3 Week Adventurous Trip to the Philippines

I have lately been to one of the most beautiful countries on earth – the Philippines. This is not just my opinion, but more of a neutral point of view. Most people consider the Philippines to be pure paradise. And I can say for myself, that this is completely true. I totally agree. I have seen a lot of other wonderful countries like Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, etc. within Southeast Asia before, but the Philippines are still pretty different in a good way. Of course, you find a lot of similarities compared to all the other Southeast Asian countries – the traffic is crazy, some places are not really developed in terms of infrastructure, different habits than most western people might be used to.

Pocket Beach in El Nido Trip to the Philippines
Pocket Beach in El Nido – Trip to the Philippines

But anyway, if you look at this country with open eyes, you will see true beauty, which is almost incomparable and can not be found anywhere else. We mainly had 4 places that we went to on our 3-week trip to the Philippines and all of them is absolutely incredible. But let’s start with the first part:


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1. Jungle trekking in Banaue

The jungle trekking in Banaue is something I highly recommend. You won`t find a lot of places like this within the Philippines or even in whole Southeast Asia. Banaue basically is a UNESCO World Heritage area with 2000 year-old rice terraces in the middle of the jungle. You will discover old and very small villages with less than 50 people. They have rarely seen anything besides their village and live completely isolated. So cool!

Rice Terraces in Banaue
Rice Terraces in Banaue Photo credit: eesti via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND

Besides that, you will see many, many really beautiful rice terraces, rivers, and waterfalls. Some of these highlights are very impressive and in itself already worth the trip. The mix is what makes it so unique. The trekking can get quite hard though. So try to mentally prepare for rough trekking. But, if you are a little into an adventure, that will always remember, than Banaue might be for you.

2. Discovering the Southern parts of Cebu

Cebu Island is full of highlights. Honestly, you will be amazed, how much there is to do. Especially in the southern part of the island you will find various attractions, that will leave you speechless several times. The main attractions are the area of Moalboal, where you can go scuba diving and see some turtles as well as big sardine swarms, the Kawasan Falls canyoning tour (so good), the whale shark snorkeling in Oslob (controversial) and Siquijor Island, which is just absolutely fantastic.

Cebu Canyoneering
Cebu Canyoneering
Beach in Siquijor Island
Beach in Siquijor Island

At each and every place I could have stayed for way longer than we actually did. My favourite place from all of them is hard to pick, but I really liked the canyoneering tour and Siquijor Island. The canyoning tour is such a great adventure and the landscape you will see there is just stunning. The natural fresh water with the most turquoise colour in the whole Philippines. Absolutely wonderful.

Canyoneering in Cebu
Canyoneering in Cebu
Waterfalls in Cebu
Waterfalls in Cebu

Siquijor Island equals paradise. Compared to other islands, Siquijor is quite small, but not too small. You need a couple hours to get around the island with a scooter. Siquijor has several wonderful beaches like Salagdoong Beach and waterfalls as well as rice fields. Additionally, you will maybe see the most beautiful sunsets of your entire life.

3. Palawan

Palawan is the paradise of the Philippines. I know I said that about Siquijor as well, but Palawan is way more known and that’s for a reason. Palawan is the island, which is always used for advertising campaigns. Especially the El Nido area is really famous for its outstanding beauty. We have been to Nacpan and Duli Beach as well as an island hopping tour. All these places left me speechless and that does not happen a lot. What you see on the island hopping tour is crazy.

Coron Palawan
Coron Palawan
El Nido Palawan
El Nido Palawan
Island Hopping in Coron Palawan
Island Hopping in Coron Palawan

A lot of destinations have been used in movies like “Cast Away“ and others because this area is so magnificent. The special thing about Nacpan and Duli Beach is, that they are still almost completely untouched. You won’t find a lot of tourism, which is really nice. Tranquility, peace, and harmony. That’s what you get and that’s what we all need sometimes…

4. Scuba Diving on Coron

The last place we went to was Coron. Coron is also an absolute paradise, but more known for its incredible scuba diving spots. Back in the 2nd world war, after Japan bombed Pearl Harbour, some Japanese ships tried to hide in between all the beautiful islands in Coron. After a while, the U.S. army found and bombed them. Nowadays these shipwrecks are famous dive spots and known all over the world.

Diving in Coron
Diving in Coron
Shipwreck diving in Coron Palawan
Shipwreck diving in Coron Palawan

You can also go for an island hopping tour in Coron. We did that as well and in my opinion, it is very recommendable. Really pretty places that look like someone imagined heaven and brought it to planet earth.

It doesn’t matter which place of these 4 you choose, you will love it for sure. I would say “Go to all of them“. But, if you can’t, at least bring enough time to enjoy the one you choose to the fullest.

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