Discover the best of the Philippines on this all-encompassing tour as you paddle, snorkel, rappel, hike, and fly your way across the country. Begin in Manila, working your way north to the Banaue Rice Terraces before flying south to the islands of Bohol, Cebu, and Mactan. Travel west and end your trip in Puerto Princesa and the ever-popular El Nido.
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Weather is most pleasant from December-February. This is the dry season and the high season—with the mild and sunny days, you can expect lots of fellow travelers, especially around Christmas and the New Year. That said, you can escape the throngs by avoiding the most popular tourist areas—ask your specialist for their recommendations.
March through mid-May is also typically dry, with rising temperatures as the months go by. International travelers are replaced by vacationing locals, with crowds peaking again during Holy Week. The rest of the year is considered the wet season—rainy days are common and typhoons are possible, but this is a good time to avoid crowds and find deals if you feel like taking your chances. Cebu, Bohol, and Palawan tend to be sheltered from big storms, making them good bets for this time of year.
Where should you go?
Made up of a dizzying number of islands—more than 7,000 in all—the Philippines offers its fair share of brilliant beaches along with all the tropical trappings you've been daydreaming about. Palawan is a crowd pleaser, with stretches of untouched coast to laze on, fantastical limestone formations to kayak around, and brilliant reefs with great snorkeling visibility. Divers will head to Visayas, hikers and bikers will revel in the mountainous Cordillera, and Luzon offers luxe resorts and excellent windsurfing on the northern side.
How many days do you need?
Five days in the Philippines makes for a sweet but very short trip—you'll want to maximize your time by focusing on one region. For example, stick to Palawan and you can snorkel the coral reefs of Ulugan Bay, kayak around limestone formations in El Nido, and explore multiple islands in a very limited timeframe.
With more than a week to spend, you can combine Palawan with time in the Cordillera: see the famous Banaue Rice Terraces, spend a night in Batad, a village within an amphitheater of rice terraces, check out the bizarre hanging coffins of Sagada, and more. If you plan to spend 2 weeks or more in the Philippines, you'll be able to see it all at a relaxed pace and time to spare—if you're feeling bold, why not add a side trip to swim with whale sharks in Donsol?
Covering some of the Philippines' most desirable beaches, this 11-day tour offers the perfect romantic getaway for couples. Stay in luxury resorts in exotic locations from private islands to jungle hideaways. Enjoy customized private tours of nearby islands, snorkel shipwrecks, and lounge beachside with a cocktail in hand.
This 15-day itinerary offers the perfect combination of adventurous and relaxing activities. You will snorkel shipwrecks and aquamarine lagoons, visit secluded beaches, and climb and rappel slippery trails. Enjoy the Philippines as you island hop your way across the country, ending on the white sandy beaches of Boracay.
Trek through the Philippines' Cordillera and marvel at its natural and cultural heritage. Discover famous rice terraces, quaint villages, sacred waterfalls and rivers, extensive cave systems, and the hanging coffins of Echo Valley.
Spend 20 days island hopping in the Philippines, hitting some of the country's major highlights. You'll begin in Manila, the country's busy capital. Then, you'll swim with whale sharks, and snorkel in Donsol. Next, you'll fly to beautiful Cebu, where you'll swim in pristine waterfalls, see the famous chocolate hills, and look for marine turtles. Finally, you'll arrive in Palawan, the country's largest province. Adventures include visiting shipwrecks, exploring an underground river, and hiking to hidden lakes.
Palawan's exotic geography and diverse vegetation are exceptional in a country that already has its fair share of awe-inspiring sights. This six-day adventure will have you snorkeling, seeking out wildlife, riding an underground river, and kayaking the El Nido islands. Discover why Palawan is in a league of its own when it comes to tropical destinations.
January is one of the best months to travel to the Philippines: the weather is warm but not too hot and humid, there's little rain, and everything is open and accessible. Crowds...
February is the peak season for travel to the Philippines, with warm and dry weather that's not too hot. It's a great time to participate in all outdoor activities, from hiking...
March is the high season for travel to the Philippines, as it's at the tail end of the dry season. But as temperatures and humidity increase, many travelers prefer to stick to...
April is a popular time of year for travel to the Philippines as it is at the end of the dry season before the rains arrive. Temperatures are generally hot in April, so many...
The dry season (December to May) is the best time to visit the Philippines as the sun is shining, the sea is calm and clear, and the conditions are perfect for a range of outdoor activities. There are also advantages of traveling in the wet season (June to November), including lower prices and fewer crowds, as well as pockets of the country that remain pretty dry.
October is the end of the rainy season in the Philippines, and although travelers should expect some showers, there's less rain than in the previous few months. This is the shoulder season for travel and is an excellent time to visit if you want to take advantage of lower prices, thinner crowds, and fair weather. There are also many great festivals you can take part in during October. Read on to learn more about travel to the Philippines in October.
December is the peak season for travel to the Philippines: the weather is fine and clear, and so are the seas. Swimming and diving are excellent this month, as are island-hopping itineraries—there are over 7,000 islands in the Philippines, after all! Read on to find out more about travel to the Philippines in December.
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Amazing Trip in El Nido!
Dec 4 - Dec 8, 2022
My time in El Nido was amazing, and it was all thanks to Leo and the staff at Uncharted Earth! Leo took care of everything and answered all my questions and concerns in such a timely fashion and patient way. I was super anxious about traveling to the Philippines alone for the first time, and because Leo organized everything for me, I was able to enjoy my time there without having to worry about all the little details. El Bacuit Tours was also amazing, and the tour guides who work for the... read more
Nov 18 - Nov 27, 2022
We had the most memorable first time in the Philippines thanks to Kim Kim and the wonderful staff from Unchartered Philippines. We get to Manila and Ana picked us up and toured Intermesos. She was nice, sweet, informative. The next days we spent in Palawan starting with Rich in Puerto Princessa for one day then 4 in El Nido. You can really tell the passion and knowledge Rich had about the country, Palawan. He was personable and friendly. The drivers were great and our tours with Mike and his... read more
Will def book again!
Aug 9 - Aug 19, 2022
Booking this trip through my guide, Cami, was the best decision ever. She took care of everything. I had the piece of mind knowing that all my activities were taken care of. She was always accessible and responded very quickly. I had zero issues during my 2 weeks by myself in the Phillipines. She was even kind enough to give me suggestions for my off days. I wouldn’t go with any other company. 10/10 would recommend to anybody. I’m already planning my next trip and can’t wait to book with Cami again!