10 Things To Do In Manila Philippines 2023 - The Filipino Rambler


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Friday, March 10, 2023

10 Things To Do In Manila Philippines 2023

Manila, the capital city of the Philippines, is a bustling metropolis with a rich history and culture. Here are 10 things you can do in Manila:

1. Visit Intramuros 

Explore the walled city of Intramuros, which was built by the Spanish during the colonial period.

Photo by Wander Fleur on Unsplash
  • Take a walking tour - A walking tour is the best way to explore Intramuros. There are guided tours available that will take you to the most important sites and provide you with historical information.
  • Visit Fort Santiago - Fort Santiago is a 16th-century fortress that was used as a military prison during World War II. It now serves as a museum and features exhibits on Philippine history and culture.
  • Walk along the walls - Intramuros is surrounded by walls that were built during the Spanish colonial period. Walking along the walls provides a great view of the surrounding area.
  • Visit the San Agustin Church - The San Agustin Church is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is one of the oldest stone churches in the Philippines. It features beautiful architecture and artwork.
  • Explore the Casa Manila Museum - The Casa Manila Museum is a reconstructed 19th-century house that showcases the lifestyle of the upper-class during the Spanish colonial period.
  • Ride a kalesa - A kalesa is a traditional horse-drawn carriage that you can ride around Intramuros. It's a fun and unique way to explore the area.
  • Eat at a local restaurant - There are many local restaurants in Intramuros that serve traditional Filipino dishes. It's a great way to experience the local culture and cuisine.
Entrance Fee to Fort Santiago and Casa Manila Museum is at P75. Fort Santiago is open from 9AM to 8PM on weekdays and from 6AM to 9PM during Saturdays and Sundays. Casa Manila Museum is closed on Mondays and open the rest of the week from 9AM to 6PM. Check here for schedules and fees. 

It has been a long time since I last visited Fort Santiago. I'm also yet to explore Baluarte de Santiago. Back in the day, I and my friends would spend time just chit-chatting at the walls of Intramuros- the area near Lyceum. I still get chills seeing how thick the walls are and all the cannons still on display there.

2. Go on a food tour 

Manila is known for its diverse and delicious cuisine. Take a food tour to sample local specialties such as adobo, sisig, and halo-halo.

Here are some of the best Pinoy restaurants in Manila:
  • Abe - Abe is a restaurant that serves traditional Filipino dishes with a modern twist. It is known for its crispy pata (deep-fried pork leg) and kare-kare (oxtail stew).
  • Sarsa - Sarsa is a restaurant that offers a contemporary take on traditional Filipino cuisine. It is known for its sinigang na baboy (pork sour soup) and lechon kawali (deep-fried pork belly).
  • Kanin Club - Kanin Club is a restaurant that specializes in rice dishes, which are a staple in Filipino cuisine. It is known for its crispy dinuguan (deep-fried pork blood stew) and sinangag na sinigang (sinigang-flavored fried rice).
  • Mesa - Mesa is a restaurant that offers a mix of traditional and modern Filipino dishes. It is known for its crispy boneless pata (deep-fried pork leg) and adobong pusit (squid adobo).
  • Locavore - Locavore is a restaurant that uses locally sourced ingredients to create traditional Filipino dishes with a modern twist. It is known for its sizzling sinigang (sinigang served on a sizzling plate) and lechon and liver pate.
  • Manam - Manam is a restaurant that serves both classic and modern Filipino dishes. It is known for its crispy sisig (chopped pork served on a sizzling plate) and crispy pancit palabok (crispy noodles with shrimp sauce).
If you're hankering for a really good Pinoy meal, then you should really try visiting those in the list. I personally like Sarsa and Manam. I also recommend trying the food stalls in Quiapo for a delicious plate of Palabok or go food hopping at Ugbo sa Tondo for a variety of meals.

3. Shop at Divisoria 

Visit Divisoria, a popular shopping district in Manila where you can find a wide range of products at bargain prices.

Divisoria is a mecca of every item you might have in mind. Whether your sourcing for bargained clothes, shoes, house items, school and office supplies for personal use or business, name it, they have it! Your one thousand pesos will sure come a long way. One had to be careful though for pick pockets. Always look after your money and phone!

Photo by Erik Scheel: https://www.pexels.com/photo/person-giving-fruit-to-another-95425/
4. Visit the National Museum 

The National Museum of the Philippines houses a collection of art and artifacts that showcase the country's rich history and culture. 

  • See the Spoliarium- a painting by Juan Luna that is considered a masterpiece of Philippine art. It is the most famous artwork in the National Museum. 
  • Explore the National Art Gallery - a section of the National Museum that houses a collection of Philippine art, including paintings, sculptures, and other art forms. 
  • Visit the Museum of the Filipino People - a section of the National Museum that showcases the history and culture of the Philippines through exhibits and artifacts.
  • The National Museum also features exhibits on natural history, including a collection of fossils and specimens of plants and animals found in the Philippines. 
  • The National Museum also features an exhibit on the San Diego shipwreck, which is considered one of the most important underwater archaeological discoveries in Asia.
For the latest info about the National Museum, click HERE

5. Attend a performance at the Cultural Center of the Philippines 

The Cultural Center of the Philippines is a venue for performing arts, music, and theater. Check their schedule for upcoming events.

