Originally meant to be the seat of the Philippine government before WWII, after the war it was dedicated as a memorial to Manuel L. Quezon, the country’s second president. Construction began in the 1950s with the memorial finished in 1978, the 100th anniversary of the founding of Quezon City. The site was established as a national shrine in 1979.

Locally known as the “Circle,” the area has increasingly become more popular with tourists. While the shrine is beautiful in itself, there’s more to see and do here. The area is popular for joggers, bikers and is also a great place just to sit and enjoy an outdoor lunch or even a nap.

You can also find a Zipline—perfect for those who enjoy a thrill! You’ll also find Zumba and ballroom dancing lessons at the People’s Hall. And if you’re hungry, be sure to visit the popular food stalls and restaurants. Once you’re refreshed, pay a visit to the Tiangge Bazaar, where you can buy everything from herbs and organic vegetables to flowers and more. If you’d like a quiet place to take a rest, then be sure to visit the one of the gardens in the park’s area. You’ll also find a selection of museums and even a small amusement park—the Circle has a lot of offer.

SM North EDSA Shopping Mall

The first SM supermall in the country, it’s still the largest shopping mall in the Philippines. If you love shopping, you won’t be disappointed by the variety of stores and other amenities offered here. You’ll find everything from high-end department stores to optical shops and more.

Not only can you shop till you drop, but the mall also offers amusements including a multiplex movie theater, a bowling alley and more. The mall even offers a place to rest from the excitement of shopping. Visit the Sky Garden for a touch of nature in the midst of the city and the flurry of shopping. Here, you can enjoy a small river and waterfalls, plants and a pretty place to relax.

And don’t forget all the restaurants! You have to stay energized for all the shopping! The mall offers a wide variety of dining options including fast food restaurants and more. For more information about SM North EDSA, you can visit their website here: SM City North EDSA .

Art in Island

If you’re looking for a unique, fun experience for you and your family, be sure to visit Art in Island—a museum of art where you literally become immersed into the art. This unique art museum is a place of 3D interactive paintings, where you become part of the art. Each 3D scene is beautifully created with vibrant colors, at once both realistic and fantastical.

You can walk over a huge, powerful waterfall by using the wooden slat bridge. Only cross over if you’re brave! Or become trapped in a stoppered bottle in the middle of the ocean. Your dreams come to life in these artful, beautiful paintings. Be creative and take as many photos as you’d like! You and your family will have wonderful, fun memories after visiting the Art in Island museum.

La Mesa Ecopark

If you are in to nature, be sure to check out La Mesa Ecopark. This public park was established as a place to protect the La Mesa Watershed and sits on 33 hectares. The preserve is there for everyone to enjoy, but also helps to educate people about preserving the environment. Your whole family will find things to enjoy here!

The park offers bike rentals—what a perfect spot to enjoy nature and some great exercise! If you don’t have a bike, you can rent a bike to ride here. At the small lake, visitors can enjoy boat rentals and fishing rod rentals. What’s more relaxing than boating and/or fishing on a beautiful lake? There’s also a climbing wall, swimming pools and more. All in this beautiful park, where you can also learn about protecting nature.

Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Center (NAPWC)

If you enjoy green spaces in the city, then be sure to check out the Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Center in Quezon City. This 22 hectare park is both an animal sanctuary and botanical garden, not far from the Quezon City Memorial Circle. The park is home to animals that have been confiscated, donated, abandoned or rescued.

This moderately priced park is a wonderful place to relax in a green area, where you can enjoy viewing the animals, walking and more. The park is popular with families looking for a nice place to picnic, play and relax. It’s also a popular place for staged photos for weddings and other occasions. You can also enjoy a fishing village, viewing the protected wildlife, and much more. You and your family will savor a day spent here, not far from the city center.

