Top things to do in Manila
Many times in my life some foreign nationalities either my friends or just known through work or business related activities asked me and said this exactly “Can you tell me or give me an idea about the Top things to do in Manila?” As a Filipino and Manila born citizen i feel guilty because even me don’t really sure if all the answer i gave to them before are really top things to do or to visit in Manila.
That’s why i decided to put some of my free time to do minor internet research about Top things to do in Manila. And here it is: (Some of the write up and images that i put in this article are the collection or summary from the other blogger and/or travel’s sites.)
Manila’s Hot Spot (A must visit place)
Manila has lot of must visit spots to offer from the old historic sites and churches to the newly built huge malls and theme park.
- Rizal Park – Manila
Rizal Park or Luneta Park is the most famous landmark in Manila. The country’s national hero and genius, Jose Rizal’s monument stands in the facade of the park across the Roxas Boulevard and the Manila Bay. It is also called the zero ‘0 KM’ kilometer. Many tourists and locals go there every day to have some photos taken in the famous statue and park. No entrance fee in the park so chillax.
- Fort Santiago – Intramuros, Manila
If you love visiting historical places and seeing vintage stuffs, you’ll surely enjoy this place. Fort Santiago was where Jose Rizal spent his last days before his execution. He also had written some of his writings here. Seeing Fort Santiago mirrors the life and culture of the country during the Spanish times and the sixteenth century. There are also Kalesa or carriage tour company around the area like us Castillan Tours in case you want to tour around riding it.
- Manila Ocean Park – Roxas Blvd., Manila
This one is one of the most favorite hotspots in the metro. The Manila Ocean Park shows amazing aquatic and marine life in awesome facilities and high technology tools to let children and marine lovers experience the best trip and see other aquatic species. Some activities are also available for visitors – dive and swim with the sharks, fishes and cute adorable creatures into the deep.
- Kidzania Manila – Fort Bonifacio, Taguig
This place is “awesome”. It was the exact word came out to my daughter’s mouth the day we visited this place. KidZania is an indoor play city where kids can have fun exploring the adult world! KidZania is one of the fastest growing educational entertainment brands in the world that targeted the children.
- Resort World Manila – Newport Blvd., Pasay
Want more fun and games? Visit some casinos and entertainment clubs in the Resorts World Manila. This elegant place has been developed to compliment the entertainment, leisure, and other events. Republiq, a famous elite club is here too. If you love the Sentosa in Singapore, you’ll love the Resorts World Manila. Maxims and Marriott Hotel are in this area also.
- Star City – Roxas Blvd., Manila
Spend the night in the popular amusement park in the heart of Manila, the Star City. With only few hundred of pesos, you’ll have the pass to ride all the rides you can and want. Roller Coasters, Wild River and xtreme fun are available to everyone.
source site: philpad
Intramuros Tour (Spanish old town)
The colonial Spanish walled in area of Intramuros is an interesting place to walk around and explore. Churches and schools built with complete Spanish influence make it hard to believe you are still on an Asian island.
Horse drawn carriages with guides like Castillan Tours are available for small fees to take you around and show you the main and important sites. However, the thick surrounding walls make Intramuros a friendly walking environment as rowdy traffic roars outside. Visiting this area is one of the top things to do in Manila.
source site: migrationology
Binondo Tour (The World’s First China Town)
Strolling through various Chinatown’s around the world from Yaowarat in Bangkok to Chinatown in Buenos Aires, is always a delicious culinary expedition.
The world’s first Chinatown also known as Binondo in Manila is no different. It’s an exquisite place to stimulate your senses. Walking the cluttered streets are particularly interesting with hundreds of people going about business, napping, and chowing down great things. There’s also some company offer horse drawn carriage to tour you around China Town like Castillan Tours.
source site: migrationology
For the millions of Catholic faithful in the country, Manila is the home of some popular and Spanish era type of churches to name a few like:
- Manila Metropolitan Cathedral-Basilica – Intramuros, Manila
Standing grand and regal at the heart Intramuros in Manila is the breathtaking Manila Metropolitan Cathedral-Basilica, more commonly known as Manila Cathedral. This Neo-Romanesque church boasts of impressive architecture, from façade to interiors.
