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Exploring Philippines

Artistry & Mysticism

Get off the beaten track in the Philippines with this 16-day itinerary in the Visayas that concludes with a few days on the glorious white sands of Boracay. Start in the city of Cebu to see some of the nation’s Spanish colonial history then move on to Siquijor. This mystical island is known for magic and mysticism so we’ll make sure you meet a healer and learn a bit of the legend. Travel overland through the island of Negros, meeting weavers and artisans along the way. Try your hand at weaving and handicrafts using traditional techniques and local materials.

In 2018, the island of Boracay closed to visitors for environmental rehabilitation. While now open, rehabilitation and renovation efforts are ongoing. Please contact us to tailor this itinerary to your preferences and to discuss whether and when to next visit Boracay.

All of our itineraries are meant to be suggestions as we customize every trip we create. Email our Philippines expert at or even better, give her a ring at (UK) 020 7112 0019 to begin planning your tailor made holiday.

Your Itinerary

Day 1 - Welcome to Cebu

This afternoon your overnight flight arrives in Cebu, the third largest city in the Philippines. Your private driver will greet you at Mactan-Cebu International Airport and transport you to your comfortable accommodation. We’ve not planned anything for this afternoon to allow you to recover from your flight, so relax or head out for a wander.

Day 2 - Cebu City tour

Your private guide will meet you this morning for a tour of the city of Cebu. Much of the tour you’ll be on foot as the city’s historical and cultural landmarks are quite close to one another. You’ll see Magellan’s Cross, Fort San Pedro, the Carbon Market and more as you learn about the history and daily life of Cebu.

Days 3-6 - Serene Siquijor

Travel by ferry to the mystical island of Siquijor and settle into your home for the next four nights. Siquijor is known for sorcery and healing so you’ll have a chance to meet a healer and ask your guide about island legends. See Cambugahay Falls, the century old Balete Tree with its natural fish spa, and climb up to the highest point on the island for a lovely view. Enjoy a few days relaxing on this peaceful island with its quiet beaches and consider a day trip to Apo Island for snorkeling with turtles or diving in the well-preserved marine park.

Days 7-8 - Dumaguete and Lake Balinsasayaw

Travel by ferry to Dumaguete on the island of Negros and check in to your next seaside home. We’ve set up a private day tour to Lake Balinsasayaw where you can spot a variety of tropical birds, kayak, walk to waterfalls, and taste the edible plants that grow around this crater lake.

Day 9 - Weavers of Negros Oriental

Today you’ll go north along the coast to La Libertad. Once you’re checked into your accommodation for the night, your guide will take you on a tour of the local market and then to meet the local weavers of the La Libertad Women’s Association. You’ll have a chance to try weaving your own souvenir before retiring to your resort for the evening.

Days 10-12 - History, Artistry, and Sugarcane in Bacolod

Cross the island of Negros to the city of Bacolod. You have two full days of touring here with visits to Balay Negrense to learn how sugar planters lived in the 1800s, the picture-perfect ruins of a former mansion, an active sugar plantation, a sugar mill, and Hacienda Crafts. Learn about Negros Island artistry and craftwork using sustainable materials and indigenous techniques.

Days 13-15 - Beach Time in Boracay

Your driver this morning will take you to the port for a ferry to Iloilo. Upon arrival, a driver will take you to the Jetty Port in Caticlan. Along the way, you’ll stop by the UNESCO-designated Miago Fortress Church and learn a bit about its history as a defense tower. In Caticlan, you’ll be escorted to the boat that takes you over to Boracay where you can relax for a few days on the beach at leisure.

Day 16 - Bid farewell

After a short boat ride back to Caticlan, begin your international journey home. Safe travels!


This itinerary costs from £2100 per person B&B and is based on two people sharing during the high season (Nov-May) excluding the Christmas and New Year, Chinese New Year, Easter, and other holiday periods. The price includes all private transfers and domestic travel but not international flights.

International flights can be found from £600 return – do ask us for advice. Alternatively we can book the flights for you but a booking fee may apply.

What's included?

  • Prices start from £2100 per person
  • Accommodation on B&B basis
  • Private transfers in an air-conditioned vehicle or by boat as noted
  • Local taxes
  • Entrance fees
  • All excursions and activities mentioned in the itinerary
  • Internal ferries
  • All trips are ATOL protected or ABTA bonded to ensure you are fully covered
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Negros Oriental
The island of Negros is home to world-class diving off the coast of Dauin and on neighboring Apo Island. Waterfalls and adventure are just a day trip away from the university town of Dumaguete. On neighboring Siquijor settle in to the tranquility of an island known for sorcery and healing powers. More
Negros Occidental
On the west coast of Negros you'll find Bacolod, the city of smiles. Sugar plantations in the area host historic mansions and in October, the streets come alive with the annual MassKara festival. More
Puerto Princesa
The gateway to Palawan, Puerto Princesa sits near one of the longest subterranean rivers in the world. Let us arrange a stay for you at a beachside hotel with mountain views just a short boat ride away. More
El Nido
When people refer to Palawan as the most beautiful island in the world, images of El Nido come to mind. Limestone cliffs jut from aquamarine water, lush jungle fills the interior, and the coasts are lined with dazzling beaches. Some of the finest resorts in the country dot the islands around this northern bit of Palawan. More
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Puerto Galera
Fast drift dives and schools of big fish await experienced divers in Puerto Galera while shallow macro dives make for excellent underwater photography, relaxing night dives, and the perfect place to learn or improve your dive skills. More
Tubbataha Reefs
The greatest variety of marine life in the Philippines is within Tubbataha Reefs National Marine Park; only accessible for diving mid-March to mid-June

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