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17-Day Countryside, Islands & Highlands Tour to Cebu, Palawan & Baguio from Manila

Beach at Secret Lagoon in El Nido Palawan
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Tour starts
Manila, Metro Manila, Philippines
Starting time
at 09:00
Duration
17 days
Ending place
Manila, Metro Manila, Philippines
Languages:
English
Difficulty:
Easy
Available:
All year
Minimum age:
None

Visit the highlands, countryside, and islands of the Philippines in this 17-day vacation package. Explore the parks in Baguio, the historical landmarks in Cebu, and the idyllic islands of Palawan from Manila. Accommodations, daily breakfast, transfers, entrance fees, and the service of guides will also be pre-arranged. 

You will meet your guide at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport and travel to Manila for a full-day Intramuros tour. From the capital, you will then fly to the Ilocos region, where you will learn about the life of late president Ferdinand Marcos at the Malacanang of the North in Ilocos Norte and walk down the Spanish-era Calle Crisologo in Vigan. 

Your guide will then bring you to the highlands, particularly in Sagada, for a spelunking tour of Sumaguing Cave. You will also bring home strawberries from the Strawberry Farm in Benguet before heading to the lowlands and trekking up Mt. Pinatubo. From Luzon, you will ride a plane to Bohol. Here, you will explore Cambuhat Village, discover the underwater world of Pamilacan Island, dig into a hearty lunch on your Loboc River Cruise, and see the famous Chocolate Hills. 

After getting your fill of Bohol’s countryside, board a ferry for Dumaguete next and see its Silliman University and Apo Island. Another notable Visayan province on your itinerary is Cebu, where you will indulge in the Kawasan Falls, Pescador Island, Temple of Leah, and Sirao Flower Farm. 

To conclude your tour, you will fly from Cebu to Palawan. Explore Honda Bay and the Underground River in Puerto Princesa, see the islands of Port Barton, and take photos in the Big Lagoon and Shimizu Island in El Nido. 

Go on a 17-day vacation and see the beauty of Manila, Ilocos, Sagada, Benguet, Tarlac, Bohol, Dumaguete, Cebu, and Palawan. Check availability by choosing a date.

Included

16 nights accommodation (budget category)
16 days breakfast
16 lunch
All flights with 20kgs baggage allowance
Day 1 - Intramuros Tour (Manila)
Day 2 - Ilocos Norte and Ilocos Sur (Ilocos Region)
Day 3 to 4 - Sagada and Benguet Tour (Cordillera Region)
Day 5 - Mt. Pinatubo Tour
Day 6 to 12 - Bohol, Dumaguete and Cebu Tour (Central Visayas)
Day 13 to 16 - Puerto Princesa, Port Barton and El Nido Tour (Palawan)
Day 17 - Back to Manila
All transportation to and from included activities and destinations
All environmental fees, port fees, and all other applicable taxes

Map

Attractions

Activities

Sightseeing and Walking
Island Hopping
City Tours
Culture, Arts and Historical Tour
Outdoor Activities

Daily itinerary

Day 1
View of National Museum from Intramuros

Day 1: Intramuros Tour

You will arrive at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport on Day 1. From there, you will make your way to Intramuros to jumpstart your tour. A National Historical Landmark since 1951, this walled city exudes an old-world charm thanks to its myriad of Spanish-era attractions. One of the sites you will visit here is Fort Santiago, a Hispanic stone fortress commissioned by Spanish governor Miguel López de Legazpi in 1593.

Just outside of the fortress is Plaza Roma. Known as the heart of Intramuros, Plaza Roma is one of the walled district’s three major public squares. Enjoy a quick stroll across the plaza before heading to Bahay Tsinoy. This museum presents the story of the Chinese contributions to Philippine history.

After examining the varied collections here, you will head to Casa Manila, a fully-furnished home-turned-museum that showcases the Filipinos’ lifestyle during the Spanish colonial era. You will then enjoy a leisurely walk through San Diego Gardens and Baluarte De San Diego on the southwestern corner of Intramuros before continuing to San Agustin Church and Museum.

