The Philippines is an archipelago of over 7,000 islands, boasting some of the most stunning natural and cultural attractions in Southeast Asia. From its pristine white-sand beaches, lush tropical jungles, and vibrant cities, the country has something for everyone to enjoy.
For travelers looking to explore the beauty of the Philippines without having to venture too far from the comforts of home, there are dozens of local tourist spots in the country that you can visit. Whether you’re looking to spend your free time at the beach or hiking to the top of a mountain, the Philippines is a great place to go on holiday.
Reasons to Travel Locally
Before you decide to go out of the country and explore the wonders of the world, why not begin with traveling in the Philippines? There are reasons people from all over the world fly for several hours just to enjoy the several tourist attractions in our country. Aside from marveling at the natural and manmade attractions here in the Philippines, traveling locally will allow you to:
- Learn More About Your Own Country
When you start traveling locally, you’ll get to talk to locals and see the different ways they live in different places. You’ll get to know more about the culture, cuisine, traditions, and history of the area you’re visiting. You may even discover something unique about the Philippines that you didn’t know before. This way, you learn more about your country and even develop a better understanding of it.
- Rediscover the Country’s Beauty
Living in the Philippines may cause you to get used to its beauty and lose appreciation for it. But traveling locally allows you to rediscover the country’s beauty and find new places and perspectives that will make you appreciate the Philippines even more.
Exploring a destination on your terms can also be an invigorating experience, allowing you to take in all the sights, smells, and sounds of each place without being rushed.
- See the World Better
You develop a better understanding of the world when you’ve been around your own country. Plus, when you meet people who’ll want to know about your motherland, wouldn’t it be great if you can proudly answer them based on your own experiences?
- Support Local
Traveling locally is good for the economy! By traveling locally, you support local businesses and even help promote local tourism every time you post something online. See, traveling is almost a social responsibility!
- Learn to Love and Care for Your Country More
Traveling locally will open your eyes, give you a new perspective, and make you see why this country deserves to be loved. And when you love something, you want to protect and take care of it, which is something our mountains, forests, and animals are currently very much in need of.
Local Tourist Spots You Should Visit
There are a lot of tourist attractions around the Philippines that you should see. Here are some of the most remarkable ones that you shouldn’t miss.
One of the easiest destinations to access from Metro Manila, Tagaytay has always been a place for a quick getaway whether on the weekends or a quick holiday. From Tagaytay, Taal is a majestic view, but did you know that you can actually travel nearer the volcano?
You can catch a banca tour or speedboat tour in the area. A roundtrip tour around Taal Volcano is about 1.5 hours depending on the package that you choose.
Aside from the sail, there are also different tourist trails. One trail goes up a part of Taal Volcano so you can see the crater and lake island inside the area. There is also a secret trail where you can go into the inner lake.
If you are up for a road trip to Pangasinan, there are many places to visit but one of our favorites is Bolinao.
Bolinao, Pangasinan has white sand beaches, rock formations, and a lighthouse since it is located at the westernmost tip of the province. If you want a little bit of rest and relaxation, Bolinao has excellent resorts where you can enjoy the most wonderful sunset overlooking the sea.
You can also enjoy some lunch at Sungayan Grill, a floating restaurant that offers many local dishes like their signature Sungayan fish. You will enjoy great food while floating along the Balingasay River where you can relax and enjoy what Bolinao has to offer.
Ready for an underwater adventure? Just a few hours away from Manila, Anilao is the home of the magnificent underwater treasure. The town houses over 40 diving spots like the famous Twin Rocks, Sombrero Island, Maricaban Island, and Cathedral. But Anilao can also be a jump-off point for the world-famous Apo Reef.
Rich in history and amazing food, Cebu has always been a great destination for unique adventures but with the comforts of the city as well. When you visit Cebu, most of the things you should visit or try are just a few hours away. The province is brimming with white sand beaches, historic sites, and delicious food.
If you want to relax, Mactan has beautiful beaches and resorts so you can enjoy a cool vacation. For adventures, you can visit Moalboal and swim with underwater friends
Known for Anawangin Cove, Nagsasa Cove, Potipot Island, and Capones Island, Zambales has unlimited places to visit. Just a few hours away from Manila, this province has peaceful beaches, gorgeous beach coves, and waves for a nice surf session. Zambales is also the home of delicious mangoes that you can enjoy during your vacation or as pasalubong when you go home to Manila.
