Skip the Hotel: 7 Unique Airbnbs for Group Outings Near Manila

Are you gearing up for your family or barkada getaway?

It’s likely that everybody else will be on holiday, too. So for a change, skip the crowded hotel and resort, and book your own little hideaway via Airbnb. We did the homework for you and sought listings with unique concepts, stunning views, close proximity to nature activities, and rock-solid reviews, too.

Stay in one of these to make the most of your summer:

**Click the title of each lodging to be redirected to their respective Airbnb page. 

1. Modern Kubo with Private Pool Overlooking Taal
    Narra Hill, Tagaytay

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narra-1

THE GIST A bed & breakfast overlooking Taal Lake where you can rent a kubo, or the entire venue.
P9,041.00 / night
1 night minimum stay
THE SPACE Accommodates: 5
Bathrooms: 1
Bedrooms: 2
Beds: 3
RATING 5 stars (26 reviews)
AMENITIES Free Breakfast, served by staff
Free Parking
Pool
Air-conditioning
Wireless Internet
Family and Pet Friendly

We all know how Tagaytay can be crowded, especially on long weekends. But guests of Narra Hill say it makes you feel like you’re on a different side of town.

Continue reading Skip the Hotel: 7 Unique Airbnbs for Group Outings Near Manila

2016 Fun Summer Workshops and Activities for Your Kids in Manila

Summer is fast approaching, and with it comes endless excitement for kids. Gone are the days of homework and waking up early to go to school. Instead, it’s time for playing and having fun all hours of the day. But just because school is temporarily over doesn’t mean that learning should stop for your children. Summer is the perfect time to combine a whole lot of fun activities and learning through summer classes for kids.

The following is a list of summer classes and workshops happening this year in Manila for any and every skill and interest. Whatever hobby or passion your child has, there are a fun and enriching program that would suit their needs.

SPORTS

summer-classes-for-kids-futbol

Milo Sports Clinic

One of the longest running summer sports camps in the Philippines, the Milo Sports Clinic is offered all over the country. Kids can choose from 17 sports programs including basketball, volleyball, gymnastics, swimming, tennis, and Continue reading 2016 Fun Summer Workshops and Activities for Your Kids in Manila

Wander through These Culturally Eye-Opening Ayala Museum Exhibits

by Mich Escultura

When you go to Makati, especially if you work there, art is probably the last thing on your mind. But if you’re stressed out from the office or you’re not in the mood to go home just yet, take a quick stroll through the streets of Ayala and find your way to the Ayala Museum. Your mind and soul will thank you for that breath of creative air!

Here’s what you’ll encounter once you enter the ultra-chic and very modern doors of the Ayala Museum for its cultural exhibits.

Permanent Displays

1. Gold of Ancestors

gold artifacts
Photo by Mich Escultura

We’re very fashionable people, wouldn’t you say? If you don’t think so, here’s historical proof. In this exhibit of cultural glamour and gold, you’ll find over a thousand gold artifacts from way before the Spaniards decided to grace our shores. From necklaces to earpieces to a magnificent Hindu-influenced gold regalia, your eyes will be dazzled by the superb craftsmanship of our ancestors.

Bonus: Once you enter the gates of Gold of Ancestors wing, you can sit back and Continue reading Wander through These Culturally Eye-Opening Ayala Museum Exhibits

Gorgeous Boracay Hideaways for Families and Barkadas

Summer is right around the corner, and it’s never too early to plan the perfect trip. If you are bursting to get some sea and sun with your barkada or family, Boracay is always a safe bet for fun – and then some. But it isn’t just the island’s legendary beaches and waters that could make a trip memorable; the perfect lodging could do so too. There is now a ton of Boracay group accommodations for extended families or large cliques that not only give you a place to rest your head after a night of partying, but also create a whole other experience.

Check out these gorgeous accommodations perfect for big groups like barkadas and families. We dare you to resist.

The Ocean View Penthouse at Karuna Suites

Boracay group accommodations: The Ocean View Penthouse at Karuna Suites

Boracay group accommodations: Karuna Suites (Top View)

The Gist: A serviced penthouse with 180° views of the island
P 23,757/night
The Space: Accommodates: 12
Bathrooms: 4
Bedrooms: 4
Beds: 4
Rating: 4 stars (151 reviews)
Amenities: Swimming pool
Kitchen
Butler service
Wireless internet
Air-conditioning

If you are looking for something truly remarkable, look no further. Karuna Suites Continue reading Gorgeous Boracay Hideaways for Families and Barkadas

6 Amazing Spots to Swim with Turtles

by Shayne Zalameda

Put your flippers on, take a deep breath, and swim with one of the sweetest creatures that inhabit the sea —the pawikans. Here, we listed down six wild swimming spots that will surely make everyone happy.

1. Mindoro: Apo Reef

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Photo by Brinks Alo/ CC BY

Considered to be one of the top diving spots in the country, Apo Reef is the closest turtle spotting scene for those who live in Manila. Bountiful with soft and hard corals, plus some shipwrecks, Apo Reef is an interesting dive site to observe turtles and other big sea creatures such as sharks and manta rays. Not to be mistaken with Apo Island in Dumaguete, Apo Reef is located in Sablayan, Occidental Mindoro.

