Best things to do in Manila

Posted June 11, 2022

Intramuros, Manila, Metro Manila, PhilippinesImage of Intramuros from:

Manila is a historical and cultural city that is home to more than 1.8 million people. It is a fast-growing and economically progressive city that offers both old and modern must-visit spots. While there are modern buildings, malls, and hotels around the area, Manila features interesting preserved places and experiences if you know where to go.

Let’s take you around the best places to visit in Manila!

1. Tour Intramuros 

Baluarte de San Diego in IntramurosIntramuros image from:

This historic walled city is one of the most visited tourist spots in Manila. It was built during the Spanish era in the 1500s and was used as a political and military base by the Spaniards. Today, you can revel in preserved vintage architecture like that of Baluarte de San Diego (a watchtower used as a natural defense during the war), Manila Cathedral, vintage cafes, newspaper printing press, and other historical landmarks within its walls.

Get a glimpse of the past by walking on the cobbled streets of Intramuros or riding a kalesa – the drivers are able tour guides who know the vast history and significance of the place. 

2. Visit old churches

Manila is also home to a lot of historical churches worth visiting. This includes the majestic San Agustin Church, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a national treasure that features Spanish Baroque Architecture, massive interiors, paintings, and carvings. It is one of the oldest stone churches in the country.

The Manila CathedralManila Cathedral image from:

You can also drop by the Manila Cathedral, a beautiful church with its own historical features that is now a popular venue for weddings. 

Other must-visit churches are Quiapo Church and Malate Church.

3. Explore the National Museum

A visit to the National Museum is an  immersive way to learn about the rich cultural heritage of the Filipino people and the natural history of the country. It houses the National Museum of Fine Arts, Anthropology, and Natural History.

Prepare to be awed by the larger-than-life paintings and sculptures by renowned Filipino artists like Juan Luna, Fernando Zobel, and Felix Hidalgo. One of the main attractions is the Spoliarium painting by Juan Luna.

Whether or not you’re a history enthusiast, you’ll definitely learn a lot in the National Museum.

4. Food trip at Binondo

Binondo ManilaBinondo image from:

Absolutely don’t miss a food trip in Binondo when you visit Manila. Feast on yummy dumplings, fried siopao, hakaw, peking duck, and authentic milk tea! Popular choices are dumplings at Don Bei, hakaw at Wai Ying, and fried siopao at Shanghai Fried Siopao, and Chinese fried chicken at Sincerity Café. 

Tip: If you’re into charms, Binondo also houses many stores that sell various charms for good luck and good fortune.

5. Wind down at Rizal Park

When in Manila, don’t miss a visit to Rizal Park. It is a historical landmark where the country’s national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal was executed. The remains of Rizal were placed at the base of the iconic monument guarded 24/7 by the Marine Corps.

It provides a peaceful atmosphere and is a good place to calm down and escape the busy city.

6. Watch the sunset at Roxas Boulevard 

At sundown, sit along the Manila Baywalk on Roxas Boulevard for a breathtaking view of the Manila Bay. There are lots of cafes, restaurants, and food vendors nearby where you can eat while sunset viewing.

7. Join a walking or biking tour of Manila’s landmarks

Guided tours for intimate groups are also offered in Manila. It’s a good way to explore the city with a group. For instance, Bambike Ecotours Intramuros goes through 8-10 historical and cultural sites using eco-friendly bamboo bikes. You can also opt to DIY with friends so you can go around other landmarks like the Central Post Office, the beautiful Jones Bridge, or explore Chinatown.

Apart from historical and tourist attractions, Manila is also home to major hospitals, universities, and commercial establishments. It is a thriving district that features urban charm without losing touch of heritage. No wonder it is also considered as one of the top location choices for many investors. Being the country’s capital, it is minutes away from the Makati Business District, and conveniently connected to the north and south areas through infrastructure.

Torre Lorenzo Development Corporation (TLDC) has long seen the potential in Manila. It pioneered premium university residences in the country with residential developments in Manila. The company has grown its portfolio to include mixed-use and leisure developments in Manila, Quezon City, and Las Pinas, as well as in key emerging regions like South Luzon and Davao.