The 7,100 islands of the Philippines are a dream for adventurous travellers who come for extraordinary diving, good surfing and activities from kayaking to kite boarding. The country’s wonderful bio-diversity includes active volcanoes, tropical rainforests and idyllic beaches along the fifth longest coastline in the world.
The Philippines has a dynamic economy based around manufacturing and ship building industries, mining, electronics and agriculture and can boast a resilient real estate market.
The legacy of 350 years of Spanish rule is shown in the architecture, Catholic churches and regular fiestas that feature across the Philippines: even the country’s name was a tribute to King Philip II of Spain in 1543. America took over from Spain as the ruling colonial power before the country became fully independent in 1946. Alongside Filipino, English remains the official language.
Luzon is the largest group of islands and is home to several large urban areas including Manila, the capital.
The National Capital Region in Luzon has 17 cities in all. Metro Manila has a mature property market and appeals for its easy access to top-class facilities. It is the Philippines second most populous city behind nearby Quezon City. The City of Makati is the premier financial district and where many expat workers in Manila choose to base themselves, close to the technology firms that flourish there.
Immediately south of Manila, Laguna has several new developments including ones based around golf courses and like nearby Cavite, benefit from good transport links to the capital. Tagaytay City is a popular tourist and second home location there, 34 miles from Manila.
The second-largest population area in the Philippines is the province of Cebu which has a growing business community, good schools and hospitals, plenty of shops and restaurants and an international airport.