Linger Travel Balloon

Sabbatical & Experiential Travel to The Philippines

Holidays & Sabbaticals to The Philippines – In a Nutshell

The Philippines combines the familiar and the fantastical against a backdrop of some of the most spectacular scenery on earth. Verdant mountains traversed by rice terraces stretch across the North, punctuated by smoking, active volcanoes whose craters cradle milky blue lakes. Rounded, symmetrical grassy mounts undulate satisfyingly across the countryside, as though painted by a young child. Along the coast, towering, jagged limestone karsts jut into the sky, draped in greenery, hiding clear turquoise lagoons and white sand beaches their midst.

The spectacle is amplified underwater, with colours, corals and creatures which defy the bounds of imagination just below the surface. Marine life abounds: Neon-lipped giant clams flinch in the current, vivid nudibranchs slide along anemones, rays and turtles glide around huge ferns. Diving here is world class, as is snorkelling, with thriving reefs awaiting a step beyond the shore.

Local life feels uniquely accessible: years of Spanish dominance resulted in a Catholic culture with vibrant street parades. Subsequent arrivals of Americans led to English being widely spoken forming a bridge across the myriad of local languages. At the heart of Filipino culture is a warm and hospitable spirit known as “Bayanihan”, making the Philippines renowned for its friendliness and open arms to visitors.

Philippines Experiences you shouldn’t miss:

  • Towering karsts: The rugged spires of the iconic limestone karsts, adorned with luxuriant vegetation, fire the imagination. Discover their hidden caves, secluded lagoons and underwater eco-systems
  • Chocolate Hills: Gaze over the incredible undulating vista of these rounded mounts, felted in cacaocoloured grasses, on Bohol island
  • Dive the best sites: With world-renowned diving, sites abound across the archipelago. Unmissable world class dive sites are just off the shore while an overnight boat trip will take you to untouched reefs further afield
  • Paradisical beaches: Crystalline waters lap milky sands fringed with tropical vegetation. Perfect beaches abound in the Philippines. It’s harder to get closer to paradise than at Sugar Beach at Sipalay, Nacpan on Palawan or Matukad off Caramoan
  • Boat through cave systems: Glide on a boat through the Puerto Princesa Underground River through cathedral-like caverns, illuminated by shards of sunlight, to experience this special eco-system
  • Colonial heritage: Wander through the cobblestoned colonial city of Vigan, a listed UNESCO World Heritage site. Beautifully preserved and traffic-free, the main mode of transport here is horse and cart. Try a fresh empanada from the night market

Off the Beaten Path

  • Find your beach: Discover a completely hidden beach to claim as your ultimate secluded paradise. Hop between unvisited, pink-shelled shores and frond-shaded white sands on a boat trip from Bohol, marvelling at the towering shards of karsts along the way
  • Spellbinding illumination: Experience the magical luminous display of thousands of fireflies. Take a kayak at night to watch the glittering insects dancing among the stillness of the mangroves of the Abatan River on Bohol island
  • Lush terraces: Hike the rippling valleys of the Unesco-listed Ifuago rice terraces. Enjoy the hospitality of a village family who invites you into their home to sample a freshly prepared, tasty local speciality, or join farmers to have a try at planting or harvesting
  • Unchanged traditions: Experience indigenous culture, unchanged for centuries, with the Tagbanwa people on Coron Island. A local guide will show you the traditional way of life of this community, farming and hunting with blowguns
  • Jungle discovery: Trek the rugged landscapes of Samar Island to discover enchanting waterfalls and secret lagoons tucked away in the heart of the jungle
  • Local life: Try your hand at weaving a on a manual, wooden loom in Argao, Cebu, the same way ladies have here for generations. Hop across to Jessie’s house to watch her bake local ‘torta’ cakes in an oven fired by coconut husks
  • Whalesharks: These gentle giants are found in Donsol, Luzon. Dive with them here, avoiding other spots where the practise is commercialised and exploitative
  • Sardine shoals: Dive among shimmering spirals of shoals of sardines in Moalboal


The tiny tarsier, a pocket-sized ‘Gizmo’-like creature with endearingly large eyes, is endemic to The Philippines. Spot this delightful yet rare and threatened species at the Tarsier Sanctuary in Corella.  

The absolute highlights of Filipino wildlife lie beneath its crystalline waters. Its coral reefs harbour an astonishing array of species. Pods of dolphins, including the acrobatic spinner dolphin, glide through the archipelago’s aquatic realms. Gentle giants of the ocean, including whale sharks and migratory humpback whales, also grace the depths.

How to Get to The Philippines

A direct flight from London Heathrow to the capital Manila takes about 13 hours. From the USA, there are direct flights from Los Angeles, San Fransisco and JFK.

When & Weather – The Philippines

Temperatures most of the year are between 25-30 °C. October to April is the dry season, with the coolest periods (22-28°C) between December and February. May to August are humid, and September often sees a lot of rain.

Who will The Philippines Appeal To?

The Philippines’ unrivalled blend of natural beauty, warm hospitality, and cultural richness makes it a destination that appeals to a diverse spectrum of travellers, each finding their own slice of paradise in this tropical haven.

  • Honeymooners
  • Adventure seekers
  • Active Travellers
  • Solo Travellers
  • Nature Enthusiasts
  • Families with children ideally from 7 yrs (for hiking and swimming)


Exclusive private island resorts are plentiful, offering luxurious accommodation on pristine, white sand beaches. In some areas, such as the north of Luzon around the rice terraces, options are more basic but compensated for by the landscapes. A good number of charming, boutique inns in colonial houses dot the archipelago.

Start Planning

Our experienced team will guide you through a number of ideas based on how you would like to experience The Philippines.

No matter how long you wish to travel, we’ll ensure your trip is carefully pieced together to suit your interests, pace of travel and budget.

Contact us to start planning a holiday or sabbatical to The Philippines.


Photos courtesy of  Unsplash: Guiliano Gabella – bay with boats, Jamie Matocinos – Chocolate Hills, Market – Hitoshi Namura, Kayaks – Jules Bassoleil, Beach – Cris Tagopu; and Pikist