Here, you will spot some religious artwork and sculptures. To cap off the tour, you will drop by Manila Cathedral, the first-ever cathedral in the country.

Day 2
Cobblestone streets of Calle Crisologo in Ilocos

Day 2: Ilocos Laoag and Vigan Tour

It's time to see the beauty of the Ilocos region. You will catch a flight to Laoag, where your guide will take you on a full-day tour of Laoag, Vigan, and its neighboring towns. To start, you will head first to the Malacañang of the North in Paoay. This two-story mansion now serves as a presidential museum. It also stands close to Paoay Lake, where you can enjoy the scenery.

From there, your guide will lead you to Saint Augustine Church or Paoay Church, as it is more widely called. The cathedral features a characteristic Baroque style, with a three-story coral stone bell tower. You will then head next to the Marcos Museum to learn about the life of former president Ferdinand Marcos. Following your visit, your guide will bring you to another museum, Juan and Antonio Luna Museum.

You will then continue your tour to Vigan, where you will visit St. Paul's Cathedral, an Earthquake Baroque church. Bantay Church, famous for its neo-gothic architecture and pseudo-Romanesque features, is another important church in the region. Around two kilometers south of the church is Pagburnayan, where you will learn how local people produce pottery.

Visit the Burgos Museum, the National Museum, and the Crisologo Museum next to find out more about the history and past of Ilocos. Your guide will then bring you for a safari experience to Baluarte. Before heading to your hotel in Laoag, you will stroll along the cobblestone streets of Calle Crisologo.

Day 3
Hanging coffins outside a cave in Sagada

Day 3: Sagada Tour

You will start your trip to the rural town of Sagada in the Cordillera Mountains early in the morning from your Laoag hotel. The first destination you will visit in this rustic town is Sugong Cave, one of the 60 caves found here. This natural attraction is located near the town center and is famous for the coffins hanging from the side of the limestone cliffs.

You will then pass the Echo Valley on your way back to the town center. Full of lush towering trees and greenery, Echo Valley got its name because shouts can be echoed all over the area. You will then prepare for a spelunking adventure as you explore the largest cavern in Sagada, the Sumaguing Cave.

The cave has the biggest chamber among those found in this town. It features millions of ancient stalactites, stalagmites, and odd rock formations. You can also find cold water natural pools inside.

The Bontoc Tribal Museum will be your last stop. To conserve the culture and traditions of the native people of the Cordillera region, a Belgian nun founded this museum. Inside, you will find some traditional objects representing the culture of the Ifugaos. From there, you will travel to your lodging in Sagada aboard a van.

Day 4
Beautiful view of Batad Rice terraces in Banaue

Day 4: Benguet Tour

For Day 4, your guide will take you to the other towns of Benguet province, beginning with Atok. After you leave your hotel in Sagada, you will make your way to the Atok Sakura Flowers. In 2016, the Japanese government of Kochi Prefecture donated over 30 Benguet Sakura trees to the province as a sign of their 40-year friendship. That is why the Atok Sakura Flowers site has been named as Benguet-Kochi Sisterhood Park.

You will see more vibrant blooms as you visit Northern Blossom next. With unusual flowers, this two-hectare farm is sure to steal your breath away. Take pictures of the colorful flowers here before heading to the 2nd Highest Point on the Philippine road system. This location is situated at 2,255 meters above sea level and can be found in Barangays Cattubo and Paoay, Atok.

From there, you will then drop by the Spanish Trail before visiting La Trinidad. This peaceful town is home to the famous Strawberry Farm, one of the most popular destinations in the highlands. You can enjoy picking strawberries and buying strawberry items like wine, crinkles, and jams during your stay here. You will then make your way to your Baguio hotel.

Day 5
ATV vehicles in Mt. Pinatubo

Day 5: Mt. Pinatubo Tour

You will go to Tarlac for a day hike up Mt. Pinatubo after leaving your hotel in Baguio. This active volcano, located over 170km from Baguio, is noted for its devastating eruption in 1991. It is known as the second-biggest terrestrial eruption of the 20th century after it destroyed over 8,000 houses and cost around 10 billion pesos in damages.

