The Philippines consists of more than 7,000 islands with rushing rivers, beautiful limestone cliffs, emerald green rice terraces, pristine jungle and vast sandy beaches. With the lavish archipelago comes a wonderful underwater life.
On this page you will find practical information and facts about the Philippines.
PRACTICAL INFO ABOUT TRAVELING IN THE PHILIPPINES
Climate and best travel time
The Philippines has a tropical climate with five different climate zones. The average temperature is 25 degrees. The period from November to February is the “cool” period with temperatures of about 25 degrees. From March to May is the warm period with temperatures above 30 degrees. Over large parts of the Philippines, monsoon rains fall from June to October, but not in the southern part of the country, which is therefore suitable for travel during this period. The humidity is relatively high all year round.
Our recommendations for the best travel period in the Philippines are based on how the climate has been in previous years. The weather in the Philippines can be very changeable and unpredictable and therefore our recommendations are for guidance only. Visit shoefrantics.com for Philippines travel destinations.
The Philippine currency is the peso. In the banks in the largest cities, it is possible to use regular credit cards, but they are often charged with fees. Note that on most cards, a maximum of 10,000 pesos can be withdrawn at a time.
Visas The visa
rules may change at short notice, so We recommend that you check the current conditions at the country’s embassy. The information below is subject to change.
No visa is required to enter the Philippines. As a Swedish citizen, you will automatically receive a 30-day residence permit upon arrival. Please note that your passport must be valid for at least six months and you must keep a ticket out of the country. If you plan to stay more than 30 days, you must apply for a visa in advance at the Philippine Consulate. More information is available at www.swedenabroad.se
Between the larger cities, there are long-distance buses that often depart several times a day. Traveling by bus takes time, but on the other hand, it is a good way to meet the Filipinos and their country in an uncomplicated way – you are together during the trip and often it is in the bus that small friendships arise.
The Jeep is the Philippines’ most used – and most charming vehicle. A jeepney is a rebuilt jeep of American model from World War II extended to a minibus. The buses have American slang names like Loverboy and Wild Jackson and are decorated and adorned to the point that only (possibly) Pakistani trucks can compete. With flashing lights, in a variety of colors and with antennas protruding on all sides, these speed wonders thunder forward with the car stereo at full volume. As with the buses, the jeepney is an entertaining, albeit packed, pleasure. The jeep is mostly and best used for short distances and has fixed routes but not fixed stops. You wave to get on and when you want to get off, you just knock on the ceiling.
The only way to the smaller islands is by sea and even where it is possible to fly, the boat trip is preferable if you have time. A boat trip to one of the many islands can be an experience in itself, but do not expect top standards. See the ferry worn out, follow your intuition and jump on the next one. The safety of the Philippine ferries has been criticized and therefore it does not hurt with a little common sense. The ferries are always full so you get really close to the locals. There are many hours to kill with plenty of opportunities to make new friends along the way, read on the “sun deck” or just enjoy the ride.
A convenient way to get around the Philippines is to fly. There are several companies, the largest of which are Philippines Airlines and Cebu Pacific.
On departure from the international airport you have to pay 750 pesos in airport tax and 550 pesos in domestic flights. (April 2019). The aviation tax must be paid in cash (either in US dollars or in pesos).
In many countries, tips are counted as part of the salary of employees in the service industry. Therefore, it is good (and sometimes directly necessary) to give tips to, for example, cleaning staff, waiters, guides, drivers and more depending on which country you visit. We therefore recommend that you familiarize yourself with how much is normal to give in tips and to whom before departure. Such information can be found, for example, in Lonely Planet guidebooks.
LANGUAGE: FILIPINO (TAGALOG) AND ENGLISH
RELIGION: CHRISTIANITY, ISLAM AND OTHERS
Philippines – The secret paradise The
Philippines’ many deserted islands with a limited number of visitors give an easy feeling of coming to a small, exclusive paradise. The pleasant and good-natured manner of the Filipinos makes it easy to talk to the locals, who also often speak excellent English. In the capital Manila, state-of-the-art high-rise buildings are mixed with old Spanish colonial buildings and churches. The lively street scene is characterized by, among other things, karaoke stalls, whimsical fast food restaurants and lots of jeepney buses painted in imaginative and colorful patterns.
Green rice terraces and peaceful whale sharks
Banaue has a calm and peaceful atmosphere. The area is located in a lush and green mountain landscape on the northern part of the main island of Luzon. Here are rolling rice terraces as far as the eye can see, hidden cave formations and beautiful waterfalls. Banaue is an ideal place to enjoy the Filipino nature and the harmoniously undisturbed life of the locals.
The southern part of Luzon also has its sensations. Here, for example, is the pyramid-shaped active volcano Mayon. At night you can see red hot lava quietly flowing down the steep sides of the Mayon. In Donsol Bay, you have the opportunity to take a dip together with the world’s largest fish – the large whale sharks. It is a very special experience to see and try to keep pace with the peaceful giant fish when they swim majestically forward.
On a cruise in an exotic island kingdom
In the Philippines, it is also quite perfect to go on adventures among the many beautiful islands in the waters south of Luzon. The best way to discover the archipelago is to travel by boat from place to place and enjoy the rich diving and snorkeling opportunities. On the islands you will find peaceful, beautiful beaches, sea turtles that lay eggs, secluded fishing villages and various tribes with their own accommodation and traditions.