Events

Philippines Adventure - (13N/14D)

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Pax
Starts With 2149 /-
Per Person
14 days 13 nights

Description

Experience

The Philippines is a land of over 7000 islands defined by its emerald rice terraces, smouldering volcanoes, unique Spanish-Filipino colonial architecture and white sand beaches. We start our adventure in the teeming capital of Manila before making our way to the mountains and lush countryside of North Luzon, home to hundreds of ethnic groups. After admiring the volcanic crater lake of Mt. Pinatubo and the tiered agricultural land of Banaue, we journey to the island of Palawan where we explore the underground network of rivers and caves in the Puerto Princessa N.P. We spend the end of our adventure in El Nido, amongst the enchanting lagoons with tranquil turquoise water and secluded beaches

Itineary

Day 1 
Start Manila.
Start Manila, a sprawling city with a unique mixture of the modern and historic. Keep an eye out for the ‘jeepney’s, these colourful and flamboyantly decorated vehicles originally made from jeeps left by the American troops after the war, are a great way to get around and experience the city as the locals do.
 
Day 2 
Manila city tour
Today we embark on a tour of one of the world’s great metropolises, Manila. We’ll visit the World Heritage listed San Augustine Church before climbing aboard a ‘calesa’, a horse drawn carriage still used as public transport, to the Manila Cathedral. After pausing at Fort Santiago we’ll continue to the famous Chinese Cemetery to learn about the various temples, memorials and halls that were designed for Chinese citizens during Spanish rule. We will then head to Quiapo, the oldest district of Manila often referred to as the underbelly of the city and is the place for bargain hunting. In the afternoon we visit Makati, the modern, cosmopolitan district of Manila known for being the financial centre of the Philippines with numerous galleries, shopping malls and restaurants. Visiting both the old and the new today highlights the diversity this eclectic city has to offer.
 
Day 3 
Mt Pinatubo; walk to the summit, view crater lake. Transfer to Baguio
An early start this morning as we journey north for approximately 2-3 hours to reach the stop-off point for our visit to Mount Pinatubo. This active volcano, located in the Cabusilan Mountains, last erupted in 1991 after 600 years of deep slumber. It was previously obscured from sight and covered in dense forest which supported a population of several thousand indigenous people, the Aetas, who fled to the mountains during the Spanish conquest of the Philippines. We will board a 4x4 jeep and enjoy a thrilling drive across Crow Valley, a moon-like terrain, with vast ash fields and rocky rivers. We will walk the last section of the trail as we head up towards the summit. The walk is approximately an hour each way and although has no steep inclines; once at the crater summit we are rewarded with views of the crater lake and it’s deep turquoise colour. After lunch we will transfer for another 3 hours through the beautiful vistas and tiny villages of the Cordillera mountain range to Baguio City. Time-permitting we will visit the superb BenCab Museum which is famed for its animist wood carvings.
 
Day 4 
Drive to Banaue; witness spectacular views of the rice terraces
Today we journey to Banaue, a region famed for its 2000 year-old rice terraces. Built by the Ifugao tribes and stretching as far as the eye can see, the emerald green terraces were carved out by generations of traditional farmers and remain one of Asia’s most spectacular sights, often referred to as the ‘Eighth Wonder of the World’. Our guesthouse this evening is perched on the edge of the small village of Banaue and the restaurant delivers spectacular views across the valley. The transfer today will take approximately 6 hours however there will be regular stops to allow us to absorb this striking mountainous terrain.
 
Day 5 
After a quick jeepney ride we arrive at the small village of Batad. Forming an amphitheatre, the rice terraces here are the most spectacular as the concentric circles that line the mountain-side frame the village in the middle of the valley. We will visit
After a quick jeepney ride we arrive at the small village of Batad. Forming an amphitheatre, the rice terraces here are the most spectacular as the concentric circles that line the mountain-side frame the village in the middle of the valley. We will visit a traditional village where life has remained much the same for centuries and the bones of the villagers ancestors preserved and wrapped in colourful handwoven blankets can be seen. After a walk through the terraces we will visit the vast Tappiyah waterfall, an ideal spot for a refreshing swim for those keen.
 
Day 6 
Transfer to Pampanga; stay in the foothills of Mt. Arayat
Making our way through central Luzon towards Manila we today journey for approximately 7 hours towards Magalang, a small town located in the Pampagna province. We have the afternoon as leisure at a countryside villa of local restaurateur Larry Cruz. The guesthouse, a former farm, is located in the foothills of Mt Arayat and provides the perfect opportunity to relax after a busy few previous days. There will be the chance to try out a traditional Filipino massage or just relax by the pool surrounded by lush green landscaped gardens.
 