After arriving in the province, your guide will take you on a 4x4 ride from Sta. Juliana Tourism Center to the mountain base. You will cross the bumpy and dusty Crow Valley landscape while admiring its moon-like terrain. You will then get off the jeep and make your way up the volcano.

The walk usually takes 1 to 1.5 hours. Along the way, you can see a rare formation of lava sand created by the 1991 eruption. You will then be greeted by the turquoise waters of the crater lake as you hit the summit. You will have plenty of time to enjoy your lunch here while taking in the quiet countryside. Take lots of souvenir pictures, too, before you start your descent and return for a well-deserved rest to your Manila hotel.

Day 6
Fresh oysters from Bohol Cambuhat Oyster Farm

Day 6: Bohol Cambuhat Tour

You will travel to the Province of Bohol on the sixth day of this holiday package. After you check out of your Manila baywalk hotel, you will then ride a plane to Panglao International Airport. From the airport, you will make your way to the town of Buenavista, particularly at Daet Bridge. This is where you will board a boat to Cambuhat, a quiet village nestled at the end of the Cambuhat River.

Enjoy your cruise here as your boatman weaves through the lush mangroves and the waving leaves of nipa palms lining the riverside. You might also encounter wildlife along the way. After your short cruise, you will disembark at the village, where your guide will bring you to the Cambuhat Oyster Farm.

This is one of the locals’ primary sources of livelihood here. The locals here will demonstrate how they raise and harvest oysters. You will also stop by a small tourist center on the banks of the river.

After exploring the oyster farm, you will have a sumptuous lunch of oysters. While you dine, the locals will perform a traditional Buri dance for your entertainment. You will then see how the villagers produce woven goods utilizing native looms. At the end of the tour, you will head to your lodging in Panglao.

Day 7
Beautiful white sand beach at Pamilacan Island in Bohol

Day 7: Bohol Pamilacan Island Tour

On Day 7, you will visit the unspoiled island of Pamilacan, located off the coast of the town of Baclayon. It sits in the center of the Bohol Sea, some 12.5 km from the mainland. Apart from its pristine beaches and clear waters, Pamilacan is also known as a haven for whale sharks and dolphins. That said, it is likely that you will spot these marine creatures on your way to the island.

Upon disembarking at the island, you will be greeted by the calm, inviting waters, so feel free to go swimming right away. Make sure to prep your snorkeling gear, as well, since Pamilacan’s underwater paradise is worth exploring. Here, you will spot some starfish, seagrasses, crinoids, Gloria Maris seashells, and various other marine species. In the case you’re up for a more adrenaline-pumping experience, there are also diving spots you can visit here.

You may opt to take a quick walk to the 200-year-old Spanish Fort on the northeast side of the island after your beach activities. This fort is a National Cultural Treasure and has served as a lookout for Moro pirates. At the end of the day, you will be back for a well-deserved rest at your Panglao hotel.

Day 8
Chocolate Hills in Bohol

Day 8: Bohol Countryside Tour

From your hotel in Panglao, your guide will take you to see the Corella Tarsier Sanctuary on the mainland. This forest patch, situated in the town of Corella, has a significant population of tarsiers. You can also find a library, research center, conference rooms, and a visitor's complex here.

You will then get on a floating restaurant for the Loboc River Cruise. As you cruise along the river's emerald streams, you will be served a hefty lunch buffet. Some locals will also perform Filipino native songs and dances on board throughout the journey.

After you get back to the dock, you will make your way to Baclayon Church. It dates from 1595 and features coral-stone walls and pillars. You can find a crystal chandelier, silver tabernacle, and altar with carvings inlaid with gold inside the church.

Your guide will then lead you to the Butterfly Conservatory, where you will learn how the locals breed different types of butterflies. From there, you will head to the Bilar Forest, a 2km stretch of mahogany trees, before you cap off the tour at the iconic Chocolate Hills. You will retreat to your Panglao hotel at the end of the tour.

