The Essentials of the Philippines

Philippines - Your tailor-made trip

12 days - from 2419€

Day 1

Welcome to the Philippines!
You arrive at Manila International Airport where you will be greeted by your private driver and transferred to your hotel. Your holiday in the Philippines begins now! After a briefing with our representative, you spend the rest of your day at leisure. If not too tired from your flight, why not stroll through Intramuros, the old quarter of Manila and the heritage of a rich Spanish colonial past.
Day 2

5h drive - 251 km
This morning, you leave Manila and set off for the first step of your holiday in the Philippines: a 5-hour drive towards Baguio, nicknamed the “Summer Capital of the Philippines” due to its cool climate. Upon arrival in Baguio at the end of the afternoon, settle into your hotel. You can also take a walk around and visit the Baguio City Market and the city centre to see the main sights (Baguio Cathedral, Burnham Park, etc..)
Day 3

7h drive - 141 km
After breakfast, you leave for Sagada along the famous Mountain Trail, a magnificent road which runs along the mountains of Luzon. The drive takes approximately 7 hours, but there are many photo stops you can take along the way to break up the journey. Upon arrival in Sagada, you visit the surrounding areas and stop for a tour of the sacred burial caves and hanging coffins, before continuing to a weaving workshop and visiting the Echo Valley with its unique landscapes.
Day 4

First glimpse of the famous ricefields of Banaue
After breakfast at your guesthouse, your driver picks you up and you take the road to Bontoc, where you visit the Ethnological Museum to learn more about rich history of the region and its various ethnic groups. You then continue for 2.5 hours on the road to Banaue via the famous Mont Pulis Pass. En route you stop at a viewpoint at the top off the valley which offers a breathtaking view of the famous rice terraces of Banaue which are undoubtedly an iconic landscape of the Philippines because they are so impressive. Feel free to let your private driver know if there are any other stops you would like to make on the way.
Day 5

Villages and rice terraces
After your breakfast, you set off on a private Jeepney, a means of transport typical to the Philippines which lacks comfort but not charm, in the direction of the village of Banga-an, located in the heart of the Ifugao country. You discover the village and have lunch in a local Banga-an hostel before continuing on foot to the Batad Pass. Walk through sublime landscapes to the village of Batad to admire its UNESCO-listed rice terraces that form a natural amphitheatre – a highlight of your holiday in the Philippines. You then return in a Jeepney to Banaue where you can soak up the atmosphere by going for a walk in its typical market.
Day 6

9h drive - 338 km
In the morning, you leave the small town of Banaue and head towards Manila. After a 9-hour drive through countryside and typical villages, you arrive at your hotel in Manila where you can relax and enjoy your evening at leisure.
Day 7

1h flight and 40-min drive
After breakfast at the hotel, you are transferred to Manila Airport for your domestic flight to Busuanga Island. On arrival, your driver will meet you at the airport and take you in a private car to your hotel in the city of Coron (40 minutes). In the afternoon, you embark on a traditional banca boat with a local guide, to explore the islands, snorkel with hundreds of fish of all colors and visit hot springs to recharge your batteries. Return to your hotel at the end of the day.

Please note: contrary to popular belief, the city of Coron does not have a beach.
Day 8

Island hopping on a traditional bangka
Today, you leave the town of Coron and hop on a Bangka boat for a day of island hopping. Your first stop is Sangat Island. On this island, covered with virgin forest, you can kayak along the beach and hop in the water with your mask and snorkel to see the Japanese shipwreck from the Second World War. After a cozy picnic lunch, you head to the wreck of Lusong before continuing to North Cay Island where it is sometimes possible to see black-tip sharks while snorkeling. Return to your hotel and enjoy a free evening.
Day 9

40 min drive & 1h boat ride
After breakfast at the hotel, your driver picks you up and drives you to the disembarkation point for your departure by boat to the private island of Dimakya. Upon arrival, settle into your beautiful hotel and enjoy the isolated island. You are in a dream setting on a paradise island where the only nuisance is the sound of coconuts falling on the beach. Enjoy your Robinson Crusoe moment!
Day 10

Free day at Club Paradise
Today, enjoy a free day exploring the surrounding beaches. Rest and relax on the island, where you can enjoy lounging on the beach, delicious cocktails and the magnificent seabed, accessible from the hotel beach. For the more adventurous, there are also plenty of opportunities for island hopping, discovering the forest on foot or takinga  day trip to the Calauit Game Reserve. Contact your Travel Expert for more ideas! (Any extra activities can be paid on the spot).
Day 11

1h boat ride & 1h flight
After your last breakfast on this paradise island, you board a boat and are transferred to Busuanga Airport to catch a domestic flight back to Manila. Upon arrival in Manila, you enjoy your free time in the capital of the Philippines, and take this opportunity to do some last-minute souvenir shopping.
Day 12

Bye bye Philippines!
According to your flight schedule, your driver will pick you up and bring you to Manila airport for your flight home. End of our services.

We hope you had a wonderful holiday in the Philippines and hope to see you again for your next Asian adventure! 

Travel conditions

  • 24/7 assistance from your Travel Expert.
  • Welcome by your Travel Expert or our representative upon your arrival at Manila airport.
  • Land transfers and transport by private vehicle. Occasionally by Jeepney (a vehicle typical of the Philippines capable of using bad mountain roads). A free day does not include, unless specifically stated, a vehicle available.
  • Accommodation as mentioned in the program.
  • Breakfasts only unless specified otherwise. This leaves you the freedom to choose your restaurants and menus.
  • Domestic flights (prices subject to change depending on seat availability. Domestic flight schedules may be delayed or changed without notice). Note that the local flights do not always include the same baggage allowance as your international flights. Any extra baggage will be at your expense, to be paid by you during the check-in.
  • Boat transfers in bankas (traditional boat in the Philippines) as mentioned in the program.
  • Entrances to the monuments and tourist sites of the day mentioned in the program.
  • Activities marked "included" as described in the program, most of the time, accompanied by a local English-speaking guide.
  • Visa fees (valid for 30 days upon arrival in Manila).
  • International flights and airport taxes.
  • Tips.
  • Main meals (expect to pay between €4 to €5 in a local restaurant and at least double for a western restaurant).
  • Drinks and personal expenses.
  • Snorkel equipment (equipment available for hire at an additional cost on the boat, possibility to bring your equipment or buy it in the Philippines).
  • The cost of camera fees at the entrances to certain sites.
  • Optional activities.
  • Repatriation assistance.
  • Anything that is not listed in the "prices include" section.
Matthieu Travel Expert This holiday in the Philippines offers a program not to be missed for those wishing to discover the jewels of the Philippines, from some of the most beautiful rice fields in Asia to picture-perfect beaches, an effervescent underwater world and a stay on a private paradise island.
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