Travel to the Philippines – Episode 475

categories: asia travel, pacific travel

Travel to the Philippines

Hear about travel to the Philippines as the Amateur Traveler talks to Julie Longland about her travel to the Cordilleras mountain region and the island of Palawan which was just named the “Best Island in the World”.


“I am actually Filipino American so I’ve been hearing about Palawan for a long time but someone just told me that Conde Nast readers just voted it the ‘Best Island in the World’. So it was really quite a surprise to hear that something that had been gaining in popularity among Filipinos had really reached the world stage as far as popularity.”

“The Cordilleras mountain region is traditionally a place that a lot of Filipinos would visit. One of the amazing sites there is actually a UNESCO World Heritage Site, ancient rice terraces. While that’s very well known, it’s not an easy place to get to.”

Julie recommends the Cordilleras for people who want an outdoor adventure off the beaten path and Palawan for people who are interested in an exotic paradise to visit.

Julie and her husband took the comfortable overnight public bus to get to the Cordilleras. You could also rent a car and driver. They visited the rice terraces in Batad which are considered to be the most impressive. There are a variety of hikes from a few hours to overnight hikes. Hiking the rice terraces is strenuous. They did a guided hike. The hikes are basically through farmers fields so it was useful to have someone who not only knew the right path but had the right permissions.

While still in the Cordilleras they also visited Tappiya Falls and the mountain retreat of Sagada known for their hanging coffins. In Sagada, they hiked from the Sumaguing Cave through to the Lumiang Cave.

Palawan is a long thin island north of Borneo. They did an island hopping tour in Honda Bay. Near Sabang, they visited the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park, one of the longest underground rivers in the world. The park is known for monitor lizards and monkeys as well as the river. You should probably not be afraid of bats if you are going to visit the park.

Julie gives a glimpse into the Filipino culture. We talk about how to get around and what food to eat as well.

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Show Notes

Rich and Julie Get A Move On
Cordillera Central
Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras
Getting to Mt Pinatubo and the Cordilleras
Batad Rice Terraces
Uncharted Philippines
Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras
Tappiyah Falls
Hanging Coffins
Lumiang Cave
Sumaguing Cave
Bontoc Museum
Puerto Princesa
Honda Bay
Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park
El Nido
El Nido Resorts
Log Cabin, Sagada


Jim commented on Ontario Road Trip – Episode 474

Your guest didn’t mention, and is probably too young to remember, that Parry Sound is the home town of the greatest hockey player not named Gretzky, Bobby Orr. When my wife was a little girl, her family visited relatives in Coldwater, ON, not far from Lake Huron, one summer. A little girl from Fort Worth found out why they call it Coldwater. I guess that’s why they wear two wetsuits when diving.

Pat commented on Travel to Hamburg, Germany – Episode 470

Just listened to Hamburg podcast, just a few days after returning from there 🙂 still loved to hear of new places for when I return. I would add Harry’s Hafenbasar found in a refurbished crane ship at the port. Fantastic collection of art and artifacts collected by Harry, a local bar owner who asked sailors to bring him something from their travelers. Result is everything from shrunken heads to African and Asian masks.

The Philippines

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by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast, and a co-host for This Week in Travel podcast.

4 Responses to “Travel to the Philippines – Episode 475”

Kirk Beiser


Unless I missed it I think there was an entire episode about the Philippines that didn’t mention Jeepneys. I recall them being talked about extensively in the previous episode but Jeepneys are still the single most bizarre mode of transport that I have taken (only 15ish countries).

The Philippines are just insanely beautiful. They counteract that with a developing but frequently frustrating tourist industry. You can visit some amazing places but they don’t always make it easy.



I don’t think we did in this episode, but I know we did in the first Philippines episode



Nice episode.

I can backup what your guest said about getting to Banaue, Sagada etc from Manila. I did travel there by myself and it as very straightforward. I got a taxi from Malate, the tourist area of Manila and I got to the bus station in about 15 minutes. I just bought a ticket there and then for the night bus no issues. The bus itself wasn’t super luxury but did the job. I don’t remember price but I think it’s pretty reasonable.

I did everything by myself without guides and never had an issue organising anything whether it be accommodation, food, walks etc.

You also remind of 1 of my biggest travelling regrets despite the fact I spent 2 months in Philippines I never got to visit Palawan. Everybody I know who visited absolutely loves it.

Philippines is such an amazing place and recommend it to anybody.



thanks Robert!

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