Manila Travel Guide

  • lots of shops
    lots of shops
    by machomikemd
  • COLONIAL HOUSES, COBBLED STREETS
    COLONIAL HOUSES, COBBLED STREETS
    by davidjo
  • Fort Banifacio, Makati, Manila, Philippines
    Fort Banifacio, Makati, Manila,...
    by TrendsetterME

Manila Highlights

  • Pro
    AlbuqRay profile photo

    AlbuqRay says…

     Friendly people; good food; good exchange rate. 

  • Con
    limledi profile photo

    limledi says…

     Traffic and Pollution 

  • In a nutshell
    Tijavi profile photo

    Tijavi says…

     Typical Asian megalopolis, but with friendly people armed with genuine smiles. 

Manila Things to Do

  • Intramuros

    The National Press Club of the Philippines is located at 1 Magallenas Drive just at the end of Jones Bridge which leads to Chinatown. When it was formed in 1952 the members were only journalists as TV broadcasts were comparatively new. The club tries to protect press freedom and the dignity of the newspaper profession, helps journalists that face...

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  • Manila Bay

    IF YOU'RE in Manila and in need of a nice, inexpensive place to while away a late afternoon or an early evening and really enjoy it, try The Baywalk. Manila Baywalk has done wonders to the city of Manila. It became a thriving, cosmopolitan, cool to be seen area. With crowds in excess of 200,000 on the weekends, Manila Baywalk has captured the...

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  • Luneta

    We recently visited last Sunday, November 17, 2013. There was plenty of people even at night and we were wondering what they were waiting for. Most families spreaded their mats around and having dinner picnic. Then the music started to play and the fountain started to strike colorful lights. It was an amazing dancing fountain show! Kids and adults...

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Manila Hotels

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Manila Restaurants

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  • Greenbelt and Glorietta

    Part two of My Umu Japanese restaurant tips with more pictures. Umu Japanese restaurant in Dusit Hotel Manila in Makati City is knowned for really expensive but very satisfying japanese cuisine and they have seasonal promotions for the different japanese regional cuisines with the japanese goodies flown strait from japan hence the amazing...

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  • Malate

    One of the Popular Locally Owned Tex Mex Fast Food Chain is the Army Navy- Burgers + Burrito which is a relative newbie in the mexican and tex-mex fast food scene at it was founded only in 2009 but now has more than 35 branches around the Metro Manila Area and around the Philipines! the restaurant has a military barracks type of ambiance where the...

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  • Native Restaurants

    ADO'S Panciteria or Pancit ni Ado has been pleasing Pasiguenos since 1952 and has become an iconic restos to the surrounding communities and anyone who happens to stumble upon it. Situated just down the road from the Catholic church of Pasig or Simbahan ng Pasig 126 A. Luna St. Bgy. Malinao in pasig. near sumilang. They really got their pancit...

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Manila Nightlife

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  • Makati

    One of the very first night spots I visited when I came to Manila was Havanas. It is a very popular location in the Greenbelt complex, at Greenbelt 3 to be exact. The majority of the bar is located outside. This can be very pleasant as you can soak in the night time air and watch people pass by. It can also be extremely humid, as Greenbelt can act...

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  • Live Entertainment

    the new Solaire Resort and Casino, located at the Pagocr Entertainment City, has 3 bars and lounges in the casino complex and the largest is the Eclipse Lounge and Bar, which is near the Slot Machines. The Eclipse Lounge and Bar is open 24/7 and has live bands at night, starting at 9:00 pm to 1:00 am everyday and with no cover charge. but the...

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  • Malate

    You will be surprised how many bars there are in Manila that cater for bi-sexual, gay, lesbian and transgender groups, so i thought that i would mention a few of them. The area near Remedios Circle in Malate is famous but most of the bars have moved to new locations. BED BAR This was a club with three floors that was packed out late in the...

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Manila Transportation

  • JEEPNEYS IN THE RUSH HOUR

    If you are unable to get on a jeepney at its origin and should you want to make a trip from the suburbs to Makati try and allow plenty of time if you wish to travel in the rush hour which is 6.30-8.30 am in the morning. The same goes for the evening rush hour which is from 5pm to 8pm. We had an important appointment at the hospital and stood by the...

