Here’s Why the Philippines Will Always Feel Like Home, No Matter Where You Are

Here’s Why the Philippines Will Always Feel Like Home, No Matter Where You Are

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From its rich natural beauty and cultural diversity to exciting experiences, the Philippines will always make you feel right at home

No matter how far you travel, your feet will always take you back to the place close to your heart—a home that welcomes you to a world of unique and vibrant experiences and cultural delights. 

Celebrity stars Sarah Lahbati-Gutierrez and Nadine Lustre are just a few who have recently shared their love for the natural wonders of the country. In the past few months, they’ve been sharing their Siargao trip and life to the world. While summer’s long passed, Lahbati flaunted her sunny days in a cool, relaxed fit on the island for her birthday. Meanwhile, Lustre considered Siargao her second home, saying, “When I travel, that’s when I can really breathe.”

 the Philippines is a tropical paradise
Blessed with the richness of natural wonders and endless beaches, the Philippines is a tropical paradise. Photo Courtesy of Tripadvisor

The country’s beaches don’t only offer respite from the heat, but comfortability in our skin as we immerse ourselves in the environment.  You know you’re in your version of paradise as the sun’s rays kiss your face and the sea’s waves crash against your swimsuit. Whether you’re home or thousands of miles away across the oceans, the country’s natural resources, scenic locales, and inventive ideas will make you #LoveThePhilippines.

Here are all the things that make the Philippines a one-of-a-kind home:

  1. Nature’s Paradise
The Tubbataha Reefs in the Philippines 
The Tubbataha Reefs in the Philippines is made up of vibrant corals and marine life.
Photo Courtesy of Tet Lara of Marine Conservation Institute

If you’re looking for a memorable tropical holiday, the Philippines has many beautiful and pristine beaches. While the sun is out, it’s the perfect time to plunge into the deepest waters of the sea. Ready your swimsuit and revel in the charms of vast ecosystems by exploring the likes of Tubbataha Reef, where beautiful coral reefs and diverse marine life can be found.

You can also catch the waves of the ocean in Siargao, a haven that was once a well-kept secret in surfing circles, or explore the hidden gem that’s been making waves in the surfing community—Calicoan Island. However, if you want to see more landscapes, come to the playground of the gods in the sea of clouds at Mt. Pulag, the highest peak in Luzon. Just make sure to bring some jackets and windbreakers because it can get chilly. 

  1. Cultural Delights
Intramuros is the historic old walled city part of Manila
Intramuros is the historic old walled city part of Manila. Photo Courtesy of Inquirer Lyn Rillon

While many tourists visit the Philippines for its white-sand beaches and azure blue waters, immersing yourself in Filipino culture allows you to dig deep beneath the surface and understand better the events that have shaped the country.

Travel back in time and tour the Walled City of Intramuros by horse-drawn carriage or eco-friendly bamboo bicycle. For a more vivid experience, Regatta de Zamboanga is one of the most awaited festivals in Zamboanga City. Enjoy activities such as fashion shows, dance and song performances, trade fairs, and the colorful race of vintas known as Regatta. 

Meanwhile, in the luxuriant homeland of Maranao tribe in Lanao provinces of Mindanao, the “Pagana,” a traditional feast, awaits special guests and visitors during special occasions, such as weddings, merrymaking, and religious events. Well-known for their high regard for beauty and grandeur, the Maranao’s dining hall for the feast is decorated with gold and silver.

  1. The Art of Creativity
Apo Whang-Od is the oldest tattoo artist in the world
Apo Whang-Od is the oldest tattoo artist in the world. Photo Courtesy of Scott Sorensen

Filipino culture also embeds itself in the art and design of life, from fabrics and woodwork to the bare skin. Showcasing her life story inscribed in her skin, Apo Whang-Od is the Filipina tattoo artist from Buscalan, Kalinga. She’s been hand-tapping tattoos on her skin since she was a teenager, but it’s only within the last 15 years that thousands of visitors worldwide came to seek her marks. 

There’s also a man called the Godfather of the Filipino New Wave: Kidlat Tahimik (which means “silent lightning” in Tagalog). Kidlat’s work ranges from film and photography to weaving, free-style architecture, and carved installations. If you happen to be in Baguio, drop by his artist café and vegetarian restaurant Oh My Gulay, which rests in the heart of Session Road on the fifth floor of the La Azotea Building.

If that’s not up your alley, a province in the southern part of Mindanao is dubbed the “Land of the Dreamweavers,” where they weave the famous T’nalak. Hailed as the ultimate cultural emblem, T’nalak weaving is a traditional masterpiece of geometric patterns dreamt to life by T’boli women. 

  1. Culinary Journey
Pork Adobo is made with succulent pork belly braised in vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, and onions.
Pork Adobo is made with succulent pork belly braised in vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, and onions. Photo Courtesy of Joy D. Ganaden

Filipino cuisine is one of the most diverse food sets, drawing inspiration from other indigenous cuisines. In every Filipino home, expect to be invited to the dining table. This gesture truly represents two important factors of Filipino culture—hospitality and the love for food. 

Widely common in Filipino households, try the Adobo. It consists of meat in stewed soy sauce and vinegar, with loads of black pepper and crushed garlic, served alongside plain steamed rice. There’s also the sinigang for that sour and savory taste, filled with pork as the primary meat and tossed in with various veggies, making it a very versatile dish. After the main courses, savor Cebu’s sweet mangoes or try Leyte’s local delicacy, binagol, made from grated gabi or taro tubers and condensed milk, then cooked in coconut shells.

  1. Land of Smiles
The smiling mannerism is characteristic of many Filipinos
The smiling mannerism is characteristic of many Filipinos. Photo Courtesy of Husayno

When you have a tropical paradise with friendly and welcoming people, you get the Philippines, where hospitality is more than just a norm, but a way of life. Taking great pride in being one of the most hospitable people in the world, we show our generosity by offering food and drinks, gifts or tokens of appreciation, and a comfortable place to stay for guests. 

Most importantly, it’s a country rich in warm smiles, so you’ll never feel alone. 

No matter who you are or where you are, instinct tells you to go home. After all, the sun at home warms better than the sun elsewhere. 

Discover why there’s more to love about the Philippines by downloading the Travel Philippine app in your Android, IOS and AppGallery.

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