PHILIPPINES

  A SMILING ARCHIPELAGO

More than 7000 shimmering tropical islands choose from and discoveries still waiting to be made – the Philippines remains Southeast Asia`s destination of surprises along routes less travelled. It only costs one extra flight across the South Chinese Sea to get there, albeit a very short one, travellers often ignore the country. But perhaps that is the reason for the Philippines being such an attractive place. With so many islands and comparatively few visitors, the Philippines is one of the last great frontiers in Asian travel.

The Philippines is the second largest archipelago in the world after the neighbouring Indonesia, and similarly to its cousin the country boasts greenery and wildlife. Being located right on the Pacific “Ring of Fire”, close to the Equator, makes it to be prone to typhoons and earthquakes, but also a place of superabundant natural resources and one of the most diverse ecosystems. Majority of the islands are uninhabited, providing sanctuaries for rare fauna and flora.

Multiple ethnics throughout the country together with various architectonic styles speak for the colourful past of the Philippines. Nonetheless, what is the most obvious and significant part of the Filipino culture is the Spanish legacy. Colonial towns teems with historic churches and echoing sound of their bells, laid-back day life on the sleepy palm tree beaches, leisurely dotted with swings, hammocks and relaxed beach siesta-bars selling St Miguel beer, oscillates with endless night fiestas and late dinners of finger-licking culinary delights.

Not only the marvels of Terra Firma can get one captivated. The myriads of limestone islands, offshore isles and ethereal islets are veiling phenomenal underwater charm. The Philippines is a true scuba diver` s hub. In the immense depths of the turquoise waters one can find one of the world`s richest marine biodiversity. And all the city addicts will certainly take pleasure in bustling Manila, “The Heart of Fun” and a bustling melting pot where one can sample the country`s best offerings. Clearly, there is beauty everywhere around and maybe that is why the Filipinos are such happy, joyful and always smiling people.

 

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REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES

philippines

Political system: Unitary presidential constitutional republic

Capital: Manila

Population: 102,729,000

Land area: 298,170 km2

Religion: Roman Catholic

Currency: Peso (PHP)

Official language: Filipino, English

Drives on: Right side

Climate: Tropical

Plug type: A,B,C

Voltage: 220V

Kalamansi Juice: lime juice

Gulaman at Sago: sweet iced lemonade with tapioca balls

Salabat: ginger tea

Lambanog: coconut drink

Fresh fruit and milk shakes: mango, pomelo, lime, coconut

San Miguel, Cerveza Negra, Red Horse, Colt 45: local beers

Lechon: whole roasted pig

Longganisa: sausages

Tapa: cured beef

Torta: omelette

Adobo: chicken or pork in garlic and vinegar cooked until dry

Kaldereta: meat in tomato sauce

Puchero: beef in bananas and tomato sauce

Kare-kare: oxtail cooked in peanut sauce

Homonado: pork in pineapple sauce

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