Philippines attractions include Manila Ocean Park, Manila Intramuros, Manila SM City North EDSA shopping mall, Borocay Island, and Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park.
Manila Ocean Park (manilaoceanpark.com) is an Oceanarium that was built in 2008, and offers 8,000 square meters (86,111 sq.ft) of exhibition space of maritime plants and animals.
In addition to the oceanarium, the park contains:
- a marine-themed shopping mall (with 30 shops and 25 restaurants),
- hotel “H20”, and
- outdoor swimming pools.
On top of the interior exhibitions spaces for sea animals, the park also features outdoor exhibition areas.
Top highlights of the Oceanarium include….
- a 25 meter (82 ft) long tunnel through the aquariums, and
- a unique “Pagi” overhead water tank, where you can see a variety of stingrays swim above you.
Of the Philippines attractions, Manila Intramuros area, the oldest district in the city, was constructed from 1571, during the colonial period under Spanish rule.
Today, the area consists of historical, European style buildings and churches…
…with the area, out of which the metropolis of Manila expanded from, being one of the world’s best preserved Medieval Old Towns.
Intramuros highlights include:
- Manila Cathedral,
- San Agustin Church,
- Philippine Baroque church (listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List), and
- Fort Santiago.
Manila SM City North EDSA shopping mall(www.smprime.com/ManilaSMCityNorthEDSA), meanwhile, is one of the best shopping malls in the Philippines.
In terms of size, it is one of the top 10 shopping centers in the world with 331,861 square meters (82 acres) of shop floors within 17.5 hectares (43 acres) of land.
Highlights at the mall range from…
- SM Department Store to SM Cinemas movie theater complex, and from
- restaurants to SM Food Court & SM Supermarket and SM Bowling Lanes.
All in all, SM City North EDSA mall is visited by some 1.7 million daily visitors on weekends, and about one million on weekdays.
Borocay island, located about 2 km (1.2 miles) from the north tip of the island of Panay, is a small (7 km x 2 km, 4.3 mile x 1.2 mile) holiday island that is used primarily for coral reef diving and relaxing in the white sands.
The island has three villages — Manoc-Manoc, Balabag, and Yapak — that you can use as a base while enjoying the island’s natural beauty.
To get to the island, you can first fly to the nearest airport at Kalibo (in the province of Aklan within Panay Island), and then take a ferry, which depart from Caticlan.
Highlights at the island include its beaches, including…
- the world-famous White Beach (the most popular beach, about 3.5 km long and surrounded by a fully developed holiday services),
- Yapak Beach (also known as Puka Shell Beach, a popular picnic spot known for its beauty and tranquility), and
- Bulabog Beach.
Finally, Philippines attractions feature Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park (www.puerto-undergroundriver.com), one of the most impressive cave systems in the world.
The main attraction of the cave system is a 8.2 km (5 mile) long underground river, which flows majestically under beautiful limestone formations.
The area is especially popular with hikers, nature photographers, and nature lovers in general…due to its caverns, tropical rain forests, and tropical flora, as the region is considered one of the best unspoiled natural areas in the world.
A good way to enjoy the sights in the park is to join a tour to the area, which depart from Puerto Princesa, going first to Sabang, which acts as a gateway to the national park.
A tour of the rivers is available with the licensed, official national park-operated boats, with a typical tour taking approximately 1 hour.