Top 10 Places to Visit in Metro Manila

As the Philippines is getting more and more popular as a holiday destination, I look at the top 10 places I believe that cant be missed whilst in the country’s entry point Metro Manila.

10th) Manila Ocean Park

Firstly we start off with a family amusement. This Oceanarium has plenty to see and do, with over 300 marine species indigenous to South East Asia. There are also land creatures with a barnyard, bird and insect section. Most anticipated are the seal show which is applaudable and last but not the least is the symphony of evening show which is a magical light, water and fire show which come together to gives a great end to the day. Honestly it is not the best Oceanarium that would blow your mind, but it is a worthy visit whilst in the capital.

Manila Ocean Park
Manila Ocean Park ( photo from https://www.shoreexcursions.asia/manila-ocean-park/)
9th) Quiapo Church and China Town

Quiapo church and the surrounding area is no doubt very important to the Filipino people, its religious and cultural significance is the reason it is on my top 10 list, however this area is also known to be very dangerous to locals themselves, so any tourists would need to be cautious. Nonetheless this Church is very important with many miracles said to have happened, one of which is the story of the black Nazarene statue which arrived from Mexico in 1606 surviving a huge fire.

The nearby Binondo China town is also significant for being the worlds oldest china town in the world. A place that should be high on this list but because its not accessible and a little dangerous, im happy this being 9th.

asianjournalusa.com/the-political-rallies-in-plaza-miranda-the-mercenary-prayers-at-quiapo-chu-p13552-184.htm
8th) Poblacion, Makati

One for those who enjoy a bit of nightlife, Poblacion has a mixture of affordable and high-end bars and clubs. It is popular for locals and foreign tourists. A place that must be visited to appreciate Filipino night life.

7th) Bonifacio Global City

The first of four shopping site on my list. Bonifacio Global City is an outdoor high street retail arcade which has both affordable and high end shops and restaurants. Boasting a beautiful parklike greenspace in the middle with fountain and artistic features this shopping district is very popular.

Bonifacio High Street (goodfreephotos.com)
6th) Resorts World

The brand ‘Resorts World’ is well known around the world. For Manila, Resorts World is a complete high end entertainment complex including a casino, theatre, cinema, shopping complex, restaurants and accommodations. Resorts world is high on my list as it is popular amongst tourist and it is nearest to the airport.

5th) Greenbelt Ayala Centre

The most extravagant and  luxurious of all the malls in Metro Manila. the Greenbelt shopping mall consist of high end shops such as Prada, Gucci, Armani and others alike. This mall makes the 5th best place to visit in Metro Manila as in my opinion it takes you out of the hustle and bustle of the city, a nice place which may make you feel at home. The nice green space in the middle, vegetable plantation, cat play area and the outdoor church makes a brilliant hotspot for tourism

4th) SM Mall of Asia

…and another mall but its the last one I promise. SM Mall of Asia was arguably once the largest in Asia when it was built in the year 2006, it has since been replaced as 4th largest in the country and down to 14th in the continent.  4th on my list as unlike ‘Resorts World’ this is a complete leisure complex for all ages that is affordable to the average person. Complete with concert halls, Imax, bowling, arcades, funfair, shops, restaurants and an Olympic sized skating ring. Furthermore the man made bay area is a good place to chill and take it easy.

Mall Of Asia
https://www.publicdomainpictures.net/en/view-image.php?image=59538&picture=mall-of-asia
3rd) Intramuros

A fortified walled complex from the Spanish colonial era makes it as my 3rd place that I believe people should visit. Formerly the Spaniards centre for governance, this had huge significance through all colony from Spanish, Japanese and American rule. Intramuros has lots of Spanish architecture within its walls which I believe is  a must for visitors.

