Manila

A fascinating and chaotic melting pot.

Explore Manila's historic sites and vibrant districts, from the oldest Chinatown to the National Museum, in a city pulsing with dynamic culture.

3.7
out of 5
Photo of Binondo in Philippines

Oldest Chinatown in the World

Explore Binondo, Manila's historic district and the world's oldest Chinatown, known for authentic Chinese cuisine, unique shops, and cultural landmarks.

Manila, the vibrant capital of the Philippines, stands as a reflection of the country's colonial history and its modern progression. Intramuros, the walled city founded by the Spanish in the 16th century, offers visitors a window into the past with its historical landmarks and fortifications. The city is also a major economic and cultural center, with commercial districts like Makati showcasing skyscrapers and contemporary shopping areas. The Rizal Park, named after the national hero José Rizal, provides a spacious green escape amidst the urban sprawl. Manila's blend of Spanish colonial architecture, bustling markets, and expansive malls makes it an engaging destination for travelers.

Intramuros and Rizal Park

Walking through the cobbled streets of Intramuros, you can visit historical sites such as Fort Santiago, a defense fortress that is a key monument to the country's history. Here, you can learn about the life of José Rizal and other notable figures. Nearby, Rizal Park's green expanses offer a place for relaxation and reflection, with the Rizal Monument standing as a tribute to the hero's influence in Philippine history.

Traditional Filipino Cuisine

For those eager to explore Manila's culinary offerings, Binondo, the world's oldest Chinatown, provides a fusion of Filipino and Chinese flavors. Seek out eateries that serve traditional dishes like adobo, sinigang, and lechon. For an authentic street food experience, try balut, a local delicacy, from the many street vendors throughout the city.

Cultural and Religious Festivals

Manila plays host to vibrant cultural and religious festivals which can be a spectacle for visitors. The Feast of the Black Nazarene in Quiapo is one such event, drawing millions of devotees annually. Experiencing such an event can give travelers a profound glimpse into the spiritual fervor and community spirit of the Filipinos.

Ayala Museum and Manila Ocean Park

The Ayala Museum in Makati is known for its extensive collection that spans Filipino history, art, and culture. Meanwhile, families and marine life enthusiasts will enjoy Manila Ocean Park, an oceanarium that showcases the biodiversity of the Philippine seas.

Cost of Living and Budget-Friendly Options

Even in the metropolis of Manila, there are plenty of budget-friendly options for dining, shopping, and accommodation. Markets like Divisoria offer goods at bargain prices if you're willing to navigate their busy lanes. Street food stalls and smaller local restaurants provide cheap yet tasty food options compared to dining in more upscale areas.

Public Parks and Baywalk

Despite its dense urban environment, Manila also has public parks and spaces like the Manila Baywalk. This promenade area along Manila Bay is ideal for leisurely walks at sunset, with the view of the bay providing a picturesque backdrop.

Transportation Tips

Navigating Manila can be challenging due to traffic congestion. The city's Light Rail Transit (LRT) and Metro Rail Transit (MRT) systems are often the fastest way to get around. Jeepneys provide a more local mode of transportation, although they may not be as comfortable or efficient as modern transport options. It's also wise to be aware of rush hour times when planning your travel to avoid delays.

Average temperatures during the day in Manila.
June
28°
Jul
28°
Aug
27°
Sep
28°
Oct
27°
Nov
27°
Dec
26°
Jan
26°
Feb
26°
Mar
28°
Apr
29°
May
29°

What people say about Manila

3.7
People
4
Food
4
Spaces
3
Value
4
Safety
3

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