Manila: The Philippines’ Big Apple. A city that moves just as fast as it’s inhabitants. A place where you can dine, drink, shop, and have fun 24 hours a day while enjoying the Filipino’s genuine hospitality and our mixed heritage of Spanish, Chinese, and American. Like New York, this is the concrete jungle where Filipino dreams are made of. There’s just so much to do and we’re giving you 6 of our top picks for places to go in Manila. Get your cosmopolitans ready as we explore the Pearl of the Orient’s metropolis.
1. Go for a stroll in Intramuros
Known as the “Walled City”, Intramuros is rich with Philippine history. Built 3 centuries ago by the Spaniards when they colonized the country, it is now home to stunning architecture and “Instagram-worthy” photos. There are a lot of things to do in Intramuros like go to Fort Santiago and time travel to when Philippine National Hero, Jose Rizal, was imprisoned and executed there. There’s also Casa Manila, a museum that illustrates the life of rich Filipino families in days of old.
2. Indulge your inner foodie in Binondo
Binondo, the world’s first Chinatown, which was founded more than 50 years ago in 1954, is one of the best places in Manila to go for a food crawl. Here you’ll find awesome fresh dumplings from Dong Bei Dumpling, authentic Chinese cuisine from Sincerity Café and Restaurant, or try the unique Shanghai Fried Siopao. Truly a foodie paradise.
3. Shop until you drop at the street markets of Divisoria, Quiapo, or Salcedo Market
If your palms get itchy and you just have the cash to blow, check out the street markets in Manila. You’re sure to get the cheapest deals – assuming you can haggle your way into them. The Divisoria and Quiapo markets are more crowded and offer a ton more choices; from bags, to clothing, household needs, toys, and whatever you can think of. Just be prepared for a crowd, Filipinos love a good deal and you’ll see an even greater deal of Filipinos swarming these markets. If you’re not up to rubbing elbows, you can always try out the Salcedo Sunday Market in Makati which brings more high-end products available along with a food bazaar.
4. Visit the beautiful churches of Manila
With the Philippines being a prominently Roman-Catholic country, you can be sure that there are some amazing churches anywhere you go. Regardless of Manila’s blazing economic development, the churches have retained all their glory. Bask in the magnificence of the San Agustin Church, the only all-steel church in Asia that is San Sebastian Church, or Manila Cathedral that features famous saint statues and Italian artwork that makes the architecture even more stunning.
5. Admire the sunset from Manila Bay
Definitely a must-see for any tourist in Manila. Whether it’s your first time or not, the sunset at Manila Bay is truly a captivating sight. It’s even better seen while cruising over its waters and having dinner with that special someone or your family. You can even rent out your own yacht. Check out http://www.manilaluxuryclub.com/ for rates on rentals.
6. Grab your cosmopolitans at Bonifacio Global City
With Metro Manila being the mega-city that it is, it’s only natural to find the best bars and clubs to dance the night away here. There are bars where you can grab a beer quietly, sports bars to catch up on the latest pay-per-view games and matches, and of course rave parties and clubs galore. The nightlife in Manila is never dull. The Filipino people are known for their hospitality and kindness so imagine just how friendlier we can get when we get a bit of booze in our system! Some of the best bars in BGC include Valkyrie, The Palace Pool Club, and for our LGBT friends, the Nectar Nightclub.