Things to do in Philippines that you shouldn’t pass up

Kick back and relax or choose to adventure your way through the dazzling islands of the Philippines.

Learn about the Spanish influence in Manila, stroll along white sand beaches in Boracay and dive with whale sharks in Cebu.

The Philippines holds something for every type of traveller.

We’re sharing with you the best destinations and things to do while on holiday here.

Top things to do in Philippines


Laze on the beautiful beaches of Boracay

Boracay is a top destination in the Philippines. The small island lures in visitors with its white sand beaches, water sports and relaxing resorts.

Around the central island, you can find diverse marine life with coral reefs and shipwrecks.

Island-hopping, day adventures that include cliff jumping and pub crawls are also popular activities.


Discover Palawan; arguably the best island in the world

One of the most famous islands in the Philippines, Travel + Leisure magazine named Palawan the best island in the world.

Its glittering blue and green waters are amazing for diving as well as for island hopping from Coron or El Nido.

Puerto Princesa is the culinary capital of the island where you’ll also find day trips to the Underground River, one of the world’s new seven natural wonders.


Swim with whale sharks in Donsol and Cebu

Whale sharks are magnificent, large, gentle creatures that are common in the Philippines.

You can choose to ride a glass bottom boat and watch as they swim below you or free dive and swim along beside them. The best places to spot them are in Donsol and Cebu.

Chase turtles in Cebu

You don't have to dive deep to explore the underwater world in the south of Cebu Island.

A visit to Pescador Island and its surrounding waters can have you swimming centimetres from coral, hawksbill turtles and through walls of sardines called the "sardine run".

Catch it all in a day trip from Cebu City which also includes a stopover at White Beach for a picnic lunch and the chance to gaze upon a 98 metre high waterfall.


Tour the country's capital: Manila

The Filipino capital of Manila mixes skyscrapers with Spanish architecture along the coast. Its busy streets have plenty of malls, including the Mall of Asia, but you should also make time to visit Intramuros, a walled city from colonial times.

Visit Villa Escuderoo to have a meal at the base of a waterfall or tour Manila in a jeepney, a large open air vehicle used for public transportation in the Philippines.


Go on that deep sea diving adventure

The Philippines has a number of incredible dive spots that will ensure you see a wide variety of underwater activity.

Apo Island is popular for spotting turtles and you can see thresher sharks while diving in Monad Shoal.

Anilao has great diving conditions year-round, Coron has WWII ruins to dive in and Tubbataha Reef National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage site with over 600 species of fish.


Catch a game of basketball

Basketball is the most popular sport in the Philippines and is played on both amateur and professional levels.

You’ll find basketball courts scattered across the cities and islands throughout the country.


Skip the formalities and go straight into holiday-mode in Cebu

Cebu draws in visitors because of its white sand beaches, spectacular diving, waterfalls and history.

Swim with whale sharks, see Spanish influenced buildings from the 16th century and kick back at Cebu City’s upbeat bars and restaurants.

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Stephanie Yip

Stephanie is the travel editor at On top of being an avid traveller, she's an all-round bargain hunter. If there's a deal on hotels or a sale on flights, she'll know about it. And she'll let you know about it, too. Though probably not before she buys her own ticket.

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