Photo by Kevin Rein Bantang on Unsplash
6. Visit Rizal Park 

Rizal Park is a historical park located in the heart of Manila. It features a monument of Jose Rizal, a national hero of the Philippines. 

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Here are some of the things you enjoy while at Rizal Park:
  • Visit the Rizal Monument - The Rizal Monument is a bronze statue of Jose Rizal that stands in the center of Rizal Park. It is a popular landmark and a symbol of Philippine independence.
  • Explore the gardens - Rizal Park features beautiful gardens and landscaping, including the Orchidarium, where you can see a variety of orchids, and the Japanese Garden, which features a traditional Japanese landscape.
  • Relax and enjoy the scenery - Rizal Park is a peaceful and scenic destination where you can relax and enjoy the outdoors. There are plenty of benches and shaded areas where you can sit and take in the views.
7. Explore Chinatown 

Manila's Chinatown is one of the oldest in the world. The Binondo Church is a beautiful and historical church located in the heart of Chinatown. It was built in 1596 and is the oldest church in Manila. Binondo is known for its delicious and diverse cuisine. Take a food tour and try popular dishes such as dumplings, noodles, and hopia. Explore the street markets of Binondo, where you can find a variety of products such as clothes, accessories, and souvenirs. The Seng Guan Temple is a Taoist temple located in the heart of Chinatown. It is a beautiful and peaceful place to visit and learn about the Taoist religion.

I usually go to Binondo during Chinese New Year. Many people flock there during this time to celebrate and see dragon and lion dances and pay homage at the temples. I also make sure to stop by Yin Ying Restaurant for a good asado rice meal and a cold glass of their milk tea. It's the best!

8. Watch a sunset at Manila Bay 

Manila Bay is known for its beautiful sunsets. Take a stroll along the Baywalk and enjoy the view. I highly recommend going to SM MOA by the Bay to watch the magnificent Manila Bay Sunset.

9. Visit the Manila Ocean Park 

The Manila Ocean Park is a popular attraction for families, with a variety of marine life exhibits, shows, and attractions.

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Here are some things to do at Manila Ocean Park:
  • See the Oceanarium - The Oceanarium is the main attraction at Manila Ocean Park. It is a large indoor oceanarium that features over 14,000 sea creatures from around the world.
  • Watch the Symphony Evening Show - The Symphony Evening Show is a multimedia show that features music, lights, and water effects. It takes place at the main attraction of Manila Ocean Park, the Oceanarium.
  • Experience the Fish Spa - The Fish Spa is a unique experience where visitors dip their feet in a pool of water and have small fish nibble at the dead skin on their feet.
  • Visit the Jellies Exhibit - The Jellies Exhibit is a special exhibit that showcases different species of jellyfish in various colors and shapes.
  • Enjoy the Sea Lion Show - The Sea Lion Show is a fun and entertaining show that features trained sea lions performing tricks and stunts.
  • Go on a Glass Bottom Boat Ride - The Glass Bottom Boat Ride is a unique experience where visitors can ride on a boat with a glass bottom that allows them to see the marine life below.
  • Explore the Birds of Prey Kingdom - The Birds of Prey Kingdom is an aviary that showcases different species of birds of prey, including eagles, hawks, and falcons.
10. Visit the Manila Zoo.

Manila Zoo is a popular attraction located in the heart of Manila, Philippines. It is home to a wide range of animals and offers various activities and experiences for visitors. 

Image Source
Here are some things to do at Manila Zoo:
  • See the animals - Manila Zoo is home to over 500 animals, including tigers, elephants, lions, zebras, monkeys, and more.
  • Explore the Reptile House - The Reptile House features different species of snakes, lizards, and turtles from around the world.
  • Watch the Animal Shows - Manila Zoo features daily animal shows where visitors can watch different animals perform tricks and stunts.
  • Visit the Botanical Garden - The Botanical Garden is a tranquil garden filled with various plants and flowers. It's a great place to relax and take a break from the animal exhibits.
These are just a few of the many things you can do in Manila. There's always something to see and do in this vibrant city.


  1. Ang dami na tlgang pwedeng pasyalan sa Manila . Ung bagong manila zoo ang gusto ko mapuntahan ulit 😍


  3. Ang daming pwedeng puntahan at gawin dyan sa Manila. Sa Intramuros pa lang, kulang na ang isang araw. Sa mga nasa listahan, sa Divisoria at Rizal Park pa lang ako nakapunta kaya I'm looking forward na makabisita sa iba lalo na ang Intramuros. And of course, ang mga kainan sa Manila ay panalo din, hindi talaga mawawala anh food trip sa mga travels.

  4. Wow dami din talaga magagandang pasyalan jan sa Manila naalala ko dati enjoy ako non sa Intramuros looking forward ako sa manila ocean park gusto ko madala jan kids ko sure mag eenjoy sila💯💕

  5. Thank you for sharing this sir allan

  6. Thank you for sharing this sir allan


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