Underrated Places near Manila to consider for your Next Getaway

2 Long weekends are fast approaching already!! We have that urge to maximize these since that big break that we’ve been desiring is already on the palm of our hands (times two pa!) Now, the big question is: Where to go, then?

There is so much to visit in the Philippines! From mountains to seas, from historical spots to instagrammable sites, from relaxing staycations to fun activity places, everything! It’s definitely #MoreFunInThePhilippines ❤ But despite all these, there is still something that prevent us from making the most out of our country. And that something could be money and/or time matters.


As a traveler, one of my daily routine is search for flights and hopefully score a cheap one! But it’s not everyday where I can find one, so this tends to hinder me from flying somewhere. I don’t want to spend so much if there will be opportunities to spend less, right? This is one preventive factor for me when it comes to traveling the Philippines: MONEY. Moreover, as you can see, I am not a full time traveler/ blogger, I also have a corporate job who demands my time 5 days in a week! Thus, it limits my traveling days to just 2 days in a week. How short!? Time really is a big thing for me!

I understand that most of you also relates in my dilemma. You might be a student who has limited funds, a nurse who has different work shifts, an accountant (like me) who is always stressed with work 5 times in a week and needs a vacation but has limited time. Hence, I made this post for all of us who has limited money and time but HAS TO TRAVEL THIS LONG WEEKEND.


Here are some places you can visit that are near in Manila, and aren’t that expensive to travel:


Backpacking Trips

If you’re that adventurous type of person and isn’t contented on just exploring one place, your perfect for a backpacking trip, where you get to visit more than one attraction in one trip! This will be epic!





Not everyone has discovered Bulacan’s marvelous beauty. This is your chance before everyone does! This province has a lot of beautiful places to explore; from refreshing lakes to breathtaking mountains, you’ll never go wrong with Bulacan!

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 2-3 hours
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 500-800PHPpink-dotted-line

Bolinao x Pangasinan


If you’re itching of an adventure filled with breathtaking attractions such as an astonishing lighthouse, serene white sand beaches, jaw dropping sunsets and magical caves, Bolinao and Hundred Islands are the perfect places! They also offer a lot of activities including island hopping, cliff diving and other water activities. So get your swimsuits prepared and be ready to explore A LOT of islands + attractions!

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 5-6 hours
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 2000PHP – 2500PHP
untitled  Travel Guide: Bolinao: Hidden Jewel of the North: x Hundred Islands getaway: check 100 Islands in your Island Bucket list





If you’re really into a getaway that’s super near Manila, then Rizal’s the one for you! It can easily be accessed in just 2-3 hours! Without a doubt, Rizal is a paradise of picturesque and breathtaking destinations that offers off the beaten adventures for everyone, so I’m really sure you’ll enjoy this place!

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 2-3 hours
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 800PHP- 1000PHP
untitled  Travel Guide: Our Roadtrip Date: The Windmill, Pililla Rizal





If you just want a relaxing type of weekend, away from every stress the world gives you: well, you have to have a perfect unique staycation!


Crosswinds Resorts Suites, Tagaytay


Why not stay in a themed hotel like Crosswinds Swiss Luxury Resort? Its stupefying lush landscape and rolling terrain at one of the highest peak of Tagaytay city, cool breeze supplementing that sweet scent coming from the aesthetic pine trees placed all over the whole place, rows of picturesque swiss-inspired homes rested serenely in the 100 hectare marvelous Resort Suite, will definitely give you that one Switzerland-ish staycation!

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 3 hours
money-bag-256.png  Budget: Starts at 3500PHP (in Agoda)
untitled  Travel Guide:  Crosswinds Swiss Luxury Resort: The Switzerland of the Philippines


Aquascape, Laguna

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“BRB WORLD. And hello Heaven.” -this was my feeling during my stay in the resort. It was as if I was totally away from everything in this world. And all I have is my floating suite (literally floating on waters) and the breathtaking landscape which serves as my view outside my suite. It was all perfect. I wanted to stay here forever.

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 2 hours
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 10,000PHP (Good for 5 PAX)
untitled  Travel Guide: That perfect staycation in Aquascape, Caliraya Lakepink-dotted-line

Mount Purro Nature Reserve, Antipolo



The ambiance of this place is perfect where it is swarming with rich, lush greenery, the breathtaking view of the mountains is so stunning that it will totally leave you speechless, the air is so refreshingly cool which really supplements the relaxing atmosphere of the place, the staff are so welcoming and the villas are just the right ones you need during your relaxing stay- no aircons, no brick walls, and simply bamboo cottages. You’ll definitely get yourself immersed with the flawless beauty of nature in no time!

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 2-3 hours
money-bag-256.png  Budget: Starts at 3500PHP (For two)
untitled  Travel Guide: A Tranquil Weekend Staycation: Mount Purro Nature Reserve




Meet New Friends- Trip

Wanting to maximize your long weekends by meeting new friends/ travelers? That’s actually a super cute idea! Not only are you gaining friends, but also you’ll get to know awesome stories from these people ++ be inspired by them! With this, I think, artsy and homey vibe hostels are perfect!


Circle Hostel, Zambales



With their tagline, #ThereAreNoStrangers, The Circle Hostel is perfect for your weekend filled with art and nature ++ new found friends! Evidently,  this place is a haven perfect for the artsy and adventurous ones- those who prefer to mingle with new people, befriend with the locals and travelers, discover and learn new things , making your circle bigger and more fun -behind the artsy walls of this hostel.

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 6 hours
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 1000- 1500PHP
untitled  Travel Guide:  The Circle Hostel, Zambales: So backpacker-charming!


