Manila Travel Guide

Overview of Manila

Visit the capital of the Philippines! If you’re visiting the Philippines for the first time, don't skip this bustling city. Manila is an excellent hub for Philippine culture, history, shopping, and nightlife. You’ll be greeted with lively streets teeming with cars, buildings, and people with high energy, but you’ll also never run out of fun activities.

Immerse yourself in the bustling energy of the metropolis, with shopping districts, entertainment hubs, and vibrant nightlife that cater to every taste. Manila's warm hospitality and diverse offerings make it a captivating destination for travellers seeking a unique blend of the past and the present.

Popular Packages in Manila

Explore the popular places in Manila, Philippines

Where to Go

Historical Places & Cultural Heritage


Explore the walled city, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with its Spanish colonial architecture, Fort Santiago, and San Agustin Church.

Rizal Park

Witness the iconic Rizal Monument and learn about the national hero's legacy.

National Museum

Explore Philippine history and art through a variety of exhibits.

Casa Manila

Step back in time at this 19th-century mansion, showcasing Filipino heritage.


Discover Manila's Chinatown, the oldest in the world! With its vibrant markets and temples.


Ocean Park

Discover marine life from around the world in this large oceanarium.

Manila Zoo

Observe diverse animal species, including endangered ones.

Pasig River

Take a scenic boat ride through the city, admiring the skyline and riverside landmarks.

Taal Volcano

Witness the active volcano's power from afar or climb its slopes for breathtaking views.

What to Do

Luxury Indulgence & Shopping

Manila is the center hub for shopping sprees, upscale boutiques of international brands such as Louis Vuitton and Chanel seamlessly blend with art galleries and rooftops bar establishments.


Manila is renowned for its vibrant casino scene, offering an exciting array of gaming and entertainment options. From world-class resorts to lively casinos, the city invites those seeking thrilling experiences and the chance to try their luck in a dynamic gaming environment

Leisure Activities

Travellers can embark on diverse shopping adventure with market hunting at places like Divisoria and Tutuban Centre, where vibrant stalls offer a wide array of goods.

For a more modern and dynamic experience, take a leisurely stroll through the bustling streets of Bonifacio Global City (BGC). If upscale malls are your preference, indulge in relaxing strolls at famous shopping destinations.

When is the Best Time to Visit Manila

The dry season in Manila typically occurs from November to April. During this period, the city experiences lower rainfall and higher temperatures, creating a more arid and comfortable climate. It is an ideal time for outdoor activities, exploration, and enjoying the various attractions Manila has to offer.

The rainy season in Manila usually spans from June to November. During this period, the city experiences increased rainfall, occasional thunderstorms, and higher humidity levels. It's advisable to be prepared for wet weather by carrying an umbrella, waterproof clothing, and allowing extra travel time.

Manila hosts a variety of festivals throughout the year, each offering a unique glimpse into the city's vibrant culture and traditions. One of the most significant celebrations is the Feast of the Black Nazarene, held every January, drawing millions of devotees in a grand procession. The Manila Day, celebrated on June 24th, commemorates the founding of the city with parades and cultural events. The Aliwan Fiesta, typically in April, showcases the diversity of Philippine cultures through street dances and floats.

How to Get to Manila

By Air

The Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) serves as Manila's primary gateway, welcoming international and domestic flights. Airlines from around the world operate regular flights to and from NAIA.

By Sea

Manila has a seaport, the Manila South Harbor, catering to sea travel. Ferries and ships connect Manila to various domestic destinations, including nearby islands.

By Car / Bus

Getting to Manila by car or bus is a convenient option, offering flexibility and accessibility. If you're traveling by car, major expressways like the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) and South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) connect Manila to different parts of Luzon.

Numerous bus terminals, including those in Cubao and Pasay, provide bus services from various locations, offering an affordable and efficient means of reaching the bustling capital.


Travellers can take the LRT / MRT across Manila. Fare rates may vary for short trips and long-distance journeys. There are different fare rates for different station-to-station distances.

How to Get Around

By Taxi / Ride-Sharing Services

Taxis are readily available in Manila. Ensure that the driver uses the meter, or agree on a fare before starting the journey. Ride-hailing services like Grab are also widely used.

By Car / Motorcycle

Renting a car or using your private vehicle is an affordable option, but Manila's traffic can be challenging, especially during peak hours.

