In one of the most vibrant capitals of the world, a trip to Manila is a disorienting experience. Faced with its magnificent skyscrapers, Manila saves up a more human spectacle for its visitors.
The city is a reflection of the whole of the Philippines, a melting pot of Chinese, Hindu and Western influences. Just as Chinese cuisine meets with Spanish flavors, this is a colorful heritage, a disorder of Western senses that makes your stay in Manila an emotionally-charged experience. The disorienting feeling continues as you explore the Intramuros neighborhood, reflecting an old-fashioned image with its outdated style, reflecting its struggle through some of Manila's more difficult times and its many Hispanic and more broadly, colonial, vestiges.
A unique cultural deposit left by the West on the other side of the world, old Manila first offers an austere image with its city walls, its parapets and its former cells that are now restaurants. A high point of the site, Fort Santiago offers visitors a moving walk amid these sixteenth century remains where eras come together with memorable eclecticism. But like a ghost hovering over Manila and its generous tropical climate, Spain continues to inhabit the soul of Manila through the ancient stones of the church of San Augustin. Gracefully Sevillian and located on the other side of the Pasig River, the Basilica of the Black Nazarene is an impossible bridge between the Philippine capital and beautiful Andalusia, thousands of miles away. A quite unique experience therefore awaits the traveler arriving on Manilan soil, as is asserted by the capital's hedonistic and wild nightlife. The bravest among you might want to wait for sunrise so you can watch the first rays of sun illuminate the city from Manila Bay.