10 Reasons Why “Commuting” is More Fun in the Philippines

Getting around Manila is definitely one of the horrors most foreign tourists face when they get here. From the uncontrollable daily traffic situations, to taxi scams, and undisciplined motorists, we can go on and on the whole day enumerating n reasons. Despite all these, there’s always something to look forward to on the streets of the Philippines. Here’s a list of why it’s worth enjoying:

1. You need not shed a lot of cash to explore some of the 7,107 islands of the archipelago. Everything comes cheap here in the Philippines, especially when you are good at haggling.

Forget about those hop on, hop off buses! Rent a “Bangka” (a local outrigger boat). Find a secluded island. Burn your passport. And spend the rest of your life in paradise.


2. Biking on the Beach. Worth doing on any Summer Day!


3. The “Top Load!”

Any visit to the Philippines isn’t complete without having a ride on board the colorful Jeepney. Originally made from US military jeeps of World War II, these icons are the most popular means of public transportation in the country.

In some provinces, however, it is quite common to see passengers sitting on a roof of an overloaded jeepney. We call it “Top Loading.”

Is it illegal? Yes.

Dangerous? Definitely!

And yes, foreign tourists are highly encouraged (or discouraged) to try. No waiver form required.


4. Travel back in time. Hop on the “Calesa,” a decorated horse-drawn carriage used widely by the rich and powerful during the Spanish Era.

Know how it feels to ride an 18th century Bentley!


5. We have our own “Tuk-tuk.” Just a bit different.

Tricycles can be found in almost every local town in Luzon. They are mainly used to service short distance travels. As it is the preferred mode of transportation by most locals, you will have no trouble finding one on any street.

The tricycle is actually like a taxi minus the meter… and the suspensions.


6. And they come in different varieties!

In the southern part of the Philippines, “Motorelas” rule the road. It works like a tricycle- you hop on and tell where you wanna go.

The only difference is: the driver can also pick up other passengers as long as their destination is (a.) the same as yours or (b.) on the way to yours.

Siargao, Surigao del Norte, Surfing, Surfer, Cloud 9, Habal-Habal, Motorcycle

“Habal-habal” in Siargao


7. “Paraws.” Apart from the powdery, white sands, these colorful sail boats surrounding Boracay make the island worth flying to.


8. Not all rafts are created equal. The best ones are in the Philippines.


9. Skid Slopes in Style.

High above the clouds, atop the mountains of the north, Ifugao kids (and even adults) roll on these badass Scooters downhill.

“Look ‘ma, no brakes!”


10. Because You Are Never Lost!

Wherever you are, whoever you meet, there is, at least, one thing that will make you fall in love with this country.

Whether it’s the powdery beach, the warm Filipino smile, or the amazing diving experience, you can never go wrong about getting lost in this sunny side of the globe.

Toploading, Port Barton, El Nido, Jeepney, Philippines

Toploading in Port Barton