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Country Facts

The Philippines may have over 7000 coral islands, some of the best diving, snorkeling and beach destinations, and may even have the best island parties, but it's the people and their culture that makes this land special. Get lost in Manila, see a Crucifixion enactment in Pampagna, visit the 17th Century site of Vigan or stain your hands as you eat a delectable mango on Guimaras Island. at To get under Filipino skin, read 'Great Philippene Jungle Energy Cafe' by Alfred A Yuson, watch 'Back to Bataan' and listen to 'Anak' by Freddie Aguilar.

  • Capital: Manila
  • Official Languages: Filipino, English
  • Government: Republic
  • Currency: Peso
  • Time Zone: +8:00 GMT (2½ hrs ahead of India)
  • Telephone Calling Code: 0063

When To Go

Best time to visit: September to mid-May. The average temperature in Philippines is 27.7°C with an average high of 34°C in May and average low of 22°C in January and February.

What To Do

Filipino cuisine is a bold combination of sweet, sour, and salty flavours and is not heavily spiced. Rice is staple, accompanied with chicken, pork, beef and seafood dishes. Tropical fruits such as pineapple, mango, banana, guava and papaya are favourites.

What to eat and drink
  • Lechón: Whole roasted pig
  • Longganisa: Philippine sausage
  • Adobo: Chicken or pork braised in garlic, vinegar, oil and soy sauce
  • Dinuguan: Pig's blood soup
  • Kare-kare: Oxtail and vegetables cooked in peanut sauce
  • Crispy pata: Deep-fried pig's leg
  • Hamonado: Pork sweetened in pineapple sauce
  • Guyabano: Juice made from soursop fruit
  • San Miguel beer


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