With the Philippines having 7,641 islands, each offering a different kind of paradise, there are surely way more places that make every visit a more fun experience.
Dumaguete, the capital of Negros Oriental, is also nicknamed as the City of Gentle People. Primarily, having three private and one state universities, and a number of public elementary and high schools, Dumaguete has been dubbed as a university town. Its central location makes it a convenient gateway for those who wish to take up tertiary education coming in from surrounding provinces of Visayas and Mindanao regions. Not only is it an educational destination, but also a draw among foreigners with its beaches, diving sites such as the world-famous Apo Island.
Iloilo, the largest city of the islands of Panay in the Western Visayas region, is host to a number of Spanish colonial houses and churches, including the Sto. Tomas de Villanueva Parish Church or popularly know as Miag-ao Cathedral, one of the four baroque churches in the country inscribed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Its heritage depicted through various cultural traditions (Dinagyang Festival), historic hotspots pleasantly blend with the thriving urban scene. The nearby Guimaras takes you to a different world with its sweet mangoes, islets, lovely beaches and a slow-paced country life.
Nestling in the northern part of Mindanao is the volcanic island province of Camiguin. The life on this pear-shaped island thrives on agricultural, aquamarine and an abundance of the copra production (product of coconut palms).
As it rests in the Bohol Sea, this quaint and underrated destination boasts of cold and hot springs amid lush jungles and idyllic beaches that offer a fascinating experience of the island, catering to the continuous growth of its local economy.
And while some express disapproval and are saddened about the recent 6-months temporary closure of Boracay Island, this decision didn't only encourage travelers to be more open in further exploring the country but also serves as a reminder to carry out our roles as caretakers of Mother Earth.