Day 9
Rizal Boulevard in Dumaguete

Day 9: Dumaguete City Tour

After leaving Bohol, you will board a ferry to Dumaguete. Your city tour starts with the Silliman University Campus, the first American and Protestant-based higher education institution in the country. This university covers an area of 62 hectares and is filled with numerous acacia trees.

You will then take a stroll along Rizal Boulevard, named after the national hero Jose Rizal. Your next location will be the St. Catherine of Alexandria Cathedral, where you can find elaborately designed altarpieces and exquisite chandeliers. Next to the church is the Dumaguete Campanario, the oldest bell tower of the Visayas.

You will also visit the Dumaguete Public Market for some souvenir shopping before heading to the provincial Capitol and Freedom Park for a photo-op on its well-manicured lawns. From there, you will drop by Claytown Pottery and Sidlakang Negros Village.

You will then take a lunch break at Lab-as Seafood and continue your tour to the Forest Camp, Valencia's mountain retreat. Your guide will also bring you to the Cata-al War Museum, where you can find Nazi German artifacts, unfired bullets, unexploded bombs, and even teeth. To cap off your tour, you will visit the centuries-old San Augustin Church and the Negros Oriental Arts & Heritage Center in the town of Bacong.

Day 10
Sea turtle in Apo Island

Day 10: Apo Island Tour

Day 10 will be dedicated to a visit to Dumaguete's Apo Island. After leaving your hotel, you will make your way to Malatapay Boat Terminal, located approximately 24km away. You will travel on board a boat here to Apo Island.

This water-locked paradise became a favorite destination because it has been dubbed as one of the best dive spots in the Philippines. It sits on the southeast end of Negros Island and features thriving marine life.

Your guide will bring you to the Turtle Sanctuary on the island right after you dock. Here, you can go swimming and snorkeling with the tortoises. You can also find a lively coral garden with a multitude of colorful fish around this area. In addition to enjoying Apo Island's aquatic paradise, feel free to go sunbathing on the island's powdery sand.

You may also go trekking to the Apo View Deck or Apo Island Lighthouse. You can take three trails here: the 600m Habagat Eco-Trail, David's Trek, and Witchy's Trail. At the end of each route, you will see a panoramic view of Negros Island and its surroundings. You will then leave on your boat before the end of the day and head to your Dumaguete hotel.

Day 11
A diver capturing the beautiful sardine run in Cebu

Day 11: Kawasan Falls & Moalboal Sardine Run Tour

You will board a ferry from Dumaguete to Cebu. After docking in the province, your guide will bring you to Badian to see the famous Kawasan Falls, located 130km southwest of Cebu City. You will enjoy a quick swim in the falls’ cool spring waters before you make your way north to Moalboal.

This town has made a name for itself as the home of a long stretch of white beach. A boat will be waiting for you here to take you to Pescador Island. This water-locked paradise sits just about a half-hour boat ride from the mainland and is known as one of the best snorkeling spots in the province.

You will also visit Turtle Island to swim and snorkel with the turtles before you sail back to the province. Once you dock on the shore, your guide will bring you to Panagsama Beach for the famous sardine run. An instructor will brief you about the activity and provide you with your equipment.

After donning your gear, you will follow your instructor out to sea. Wait for a few minutes until the area becomes filled with millions of sardines swimming before your eyes. You will then head back to your hotel in Argao afterward.

Day 12
Taoist Temple in Cebu

Day 12: Cebu City Tour

You will now leave Argao and make your way further north to Cebu City for a full-day city tour. To start, you will visit the Taoist Temple first. This site features a spacious balcony with access to the scenery of the city. You will also find a souvenir shop, wishing well, and library here.

From there, you will head next to Basilica Minore Del Santo Nino. Built during the 16th century, this Roman Catholic Church has a façade with a combination of Muslim, Romanesque, and Neoclassical architecture. You will also stop by the Magellan Cross next to the basilica. This Christian cross is believed to be planted by Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan.

