Manila, the capital of Philippines, is a remarkable destination in Asia. This popular destination, which is renowned for its spectacular sunsets, is thronged by millions of visitors from different parts of the world every year. With its numerous attractions, Manila offers the quintessential visitor several reasons to visit the city year after year.
As you set off exploring the city, the prime attraction “Coconut Palace” is ready to catch your fancy and keep mesmerized for a long time. This building was earlier home to ousted President Ferdinand Marcos and his shoe-loving wife Imelda. The Coconut Palace is currently home to the Vice President of the country. The building has been exquisitely designed. Plenty of coconuts and other natural materials have been extensively used in constructing the building.
Another attraction that is set to fascinate you is the “Jeepneys”. These are gaudy, fumes-belching vehicles that are now integral to Manila’s character. These privately-owned, long colorful jeeps are decorated with political or religious slogans. If you want to talk to the locals and understand their way of life, then jeepneys are always the best thing to hop on to and see Manila closely.
Tourists visiting Manila just can’t skip karaoke bars, which are found in every nook and corner of the city. Filipinos are fun loving people and you can see them bursting into song whenever they find slightest opportunity. It is widespread here and a typical Filipino trait. For those who are passionate music lovers or want to try out singing themselves must visit one of these karaoke bars, take a microphone and start belting out the songs of their choice or the most popular ones listed on the walls.
The theatrical tours of Carlos Celdran, Manila’s most famous guide, are awesome. When you attend one of his theatrical performances, be ready to take yourself down the memory lane. These performances are based around historic Intramuros and retraces Manila’s tragic history bringing back to life. The spectators are taken to Japanese, American and Spanish postwar eras through the powerful, sentimental and comic theatrical performances.
The San Agustin Church is yet another key attraction that draws tourists every year in large numbers. It is Philippines’ oldest church dating from 16th century. It was among the few buildings in the city to survive World War II. The church is elaborately designed. It has a number of richly decorated shrines with baroque flourish. The exhibitions showcasing the Spanish religious orders founded in modern Philippines are simply captivating. It is one of the rare monuments to be found elsewhere in Asia.
Intramuros is another fascinating place in the historic heart of the city, which is bound to catch your imagination. This was a remarkable version of Latin American-banana-republic-transported-to Asia. Under the Spanish rule, the Intramuros was transformed into a fortified city within a city. Its architecture shows the Iberian influence heavily. The memories of city’s rich history come alive with its cannon-laden bastions, amazing views over the river and its stunning gardens. Fort Santiago here is also the cynosure of all eyes.
Tourists visiting Manila shouldn’t miss out visiting the Rizal Park. It’s among a prime attraction in the city. The expansive park is renowned for tribute statues, and venue for political demonstrations and open-air concerts. The Rizal Park is also home to the National Museum, Japanese Garden and Chinese Garden. If you love people-watching, then Rizal Park is must visit. It is a favorite haunt for joggers, kite-flyers, picnickers and smooching couples.