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

The Heritage Hotel Manila
The Heritage Hotel Manila
4 out of 5
Roxas Boulevard, Corner Of Edsa, Pasay, Manila, 1300
The price is ¥7,214 per night from Aug 9 to Aug 10
Stay at this 4-star family-friendly hotel in Pasay. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and breakfast. Our guests praise the helpful staff and the spacious rooms ...
3.9/5 Very Good! (1,005 reviews)
"All the staff was helpful and friendly. The only thing I don’t like was no microwave inside the room."

Reviewed on Aug 4, 2022

The Heritage Hotel Manila
Dusit Thani Manila
Dusit Thani Manila
5 out of 5
Arnaiz Ave, Ayala Center, Makati, Manila, 1223
The price is ¥12,403 per night from Sep 3 to Sep 4
Stay at this 5-star luxury hotel in Makati. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and 3 restaurants. Our guests praise the breakfast and the helpful staff in our reviews. ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (1,008 reviews)
"Good service."

Reviewed on Aug 4, 2022

Dusit Thani Manila
Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila
Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila
5 out of 5
CCP Complex, Roxas Boulevard, Pasay, Manila, 1300
The price is ¥13,425 per night from Aug 15 to Aug 16
Stay at this 5-star luxury hotel in Pasay. Enjoy free WiFi, 2 restaurants, and a full-service spa. Our guests praise the pool and the helpful staff in our reviews. ...
4.2/5 Very Good! (1,005 reviews)
"Great place to stay for vacation"

Reviewed on Aug 4, 2022

Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila
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.
Seda Residences Makati
Seda Residences Makati
4 out of 5
Ayala Ave corner Amorsolo and Salcedo St, Legazpi Village, Makati, 1229
The price is ¥15,650 per night from Aug 9 to Aug 10
Stay at this 4-star aparthotel in Makati. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and breakfast. Our guests praise the breakfast and the pool in our reviews. Popular ...
4.7/5 Exceptional! (53 reviews)
"I love everything here. Superb! They have well-mannered staffs. Room is very spacious and very comfortable. The breakfast buffet is also excellent. Will definitely stay here again when visiting Manila and will really recommend to friends and relatives. Staying here is one of the best experience I ..."

Reviewed on Jul 16, 2022

Seda Residences Makati
Ascott Makati
Ascott Makati
5 out of 5
Glorietta 4, Ayala Centre, Makati, Manila, 1224
The price is ¥19,808 per night from Aug 9 to Aug 10
Stay at this 5-star luxury aparthotel in Makati. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and breakfast. Our guests praise the pool and the comfy beds in our reviews. ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (741 reviews)
"overall very good experience. liked very much the in-room coffee bar which included microwave oven. The only con was the lack of bath robes."

Reviewed on Jul 31, 2022

Ascott Makati
Ascott Bonifacio Global City Manila
Ascott Bonifacio Global City Manila
4 out of 5
28th Street corner 5th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig, Manila, 1634
The price is ¥22,449 per night from Aug 12 to Aug 13
Stay at this 4-star business-friendly aparthotel in Taguig. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and breakfast. Our guests praise the breakfast and the comfy beds ...
4.7/5 Exceptional! (229 reviews)
"I will never stay in any other hotel/condo in BGC. The rooms are beautifully designed and equipped for even a long-term stay in BGC. My stay was casually luxurious. The staff is welcoming and accommodating. The condition of the building and the furniture is excellent. I was never bothered by a smell ..."

Reviewed on Jul 17, 2022

Ascott Bonifacio Global City Manila
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

Things to do

Cities near Manila