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These places are perfect alternatives for those boring and usual Yuletide celebration at home every year.
Christmas is in the air, and many people are traveling to their provinces to spend the Christmas celebration with their family. In the Philippines, you know it’s Christmas once the BER months entered. Why? Because it’s the moment where you will hear LSS Christmas songs (Goodluck to that!). It has become partly a tradition that Christmas songs are played by the local radio stations and on air. Even in the rural areas, you will hear Christmas songs played in most establishments and stalls. That’s why Philippines have been known even by some foreigners and long-time tourists that the Philippines is celebrating a long Christmas festivity starting from early September to the celebration of the Three Kings in the first week of January.
There are also some tourists who prefer spending the holidays here in the Philippines. There is always a heart-warming feeling on how Filipinos tend to celebrate this joyous occasion once every year. Immigrants and those who have Filipino spouses will attest it. With many places to offer, the Philippines is among the busiest countries with a lot of tourists and immigrants during December. However, it also comes with a disadvantage as tickets are ridiculously expensive in the whole month of December. So, if you are planning to spend the holiday here, better to book ahead of time or check your local travel agencies for flight deals and promotions.
See also: The Essence of Thanksgiving 2019
Alternative Places To Spend The Holiday
Known to many, Christmas is also a day to travel and spend the vacation in other countries. Some wealthy Filipinos and frequent travelers are taking this opportunity to travel to their favorite destinations and spend the holiday there. This is in a way their meditative routine to detoxify from the whole year work load.
For the average Filipinos, their home is simply the only place they will spend the Christmas Eve. With their relatives returning home from the city, it became a reunion and a get-together from distant relatives and long time friends who haven’t seen each other for awhile. Family ties among Filipinos are tight, thus, it’s a culture that makes the Filipino tradition unique and that you wouldn’t find in other nations.
There are actually many places in the Philippines that could be an alternative from the usual Christmas home celebration. Some of the places might not be new to you. But for those who don’t, we round up some places that might be an alternative and will eventually break your usual holiday celebration.
Boracay has been known both as a local and international tourist destination spot. It has been included in the world’s best travel destination for numerous times even landed in the top spot according to a famous travel magazine. Famous destination of local celebrities not only during Yuletide season but also in national holidays like Holy Week and summer breaks. Who wouldn’t try a Christmas Eve under the stars, sands and open seas?
Rizal National Park
If you are a city dweller, chances are you have spent your Christmas Eve in this park at least once in your life. Famous for other heritage sites, Rizal Park or Luneta Park always have that “family get-together vibe” outside your homes. Manileños will just bring with them their packed holiday meals, picnic baskets and assemble in the area as they watch fireworks prepared by the local government in the eve of Christmas day. However, be ready to face a crowd of families that will also spend the Christmas with you. With that being said, thousands of locals from far-flung provinces dreamt on going in this famous park in Manila. And would it be nice if that lifelong dream can be achieve this holiday season?
One of the most well-loved famous destination spots in the north, Baguio City. The famous city of pines should be one of your bucketlist. For international tourists, the weather in Baguio City reaches 16°c dropping to 10°c record during this December until March next year. Burnham Park, similar to Rizal Park in Manila is a famous park in Baguio City and a great alternative from the city’s humid atmosphere. There is always something in a cold Christmas day. It gives that holiday chill effect of the winter like the other countries but not as freezing since there is no snow. Great when you are with your partners, spouses and first Christmas together for newly weds.
Mall Of Asia
Dubbed as one of the biggest shopping malls in the world, it’s likely that city dwellers might see this as a perfect alternative from Rizal Park. With a lot of events within the stretch of Mall of Asia in the eve of Christmas, plus the view of an open sea along the seaside area, the smell of the sea almost seems perfect to start the midnight of December 25th or end the Christmas evening.
This is probably the most adventurous Christmas you will ever have this year. Wait! This doesn’t mean you have to spend the Christmas on top of Mt Apo. A match made for those who are thrill seekers who love adventures and outdoor fun. Why not rent a cabin near the site? Enjoy the chill of the pre-Christmas celebration in the mountainous region of Davao and start the whole day holiday celebration hiking with your friends greeting the sunrise of the morning of 25th.
Another of the famous international beaches in the Philippines next to Boracay and home to the UNESCO heritage site as one of the seven new wonders of nature, the Palawan Underground River. Similar to Boracay, Palawan has a lot to offer for both local and international travelers in events such as Christmas. If you find Boracay as a crowded spot, why not book your holiday in Palawan instead?
One of treasures of Mindanao and dubbed as the surfing capital of the Philippines. Currently among one of the top 20 Best Destinations in 2019 according to Conde Nast. For sea lovers who love the waves and the growling of the open sea. Spend the Christmas evening with a wine drinking under the moon with your significant others.
See also: 4 Places to Visit this Independence Day
The Philippines is known as one of the countries with a lot of Catholic devotees, different denominations and religious beliefs. Pilgrims have the option to bathe in the presence of God contemplating and thanking God of the blessings that happened for the entire year. Catholic devotees could spend the Yuletide season in historical churches in the Philippines, the pilgrimage of Christ the Savior in Hundred Island National Park in Alaminos, the St Vincent Ferrer Statue in Bayambang, Regina Rica in Rizal, Kamay ni Hesus shrine in Quezon, Monasterio de Tarlac in Tarlac, the pilgrimage in GarinFarm Resort in Iloilo. And there are also prayers mountains like Mary Ridge Retreat House in Tagaytay, Touch of Glory Prayer Mountain in Antipolo Rizal, Tamayong Prayer Mountain in Davao and TAYAK HILL in Laguna. It always refreshing to spend the Christmas and end the year in a religious manner.
Wishing you all a blessed Yuletide season and a hopeful year ahead! God bless you!
What other places have you been that are not included in the list and would like to share with your fellow readers? Comment in the section below so people will include it in their Christmas must-haves.
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