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Each island group in the Philippines is blessed with bountiful nature, with several attractions encouraging travellers to connect with the environment peacefully and responsibly. Here, ecotourism activities range from coming face-to-face with fascinating wildlife to exploring colourful seascapes. Welcome to the true beauty of the Philippines.
With over 7,000 islands to explore in the Philippines, it is a dream destination for all kinds of beach bums, outdoor enthusiasts and adventure seekers.To preserve its natural splendour, ecotourism attractions give tourists a taste of the country’s natural environments while keeping them protected.
While its name means ‘Bad Christmas’, the tiny island of Malapascua will bring no humbugs to your holiday cheer. Unspoiled white-sand beaches, beautiful coral gardens, and a beaming marine life sanctuary have earned Malapascua the title of one of the best diving spots in the Philippines. Take the chance to spot thresher sharks, enjoy unlimited scenic views and immerse yourself in a laid-back, relaxing atmosphere. Be sure to order a San Miguel while you watch the sunset.
Nestled in the western part of Leyte, you’ll find a group of islands bordered by white-sand shores and colourful coral gardens – the Cuatro Islas. The group of islands, which literally means ‘Four Islands,’ showcases a rich and diverse underwater paradise in the province of Leyte. These are the islands of Apid, Digyo, Himokilan and Mahaba, which all have a specialty of their own. Through proper maintenance of its ecosystem, Cuatro Islas is on its way to becoming a top recreational diving destination, giving tourists the chance to interact with their diverse marine sanctuary.
Located in Northern Samar, Biri-Larosa Protected Landscape/Seascape is a breathtaking beauty famous for its natural rock formations and scenic views. There are seven gigantic rock formations within the area: Magasang, Magsapad, Macadlaw, Puhunan, Bel-at, Caranas, and Pinanahawan. These are said to be the result of underwater tectonic plate movements and the crashing of waves millions of years ago. Adventure junkies will love the natural saltwater pools and coming face-to-face with diverse wildlife and marine species.
Mount Apo Natural Park is one of the country’s most highly-prioritized protected areas and important heritage sites. This is because it primarily serves as a sanctuary for countless wildlife species, including endangered animals such as the Philippine Eagle, Philippine Deer and over native 600 species. It is also home to two mountains, namely Mount Talomo and Mount Apo — the country’s highest peak. This majestic forest is a rich pool of natural resources set to benefit future generations of Filipinos.
The Philippines has only six UNESCO World Heritage Sites and one of them can be found on the island of Mindanao. Boasting land and sea ecosystems at various elevations, Mount Hamiguitan Range Wildlife Sanctuary is a wonderful example of the adaptability of nature. It’s estimated to have 1,400 different species of plants and animals, including the Philippine Tarsier and the world’s smallest dragonfly — the Scarlet Dwarf (Nannophya pygmaea). Within the sanctuary, you’ll also find the natural wonders of Tinagong Dagat (Hidden Sea) and Twin Falls — both features that never fail to enthrall mountain climbers and outdoor enthusiasts.
Situated at the foot of Mount Apo, Barangay New Israel’s Eco Park is among the south’s travel destinations on the rise. Apart from serving as an entry point to the peak of Mount Apo, the once humble village has become home to the longest zip lines in Asia – about 2.3 kilometers long! Divided into two parts, the thrilling ride lets you pass through pass the within the New Israel community and back. Be observant of your surroundings too, as Philippine long-tailed Macaque monkeys freely roam around the area at certain times of day. Just try not to smuggle the cute little scamps under your jacket on the way out.