Maginhawa Food Park

if you’re a foodie and like to do the food crawl, then be sure to visit the Maginhawa Food Park. You’ll find a wide variety of foods—you’ll be delighted and full before leaving this delicious park. There’s an all-day breakfast place, spots that serve wonderful drinks and desserts, coffee shops, and more. You’ll probably even find ribs and wings here! Most likely you’ll find your favorite foods here—you may even find some “new” favorites! You won’t be disappointed or hungry after visiting this delightful, yummy food park.

Quezon City offers a wide variety of places for locals and tourists to enjoy—from shopping malls with shops selling everything you can imagine, to animal and nature preserves. You’re sure to enjoy your time in this beautiful city!

But Wait…. That’s Not All!

I know I have been sharing a lot of information about Quezon City, which is just a drop in the bucket compared to all of the other things you can do in the philippines as a whole.  As we extend our radius around Quezon City you will see other metropolitan areas such as Makati, Pasay and Taguig. Each of which surround Manila and have their own unique personality and offerings for visitors.

Traffic in the Philippones

Ninoy Aquino International Airport,  is located in Manila.  If you were to look at a map of Metro Manila at first glance you would think driving from Manila to Quezon City or driving from Manila to Makati would be an easy trip. Depending on the time of day, it could take more than two hours just to get from the Airport to Central Quezon City. 

Metro Manila, just like many other places in the world is no stranger to heavy traffic. And just like many other places in the world ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft are available in Metro Manila. You will also notice that there is no shortage of Taxi’s as well. Unfortunately this does not do much to lessen the challenge of slow moving traffic when getting from place to place in a motor vehicle.  Its always best to consider the time of day and plan accordingly.  I always plan to arrive late night when flying to Manila, just to avoid the heavy traffic.

Tagaytay

Volcano in Lake Taal located in Tagaytai Philippines

If you are considering a quick get-away you might want to consider a trip to Taygaytay.  It’s a pretty good drive from Metro Manila, however its worth it.  You might even want to consider staying a few days.  Tagaytay is located in the southern region of Cavite and it has a much cooler climate due to its high altitude.

Tagaytay is home to Taal Lake which offers you a good view of Taal Volcano. You will not want to miss a visit here because the climate is so pleasant, and the view is breathtaking. There are local restaurants and outdoor parks that display the scenic nature of this wonderful city.
Although the Taal Volcano is one of the main attractions, you will also find many other attractions while you visit Tagaytay.

Here are a few of the best things to do in Tagaytay City:

Do a Taal Volcano Tour

Taal Volcano is less 40 miles (about 60 km) south of Manila.  It is still considered an active volcano, but it hasn’t seen an eruption since 1965.  Depending on what you would like to do, be it hiking, camping or even a single day bus tour from Manila.  The average cost is somewhere around $100USD.

There are actually 8 active volcano’s in the Philippines as of this writing.

Enjoy Picnic Grove

Small family sized nipa huts placed alongside a grassy hill  will allow you take a break and enjoy the view, have a picnic or just enjoy this family friendly park.  

Experience Tagaytay Zipline & Cable Car

Once you arrive in Tagaytay, you will find amusement parks, restraunts, hotels and resorts.

Get a birds eye view and experience a zipline ride.  Would you believe there are abuot 10 different ways you can do a zipline at this park?

Now Let’s Talk Beach

The philippines has been known for its beautiful beaches and rightfully so.  You have so many destinations to choose from. What I have listed below are just a few beaches you can research.  If you do a little research, you will find what beach fits into your particular travel plan.

Alona Beach, Panglao

Boracay, Aklan

Dumaluan Beach, Panglao

El Nido, Palawan

Panglao Island, Bohol

Paradise Beach, Bantayan Island

Puerto Galera, Oriental Mindoro

Mactan Island, Cebu

In summary I can say I enjoy visiting the Philippines from the moment I get off the airplane. The  first thing you will notice when you exit your flight in Manila and step out the catch a taxi, is the noise. Manila has a heartbeat of its own.  There are so many people waiting to greet new arrivals at the airport; the noise level will almost scared you on your first visit.

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