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By: Karina Melissa Y. Ibabao
With some simply stunning natural attractions and a rich history, the Philippines truly have a lot to offer to adventure-seekers and travelers. Here is a list of some must-see places in the Philippines:
The Banaue Rice Terraces
Have you ever seen a staircase that’s been carved into a mountain? Set your eyes on the stunning Banaue Rice Terraces and prepare to be amazed. The Ifugao tribe made the terraces some 2000 years ago, to optimize the cultivation of rice. The terraces are located 348 kilometers from Manila and can be reached by taking an eight to ten-hour bus ride. While the trip may seem like a tough challenge, the views on the way make up the long travel hours.
Aside from its crystal clear waters and powdery sandy beaches, Boracay is popular for its breathtaking sunset. Be sure to be by the beach, with your favorite drink in hand, around 5pm to enjoy an astonishing view. Your nights in Boracay are also surely going to be unforgettable, as the island is known as the Philippines’ biggest beach party place.
El Nido, Palawan
This list is not complete without the ultimate beach destination. Many travellers consider it as THE beach to go to in the Philippines. Its pristine white sands, beautiful sunset and wonderful ecosystem define its beauty. Many celebrities, local and international, are known to frequent the island not only for its beauty but also for the privacy it gives them.
The Tubbataha National Marine Park
The marine park is popular for its spectacular atoll coral reef. Located in the Sulu Sea, 181 kilometers southeast of Puerto Princesa, Palawan, the Marine Park is a sanctuary for a diverse group of corals and fish colonies.
It is considered as one of the best playgrounds for divers. Hammerhead sharks, manta rays, parrotfish and barracudas are just a few of the many sea creatures that can be seen in the park. Divers can experience the beauty of Tubbataha from March until June, as these are the months when waves are most calm.
The Historic Town of Vigan
If you want to get lost in time and see the majesty and charm of the Spanish heritage, there is one place to visit- Vigan. This historic town is home to beautiful colonial Spanish architecture and culture. Considered a World Heritage Site, many of its ancient structures seem to have been preserved in time. It is best to walk around on its cobblestone streets and appreciate the European architecture during the late afternoon, when it is not too hot.
If you have more time to spend in Ilocos, a good place to visit is the Bangui Bay. Near the bay, you will see the famous Bangui Windmills that provides almost fifty percent of the power needs of Northern Ilocos.