Tourist Attractions in Manila

Top 5 Tourist Attractions in Manila to Add to your Schedule

If you are planning a holiday in the Philippines, you will no doubt spend at least a week in the capital Manila, which has a unique ambience that cannot be found anywhere else. Of course, your main focus will be the tropical beaches on the idyllic islands that the Philippines is known for, but let us not forget the colour and vibrancy of the capital city.

  1. Manila Cathedral – Even if you are not a religious person, you can appreciate the stunning architecture of Manila Cathedral; built in 1581, this incredible structure has actually been rebuilt 6 times, thanks to hurricanes, earthquakes, wars and typhoons. A night visit is recommended, as the cathedral is bathed in light, bringing a supernatural aura to the building. You can hire an English-speaking guide to fill you in on the long history that this epic cathedral has seen. If you stay in a central hotel with rooftop pool, you should be able to see the cathedral in the evening.
  2. Manila Ocean Park – If you are travelling as a family, spending a day at the Manila Ocean Park is definitely a must. There are 8 special projects in total, including an all-star bird show, a funny sea lion performance, the amazing world of creepy crawlies, trails to Antarctica, jelly dancing sea fairies and the super toy collection. This attraction is all about learning as well as entertainment; discover the many interesting features and you can walk around at your leisure with a special family package pass.
  3. Fort Santiago – Constructed in 1593, Fort Santiago is located in the ancient walled city of Intramuros and is home to the famous Rizal Shrine; this fort has seen many historical events from the Spanish Conquest to the Second World War and for as long as anyone can remember, the structure has been in a constant state of repair. Open from 8 am to 9 pm daily, there are some stunning photo corners to impress your Instagram followers.
  4. National Museum Complex – This has to be the best museum in the country, which depicts the different aspects of the nation’s history; a great learning experience for kids, with the National Art Gallery and the planetarium well worth the visit. The complex is open from 10 am to 5 pm (closed on Mondays) and admission is free! Click here to discover how flowers are grown in the Philippines.
  5. Malacanang Palace – Officially the residence of the President of the Philippines, this sprawling palace has stunning well-maintained gardens where you can wander along shady pathways. Visit the Presidential Museum to find out about presidential duties and the many presidents the country has had. The Palace is open from 8 am to 5 pm and closed on weekends.

Staying in a central Manila hotel puts you right in the middle of the action and after a week of sightseeing, you will be ready to explore some of the tropical islands.