With over 7,100 islands to choose from, you will never run out of things to do in the Philippines. This archipelago at the heart of Southeast Asia offers countless destinations to explore, from high mountains covered in lush green forests to deep blue seas rich in marine resources. Of course, with these destinations come an endless number of adventures to experience and activities to do.
While the Philippines also excels in tourist spots for rest and relaxation, the country is too beautiful to just stay in the four corners of a room. This country is waiting to be discovered, and there are several recreational activities in the Philippines you can do to fully appreciate the wealth of its resources.
Recreational Activities in the Philippines
Here is a list of top 10 recreational activities in the Philippines you can try out to really see the beauty of this country and maximize your stay in this awesome archipelago. There’s something to do for everybody: from the beach bum and the adventure-seeker to the more laidback foodie and fashionista.
1. Swimming and Water Sports
Enjoying the bright tropical sun, crystal clear waters and fine white sand is definitely among the top recreational activities in the Philippines. With so many beautiful beaches around this country, you will never run out of ways to enjoy the sea. You may just sit back and relax on the shore, under tropical trees. If you’re looking for adventure, you can do some exciting water sports like surfing, kayaking, parasailing and banana boat riding. Boracay Island and El Nido in Palawan are among the best spots for swimming and water sports.
Related Article: Best Philippines Beaches
The ocean and the seas in the Philippines are not just picturesque; they are also rich in marine resources. This is why diving is also among the best recreational activities in the Philippines. Plunge into the deep waters and be amazed with the variety of marine mammals, fish, corals and other underwater plants. There are many diving spots across the country, ranging from those that can be tried by beginners to those only for professional divers. Anilao in Batangas province and Coron in Palawan are only some of the dive spots in the Philippines.
3. Mountain Climbing
Not a fan of the deep? How about trying to conquer high altitudes? Because of its geography, this country has several mountains and mountain rangers, and climbing them is definitely a good recreational activity in the Philippines. Not only do these mountains present fantastic views at the summit, they also serve as natural habitat for a wide variety of wild plants and animals. Mount Pulag in Benguet and Mount Pinatubo in Zambales are good hiking spots for beginners.
Related Article: Top 5 Highest Mountains in the Philippines
This great recreational activity in the Philippines is not for the claustrophobic. Caving, or known to enthusiasts as spelunking, requires flexibility and some courage to go squeeze through tiny and dark spaces inside caves. This outdoor activity, however, is very rewarding once you see the great rock formations—the stalactites and stalagmites inside the caves—carved by nature itself. Mount Banahaw in Quezon Province and the Sumaguing Cave in Mountain Province are famous spelunking spots in the Philippines.
5. Horseback Riding
Want to explore photogenic places in the Philippines but too lazy to walk? You might want to consider horseback riding in your list of recreational activities to try in the Philippines. Native horses here are strong and sturdy, and have been trained to take tourists to popular spots. The cities of Tagaytay and Baguio are good areas for horseback riding.
If you’re looking for a unique recreational activity in the Philippines, then you can try birdwatching. This hobby is all about concentration, because it requires you to focus your attention on birds and appreciate their appearances and gestures with the use of binoculars or telescopes. This activity can also be very relaxing to the ears and the mind because of the tranquility that the singing of the birds brings.
Another unique and fun recreational activity in the Philippines that is worth trying is stargazing. This country has some of the most magical night skies in the world, especially if you go to the rural areas. There is no need to use telescopes and binoculars to witness the beauty of the starts glistening in the sky; you can see their glitter with your naked eyes.
Shopping is also among the top recreational activities in the Philippines because of the wide variety of quality products you can buy in this country. There’s just something for everyone. For those on a limited budget, you can go to places where you can bargain, such as Divisoria in Manila and other flea markets. For those who want style and comfort, there are several big shopping malls in the Philippines like SM and Ayala Malls carrying known local and international brands.
9. Food Tripping
Filipino cuisine is about bold and unique flavors, and getting a taste of local food is one of the top recreational activities in the Philippines you should definitely do. Start from cheap yet tasty street food like fish balls, banana on sticks and the infamous balut, or the underdeveloped duck eggs. There are also a lot of restaurants in the Philippines offering local food, such as adobo and kare-kare. Of course, you can’t miss the most popular fast food chain in the Philippines, Jollibee.
Great recreational activities in the Philippines do not just happen when the sun is up. The party scene here is also very vibrant, with bars and bistros scattered all over the metro. The best thing about the Philippines is its cheap but good beer, so you can party the night away without burning a hole in your pocket.
These are just some of the top recreational activities in the Philippines. There’s still so much more to do to fully explore and appreciate this country of beautiful sights and joyful people.
Feature image credit: Kai Lehmann