File:Intramuros Manila.jpg
Intramuros (photo by Armanbambuco)
2nd) Quezon Circle

My 2nd placer is questionable and I believe a lot of people who is from the Philippines or Metro Manila itself would find my choice quiet surprising and interesting. Quezon Circle is a park situated in between a large 8 lane roundabout, it is a park where many locals visit to chill, date, unwind, stay active and just have a good time. Central to this park it the Quezon Shrine which is a beautiful 3 pillar structure which houses the remains of the popular late president Manuel Quezon. On top of the monument is an observation deck and below is a museum about the late president and also about the country in general. The park has a cute theme park with traditional fair games and rides. I believe Quezon circle doesn’t get the recognition it deserves, maybe the sheer distance from the main Manila region or the lack of advertisements. I have always found this place amazing and when I brought my visiting friends over to see this, I was surprised by their very positive reaction, so this park makes it as my top 2 place to visit whilst around Metro Manila.

Quezon Shrine (Photo from https://www.justrunlah.com/running_route/quezon-memorial-circle/)
1st) Rizal Park

Probably the cover attraction of the capital and what I believe is the must see place whilst in Metro Manila is Rizal Park. Adjacent to the walled city of Intramuros this place is a favourite leisure spot for Filipinos. This park also has history as it was the location of the execution of Filipino patriot Jose Rizal which started the Philippine revolution against Spain. The monument which holds his remains is the focal point of this park and because of this the area remains a significant place for the country and for what I believe is a place visitors should visit whilst in the country. 

File:Rizal Monument at Rizal Park.jpg
Rizal Monument (photo by Maynard Rabanal)

So there’s my personal top 10 places to visit whilst in Metro Manila, do you think?

Thanks for reading!!!

 

GIF 1

 

Reference:

https://www.myproperty.ph/journal/2019/02/13/the-top-10-largest-malls-in-the-philippines-infographic/
Advertisements

Marseille Transport

Getting there

Marseille is a very popular destination in the south of France, and it attracts scores of people throughout the year. There are plenty modes of transport that can be taken to go to Marseille from around the world.

Firstly by train, Marseille has many domestic and international rail journeys to St Charles train station. SNCF is the main company which connects Marseille, however SNCF-Renfre partnership also has journeys coming from Spain.

There are also many airline carriers that operate in Marseille Provence Airport. Only British Airways is the only notable direct flight from LHR and only 1 of 3 from London. Other airlines flying from London to Marseille are ‘Easy jet’ which flies from Gatwick and ‘Ryan air’ which flies from Stanstead. Other airlines including ‘Air France’ have a stop over so it will not be too convenient as the 3 direct flights.

In Marseille

Getting to Marseille from the airport is a bit more difficult than other cities. There is no subway system and the nearest train station is a 15minute walk. The best way to travel is by the  airport-city coach which takes you straight from the airport and into St Charles train station which is central to the city.

Once in Marseille there are various modes of transport you can take buses, metro subway, tram and even by boat.

The metro (subway) in Marseille consists of only 2 lines identified a simple metro ‘1’and ‘2’. Metro 2 journeys north to south, whilst  Metro 1 is a U shaped starting from ‘La Rose’ which goes inwards to ‘Vieux Port’ the outwards to ‘La Fourragere. Both lines interlinks at St Charles which is the main train station of Marseille and Castellene.

I was very impressed with the tram system in Marseille, it was new, modern, very easy to use and spacious. You can see that Marseille has put a lot of thought to their trams and the carriages were designed with a futuristic modern appearance, inside the tram was air-conditioned and had lots of space, very comfortable. There is 3 lines to the Marseille tram system, T1,T2 and T3.

There were many different bus journeys available in Marseille, however their intervals can be far apart, which means longer waits and fuller buses. I took 3 buses on my time in Marseille and they were all alike. The buses were very comfortable, air-conditioned and had fast journeys, I didn’t have any problem with them apart from the long waits and packed buses.

As Marseille is mainly a port city, it was just right that boat transport would be available. Between many of the different boat ports such as ‘Port Rouge’ were I scuba dived, and ‘Vieux Port’ there are now boat journeys. I didn’t try them so I cant really write about it.

Transport in Marseille is very easy and straight forward, so even the most amateur of travellers shouldn’t get lost.