1. The people
The Filipinos are the most friendly people I encountered on my travels. They call you ‘ma’am’ and ‘sir’ and always have a big smile on their faces. They also have a great sense of humour and do not take life too seriously.
2. They speak very good English
I know I sound ignorant, but it has been so refreshing to have someone understand me when I am trying to ask what type of meat is present in the food I am trying to order.
3. The beaches are world-class and not crowded!
The most beautiful beaches that I have ever seen in my life and you actually have space! Some have even been desserted and we have had it all to ourselves
4. Their eateries are the best
I don’t know about you but I hate waiting for the food I have ordered. With Filipino eateries you choose from food right in front of you what you would like, it is also so cheap. Granted, it is normally cold, but the food is delicious and the rice is always warm, which is the main thing
5. They care about their environment and are proud of their beautiful islands
I was surprised to see that they make an effort to recycle as this is not something I encountered whilst travelling in Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. They genuinely want to try and be as eco-friendly as possible
6. It is Mecca for divers
I have dived in Coron, Moalboal and Apo Island and can tell you that the underwater landscape there is breathtaking. There are underwater shipwrecks in Coron, sardines and huge turtles in Moalboal and amazing coral and turtles in Apo Island. You can also dive in Malapascua where you can spot the thresher sharks. I even came face-to-face with a banded sea krait and was admiring it’s black and white stripes when I turned to see my friend rapidly swimming away from it, which is when I realised it was probably a poisonous snake. Whoops, my bad.
7. Their bakeshops are amazing
My waistline is berating me for discovering the Filipino bakeshops. Their pastries are mostly 5 pesos each and they are freshly baked every day with so much choice. You can choose from things like Pan de Coco, a soft bread filled with sweet coconut filling, Kalihim, soft bread filled with bright red of purple filling, sesame bread rolls, chocolate muffins, chocolate cookies… I could go on but I am salivating over my keyboard
8. Their surreal landscapes
One of the best things to do in the Philippines is to rent a motorbike and just drive around. The landscapes are absolutely breathtaking and are never boring or ugly. There are so many majestic waterfalls to visit as well and to cool down in
9. The coconuts are fresh and the rum is cheap
A 750 ml bottle of Tanduay Rum costs 120 pesos which is around £2. Buy a bottle of this and let the good times roll
10. They live for karaoke
I really admire how fearless they are with karaoke. I am petrified of singing on my own and would never do it unless I was four or five drinks down or in a group. But the Filipinos sing their hearts out no matter how young or old they are, and even if they are a good singer or not. And even if they are bad… NOBODY LAUGHS! Below is a video of the day when we were caught short by the heavy downpours and spent the day singing karaoke with the locals. It was great fun and a memory which I will never forget.