Tourism in the Philippines

Tourism in the Philippines

Tourism is an important sector for the Philippine economy. In 2015, the travel and tourism industry contributed 10.6% to the country’s GDP.[2] The Philippines is an archipelagic country composed of 7,641 islands with 82 provinces divided in 18 regions. The country is known for having its rich biodiversity as its main tourist attraction.[3] Its beaches, mountains, rainforests, islands and diving spots are among the country’s most popular tourist destinations. The country’s rich historical and cultural heritage are also one of the attractions of the Philippines. Popular destinations among tourists are El Nido in Palawan, Davao, Boracay, Siargao, Cebu, Manila and many more.[citation needed]

As of 2015, 4.99 million Filipinos have been employed in the tourism sector and the government collected P227.62 billion pesos from foreign tourists.[4] The country attracted a total of 5,360,682 foreign visitors in 2015.[4]

Attractions

As an archipelago composed of 7,641 islands, the Philippines offers a range of attractions such as the white sand beaches of Boracay, shopping centers of Metro Manila, surfing spots in Siargao, rice terraces of Ifugao, Mayon Volcano in Albay, diving sites of Palawan, heritage houses in Vigan, and the cultural attractions of Cebu, Davao and Manila.

The island of Luzon is considered the political and economic center of the Philippines. The economy of Luzon is centered in Metro Manila, the national capital region. Manila was ranked 11th most attractive city for American shoppers out of 25 Asia Pacific cities by a Global Blue survey in 2012.[17] Shopping malls can be found around the metropolis, especially in the business and financial districts of Makati, Ortigas and Bonifacio Global City. Despite the rise of modern shopping malls, traditional Filipino shopping centers such as flea markets and bazaars still remain around the metropolis.

The Visayas, the central island group of the Philippines, is the heart of the country’s biodiversity. The most popular beach destination in Visayas is Boracay: the island is popular for its pure white sand beaches and has been a favorite island destination for local and foreign visitors.[18][19] In 2012, Boracay received the “best island” award from the international travel magazine Travel + Leisure.[20][21] Aside from its white sand beaches, Boracay is also a popular destination for relaxation, tranquility and an exciting nightlife.[22]

Mindanao, the southernmost island of the Philippines, is known for its mountain ranges; it is one of the best climbing destinations in the Philippines. Mindanao is home to the country’s highest mountain, Mount Apo. On average, it takes two days to reach the summit. The mountain has a wide range of flora and fauna, including over 272 bird species, 111 of which are endemic to the area, including the national bird, the Philippine eagle.[23] Mount Apo has become a popular hiking destination for mountain climbers.[24]

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