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Manila
Travel Guide

Baywalk which includes a city, boating and a bay or harbor

The capital of the Philippines is a fast-paced and hectic city filled with cultural and historic gems, from old ruins to national museums and lively promenades.

Manila is continually expanding outwards and upwards. Scores of skyscrapers and business centers are rising up across the city and Filipinos from rural areas pour into the capital everyday looking for opportunities. This is one of the largest cities on the planet.

Manila can be overwhelming at first glance. The sprawling metropolis is a collection of 16 towns with no discernible center. The streets are busy, crowded and loud, but it’s this energy and chaos that gives the city its charm.

To really get to know Manila you need to understand its past. The city has been bombed, devastated by fires and earthquakes and occupied by the Spanish, British, Japanese and Americans.

Start your trip in Intramuros, the oldest part of Manila. It’s surrounded by fortifications and moats that were built by the Spanish in the 16th century. Most of the fortifications were destroyed by bombs during World War II. What was left has been rebuilt and restored. Walk around and on the walls and visit some of its key defensive structures such as the Baluarte de San Diego and the Baluarte de San Andres.

Go to the defensive centerpiece the Fort of Santiago, a large citadel and park, then visit Manila Cathedral. The present structure dates from the mid-20th century. Close to Intramuros is Rizal Park, a green expanse with ornamental gardens, lawns and monuments.

Pay a visit to the National Museum of the Filipino People to learn about the history and culture of the Philippines, and visit Casa Manila Museum, a reproduction of a Spanish colonial house.

Manila captivates with some of its modern charms. Take a ferry along the Pasig River and enjoy the nightlife of the Baywalk, a seaside promenade.

Like many Asian cities traffic is a huge problem. Fortunately, taxis are plentiful, cheap and air-conditioned. A good way to get around is on the light rail and metro. The main forms of public transport are the jeepneys, small brightly colored buses. If you travel by road it may take you longer to get to your destination than you planned. Allow plenty of time and do as the Filipinos do, just go with the flow.

Where to stay in Manila

Bayview Park Hotel Manila
Bayview Park Hotel Manila
3 out of 5
1118 Roxas Boulevard, corner United Nations Avenue, Manila, Manila
Free CancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is ¥7,358 per night from May 23 to May 23
Located in Ermita, this hotel is steps from U.S. Embassy and Rizal Park. Manila Bay and Manila Ocean Park are also within 10 minutes. United Nations LRT Station ...
3.9/5Very Good! (999 reviews)
Good hotel!
"My room was clean. My only concern was it smells cigs. It said it’s non-smoking. I don’t smoke, never smoke. I hate the smell of it. It lingers and hard to get rid of. The rug was looking old and stained. The service is great. The breakfast is fantastic. I would recommend it to others and really ..."

Reviewed on Oct 28, 2020

Bayview Park Hotel Manila
Nichols Airport Hotel
Nichols Airport Hotel
3 out of 5
484 Quirino Avenue, Baclaran, Parañaque, Manila
Free CancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is ¥4,784 per night from May 23 to May 23
This family-friendly Parañaque hotel is located near the airport, within 3 mi (5 km) of SMX Convention Center, SM Mall of Asia and Embassy of Japan. Cuneta Astrodome ...
3.4/5 (725 reviews)
Friendly
"Friendly and great service for my family to stay overnight."

Reviewed on Jan 2, 2021

Nichols Airport Hotel
Holiday Inn Express Manila Newport City, an IHG Hotel
Holiday Inn Express Manila Newport City, an IHG Hotel
3 out of 5
1 Jasmine Drive, Pasay, Manila
The price is ¥9,345 per night from May 27 to May 27
Situated near the airport, this hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Resorts World Manila, Fort Bonifacio, and Venice Grand Canal Mall. SM Makati is 3 mi (4.8 km) ...
3.9/5Very Good! (1,411 reviews)
"Me and my son stayed here for 7 days to comply with the government quarantine procedures for returning filipino citizen. So we don't have a choice but to be in the room for 7 days, fortunately the place is nice and the room is clean."

Reviewed on Mar 21, 2021

Holiday Inn Express Manila Newport City, an IHG Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Gotophi at One Uptown Residence
Gotophi at One Uptown Residence
3 out of 5
36th Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig
Located in Bonifacio Global City, this condo building is within a 15-minute walk of Uptown Mall, St Luke's Medical Center Global City, and Bonifacio High Street. ...
4.4/5Excellent! (10 reviews)
"Overall our stay was satisfactory. Pros:-rooms and area where clean - condo was in vicinity of upscale mall, restaurants and grocery store. -"

Reviewed on Mar 1, 2020

Gotophi at One Uptown Residence
Aruga Apartments by Rockwell Makati
Aruga Apartments by Rockwell Makati
4 out of 5
Waterfront Drive, Rockwell Center, Makati, Manila
The price is ¥10,694 per night from May 29 to May 29
Located in Makati Downtown, this aparthotel is 0.1 mi (0.2 km) from Power Plant Mall and within 3 mi (5 km) of Makati Medical Center and SM Megamall. Fort Bonifacio ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (435 reviews)
"Ease of booking Quite centrally located Connected to the Power Plant mall"

Reviewed on Apr 17, 2021

Aruga Apartments by Rockwell Makati
JMM Grand Suites
JMM Grand Suites
3 out of 5
1622 Jorge Bocobo Street, Manila, Manila
The price is ¥4,203 per night from May 17 to May 17
Located in Malate, this aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Robinson's Place, Manila Bay, and Baywalk. Rizal Park and U.S. Embassy are also within 15 minutes. ...
3.6/5Good! (398 reviews)
"Location in relation to St. Luke and free parking."

Reviewed on Jan 30, 2021

JMM Grand Suites
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Manila

Top things to do in Manila

Reviews of Manila

3.9

Guest rating

5 - Excellent
170
5 - Excellent 26.771653543307085%
4 - Good
284
4 - Good 44.724409448818896%
3 - Okay
152
3 - Okay 23.937007874015748%
2 - Disappointing
20
2 - Disappointing 3.1496062992125986%
1 - Terrible
9
1 - Terrible 1.4173228346456692%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Apr 15, 2020

Keep up the breakfast deals and the evening roof top restaurant. Your day time restaurant staff are outstanding. I wonder if the young lady and man who work there did fall in love. I am the one who took the photo of 4 of your staff with my son.

1/5 - Terrible

Verified traveler

Mar 18, 2020

It can be crowded but the people are friendly. I cannot say that the government handle the COVID 19 situation. They are still letting people leave Manila if you have a private vehicle and they’re making the spread of the virus worse with checkpoints

3/5 - Okay

Verified traveler

Mar 17, 2020

Negotiate your van ride van from the airport, or any vehicles without meter. The van from the airport charged me $3000 pesos from the airport to city garden hotel. Which should’ve only charge me 230 pesos.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

Mar 17, 2020

Manila is a great place to vacation in if traffic and heat are not out of control.

5/5 - Excellent

traveller

Mar 17, 2020

Manila had improved a lot since the kast time I have been there

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

Mar 9, 2020

Lots of traffic, bustling city full of exotic life

Cities near Manila