- San Agustin Church – Intramuros, Manila
Just a few blocks away from Manila Cathedral is the equally magnificent San Agustin Church. Completed in 1607, this church has withstood major calamities and two world wars. In 1945, it was one of the seven Churches in Intramuros that remained standing, with only a damaged roof.
- Minor Basilica of St. Lorenzo Ruiz – Binondo, Manila
Minor Basilica of St. Lorenzo Ruiz or better known as Binondo was once considered as one of the most beautiful churches in the country, until it was destroyed during the British invasion. It was rebuilt in 1852, but part of the church was again destroyed during the World War II.
- Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene – Quiapo, Manila
Needless to say, the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene, or Quiapo Church, is one of the favorite Visita Iglesia destinations not only because of prominence as a devotion site, but also because of its convenience, being at the heart of Manila. Quiapo Church is home to the miraculous Black Nazarene, whose original image was brought to the country in the 17th century.
- San Sebastian Church – Plaza del Carmen, Manila
Famous for its impressive architectural features, San Sebastian Church is the only all-steel church in the country and the only pre-fabricated steel church in the world. This architectural wonder has already been declared a National Historical Landmark and has also made it to the tentative list of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
- National Shrine of our Lady of the Rosary – Quezon Ave., Quezon City
The National Shrine of our Lady of the Rosary or commonly known as Sto. Domingo Church is considered the largest church in Metro Manila and one of the biggest churches in Asia. And unlike the Baroque churches built during the Spanish period, Sto. Domingo Church was built in Modern Spanish style.
- National Shrine of Our Mother of Perpetual Help – Roxas Blvd., Paranaque City
The National Shrine of Our Mother of Perpetual Help, also known as Redemptorist Church, or even more popularly known as Baclaran Church, is one of the largest Marian churches in the country. Needless to say, it has gained popularity because of the tens of thousands of devotees who flock the church every Wednesday.
source site: gmanetwork
The Philippines is the bargain center of the world, and its malls are culture quirks. Malls for everybody, which will entertain every visitor no matter your tastes. A day in a mall offers a selection of restaurants, theaters, all types of stores, beauty salons, spas, clinics, play areas and wonderland rides for children, furniture shops, etc. under one roof.
Philippine traffic is legendary, and not in a good way, so you are better off to do your shopping all in one place rather than spend hours on the road. Because malls tend to have the same stores, boutiques, options, etc. I will first suggest the best or the best malls and describe their unique traits, then recommend stores to look for in them.
- SM Mall of Asia – Pasay, Manila
The Mall of Asia is Asia’s biggest mall. Do go to the bridge to see the sunset. It is framed well and you feel quite Zen. The Mall of Asia has the widest Filipiniana selection (basketry, capiz, Filipino jewelry, bags, etc) at good prices. There is also a 3D theatre and a nice science discovery center. At night bands play and liven the place up quite a bit.
- The Greenbelt Mall – Ayala, Makati
The Greenbelt Mall is a must for a great shopping experience. Try to see Ayala Museum while you are there. This is also a great place for club hopping as they are all steps away from each other. Remember, clubbing starts at midnight.
- Rockwell Powerplant Mall – Poblacion, Makati
Upscale and tasteful, this mall is comfortable with quality buys. The basement has a wide selection of good food choices.
- Alabang Town Center – Alabang, Muntinlupa
I love ATC. Cheap options can be had at the Food Court and there is a flea market on the ground floor with Korean buys. Havin’ a Baby has the greatest pregnancy stuff. All the other stores here are expensive but quality is very good.
- Among many others such as Greenhills Shopping Center in San Juan, Shangri-la and SM Megamall in Mandaluyong, Trinoma and SM North in Quezon City.
source site: outoftownblog