Next, you will visit the Heritage of Cebu Monument, where you will see a set of sculptures telling the story of the major historical events of the province. You will then drop by the Yap-San Diego Ancestral Home, located just across the street from the monument.

After enjoying the attractions in the lowland, you will then go to the Temple of Leah, referred to as Cebu’s version of Taj Mahal. Your guide will take you to the Sirao Flower Farm to see the vibrant fields of Celosia before retreating to your hotel in Mandaue.

Day 13
Couple walking by the beach of Honda Bay Palawan

Day 13: Puerto Princesa Honda Bay Island Hopping Tour

After leaving your Mandaue hotel, you will ride a plane to Puerto Princesa Airport from Cebu and start your Palawan adventure. Upon your arrival, your guide will take you to the eastern coast of the province, where you can find Honda Bay. Here, you will board a boat to start your island-hopping escapade.

Starfish Island will be your first destination from the coast. As its name suggests, this island is full of starfish, both on the beach and in the waters. You will also find some bloating puffer and rainbow parrotfish here when you go snorkeling.

Your second location will be Cowrie Island. Cowrie's shape is identical to that of a seashell, hence its name. Since it is Honda Bay's biggest island, you can find restaurants here that serve a variety of delicious seafood and local dishes. There are also facilities for banana boat riding and jet skis.

The last stop of your island hopping tour will be Luli Island. Luli is mainly known for its disappearing sandbars, but it is also a nice place for snorkeling. You will then come back to the mainland and go to your hotel in Sabang afterward.

Day 14
Underground River of Puerto Princesa Palawan

Day 14: Puerto Princesa Underground River & City Tour

Your guide will take you to Sabang Wharf in the morning, where you will board a boat to reach the world-famous Puerto Princesa Underground River. This river encompasses one of the world's most impressive cave systems, earning its spot as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. When inside, take in the breathtaking stalactites and stalagmites formations that line the cave's walls.

Following your cruise, you will return to the mainland and begin your city tour of Puerto Princesa. Your first location in the city will be Baker's Hill. This bakery/theme park serves a range of baked products as souvenirs. You can also find some restaurants, a garden, and several picture-perfect places here.

Following Baker's Hill, you will make your way to the historic Plaza Cuartel. It was formerly a military base with an old Spanish garrison and tunnels. Today, the property has been converted into a community park.

The Crocodile Farm is around a half-hour drive from the plaza. It is significantly similar to that of a zoo, except it features rare and endangered animal species. From there, your guide will bring you to Mitra's Ranch to see a panoramic view of Puerto Princesa. The tour will conclude with a quick stroll at the Puerto Princesa Baywalk.

Day 15
Aerial view of the white sand beach in Port Barton Palawan

Day 15: Port Barton Island Hopping Tour

On Day 15, you will explore the sights of Port Barton, a little-known jewel on Palawan's northwestern coast. This tiny village is located in the serene town of San Vicente and boasts an unspoiled coastline. While it lacks the luxurious hotels found in the more popular El Nido, it still draws a small number of visitors seeking to experience Palawan's off-the-beaten-path attractions.

There are several islands located off the coast of Port Barton, one of which is the island of Inaladelan. Sometimes referred to as German Island, it has become a famous camping place for visitors and locals alike. It is 12 hectares in size and offers a range of sporting equipment, such as beach volleyball and kayaking.

From Inaladelan, your boat will then take you to Luli Sandbar. This attraction is known to disappear during high tide. You can also go snorkeling here and sunbathe on its powdery white sand.

Following your visit to Luli, you will make your way to the Turtle Snorkeling Site to observe and swim with sea turtles. You will also go to the Fish and Reef Snorkeling location to see more colorful fish and spectacular reefs. After that, you'll head to your hotel in Lio.

Day 16
A girl floating on the waters of Big Lagoon in El Nido Palawan

Day 16: El Nido Island Hopping Tour

Day 16 will be dedicated to exploring El Nido's natural wonders. You will be visiting more off-coast locations, so make sure to have your sunscreen and beachwear prepared. From your hotel in Lio, your guide will bring you to Bacuit Bay in the morning. You will ride a boat here that will sail you to the Big Lagoon.

