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Include Philippines in your itinerary?

Travel Forums Asia Include Philippines in your itinerary?

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1. Posted by pau_p1 (Respected Member 214 posts) 6y

While visiting South East Asia, have you considered including the Philippines in your itinerary?

I'm noticing that most guys are looking into visiting countries like Thailand, Malaysia, Hong Kong and other mainland Asian countries... I know that they offer good sites for every tourist to see, but I'm wondering why not so many consider Philippines in their travels...

2. Posted by bwiiian (Travel Guru 768 posts) 6y

I do, in fact I wil be there in 1 week and 4 days!!!!!

3. Posted by Peter (Admin 5492 posts) 6y

Not saying the Philippines isn't a beautiful country (it is.. I visited and loved it), but I'll take a stab at the reasons that people might not be visiting the Philippines as much as they should.

  • Because they're islands and perhaps not quite as easy to get to. There's probably enough interestingness in the other South East Asian countries to keep people busy for quite some time. And once you're in say Cambodia, it's easier to visit Laos, Vietnam, etc than it is to head over to the Philippines (cheaper too?)
  • The reputation of Manila as an extremely polluted city (which was true the last time I visited).
  • The occasional kidnappings, bombings, sunken ferries etc.. that have been in the news. I realise some of these things only affect certain areas, but all that people hear in the news is "Tourists kidnapped in Philippines" and that kind of headline can keep people away for a quite some time! Though in fairness, it's been a while since I heard the Philippines make the headlines like that .. so hopefully opinions are changing.

Not saying any of these are good reasons, but I suspect those are the main things stopping people from visiting as much as they should!

Then again, maybe Philippines will be "discovered" as a the next big tourism hot spot ;)

4. Posted by SamSalmon (Respected Member 623 posts) 6y

Filipinos themselves-and there are a lot of Filipinos where I live-have told me that the natural world has been largely destroyed-except perhaps for Palawan, if I want to see bleached reefs and straggly second growth forest there are many places to do so.

Also Filipino food isn't in any way appealing-a few dishes are OK but I can't see eating it every day-I'm not that tough.

5. Posted by Budai (Respected Member 506 posts) 6y

Well i was planning on visiting the Philippines in May, but having seen prices of accomodation in Manila and Baguio im having second thoughts... Much more expensive than in mainland Southeast Asia... Just thought itd be more value for money if i went to say, India or Lao where 10USD gets me a room and all my meals for a day than in the PPines where, correct me if im wrong, it just gets you a single fan room for the night...

So for me, the cost is very discouraging. But otherwise ive heard some amazing things about the Philippines, especially Palawan, Brooks point and the islands around the Visayan sea...

6. Posted by pau_p1 (Respected Member 214 posts) 6y

yeah.. I think being an archipelago.. and being not connected to the mainland is a negative factor.. plus the old news that haunted us...

yeah Manila is a bit polluted.. but Manila may just be the gateway to other cleaner and beautiful islands...

as for cost, I'm not sure.. I haven't been to Cambodia or Laos before...but I think there are cheap places here also..

yeah... I guess we'll have to wait until most westerners has gone to Thailand, Cambodia, and others before they come and visit us... well at least I heard that Koreans, the Chinese, and Japanese are visiting us more often for now...

7. Posted by stoa (Budding Member 17 posts) 6y

I would love to go to the Philippines. I've heard they offer stunning natural beauty and pristine beaches. I won't be including it in my itinerary though, when I leave for SE-Asia next month. There are three reason really:

1) To begin with I didn't think of it because I was looking at the rout people are generally taking and the Philippines didn't come to mind
2) When I realized the Philippines might be worth visiting as well I saw that it would be more of a hassle and a bit more expensive because I would have to add an extra flight
3) I didn't really have time to add another country to my itinerary as is.

That being said, I hope I'll go to the Philippines one day

8. Posted by sofe1978 (Respected Member 127 posts) 6y

Well I'm hoping to add the Philippines to my journey.. albeit I won't be there until about August 2009!! I think it looks really lovely, not Manila so much but a lot of the islands look so nice and I can't wait!

[ Edit: Edited on Feb 6, 2008, at 6:12 AM by sofe1978 ]

9. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 1306 posts) 6y

Quoting pau_p1

While visiting South East Asia, have you considered including the Philippines in your itinerary?

I'm noticing that most guys are looking into visiting countries like Thailand, Malaysia, Hong Kong and other mainland Asian countries... I know that they offer good sites for every tourist to see, but I'm wondering why not so many consider Philippines in their travels...

I have been to all of these places. The Philippines is a little more expensive for hotels than Thailand or Laos. You will get a better hotel for the same amount of money in Thailand, more bang for your buck! (Beer is cheaper in the Philippines though!) The Philippines is cheaper than Hong Kong as far as hotels go, local transportation is cheap too.

I like the Philippines although it seems a little dirtier and run down than what you find in Thailand. Another reason Thailand is a little more popular is the fact that you can use cheap, efficient and reliable ground transportation to get to Laos, Cambodia and even to Malaysia. The Thai government knows that keeping tourist happy means the country makes more money! The Philippines could do a little better as far as tourism goes - starting right from the airport!

Manila is a little cleaner now than 4 or 5 years ago, streets are not so dirty, new streetlights on the darkest streets. Even the meter taxi cabs have meters that work a little better than a few years ago. Huge new mall off Roxas, the Mall of Asia is neat. There have been lots of improvements in Manila but more is needed. Filipino people are industrious, the people are well read and speak English pretty well. Many television shows and newspapers are in English too. Food is okay, in any event you can find cheap Western foods all over the place. In the P.I. they drive on the same side of the road as Americans and most of Europe, although the roads are quite crowded at times, especially around Christmas time.

I will be back in the P.I. again, probably in March if I can get the right price on my plane tickets.

10. Posted by pau_p1 (Respected Member 214 posts) 6y

well.. the government is now pushing on cleaning up the place as we strive to put our country in the tourism map...

about the airport.. Manila already has a newly built world-class airport.. but sadly it was caught in a legal debate on the legality of its contract... the president is pushing the courts and the parties to finish things up so that we can have this bigger airport opened... actually many new airports has just opened or is under construction now around the country specially in the Visayas area...

they are also building a site to compete Macau's casino strip on Manila Bay, plus a new Ocean Park will open this month as well..