First things first.
If this is my only blog post you’ll ever read about the Philippines- I just need to let you know that I love it here.
Listen, I’m the person that have been trying to avoid South East Asia for a long while – it just seemed to be the obvious backpackers choice and I wanted something a little off the beaten path. But the Philippines is different. The Philippines changed me. Let me tell you why.
10 reasons why Philippines is my favorite country and my #1 recommendation for you for 2017.
1. People. They alone would be good enough of a reason (but it does help they live in paradise). They are kind, patient, positive, honest and friendly. I can say that about a lot of countries but Filipinos have been consistently going above and beyond to fix my problems, not just saying ‘sorry you lost your camera’, they made sure to do everything possible to find it. Plus, they have an awesome sense of humor.
2. English is the official language which makes is very easy to communicate. Makes connecting so much easier.
3. Food is absolutely delicious and vegan friendly (and if it isn’t – the above mentioned friendly Philippinos will figure something out for you). It’s like a mix of Thai, Japanese and European food – not very spicy, but fresh and healthy.
4. It’s officially paradise on earth.
5. It’s not very expensive. Average meal in a local restaurant is about $3-$5. Better customer service than in America.
6. You can safety drink tap water in most places and don’t have to be paranoid about brushing teeth or the origins of your ice.
7. Because a lot of beautiful places are not very crowded and some are even completely isolated!
8. The water has 50 shades of blue.
9. It’s so big and diverse you can spend here an entire month and still not see everything.
10. People here respect nature and value it over getting $4 tip. I was constantly reminded not to throw food in the water so that fish don’t get dependent (it is a common practice in other countries to throw bread in the water to attract fish closer to divers for photo opportunities), not to put too much sunscreen on as it stays in the water. There were a lot of ‘do not tip’ signs everywhere and I never ever felt pressured/hinted/asked to tip anyone. It’s so much nicer to leave gratuity without being told so.