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Philippines in UK’s top 10 countries to see in 2014

The Philippines is among the Top 10 Countries worldwide to visit this 2014, according to British travel guidebook Rough Guides.

In its 2014 edition, the Philippines made it to the 10th place along with other beautiful and culturally-rich countries. Rough Guides cited Philippines’ natural places that are “not to miss” which include the islands of Boracay, the limestone islands El Nido in Palawan, the coasts of Coron that hidesbeautiful beaches and pristine mountain lakes, and Puerto Gallera.

Boracay, travel, tourism, top destinations

Rough Guides said Boracay’s enchanting white beach on picture-postcard setting is one of the country’s major tourist draws.

The Rough Guides, known for its travel references, has also recommended a must-visit in Chocolate Hills in Bohol, despite being partly damaged by the 7.2-magnitude earthquake the struck the province last year. It also recommended to visitors to see the tiny primate Tarsiers in the region.

“Soak up the bizarre landscape of Bohol’s iconic Chocolate Hills, conical brown-green mounds said to be the calcified tears of a broken-hearted giant,” Rough Guides said.

Aside from the crystal-clear waters of Philippine beaches, Rough Guides also suggest to tourists to also try to explore the country’s beautiful mountains and the majestic top views they offier, including the perfectly-coned Mt. Mayon and mountain lakes in Mt. Pinatubo.

Rough Guide describes the crystal-clear waters of Apo Reef Marine Natural Park in Mindoro as a “scuba diver’s dream,” along with other underground river in the country.

Aside from places, tourist should also explore the traditions and colorful festivals in the country like the Ati-Atihan Festival on Panay to see the “indigenous dress and learn tribal dances,” the travel advisor said, adding that if one gets exhausted from the heat of the sun, a tall glass of Halo-halo, a local sweet icy dessert, will quench tourist’ thirst.

Other countries in Rough Guides’ Top 10 countries to visit in 2014 are Georgia in Central Asia, Turkey, Macedonia, Japan, Rwarna, Ethiopia, Brazil, Bulgaria and Madagascar.

  • johnny wang

    .. and please don’t keep on bringing up Boracay as if that’s the only attraction the Philippines has got…there are other beautiful places around Asia like GOA that are easily a thousand Boracays rolled into one and exploring its many beaches is an interesting revelation. Miles of pristine white sand beaches, magnificent churches and glitzy hotels have made Goa a fascinating destination. A Portuguese enclave for almost five centuries, Goa today is an interesting blend of east and west.

  • Hywell

    If you don’t like it, don’t bloody visit then. Nobody invited you anyway. Simple. If your country is better why fly and visit another country then? I know it’s a leisure and discovering the world. But jeez mate, everything is unique. If it’s not for you, then just shut your gob and move on. No need for nasty degrading comment. Your shit stinks as well to be fair.

  • Don Koh

    My personal recommendation for an economical, entry-level, exotic-paradise beach-experience in Philippines would be: Travel in mid-November through mid-December. January can be nice as well and not terribly busy/impacted. But if possible, stay for Christmas and/or New Years — a special, unique experience not to disappoint.

    In particular though… Arrive in Manila. Take a 300-400 Peso taxi to Cubao city and Stay one night at eurohotel (professional, comfortable, clean and safe) for around P 2,200-2,500. From there, arrange through the Hotel desk (or if you meet some friendly DOT guys, ask for a contact number they might have) for a private 3-hr taxi or Van service to take direct to Batangas pier. Cost: about P 3,000 or $75 for your party of 2-4 persons including tip. Alternatively, there are plenty of modern, air-conditioned Buses (including free wifi) making the daily trips from Cubao and will set one back a whole P 250-300 or so, if memory serves.

    Once at Batangas pier (it will be a crazy experience there for first-timers, but you will survive!), ask your driver to escort you and hire ONE guy per person in your party (negotiate for about P 150 each), or just hire them yourself (negotiate a Tip — it’s well worth the 3-4 bucks if you have heavy bags!) to carry a bag and tell them to take you to FATHER N Son ferry Lines (my personal preference by experience), or MINOLO Ferry service. Be CLEAR on which Ferry Line service you have decided to take and Tip them only once you see the window for Your preferred Ferry service Line. Take the 1-1.5 hr ferry-boat taxi (quite a native experience and offering great views) direct to WHITE BEACH (usually the stop after Meulle Bay).

    Pre-book for one-night only at a spot of your choosing, ask if there are discounts, etc, and then Hotel-hop around the beach upon arriving if you wish, and search out some perhaps better deals/nicer spots, which can be found to your liking. Note: there are perhaps 2 or 3 higher-end hotels (3-star, or 3.5-star) on this beach, but many acceptable 2-2.5 star ‘deals’ are available right on the beach — some with ocean-balcony views. It can be noisy with night-life too, so one has the option to select reasonable, comfortable rooms set-back a couple hundred meters from the beach if so desired. In both of my visits I stayed at modest beach-front 2-2.5-star rooms w/wifi (two different hotels), both times with a balcony ocean-view and all for around $20-25 per night, including tax. All that was needed for my purposes of enjoying the water, snorkeling the corals, a waterfall excursion and relaxing on the beach. All-in-all, a very affordable, entry-level, all-inclusive, exotic, south-east Asian beach vacation experience.

    If one desires a larger, more pristine location – with fancier hotels and room options/apartments, to enjoy a 2-mile coral reef and 2-mile white sandy beach et al… highly recommended would be the popular and beautiful Boracay indeed.

    Beyond that, there are numerous other popular, exotic paradise beach resort islands off Cebu (perhaps better to wait a year for post-Typhoon recovery) and Panglao to research and even some lessor-known beaches of Luzon proper to possibly tie into a mountain-tour package.

    • Kabayan In Saudi

      Thanks for sharing your experiences. I can glimpsed how nice you have travelled already…Hope I can do the same in the near future…

      • Don Koh

        My pleasure. Good luck with that travel.

    • Josephine Macuha

      some people just see what they want to see and expect. they have preconceived notions. as a citizen of this country, the Philippines, it is a case of “love me, love my dog.” a tourist is an adventurer at heart, if you are not, then just stay home and be content with what you have seen and experienced, albeit limited. Thanks for a somewhat positive and informative narrative on my country. Yes, Puerto Galera had become commercialized but you cannot deny that the beaches are still astoundingly beautiful and to say the least, foreign tourist had been the first to admire its beauty in the early 70′s until today and the Filipinos much later in the late 80′s . why? because it will always be there. they went first to Hongkong, Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand and Cambodia and saw what they had compared to what we have here in the Philippines.