Real Surf PH, Real Quezon

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If you’re into a weekend filled with water activities, get stoked as this place offers a lot of fun ones: surfing, water tubing, waterfalls-cliff diving, etc. Or if you’re just into a chill getaway, this place is still perfect as Real Surf PH has this homey vibe that will tempt you to bum and probably socialize all day long.

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 4-5 hours
money-bag-256.png  Budget: Average 1600PHP (day trip)- 3000PHP (overnight)
untitled  Travel Guide: Real Surf PH: Surf till you Turf!



Unique Getaway

These 2 long weekends are definitely worthy for a Unique kind of getaway, aren’t they? Well, we don’t usually have these long breaks, so might as well make the most out of it by exploring the unusual ones!


Death Pool, Pangasinan

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Get to experience a beach escapade like no other! Imagine a beach that doesn’t just have the usual sun, sand and sea-with identical attractions, experience, and the like, it has natural pools! OMG. And it’s not your ordinary pool, it’s a freaking death pool! Yes you’re reading it right- A DEATH POOL.

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 4-5 hours
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 1000PHP
untitled  Travel Guide: Leveled-up Beach Getaway: Cabongaoan Beach ++ Death Pool


Pandin Lake, Laguna

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Cant afford to visit El Nido yet? Why not consider this hidden gem, Pandin Lake? It has this landscape and beauty similar to El Nido that will definitely take you off your feet! You won’t just get to be amazed on the breathtaking view of this place but also have fun as this place offers rafting, swimming, and trekking activities- not to mention the food they offer.. ang sarap bes!

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 2-3 hours
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 600PHP
untitled  Travel Guide: Pandin Lake & Yambo Lake: PHP400 worth El Nido-like experience


Tali Beach, Batangas

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Tali Beach is such a paradise that you, yourself, can’t fathom. Well, usually beaches near Manila already have that image of being crowded and/or polluted. But this beach resort is way different than the others. It is definitely not polluted, as it is a private resort that is regularly well maintained, and absolutely not crowded since it is a private resort. This resort doesn’t only have one beach, but A LOT- I think it has around 7 beaches (if I’m not mistaken.) This place, with no doubt, make your day a fun one!

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 2 hours
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 1000PHP
untitled  Travel Guide: SUMMER PERFECT: Visit 5 beaches for only 1199PHP in Tali Beach, Batangas



Waterfalls Gaming

It’s the rainy season, and I bet waterfalls are more marvelous than we ever imagine! If you want to dip in a nature-made-pool, then let’s go waterfalls gaming!





Photo Credits from DianaZoned 🙂

Laguna is home with majestic and magical falls, and some of them are very close to each other. This long weekend, why don’t you explore these in a day?! Get to visit Talay Falls, Hidden Falls and Hulugan Falls and be mesmerized by its beauty! Ahhhh they are breathtaking!!

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 2-3 hrs
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 600-1000PHP

Bukal Falls, Laguna



No time / budget to go to Surigao’s Enchanted River? Well, this is a cheaper + closer alternative! Bukal Falls is totally a must-see wonder of Laguna! With its clear shimmery deep blue water, giving that enchanting scene, it will definitely awe you with its beauty.

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Travel time from Manila: 2-3 hrs
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 500PHP
untitled  Travel Guide: Bukal Falls: Experience Magic



Fun in Manila

Sometimes we’re just so lazy to travel far and just want to stay in Manila the whole weekend, but still want to maximize the long weekend. I got some suggestions for you lazy adventurers!


Upside Down Museum, Pasay, Manila (ft. Star City)



This fun and amusing museum will literally turn you upside down! Located in Manila, Upside Down Museum is  a museum that is REALLY upside down-which makes it oh-so-unique! There are a lot of corners to take photos of, thus I’m sure you won’t get bored in this place! ++ If you still want more fun, Star City is just right around the museum’s corner! They have a promo bundle wherein you can purchase a ticket that cost 580php which is inclusive of Star City entrance fee & unlimited rides and Upside Down Museum passes!

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Where in Manila: Boom Na Boom Grounds, CCP Complex, Roxas Blvd, Pasay, 1300 Metro Manila
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 450PHP Entrance Fee
untitled  Travel Guide: Guide to PH’s first Upside Down Museum (Awesomely fun!)


Volunteer in Gawad Kalinga



Why not making your weekend a meaningful one through volunteering in Gawad Kalinga? Let’s have the heart to help our fellow Filipinos through our God given strengths and abilities (and extra time.) Also, you will not just help the community, but learn how to build houses! Isn’t that fun, as well?!

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Where in Manila: Depends, Visit: Gawad Kalinga for details
money-bag-256.png  Budget: No Fee
untitled  Travel Guide: Volunteer and Build a House in Gawad Kalinga


Dog and Cat Café

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Bengal Brew Cat Café + Wolf and Dog Cafe is not your ordinary cat and dog cafe. They offer a unique pet experience with the dogs and cats with not so ordinary breeds! Yep, they don’t just serve coffee and pastries, but also serves an overload of cuteness!! Plus unlike the usual dog/cat cafe in Manila, where you can either experience dogs or cats, this place offers an experience to both cats and dogs!! HUHUH CUTIE DIBA!!

samuibus_banner_logo_red.png  Where in Manila: G/F Manhattan Parkview, Gen. Malvar Ave., Araneta Center, Quezon City
money-bag-256.png  Budget: 400PHP
untitled  Travel Guide: A 2 in 1 Dog & Cat Café in Manila: Bengal Brew Café + Wolf and Bear Café





So what are you guys waiting for?! Message your barkada/ bebe love/ family and plan your weekend getaway NOW! You only live once, don’t waste it by lazingly lounging in your bed all day! SAYANG LONG WEEKEND. Yes to Adventures!

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Did you like this article?  Follow me on Facebook and Instagram for more travel updates! YES TO ADVENTURES! ❤  



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