One of the best provinces for a food trip, Pampanga is a great road trip to get those bellies full and happy. Home of the famous original sisig, Pampanga has been a tourist destination known for delicious Filipino food, pastries, and many more.
Whether it’s for surfing, a wellness getaway, a turtle conservation program, or even a food trip, La Union is one of the places that many visit over the weekend. Imagine waking up to the sound of the ocean, surfing the day away, and ending the day with the most beautiful sunset. But that’s not the only thing that the province has to offer.
There are many things you can do in La Union aside from surfing in San Juan. You can go to nearby towns where there’s a pebble beach or visit the Bilagan Road where the long and winding road is totally Instagram-worthy. There are also a few farms that can offer you a healthy retreat!
The Spanish-Colonial streets of Vigan are definitely Instagram-worthy and rich in history. With centuries-old architecture, the province is the home of two UNESCO world heritage sites.
Two must-visit sites are the UNESCO World Heritage Sites like the Paoay Church and City of Vigan where you can immerse in the Philippines’ remarkable past. If you are up for an adventure, you can also sandboard or check out the amazing rock formations.
If there is one destination that many want to visit, Boracay is known for the most beautiful white sand beaches and wonderful sunrise and sunset. Though known for its beaches, Boracay offers various activities like parasailing, helmet diving, paraw sailing, helicopter tours, and many more.
The island also has different destinations aside from the white beach. Located just at the edge of the white beach, Diniwid is one of the hidden gems of Boracay located on the hillside and beachfront.
There are also a lot of choices for local accommodation around the area, so you won’t have any trouble looking for a place to stay. Now, you can spend several days of vacation on the island comfortably.
Known as a surfing destination, Siargao has countless tourist spots that you have to visit in this lifetime. From Taktak Falls, Magpupungko rock pools, and Sugba lagoon to canyoneering at Tayangban cave pool and surfing at Cloud 9, you have endless possibilities.
Waiting for you in Pagudpud are beautiful white-sand beaches, scenic 80-foot waterfalls like Kabigan Falls, and nature reserves like Bantay Abot Cave. Those who love being close to nature will love this gem tucked away in Ilocos Norte. A 12-hour drive to Luzon’s northern shore may seem daunting, but this long drive is all worth it.
A favorite destination among thrill-seekers, Camarines Sur or Cam Sur is truly an adventure paradise. The famous CamSur Watersports Complex can be found here, where adrenaline-junkies flock for waterskiing and waterboarding.
You can also traverse Mt. Isarog, an active volcano that’s a famous hiking spot. More of a beach person? Caramoan also awaits in this province, a destination known for its pristine beaches.
Baler is one of the best surfing spots in Luzon. So, if surfing is something you’ve always wanted to try, hit the road and drive all the way here!
Aside from surfing, Baler is also known for its magnificent display of nature. Explore remarkable hidden beaches and cliffs overlooking incredible sea views, and even hike the famous Ditumabo Mother Falls, which requires a one-hour trek along the muddy, rocky terrain, and crossing river currents. A real treat for thrill-seekers!
If you love the mountains and the feeling like you’re away from it all, Banaue couldn’t be a more perfect destination. The road to this northern gem will surely satiate your thrill-seeking soul and blow you away with its remarkable beauty.
For a taste of adventure, go on a two-hour trek to the majestic Tappiya Falls, which will have you traversing up and down the famous rice terraces of Ifugao. Nope, you won’t be looking at the rice terraces from afar; you will be in the middle of it all. What adventure could be better than that?
Widen Your Horizons
Once you’ve exhausted all the local tourist destinations in the Philippines, you might want to think about an international destination for your next trip. There are several international travel destinations for Filipinos that you can choose from.
Some of the most popular international tourist destinations that Filipinos love are Japan, Indonesia, and Vietnam. These international spots each offer unique aspects that you will surely appreciate.
So, what are you waiting for? Start your journey by traveling to different local destinations and flying to international spots after!