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  • PASIG RIVER FERRY RESUMES

    After an absence of several years the river ferry is starting again on 4th April, initially having 5 terminals. A great way to see parts of the capital region and avoid the traffic. Hopefully in the future there are plans for 12 more terminals to open. The price for a ticket from end to end is 70 pesos, but you will be able to access parts of the...

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  • Pasig River Ferry

    I wrote this tip in the year 2007 when the ferry was still in operation. I am not deleteing this despite the fact that the ferry has stopped operating. there is a current move in the congress/senate to open it once again. I hope the proponent suceeds since the Pasig Ferry is not only a practical solution to the Metro's traffic problem but it also...

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Manila Shopping

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  • APPLES AND ORANGES

    Not quite sure whether this belongs in a shopping tip or a restaurant tip but by most LRT and MRT stations you will find stalls that sell apples and oranges at very reasonable prices and are usually much fresher than the same fruit that you will find in the farther away provinces, which are transported in containers by sea or truck. When i visit...

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  • Market, and Mall

    Market! Market! Is a quite new shopping area. It is titled Market! Market!, but should be called AnotherMall! AnotherMall!, because that is basically what it is, not so much a market, although there are outdoor shops and stalls as well.It is really for people who love malls, and not for those who like to scavenge for cheap bargains, because it's...

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  • PHILIPPINES BIGGEST MALL

    If you want to go shopping visit Mall of Asia, which is supposed to be the 3rd biggest mall in the world after those at Shanghai and Beijing. There are over 1100 shops but dwarfs the mall in China that has 2,350 shops. There are three different buildings and easy to get lost so if you are going with a friend have your cell phones handy or arrange a...

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Manila Local Customs

  • CANDY and BISCUITS BEFORE CATCHING YOUR...

    No really sure if this tip belongs here or somewhere else but at most jeepney departure points, bus stations and entrances to the local metro (MRT and LRT) stations you will find locals, usually teenagers selling candies for a peso each or smell packets of biscuits for a few pesos. These people will sit there all day with their small stand of...

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  • GUNS, GUNS, and more GUNS

    Don't be alarmed when walking around Manila when you see many security guards on duty outside shopping malls, banks and businesses. You will see handguns, pistols, shotguns, automatic guns etc. Manila is full of guns and the crime rate involving guns is higher than the provinces, as guns are easy to get hold of legally and illegally.

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  • BAKLAS, LADYBOYS etc

    The Philippines seem to have a great many baklas, the term given to a man who has feminine mannerisms and quite often dresses up like a woman, make up and all. Most TV shows will have a bakla in them, and there are many working in shops and other businesses, and are accepted widely by most of the population. Many work in beauty salons and...

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Manila Warnings and Dangers

  • General Safety

    Been to Philippines some times now and two things happen to me, that could have caused trouble. This September i was walking in SM city in Cebu. Inside the mall, a VERY beautiful woman approach me, and asked me if i wanted massage. Only 400 peso for 1 hour. But she insisted that the massage should happen in a short time hotel not far from the mall....

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  • Airport/Security Checks

    I travel through Manila's international airport - Terminal 1 - regularly on business travel. Twice in the last two months I have had valuables stolen from my checked bags. I am not sure who to contact about this but I would highly recommend that all valuables remain on your person when traveling through the airport in Manila. There are complaints...

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  • Health and the Weather

    More and more places are becoming smoke free zones including Rizal Park as the sign warns you. Violators will face heavy fines so don't light up your cigarette while visiting the park. first offence 500-1000 peso fine and 8 hrs community service second offense 1000-5000 peso fine and 16 hrs community work third offence 5000-15000 peso fine.

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Manila Tourist Traps

  • Fix Rate Taxis At Manila International...

    Be advised, do not go down to the arrival area unless you have a private transportation waiting for you. There is no metered taxis available down there. There is a fixed rate taxis which charge outrageous rate. I was quoted to pay Php650.00 just to go to Five Star Bus terminal which is only a few miles away. Good thingI asked around where I can...

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  • Airport Sting

    As a frequent traveller to the Philippines I have had the frequent displeasure of some successful extortion attempts and many unsuccessful attempts. The last one happened when I decided to visit friends for a week and fly from Manila to Bangkok. If there is an uncorrupted or half decent law enforcement officer or other government official who loves...

