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Visit to Manila

London
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Visit to Manila

Hi All,

I am on business in a few weeks, and will (sorry to say) only have 1 day spare (a Saturday) before I need to fly back home.

What would you recommend I do for 1 day in Manila ??

I see corregidor island is no 1 recommended. Would you recommend for the 1 day I have (how do you get there etc.. is a tour recommended).

or should I stay in actual manila and look around ?

thanks

Melbourne, Australia
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1. Re: Visit to Manila

The day tour to Corrigedor Island has become increasingly popular. I would only go if you are interested in military history. The tour departs from the Sun Cruises terminal at 0800n (boarding time from 0730) and arrives back about 1545. It is well organised with the guides displaying excellent knowledge.

If not, I would visit Intramuros and look at San Agustin Cathedral and the associated museum and Fr Blanco's garden. Then you could have lunch or a late morning tea at the Mitre cafe nearby (with its connection to the Catholic Bishops.)

Then you could take a horse drawn calesa ride around for half an hour, but be very careful to agree on a price and write it down and get the coachman to initial it, as they have been known to rip off tourists. Stand your ground if there's any 'trouble.'

Then you could catch a taxi and visit either Mall of Asia, or the closer Robinsons (shopping centre) Place Ermita.

Then why not have a lovely buffet dinner: the Hyatt's Market Cafe (in Ermita/ Malate near Manila Bay) has an excellent buffet that only opens at 1800 hours on Friday, Sat and Sunday nights now but when I went there a few months ago, it was very reasonably priced.

Other buffets are the very popular Vikings (but not really suitable for solo dining), Corniche at Manila Diamond, Spiral at Sofitel Philippine Plaza or further afield (and quite slow to get there if one travels by taxi and not the more efficient, but circuitous elevated light rail called the MRT or LRT - see www.urbanrail.net) Heat at EDSA Shangri La, Mandaluyong (near Megamall) or similar buffets at Spectrum, Fairmont Makati, New World Hotel Makati or Dusit Thani, Makati, not to mention Circles Event Cafe at Makati Shangri La.

For the taste of old Manila, The Manila Hotel not only has a marvellous, huge reception area but also a lunch and dinner buffet that receives good reviews along with The Champagne Room.

Many if not all these epicurean delights are reviewed on TA so look them up.

Singapore, Singapore
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2. Re: Visit to Manila

Better to pre-book Corrigedor tour especially on a weekend.

They are really popular and the island is really lovely.

Irvine, California
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3. Re: Visit to Manila

manila is very big and crowded. if you have 1 day don't waste time in taxis and traffic. plan what you want to see. if you want corregidor tour stay near the ferry terminal...if you want shopping makati and glorietta is nice. mall of asia is good also. pick a hotel close to where you will be visiting.

Edited: 5:57 pm, May 02, 2014
Manila
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4. Re: Visit to Manila

I agree with Victorianlad. Intramuros is an excellent place to visit and a visit to Fort Santiago after lunch will nicely fill the afternoon.

Personally, I would give the Kalesa a miss. It's no fun arguing with a crook who increases his price after the tour and then calls his friends to help him intimidate you and they always choose a place where you can't find a policeman!

Robinson's Ermita will be sure to have a restaurant that you like without the taxi ride to Pasay and although the MRT/LRT networks are good pays of travel, the overcrowding on them causes long delays especially at peak times.

London
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5. Re: Visit to Manila

Thanks everyone for your responses, so Intramuros is the way to go. Would you recommend any tours or just go explore. Assume it's the same rules like any other large cities. Regards to safety. Assume intramural swill occupy my full day ?

Singapore, Singapore
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6. Re: Visit to Manila

If possible, join the group tour.

http://celdrantours.blogspot.sg/

It is a very informative tour and the host is a good actor.

Hahahah!!!

Melbourne, Australia
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7. Re: Visit to Manila

Carlos Celdran has too many on his group tours. It is too difficult to hear him. (As a side issue, I do not like his criticism of the Catholic Church).

You are better to wander about yourself. Try to visit early in the morning (say starting at 0830) when it is not the hottest part of the day.

Panay Island...
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8. Re: Visit to Manila

If you like Chinese cuisine, you might also like the Binondo (Manila's Chinatown) food tour called "the BIG Binondo Food Wok! Nibbling our way around Chinatown!" http://oldmanilawalks.com/bndo.htm You'll visit and sample food at some good and inexpensive eateries and also get a tour of this historic part of Manila.

I disagree that it's better to wander around Manila by yourself. It's less safe and less interesting.

Paranaque...
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9. Re: Visit to Manila

A trip to Corregidor takes the whole day. I would suggest staying in Manila and going around Intramuros instead.

Metro Manila
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10. Re: Visit to Manila

Agree with #1. If you're not into history, then I would give Corregidor a miss. There are many places to visit around Metro Manila, depending on what you're interested in. As food is a universal interest -- for a sampling of different Filipino delicacies, go to Market!Market -- they have stalls outside that showcase the different specialties of the country's provinces. For a traditional Filipino meal, nothing beats home-cooked but the next best thing would be Barrio Fiesta or KKK.

If you want to save yourself the hassle and the commute, you can also go for a private day tour with a local guide and you can tailor your itinerary as you wish.