Manila has a certain ‘rough diamond’ quality about it. The Filipino capital can seem chaotic, with an eclectic mix of buildings that range from Spanish colonial styles to ultra-modern skyscrapers. The city is actually a conglomeration of 12 cities and 5 municipalities, together forming Metro Manila, so there’s no shortage of things to see and do.

The most Americanised of all Southeast Asian cities is a dynamic, charming and hugely cosmopolitan place, often visited by business and island-bound travellers. It’s a city of contrasts – gleaming shopping malls stand proudly next to slums, while street food vendors ply their wares outside 5-star hotels. Manila is an eyeopener and a showcase for the integration of the old and the new.

What to see & do in Manila

Featured stories & fun stuff
  • 16 Best Things to Do in Manila

    The best things to do in Manila showcase the unique image of this vibrant city. A mix of Spanish colonial remains and modern buildings, the city was founded by the Spanish at the end of the 16th century, then conquered by the USA at the end of the 19th century, then occupied by the Japanese during World War II. Manila offers...

    Read more

Where & what to eat in Manila

Manila’s dining scene has something to please everyone – being a cosmopolitan city, it is possible to eat pretty much anything in Manila. Food is an integral part of the Filipino culture. Featuring a mixture of European and Asian food, particularly Malay, Spanish and Chinese, there is definitely some good food to be had in the metropolis. There are clusters of restaurants and bars in San Juan's Greenhills and Mandaluyong City's...

Read more

Where to shop & what to buy in Manila

  • 13 Best Places to Go Shopping in Manila

    Our list of the best places to go shopping in Manila introduces the most exciting malls, markets, and stores available in the capital city of the Philippines. Regarding shopping options, Manila is on par with most of the Asian capital cities such as Bangkok or Singapore – ultra-modern shopping malls are the top shopping venues here, closely followed by street markets. Even if...

    Read more

Where to go & what to do at night in Manila

Nightlife in Manila is really vibrant and lively. Filipinos personify the ‘life and soul of the party’ notion, and much like their Spanish counterparts, their ability to sing and dance is an inherent characteristic. Combined with a great sense of humour, you’ll be treated to some great partying while in Manila. Karaoke, as in most Asian countries, is a national sport and mercilessly encouraged by locals, so have a backup...

Read more

Where to stay in Manila

Start planning your trip

Also popular in Philippines

Back to top
Sorry, this page hasn’t been translated in your language yet…