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  • taxis,females the street vender,and...

    manila is bad for rude taxi drivers especially if you are a tourist,make them use the meter or take another taxi,the idea is get going before you realize meter wasnt used and charge 5 or ten times actual fare,meters are required by l.t.f.r.b. the people whom allow them to oerate taxi's get the ltfrb number and tag number if you have problems and...

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Manila What to Pack

  • TAMPAX

    Foreigners will do well to wear decent and fashionable clothes if you plan to spend time in Manila's "posh" and classier areas such as the Makati City malls (Greenbelt 2, 3, 4, 5; Rockwell), Global City at Fort Bonifacio, Serendra or The Bonifacio High Street. Decent & fashionable means no beach attire. Despite the heat, you're not in the beach...

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  • Mosquito Repellent is a must pack item!

    A duffel bag or large roller board bag. Depending on your length of stay. A carry on bag for your reading and listening material, possible laptop storage, room for snacks and extra clothes. Depending on your length of stay and the month that you arrive. In the warm months, t-shirts and shorts by day. At night, a nice short sleeved dress shirt and...

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  • this ain't antartica!

    if you're making manila you're base and still plan to go to the other islands you could probably bring a small or medium-sized bag or backpack for those few items you want to bring rather than dragging your whole suitcase from one place to the next. pack light clothes all the time! this ain't antartica. unless you wanna suffer from heat stroke and...

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Manila Off The Beaten Path

  • Markets and Street Scenes

    Try and pop down to the Pasig River in Manila and see the poor people with their bamboo rafts scooping floating plastic bottles out of the river for recycling. At the recycling depots they will get a few pesos per kilo for their endeavors. Best place to see them are at the bridges crossing the river near Chinatown.

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  • Tagaytay and Taal

    Taal Lake lies in the crater of an extinct volcano on Luzon Island, about 56 km (about 35 miles) south of Manila. The lake is the 3rd largest lake in the Philippines covering an area of 240 sq km (94 sq miles).

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  • Corregidor

    If you have a day where you want to explore something different, ride a ferry to to Corregidor! This is just a short 2-3 hour ferry ride that leaves daily at 0730 from the wharf which is close to the Cultural Center of the Philippines. What will you see? Cannons! This place has a rich history, very important in how the shipping was controlled in...

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Manila Sports & Outdoors

  • Manila Auto Shows

    Some venues in the Metro Manila area have periodic Auto Shows ranging from the pimped up cars and motorcycles, restored cars, flashy sports cars and coupe, shows by car parts dealers and detailers and more. these car shows use the World Trade Center and the SMX Convention Center and the SM Mall of Asia, both in Pasay City, as their venue and these...

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  • ICE SKATING IN MANILA

    Surprise, surprise, there is an ice rink in Mall of Asia which costs 300 pesos plus equipment. It is the size of a football field and get there early before it is crowded. We saw some teenagers being trained on the ice as well as a couple of locals with all the ice hockey gear practicing their shots at goal

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  • Bowling at Star Mall

    I'm a big fan of bowling, and so I searched it out not long after I arrived in Manila. Today I write about the lanes I've frequented most, the Corronado lanes at Star Mall.This is a pretty basic, however fairly large, bowling alley. No neon lights or party nights, it's pretty much just the basic fun of bowling, eating, and if you wish, having a few...

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Manila Favorites

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  • Churches

    -Formally called Santisimo Rosario Parish Church -Located inside the University of Santo Tomas campus (along P. Noval St.) in España, Manila -Regular mass ongoing specially every Sunday (open to public) -The Church is one of the few fully air-conditioned Churches in Manila

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  • People/Local Culture

    I was most surprised to see this plaque at Rajah Sulayman Plaza just off of Roxas Boulevard in Malate. You will find this on the wall of the Dancing Fountain, facing the ocean. I think it was awarded it because it Manila was hosting the cultural minister's summit during this time. Very interesting to read this...

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  • Intramuros

    The Spanish, who replaced the wooden buildings with stone, rebuilt the original Chinese settlement on this site as a fort in 1590. Gradually the area was expanded until it became a walled city containing 15 churches and six monasteries. The walls are 3km (1.8mi) long and 6m (20ft) high, and are about all that remains after WWII finished off what...

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