7 Reasons Why Tourists Visit the Philippines
The Philippines is a country that has everything a tourist could want: great culture, unique cuisine, and some of the most breathtaking islands and beaches in the world. As a fast-emerging destination hotspot in Southeast Asia, the Philippines is only becoming more and more popular among tourists looking for a new wonderland to discover.
In 2019, the Philippines recorded over 8 million foreign tourists, and this number seems to only increase year after year. Each one of these tourists has their own reasons as to why they decided to visit the beautiful country, but here we explore 7 of the biggest reasons why tourists visit the Philippines.
1. Tropical summer weather all-year-round
For many tourists, especially those coming from temperate countries like China and the US, come to the Philippines for the warm weather. Summer only comes for a few months for these countries, but here it’s a year-round affair. Foreign tourists who want to escape the harsh winters come to the tropical Philippines to swim in warm waters and bask in the sun, no matter where we are in the year.
The dry months from November to May tend to be the most popular because of the warm temperatures averaging at 28°C, perfect for enjoying the exquisite Philippine beaches. The rainy season of June to October experiences frequent showers, but the weather remains sunny and tours around the country are still at full blast.
2. Idyllic islands and beaches
With around 7,641 islands comprising the archipelago, tourists have no problem looking for a new island to discover, no matter how many times they’ve visited the Philippines. And on each island, there are beautiful beaches, coves, and lagoons that are just waiting to be explored. Many of which are not well-known except by nearby locals, so on most days, tourists can have a strip of paradise that they can call entirely their own.
The most popular beaches in the Philippines are popular for a reason. Islands like Boracay and Coron attract tourists because of their pristine shorelines, gemstone waters, and several touristy amenities that make their island stay an unforgettable experience.
But for those looking to stay away from the crowds and longing for a more local vibe, there are several beaches out there that have remained untouched and are only visited by those in the know. The picturesque beaches and islands of Camiguin, Leyte, and Catanduanes are relatively unknown, and they make for a peaceful getaway you can’t get anywhere else.
3. World-famous diving and snorkeling spots
Situated within the mega-biodiverse region called the Coral Triangle, the Philippines is a prime spot for adventure-seekers looking to explore a colorful underwater world. Many islands scattered all over the country are a haven for marine life, and any snorkeler will be able to swim with hundreds of species of corals, tropical fishes, and manta rays.
Many of these snorkeling spots are famous all over the world, like the Apo Reef in Occidental Mindoro, the world’s second-largest coral reef system, next only to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. The shipwrecks in Coron are also considered one of the best spots for wreck diving in Asia.
4. Colorful festivals
Filipinos know how to throw a festival, no doubt. Some of the Philippines’ biggest festivals, like the Sinulog Festival in Cebu and the Ati-Atihan Festival in Aklan, are crowd-bringers as tourists from all over the globe visit the country to witness the vibrant week-long celebrations and colorful street parades.
Tourists who are lucky enough to be in time for the festivals are sure to feel the throbbing energy and excitement that a period of merriment brings to any location. There are parties all around, midnight concerts, and lots of dancing and processions that fill the streets. These spirited celebrations happen across the calendar, from Iloilo’s Dinagyang Festival in January to Pampanga’s Giant Lantern Festival in December.
5. Adventurous cuisine
Filipino food may not be as popular as Thai or Vietnamese food on the international scene, but that’s only more reason to visit the Philippines so you can taste the real, authentic flavors of the country.
Of course, there’s the famous lechon in Cebu, which the Anthony Bourdain completely swore by as the “best pig ever”. Then there’s the ubiquitous and local favorite adobo, which every culture has its own spin on, like adobo sa gata in Bicol or adobong dilaw in Cavite. But all of these popular dishes only scratch the surface of how rich the cuisine is in the Philippines.
As a mixing pot of various cultures – from Chinese to Spanish to several local cultures, the Philippine gastronomic scene is not afraid of reinventing traditional recipes, mixing these influences together, and creating unique flavors that you won’t taste anywhere else in the world.
6. Affordable destinations
More than anything, the affordability of a location is often the deciding factor for tourists whether they should visit a country or not. Visiting all of these paradisal places in the Philippines poses no problem budget-wise because the cost of living in the country is super affordable, compared relatively to the US and European countries.
Tourists often get surprised how much value they can get with their dollars or euros when they go and visit the Philippines. They can explore all of these beautiful destinations, find great accommodations, and eat as much local cuisine, without spending too much of a fortune to break the bank.
7. Friendly locals
The friendly nature of Filipinos is definitely the icing on the cake for why tourists visit the Philippines. It’s widely known that Filipinos are one of the most hospitable people out there, for local and foreign tourists alike.
Filipinos are extremely approachable and easy to talk to, and there is not much of a language barrier for English-speaking tourists. Whether these are the service providers, the people on the streets, or fellow local tourists, anyone who’s visiting the Philippines is bound to meet a lot of people and make friends along the way.
The Philippines is the dream destination because it brings together everything that a traveler asks for, while putting in its own unique twist to make sure that the experience is unlike anywhere else. You will never run out of things to do in the Philippines no matter how many times you visit, and every trip is sure to be better than the last.