Travellers can opt for tricycles, which resemble motorbikes with a sidecar and are ideal for short distances within residential areas. Additionally, they offer a more cost-effective transportation option.

By Jeepneys

Travellers can experience riding colorful and iconic, jeepneys that are a popular means of public transportation in Manila. They follow set routes, and passengers can board and alight at designated stops.

What to Eat

Manila boasts a diverse range of dining options to suit every budget and palate.

Local Food

For those seeking budget-friendly and authentic local cuisine, exploring the street food stalls with famous food such as Isaw, Kwek- Kwek and barbeque and eateries in the Binondo area is recommended for Chinese cuisines.

There are also many local restaurants from quaint eateries tucked away in vibrant neighborhoods to bustling food hubs that serves Filipino authentic food such as Abodo, Sisig and Jolibee! These local establishments provide a diverse and satisfying dining experience.

Fresh Seafood

Travellers can explore in Manila's vibrant seafood scene by heading to bustling markets like Pasay, where seafood lovers can haggle for their preferred catches and then choose from a variety of nearby restaurants to savor the freshest flavors prepared just the way they like.

Western Food

Satisfy your cravings for Western cuisine in Manila by exploring popular dining spots such as the lively districts of Makati or Bonifacio Global City (BGC). These areas boast a diverse selection of restaurants offering Western delicacies, ensuring a delightful culinary experience for travelers seeking familiar and international flavors in the heart of Manila.

What to Buy

Experience the lively essence of Manila through its diverse shopping landscape, providing options for every preference and budget.

Those in search of souvenirs can explore Tiendesitas for intricate wood carvings and woven baskets or discover charming Niña figurines in Greenbelt. Meanwhile, food enthusiasts can indulge in mouthwatering dried mangoes, a delightful purchase found at SM Mall of Asia.

Where to Stay

In Manila, there is a wide range of accommodations catering to various preferences and budgets. The city offers luxurious hotels in bustling business districts like Makati and Bonifacio Global City (BGC), providing convenience and upscale amenities.

For a more cultural experience, consider staying in historical districts such as Intramuros. Additionally, budget-friendly options, guesthouses, and boutique hotels are scattered across different neighborhoods, ensuring that visitors can find a suitable place to stay based on their preferences and needs.

What to Bring

  • Due to the tropical climate, pack lightweight and breathable clothing to stay comfortable in the warm weather.
  • Bring sunscreen with a high SPF, a wide-brimmed hat, and sunglasses to shield yourself from the strong tropical sun.
  • If visiting during the rainy season (June to November), pack a compact umbrella and a waterproof jacket to stay dry during sudden downpours.
  • Manila involves a fair amount of walking, so bring comfortable shoes suitable for exploring the city's diverse attractions.
  • Ensure you have the appropriate travel adapters to charge your electronic devices.
  • Especially if you plan to explore outdoor areas, having insect repellent can be helpful.
  • Pack any necessary medications along with a small first aid kit.
  • Carry essential travel documents, including your passport, identification, travel insurance, and any necessary tickets.
  • Stay hydrated by bringing a reusable water bottle, and consider using a filtered one if you're concerned about water quality.

What to Wear

Travellers are opt for loose-fitting, breathable fabrics such as cotton or linen to stay cool in the warm weather. Comfortable and breathable shoes, sandals, or flip-flops are ideal for exploring the city's attractions.

Things to Note

  • Manila is known for heavy traffic, especially during rush hours. Plan your travel time accordingly and consider using ride-sharing services or public transportation.
  • The official currency is the Philippine Peso (PHP). Ensure you have local currency for small purchases, as not all places accept credit cards.
  • The official languages are Filipino and English. English is widely spoken, making communication easier for international visitors.
  • Exercise standard safety precautions. Be vigilant with your belongings, avoid poorly lit areas at night, and use reliable transportation options.
  • Manila has a tropical climate with a rainy season from June to November. Check the weather forecast and pack accordingly.
  • Tipping is appreciated but not always mandatory. In restaurants, a service charge is often included in the bill, but an additional tip is customary.
  • Be cautious with taxis; it's advisable to use reputable taxi companies or ride-sharing services. The city also has a network of jeepneys and buses for budget-friendly travel.
  • Stay hydrated, especially in the warm weather. If you have specific health concerns, it's advisable to carry necessary medications and travel insurance.

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