One fine morning, radio jingle on Radio City caught my attention which spoke about Philippines to be the destination for travel lovers. The jingle promised that it has something or the other for any type of tourist – adventurous, sporty, historical, beaches and most importantly shopping, which we all ladies love. Having limited knowledge of the country, I started my research and was amazed at what Philippines has to offer to its tourist. Though it has not been promoted greatly especially in India, it is worth a trip. So I am off to Philippines and I am sure after reading my post you too would be tempted to visit this “Pearl of Orient Seas”.
Someone prominent once called the Philippines “Pearl of the Orient Seas” and with sufficient reasons. It’s a rare beauty in the heart of Southeast Asia. A few days of sightseeing in the Philippines will prove this true. If you want to experience a variety in tourism, then the best place that you should visit is Philippines where you can have a taste of the Western as well as Eastern culture since it has been dominated by several nations in the past, such as Spanish, Japanese, and Americans. Because of this, Philippines became rich in several structures such as churches, towers, museums, and more.
Sightseeing is one of the activities that you can do here in Philippines. Each region and each province has something different to offer. Most of the tourist spots here in Philippines are natural scenic scenery and had been nominated to become one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Some of these destinations include the Chocolate Hills in Bohol, Mayon Volcano in Albay, Subterranean River in Puerto Princesa, and the Tubbataha Reef in Suly. There are also several ruins that can be found in Cebu (churches as well as watchtowers), Albay (Cagsawa ruins), and even in the capital of the country, Manila (Fort Santigo).
Lets start from Manila, the capital of the Philippines, is the oldest and most popular city. It boasts of major historical sites, like those in Intramuros, the Walled City built by the Spaniards in the 16th century. Around Intramuros are Forts (like Fort Santiago) the Spaniards built to protect Manila from invasive attacks. Malacanang, the historical seat of power, is found here. Manila also keeps updated with the latest in hotel, restaurant, and mall amenities and other tourism attractions to afford travelers quality sightseeing in the Philippines. The famous SM Mall of Asia lies at its reclaimed bay area on the CCP grounds.
The Queen City in the South, Cebu City is among well developed cities in the country boasting of posh hotels, restaurants, and shopping centers considered among the finest in the country. In the early days, Cebu was famous for sweets and delicacies and the best brands of acoustic guitars. Today, Cebu is also an ideal venue for business conferences, real estate, tourism, and for establishing offshore business offices. Sightseeing in the Philippines is well rewarded with a dip in one of Cebu’s fascinating beaches.
Foreigners have been captivated by Davao City even before the place was declared a city in modern times. Considered a convenient gateway to Mindanao, the Davao Gulf area has been serving for centuries as a welcome entry point for tourism. The localities in and around the Davao Bay have been phenomenal in luring tourists to check out pristine white-sand beaches and vivid world-class dive sites.
Mountain Province lies amid hilly and mountainous vicinities of northern Luzon and is among the indigenous settlements in the Cordillera region—a series of awe-inspiring mountain ranges seldom visited by lowlanders. Mountain Province is an epitome of simple but virtuous living and tribal and communal cooperation sheltered in clusters of simple stilted huts. It is ideal for contemplative sightseeing in the Philippines.
Banawe Rice Terraces
It’s a common sight to see mountainsides converted into rice terraces by the native ingenuity of Mountain Province folks. But a vast mountain conversion is found in Banawe, a locality of Mountain Province. It is where a whole mountain range that stretches as far as the eyes could see functions as well irrigated ziggurats of rice fields manually engineered by native Ifugaos and Igorots. Called the Banawe Rice Terraces, it is a display of Filipino ingenuity, resolve, and brute strength. It’s a fascinating destination when sightseeing in the Philippines.
A bit lower than the Cordillera region is enchanting Baguio City in Benguet, a part of the Cordillera mountain ranges. This is a major tourist spot when sightseeing in the Philippines. Among fascinating sights here are Burnham Park, Mines View Park, Camp John Hay, Session Road, and Teachers Camp, among many others. The city was planned and developed by American city planner and Architect Daniel Burnham in the 1900s. Baguio City is the Summer Capital of the Philippines.
Vigan and Laoag
Ilocos Sur and Norte offer tourists a lot of absorbing memories of the past, especially during the Spanish time. Vigan and Laoag, capital cities of Ilocos Sur and Ilocos Norte, respectively, not only brags about superb beachfronts but archaic lighthouses and old colonial church buildings, houses, and buildings preserved well since the 18th century. Sightseeing in the Philippines should include a visit to the Old Vigan Houses and the Marcos Mausoleum in Laoag.
Sightseeing in the Philippines is so worthwhile that most tourists find the need to keep coming back to the islands for more.