Day 7 
Journey back to Manila; fly to Puerto Princesa, Palawan. Sunset river cruise to see the firefly spectacle
We leave early today as we head straight to Manila airport to check in for our flight to the island of Palawan, the second leg of our Philippine adventure. Drastically different from the highlands of the north, Palawan is famed for its white sand beaches and spectacular National Parks. We will have a city tour of Puerto Princesa and then early evening drive to the Iwahig River, a clear wide river flanked by dense jungle on either side. We will meet our boat guide before boarding our three-person paddleboats for a cruise through the mangroves; learning about the jungle mangroves and how to sky navigate is all the more magical as we watch the spectacle of thousands of fireflies that cluster on their favoured fragrant mangrove trees.
 
Day 8 
Visit the UNESCO site of the 8.2km underground river and cave system\
Today we transfer to the famous World Heritage Site of Puerto Princesa underground river. This natural wonder features an 8.2km navigable river that winds through a spectacular cave before emptying into the South China Sea. ‘Cathedral’ chambers, cavernous caves and geological formations are viewed as we make our way through the river by boat. At the mouth of the cave ancient trees frame the clear lagoon and large monitor lizards are often seen along with many species of monkeys. It is a true biodiversity hotspot and a great place for tropical bird watching too. After lunch on the beach there will be the option to enjoy a mangrove paddle boat tour lead by the community to explore a deeper part of the forest. We will return to Puerto Princesa for our overnight stay.
 
Day 9 
Batak tribe trek; visit the tribal community and learn about their age-old traditions
We journey today to the town of San Rafael, the jump-off point for visiting the Batak Community. A walk through the Palawan jungle takes us to the village of the Batak, believed to be the oldest inhabitants of the Philippines. The Batak still live largely as they have for centuries and are semi-nomadic hunters. They are believed to be the smallest tribe in stature and by numbers; the average Batak man stands at barely 5 feet tall and the population is now estimated at just 360 members. We will enjoy lunch with the Batak community and will have the opportunity to converse with the tribe through our leader. Tonight’s beachside guesthouse consists of cottage style bungalows set in a peaceful garden location in Barangay.
 
Day 10 
To El Nido, the gateway to the Bacuit Archipelago famous for its blue lagoons and towering limestone karst cliffs
Right in the north western tip of Palawan is El Nido, one of the most picturesque and iconic places in the Philippines. Made up of hundreds of limestone islands said to have formed millions of years ago El Nido is a marine reserve with only a few islands inhabited. Our journey to El Nido town, the gateway to the Bacuit archipelago will take approximately 4-5 hours and upon arrival there will be time to explore the small town and pay a visit to the local market or small art galleries.
 
Day 11 
Boat trip to explore the secluded coves; swim in the aquamarine waters of the Sulu Sea
Right in the north western tip of Palawan is El Nido, one of the most picturesque and iconic places in the Philippines. Made up of hundreds of limestone islands said to have formed millions of years ago El Nido is a marine reserve with only a few islands inhabited. Our journey to El Nido town, the gateway to the Bacuit archipelago will take approximately 4-5 hours and upon arrival there will be time to explore the small town and pay a visit to the local market or small art galleries.
 
Day 12 
Free day to relax in this tropical paradise
We take a boat tour today of the lagoons and beaches of El Nido. The Big and Small Lagoon’s tranquil turquoise-green waters of its orchid-lined limestone walls, showcase a kaleidoscope of marine life. We will also visit the ‘Secret Lagoon’; surrounded by limestone karst cliffs this secluded lagoon is only witnessed by entering through a tiny crack in the cliff that was once a vast cave. The final destination is Seven Commandos Beach named after the 7 remaining Japanese commandos who remained on the island after World War II. The island has a long white sandy beach lined with palms trees. There will be ample opportunity to snorkel throughout the day to explore the amazing underwater ecosystem consisting of over 100 types of coral.
 
Day 13 
Transfer to airport; fly to Manila
We spend the morning driving back to the south of Palawan to Peurto Princesa airport for our return flight to Manila. The journey will take approximately 6 hours and passes through lush greenery and agricultural land. Upon arrival we will transfer to our centrally located hotel in Manila. There will be a final optional group dinner at a local restaurant.
 
Day 14 
End Manila
Tour End 

 

 

Package Includes

  • 13 breakfasts and 5 lunches
  • All accommodation

Package Excludes

  • Any other taxes.
  • Iternational or domestic flights, unless included
  • Meals other than those mentioned as included (please contact us to know details specific to your trip)
  • Optional arrival and departure transfers or transfer costs to the starting point of the vacation
  • Visa, passport, travel insurance.
  • Optional tours that can be bought on a supplement.
  • Single room supplement
  • Entrance fees to attractions not specified as included (please contact us to know details specific to your trip)

Information

Dates & Prices

Start Date End Date Price
14th JAN, 2018 27th JAN, 2018 GBP £ 2299.00
11th FEB, 2018 24th FEB, 2018 GBP £ 2299.00
25th MAR, 2018 07th APR, 2018 GBP £ 2299.00
11th NOV, 2018 24th NOV, 2018 GBP £ 2299.00
02nd DEC, 2018 15th DEC, 2018 GBP £ 2299.00
 
  • Travel Insurance covering medical and evacuation expenses is mandatory for all travellers.
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