To reach the lagoon itself, you will enter through a small and shallow passageway between the limestone cliffs. You can go kayaking here to maximize your time as you take photos with the towering cliffs as your backdrop.

Following that, you will make your way to Miniloc Island. This unspoiled island is known for its white-sand beaches, lush greenery, and limestone cliffs. From there, you will explore the Secret Lagoon, a pool concealed behind dark limestone walls.

Your boat will then bring you to Seven Commandos Beach on the mainland. Relax on the white sands here or go swimming in the calm waters. Finally, you will travel to Shimizu Island. Because of its thriving marine life, it is one of the most common snorkeling spots in Bacuit Bay. Your van will return you to your accommodation in Lio at the end of the trip.

Day 17
Terminal 1 at NAIA

Day 17: Departure to Manila

You will now leave Palawan and make your way back to Manila. After checking out of your Lio hotel, you will head to the Puerto Princesa Airport to board a plane. You will then disembark at Ninoy Aquino International Airport after less than two hours of flying.

What to bring

Face mask and Face shield
Extra clothes
Passport (Valid for 6 months from date of departure)
Swimwear and sunblock
Personal medicines

Good to know

Please bring appropriate clothing. Please be aware that your itinerary may have to be rearranged to fit your arrival date and time better.

All our guides speak English. For other languages, contact us for availability and rates.

Not all establishments accept credit or debit cards, and ATMs can be limited.

The season for dolphin watching in Dumaguete is from March to October and is subject to weather and wind conditions. If off-season or on days when the northeast monsoon is strong, dolphin watching may not be possible. During Habagat/ Southwest monsoon Season (June-October), boat ride to Apo Island may be rough.

In El Nido island hopping tour mandatory environmental fee and/or user’s see is to be paid directly in cash to the service provider in El Nido, The tour itinerary is subject to change based on weather and tidal conditions. Tours will start only once operators are given permission to sail by the Local Government Unit (LGU) and the Philippine Coast Guard. Delays in start of tours or cancellation of tours affected by this is beyond the service providers’ control.

Limitation to the number of tourists, boats, kayaks and time of stay in El Nido lagoons are strictly enforced by the PAMB. Secret Beach, Big Lagoon and Small Lagoon are no longer allowed to be toured on the same day as part of the policies of the Protected Area Management Board (PAMB) of El Nido.

A mandatory user fee of PHP 200 per person is collected by PAMB for every entry to the Secret Beach, Big Lagoon and Small Lagoon.

Single use-plastics are banned in El Nido island tours. Please bring reusable water bottles or tumblers. All visitors are required to bring their own trash back to the boats.

Accommodation

See our accommodation levels below and our preferred accommodation partners under each day in the daily itinerary. All accommodation levels, bookings for one person will be arranged in single rooms, bookings for two or more people will share a twin/double, and odd number groups will always be allocated a single room. If you are travelling in a group, but prefer a single room, please make separate bookings. Teenagers and children will be arranged in the same room with parents. If additional room(s) is needed, additional costs will incur. For multi-day guided tours, accommodation cannot be upgraded and the levels below do not apply. Guide to the Philippines will provide you with the best available accommodation at the time of your booking from our preferred partners. If our preferred partners are fully booked at the time of your booking, we will find another suitable accommodation for you of similar level. We always do our best to accommodate special requests, which may incur additional costs. Press choose a date to find availability.

Budget

Private rooms with private bathrooms in guesthouses or small hotels with basic amenities.

Comfort

Private Rooms with a private bathroom at three-star hotels or resorts located in the city center, in close vicinity, or near the beach area. Breakfast is included and with basic room amenities and toiletries.

Quality

Rooms at four-star to a five-star hotel in the city center or beachfront resort with a private bathroom at the absolute best locations with the best amenities, facilities, and services.

Terms of service

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