Being able to set your own itinerary, visit places at your own pace and decide your own budget are some of the advantages of traveling solo. For individuals in the Philippines, an opportunity for personal reflection can be added to this list.
With places of astonishing natural beauty to explore, the Philippines is a great destination for unaccompanied tourists who want to truly disconnect from their daily routines.
Furthermore, known for being hospitable and friendly, visitors can expect a warm welcome from the Filipino people so that there is no need to feel alone.
There are also certain practical considerations to take into account when planning a foreign trip unaccompanied. Solo travelers can find useful information below about places to visit, where to stay and what to pack for the Philippines.
Where to Visit Alone in the Philippines
The unique landscapes and nature of the Philippines offer the perfect opportunity for self-reflection and contemplation, whilst diving and white water rafting will satisfy those with a great sense of adventure.
As the Philippines is made up of over 7,000 islands it can be hard to decide which ones to visit. Individuals have the advantage of being able to personally tailor their itinerary, without the need to consult a travel companion.
The islands below have great opportunities for lone sightseers.
Batanes: rolling hills and flawless beaches
A collection of 10 islands and islets, Batanes is a good option for solo sightseers and backpackers who want to enjoy some fantastic scenery including vast expanses of green space and hilly terrain.
The 2 main islands, and the ones most visited by tourists, are Sabtang and Itbayat. The beaches, lagoons, and caves are all well worth spending some time at.
Bohol: Chocolate Hills and dolphin watching
Bohol is best known for its famous Chocolate Hills; hills which turn brown during the summer giving them the appearance of chocolate. Independent travelers can also meet the tarsier in Bohol, a tiny primate found in very few places across the globe.
Balicasag Island Marine Sanctuary and the Blue Star Dive and Resort are great for diving in the Philippines. Blue Star Dive and Resort also offers various tours including dolphin watching, go alone for $55 or join a larger group to reduce the cost.
Davao City: discover Philippines tourist attractions
Davao City is a great option for unaccompanied tourists who want to see plenty of tourist attractions in the Philippines, either alone or as part of a guided tour. The following can all be found in Davao City:
- Crocodile Park: 1,000s of fresh and saltwater crocodiles plus other species
- Island Garden City of Samal: for unspoiled beaches and mountain activities
- Philippine Eagle Center: home to the Philippine Eagle, considered the largest in the world
- Mount. Apo: the highest point in the Philippines
For adrenaline seekers, white water rafting and river wading on the Davao River are exciting options.
Where to Stay When Traveling Solo in the Philippines
Hostels are a great way to meet new people. Hostels are usually inexpensive, from $5 to $20 and guests can choose between private rooms or a bed in a shared dormitory.
Hostels are also a great option for those who wish to socialize with other travelers as many have communal areas to relax and play pool, some even have a gym. This type of accommodation can be found throughout the main islands of the Philippines.
Whilst hostels are great for meeting fellow travelers, homestays offer the most immersive experience. Staying with a host family is a great way to experience authentic Filipino culture first hand, joining in with family meals and everyday life.
Homestays can be found and booked online, it is advisable to read online reviews prior to booking.
Is it Safe for Females to Visit the Philippines Alone?
The Philippines is generally considered to be a safe place to visit, including for females. However, like with any destination, women should remain cautious and alert especially at night or in crowded places such as on public transport.
Recommendations for solo female travelers to the Philippines include:
- Plan at least the first night’s accommodation in each destination, this is even more important if arriving late
- Avoid telling people where you are staying
- Do not carry or wear valuables such as jewelry
- Keep cash and documents safe and out of sight, also have back up copies available
- Speak with other female travelers on the same tours or at the same hostel.
What to Take to the Philippines as a Lone Traveler
As well as all the usual travel essentials, the following items are particularly useful for a solo trip:
- Anti-theft backpack, to keep personal possessions safe when on the move
- Portable power bank, to ensure your mobile phone will be charged at all times
- Personal alarm, for peace of mind and added security
- First Aid kit, carry the essentials in case of any minor accident or injury
- Selfie stick, for capturing great photos surrounded by nature.
Travelers should also check the Philippine customs regulations as they pack their luggage in order to cross the border hassle-free.
Prior to a trip to the Philippines, all foreign visitors should make sure that they meet the entry requirements and, if required, obtain a visa for the Philippines.