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Manila
Travel Guide

Baywalk showing a city, boating and a high-rise building

The capital of the Philippines is a fast-paced and hectic city filled with cultural and historic gems, from old ruins to national museums and lively promenades.

Manila is continually expanding outwards and upwards. Scores of skyscrapers and business centers are rising up across the city and Filipinos from rural areas pour into the capital everyday looking for opportunities. This is one of the largest cities on the planet.

Manila can be overwhelming at first glance. The sprawling metropolis is a collection of 16 towns with no discernible center. The streets are busy, crowded and loud, but it’s this energy and chaos that gives the city its charm.

To really get to know Manila you need to understand its past. The city has been bombed, devastated by fires and earthquakes and occupied by the Spanish, British, Japanese and Americans.

Start your trip in Intramuros, the oldest part of Manila. It’s surrounded by fortifications and moats that were built by the Spanish in the 16th century. Most of the fortifications were destroyed by bombs during World War II. What was left has been rebuilt and restored. Walk around and on the walls and visit some of its key defensive structures such as the Baluarte de San Diego and the Baluarte de San Andres.

Go to the defensive centerpiece the Fort of Santiago, a large citadel and park, then visit Manila Cathedral. The present structure dates from the mid-20th century. Close to Intramuros is Rizal Park, a green expanse with ornamental gardens, lawns and monuments.

Pay a visit to the National Museum of the Filipino People to learn about the history and culture of the Philippines, and visit Casa Manila Museum, a reproduction of a Spanish colonial house.

Manila captivates with some of its modern charms. Take a ferry along the Pasig River and enjoy the nightlife of the Baywalk, a seaside promenade.

Like many Asian cities traffic is a huge problem. Fortunately, taxis are plentiful, cheap and air-conditioned. A good way to get around is on the light rail and metro. The main forms of public transport are the jeepneys, small brightly colored buses. If you travel by road it may take you longer to get to your destination than you planned. Allow plenty of time and do as the Filipinos do, just go with the flow.

Where to stay in Manila

Conrad Manila
Conrad Manila
5 out of 5
Seaside Boulevard, Corner of Coral Way, Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay, Manila
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is CA $144 per night from Jun 27 to Jun 27
Located in Barangay 76, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia Arena, and SM Mall of Asia. World Trade Center Manila ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (997 reviews)
"All employees were so polite and were smiling when entering the premisses. All have an excellent customer services."

Reviewed on Jun. 9, 2021

Conrad Manila
City of Dreams - Nobu Hotel Manila
City of Dreams - Nobu Hotel Manila
5 out of 5
Corner Asean Avenue & Roxas Boulevard, Entertainment City, Parañaque, Manila
The price is CA $193 per night from Jun 29 to Jun 29
Located in Tambo, this luxury hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Baclaran Church, City of Dreams Manila, and Mall of Asia Arena. SM Mall of Asia and Manila Bay are ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (858 reviews)
"It was my first time and it didn’t disappoint. Great staff and prompt attention to service needs. Facility Maintenance team quickly came up upon my call at 2AM when the room’s AC didn’t work and quickly fixed the issue. I’d say superb service overall."

Reviewed on May 25, 2021

City of Dreams - Nobu Hotel Manila
Hyatt Regency Manila, City of Dreams
Hyatt Regency Manila, City of Dreams
5 out of 5
Belle Avenue, Entertainment City, Parañaque, Manila
The price is CA $145 per night from Jun 23 to Jun 23
Located in Tambo, this luxury hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Baclaran Church, City of Dreams Manila, and Mall of Asia Arena. SM Mall of Asia and Manila Bay are ...
4.4/5Excellent! (1,000 reviews)
"Overall experience is great. Staff are very hospitable and friendly"

Reviewed on Apr. 14, 2020

Hyatt Regency Manila, City of Dreams
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
JMM Grand Suites
JMM Grand Suites
3 out of 5
1622 Jorge Bocobo Street, Manila, Manila
The price is CA $46 per night from Jun 23 to Jun 23
Located in Malate, this aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Robinson's Place, Manila Bay, and Baywalk. Rizal Park and U.S. Embassy are also within 15 minutes. ...
3.6/5Good! (399 reviews)
"The staff are very accommodating and they smile at you every time they saw you , keep it up"

Reviewed on Jun. 9, 2021

JMM Grand Suites
Gotophi at One Uptown Residence
Gotophi at One Uptown Residence
3 out of 5
36th Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig
Located in Bonifacio Global City, this condo building is within a 15-minute walk of Uptown Mall, St Luke's Medical Center Global City, and Bonifacio High Street. ...
4.4/5Excellent! (10 reviews)
"Overall our stay was satisfactory. Pros:-rooms and area where clean - condo was in vicinity of upscale mall, restaurants and grocery store. -"

Reviewed on Mar. 1, 2020

Gotophi at One Uptown Residence
Aruga Apartments by Rockwell Makati
Aruga Apartments by Rockwell Makati
4 out of 5
Waterfront Drive, Rockwell Center, Makati, Manila
The price is CA $141 per night from Jun 26 to Jun 26
Located in Makati Downtown, this aparthotel is 0.1 mi (0.2 km) from Power Plant Mall and within 3 mi (5 km) of Makati Medical Center and SM Megamall. Fort Bonifacio ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (436 reviews)
"Ease of booking Quite centrally located Connected to the Power Plant mall"

Reviewed on Apr. 17, 2021

Aruga Apartments by Rockwell Makati
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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