While Manila is known for its bustling cityscape and iconic landmarks, it also hides a treasure trove of lesser-known gems waiting to be discovered. From charming neighborhoods to cultural enclaves, these hidden gems offer a unique and authentic experience of the city. Step off the beaten path and explore these 10 hidden gems in Manila for a truly memorable adventure.
Escolta Street in the old downtown area of Manila is a nostalgic throwback to the city’s glamorous past. Lined with beautifully preserved Art Deco buildings, this historic street is home to quaint cafes, specialty shops, and art galleries. Take a leisurely stroll and immerse yourself in the vintage charm and architectural beauty.
Pinto Art Museum
Escape the urban hustle and explore the serene Pinto Art Museum in Antipolo, just a short distance from Manila. This contemporary art haven showcases a collection of local and international artworks in a picturesque Mediterranean-inspired setting. Admire the stunning sculptures, paintings, and installations while enjoying the tranquil surroundings.
Tucked away in Pasig City, Kapitolyo is a vibrant and foodie-friendly neighborhood. It’s a haven for gastronomic adventures with its wide array of restaurants, food parks, and hole-in-the-wall eateries. Indulge in diverse cuisines, from local street food to international delicacies, and experience the lively and laid-back atmosphere.
Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar
Step back in time at Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar, a unique heritage resort in Bataan. This sprawling complex showcases restored Spanish colonial-era houses and buildings, creating a charming replica of a 19th-century Filipino town. Take a guided tour, stay in a heritage hotel, and soak in the nostalgic ambiance.
National Museum of Natural History
While the National Museum is well-known, the recently opened National Museum of Natural History is a hidden gem within its premises. Marvel at the stunning architecture and explore the extensive collection of botanical and geological exhibits. Don’t miss the iconic “Tree of Life” centerpiece in the museum’s central atrium.
Delve into the secrets and stories of Manila’s walled city, Intramuros. Join a guided walking tour and discover hidden courtyards, historic sites, and cobblestone streets. Uncover intriguing tales of the city’s past and gain a deeper understanding of its rich history and cultural significance.
La Mesa Ecopark
Escape the urban chaos and reconnect with nature at La Mesa Ecopark, a lush green oasis in Quezon City. Explore the park’s scenic trails, enjoy a picnic by the lake, or try activities like boating and fishing. It’s a perfect retreat for nature lovers and a great way to unwind amidst the city’s hustle and bustle.
SiningSaysay is a monumental mural that tells the story of the Philippines through vibrant and intricate artworks. Located in the basement of the Gateway Gallery in Cubao, this hidden gem presents a visual narrative of significant events and figures in Philippine history. It’s a captivating and educational experience for art enthusiasts and history buffs.
Nestled on a hilltop in Antipolo, the Antipolo Cathedral (also known as the Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage Shrine) is a serene and religious sanctuary. Visit this hidden gem to marvel at its stunning architecture, attend a mass, and enjoy panoramic views of the city.
Paco Park is a tranquil green space tucked away in the heart of Manila. This former Spanish colonial cemetery offers a serene and peaceful escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. Take a leisurely walk along its tree-lined pathways, admire the historic monuments and mausoleums, or relax on the grassy lawns. It’s a hidden gem perfect for quiet contemplation and relaxation.
Manila has more to offer than meets the eye. By exploring these hidden gems, you can uncover a different side of the city filled with history, art, nature, and cultural experiences. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, an art lover, a foodie, or simply seeking tranquility, these hidden gems in Manila will provide you with a unique and memorable adventure. So, step off the beaten path and embark on a journey to discover the hidden treasures that make Manila a truly captivating destination.