With its natural beauty and convenient location, the Philippines is fast becoming a hot destination for Australian travellers and corporate groups.
“Australian travellers are becoming increasingly aware of the stunning beauty of the Phillippines,” said Phil Norjamin Delos Reyes from the Philippine Department of Tourism.
“As a destination, it is still relatively undiscovered and offers unparalleled value, so there’s no better time to get to know our tropical archipelago, world-renowned for its abundance of beauty, wildlife and bio-diversity.”
If you’re yet to explore the Philippines, here are the top 10 things you should know about the destination:
1. There are over 7641 islands
This number increased in 2018 when more islands were officially recognised and counted!
2. It’s a country of smiling, English-speaking people
Don’t be shy about approaching a Filipino and starting a conversation – they’re fun and officially friendly too. Forbes.com ranked the Philippines as the friendliest country in Asia and the eighth friendliest place in the world.
3. The Philippines is home to the ‘Best Islands in the World’
The destination’s islands are consistently recognised in the Conde Nast Traveller’s Readers’ Choice awards. In October 2018, the Philippines scooped the top three best islands in Asia: Siargo, Boracay and Palawan were listed respectively.
4. It’s a leading beach destination
The Philippines was also named ‘Asia’s Leading Beach Destination 2018’ at the World Travel Awards.
5. The Philippines offers excellent value for money
A bottle of beer will set you back just $1 Australian.
6. The Philippines was named in honour of King Philip II of Spain
Spanish explorer Ruy Lopez de Villalobos, during his expedition in 1542, named the islands of Leyte and Samar Felipinas after the then Prince of Asturias. Eventually the name Las Islas Filipinas would be used to cover all the island of the archipelago.
7. It’s one of the seven wonder cities of the world
The town of Vigan in the province of Ilocos Sur was officially inaugurated as one of the Seven Wonder Cities of the World in May 2015.
8. The Philippines is the heart of marine biodiversity
The Philippines archipelago is located within the Coral Triangle and has 76 percent of the world’s coral species, six of the world’s seven marine turtle species and at least 2228 reef fish species.
9. There’s a story behind its famous marketing slogan
The ‘It’s more fun in the Philippines’ marketing campaign, stemmed from a single question asked to the Department of Tourism: “Why would a tourist want to come to the Philippines?”
10. It’s heritage-listed by UNESCO
Puerto Princesa Subterranean River is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the new Seven Wonders of Nature.