How To Get There: Ride a ferry in Batangas pier going to Mindoro or fly directly to San Jose, Occidental Mindoro then ride a bus bound for Sablayan. Continue reading 6 Amazing Spots to Swim with Turtles

6 Camping Sites Near Manila that Will Take Your Breath Away

There are a lot of amazing destinations to go camping near Manila. They’re all easy to access and offer stunning views that’ll satisfy your wanderlust. If you feel that the bustling city streets and pollution are taking its toll on your well-being, these breathtaking camping getaways will surely give you the relaxation you deserve – minus the long hours of travel.

1. Dampalitan Island: lets you enjoy beach camping at its most serene.

camping near Manila - Dampalitan Island
Photo by: Mae Escobin

Tranquility is the first word that comes to mind when you see the pristine shore of Dampalitan Island, is situated in Padre Burgos, Quezon Province. The Continue reading 6 Camping Sites Near Manila that Will Take Your Breath Away

6 Works of Art at the National Museum You Have to See for Yourself

When was the last time you set foot inside the National Art Gallery of the National Museum of the Philippines? Probably way back when you were required to go there on a field trip or when you were bored in Manila and just needed something to do to pass the time. It’s a common assumption that museums, particularly art museums, are places where snooty artsy types congregate to discuss the tiny nuances of each painting and sculpture. Don’t buy into that because our own National Museum showcases works of art that even the squarest, most uncreative visitor can still marvel at.

Need proof? Just check out these 6 works of art that will dazzle your mind at take your breath away. And we’re not just talking about popular works like the ubiquitous Spoliarium that you’ve seen all over the media time and again. No, we’re here to talk about the other works that no form of other media can do justice. You simply have to see them with your own eyes.

Parisian Life by Juan Luna

Artworks in National Museum - Parisian Life by Juan Luna
Image Source

To all of you who have seen Heneral Luna, yes this painting was depicted in the flashback scene of the general’s life. An avid observer and painter of beautiful women, Luna chose to represent in this piece a Parisian courtesan about to rise from a couch. It’s a far cry from his more tumultuous paintings with darker colors, as this is one of the pieces that showcased his talent for painting scenes with a lighter mood.

Fun fact: Those three men in the background are Juan Luna himself, Jose Rizal and Continue reading 6 Works of Art at the National Museum You Have to See for Yourself

Asia’s Most Amazing Dive Sites

by Anj Santos

To dive in Asia is to experience the best diving in the world.

It is home to the Coral Triangle, a protected marine area that has more marine species than anywhere else in the world. Above the sea, the days are long, packed with sunshine and the people are warm and hospitable.

If you feel like exploring our vast oceans, here are the best dives each country has to offer:

1. TUBBATAHA REEF
Cagayancillo, Palawan, Philippines

Tubbataha is made up of two atolls (North and South) rising in the middle of the Sulu Sea. It is home to 374 species of corals, almost 90% of all coral species in the country.

Divers come here for its undisturbed character and the guaranteed sightings of shark in almost every dive. There aren’t many macro species here; it’s known in the diving world for its concentration of large fauna such as tiger sharks and turtles, and big schools of pelagic fish like barracuda and trevallies. Colorful and diverse coral formations that cover two-thirds of the area also add to its beauty. Continue reading Asia’s Most Amazing Dive Sites

San Vicente, Palawan Brings Back Memories of the Old Boracay

by Anj Santos

Above: A nostalgic photo of Boracay from Boracay Magazine.

Boracay is the first island to put our country on the tourist map. It became popular among backpackers in the 80s; by the 90s, its beaches were being acclaimed as one of the best in the world.

But much has changed since then. The surge of tourists and explosive business growth has led to the island’s over commercialization and considerable damage of its once teeming marine life. With its-authenticity seemingly lost, tourists have been hard-pressed to find what they once sought in Boracay – postcard-perfect stretches of sand, beautiful sunsets and crystal blue waters, far away from the madding crowd.

Enter San Vicente, Palawan. A small fishing village northwest of Palawan’s mainland, it is now gaining recognition as a center of tourism. Endowed with white Continue reading San Vicente, Palawan Brings Back Memories of the Old Boracay

10 Unspoiled Beaches Around the Philippines

by Anj Santos

It was no surprise when Conde Nast Traveler named Palawan “The World’s Best Island” for the second straight year in 2015. Cebu and Boracay were also on the list at No. 19 and 15, respectively. Home to dozens of beaches with blinding-white sand, crystal clear waters, and healthy marine life, this trifecta is an island-hopper’s dream.

While they remain top-of-mind for the average traveler, there are other beaches in the Philippines’ 7,107 islands that have yet to be placed on the international scene. If you’re after smaller crowds and untouched nature, and ready for some roughing-it, try going to these unspoiled beaches:

1. MAHABANG BUHANGIN BEACH, Calaguas, Camarines Norte
As its name suggests, this beach is a long stretch of sand and clear waters located in Tinaga Island, a part of the Calaguas Group of Islands in Camarines Norte. Continue reading 10 Unspoiled Beaches Around the Philippines