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Philippines Economy

Philippines as a Leader in Business Process Outsourcing

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In 2010, the National Outsourcing Association (NOA), a non-profit outsourcing organization in the United Kingdom awarded the Offshoring Destination of the Year award to the Philippines beating the countries Ukraine, Sri Lanka, and Egypt.NOA selected the Philippines to be the world’s finest in outsourcing services taking into account its chief strengths over other major outsourcing destinations. These strong points include abundant and quality labor force, stable infrastructure, and unwavering government initiatives.The Philippines is not only a leader in the contact center industry. The country is rapidly becoming the top choice for providing services in fields such as shared services, medical transcription, software development and animation. This article discusses the reasons for Philippines’s global outsourcing attractiveness. RP’s PeopleGiven all the qualifications that the Philippines have, the NOA specifically merited this archipelago’s attractive people resource. At present, the country’s labor force comprises about 36 million workers, 450,000 of which hold college education. Their people’s high literacy rate which is at 92 percent makes them a far better choice for an outsourcing provider. Aside from this, Philippines also have a very high cultural affinity especially to the US, following years of American occupation in the country. This makes most Filipinos good English speakers. Their ability to speak in neutral accent is their major advantage particularly in the call center business. This is the basis for countries like the US, Australia and UK to setup their contact centers in the Philippines. Furthermore, instructions in most universities are generally in English. The government pushes hard to keep Filipinos’ English literacy on an advanced level.Language and cultural differences are not supposed to concern those who are considering outsourcing services for certain LOBs. Filipinos are recognized for having strong skills in dealing with people. Good communication means good work relationship. And when this is achieved, there lies a greater potential for excellence in the delivery of expected business results. RP’s Political SettingAnother factor that leads to this country’s appeal to outsourcing clients is the suitable legal and regulatory environment. Philippines gives income tax holidays to outsourcing clients for the first six years of their operations in the country. Moreover, they provide a flat five percent income tax rate for Philippines IT economic zones buildings and installations locators right past the four to six years of the income tax holiday. In addition, RP also offers other fiscal and non-fiscal incentives as a form of its government’s support in the outsourcing industry.However, corruption and political stability are some of the main challenges that the country is facing. Still, its government is still putting great efforts on making sure the country attracts more foreign investors. RP’s Technology and TelecommsThe overall infrastructure in telecommunication and technology also affects the decision of multinational companies in selecting their business processes vendors. The quality and stability of a nation’s technological framework is ultimately critical in outsourcing services like animation, customer care, technical support, and information technology.In comparison with other Asian countries, the Philippines have advanced and inexpensive bandwidth that is largely aiding in making the country attractive in terms of communication and telecoms capacity. Although the IT sector of the Philippines is still in maturity, it is recognizable that it is swiftly advancing.Faced with many challenges in its political and business environment, the Philippines still boasts its competitiveness in skilled workforce, advanced infrastructure and sustainable economic plans for the development of outsourcing services. The NOA Award only solidifies Philippine’s position in the global outsourcing market.Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Catherine Alibanban currently writes for Agents of Value, an established webmaster staff leasing company that offers value-for-money services in SEO / link building, virtual assistance, content writing, web design, webmaster, web development and programming support.

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Philippines Economy

The Cell Phone Industry in the Philippines

The cell phone and Smartphone industry in the Philippines is a thriving and growing business. The number of people owning a cell phone has jumped from 14.8 million in 2013 to 27.5 million in 2016. That’s a lot of people. It puts the Philippines as the third largest cell phone user in Southeast Asia. The trend is forecast to increase to 38.4 million users by the year 2020.

Current Trends

Smartphones sales are trending up while less capable feature based cell phones are trending down in terms of total sales. This can be attributed to the entry of larger companies in the market focusing on smartphone sales at a lower price because of the existence of low-cost smartphones sales from local providers such as Cherry Mobile. Global players like Acer and Lenovo are competing with the local providers and that serves to drive prices down while jacking up the volume. Feature phone providers like the Philippine local company Cosmic Technologies has seen a consistent drop in sales volume and remains one of the few companies still in the feature phone business.

The compound annual growth rate (CAGR) for smartphones is +20% while CAGR for features phones is on the decline at a -28% percent rate.
 
The State of the Market

The mobile services and broadband market is dominated by two providers, Smart Communications and Globe Telecom. Globe is the up and coming competitor while Smart, as a subsidiary of the Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT) Company has had a majority of the market share for some time. Between these two competitors, mobile coverage is available to over 99% of the population. The intense competition of Smart and Globe has provided for a higher quality of service to the average user as each company fights for a higher market share.

3G and 4G/LTE value-added services continues to spread as the demand for it increases but SMS text messaging continues to be the backbone of growth in cell phone usage overall.

One unique feature of the Philippine cell phone market is the services provided to Philippine ex-pats working overseas. It drives a thriving prepaid market because of the amount of money that is sent home to family in country. It comprises a significant percentage of money that drives the Philippine economy.

Philippine Governmental Policy over the Mobile Broadband Market

The issues of economic development for any country have a direct tie to mobile broadband services. The World Bank conducted a study that showed a 10% increase in broadband penetration would add 1.38% to the gross domestic product (GDP). In lesser-developed countries, the impact is even higher.  

The Philippines faces a significant challenge is achieving the economic growth indicated by increased mobile penetration. They are behind other the power curve with their neighbors and competitors in the APAC market. It is due to antiquated policy, lack of vision and a restrictive competitive country market.  

The changes that need to be made include adopting an open access policyFeature Articles, an update of the laws and regulatory framework that will encourage investment and innovation and updating the overall Philippine Digital Strategy Plan that serves as the blueprint for continued expansion of services. 

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Philippines Economy

A Brief Guide in Choosing the Best Plastic Surgeon in the Philippines

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Medical
tourism is one of the industries that have become a priority for the
Philippine government to boost their economy.  This trend also affected
the medical community. Suddenly, there are established and would-be
doctors who shifted specialization to cosmetic practice. They are not to
blame because cosmetic surgery is a very lucrative field in medicine
and it is the fore front of medical tourism initiatives, programs and
promotions.With
this initiative, foreigners are enticed to have their surgery done in
the Philippines. And with the influx of surgeons in the country, one
should be cautious about choosing the right doctor.  There are many
certified and reliable plastic surgeons in the Philippines who
offer their patients a competitive price. But the challenge lies in
choosing the right doctor. This article lists down some guidelines as to
what qualities you should look for in a surgeon when you want to have
your surgery done in the Philippines.Look for and thoroughly inspect their websiteSurgeons
have finally realized the importance of the Internet. Many
practitioners have put up their own website so that prospective clients
can view their resume. A credible doctor should have a professional
website and it should not look empty. Their website should include their
experiences in performing cosmetic and plastic surgery in the
Philippines. You should also look for their services and it would be
much better if they have a before and after photos of their clients.
Also check if they have post surgery services just in case you have
questions after your operation.Confirm their credentialsDo
not be deceived by a surgeon who has the lowest professional fee. You
might suffer more financial losses if you experience medical practice.
Make sure to double check the credentials of the surgeon that you are
eyeing. Look for someone who has been granted their license through
formal education and training. If it is not enough, look for
testimonials from past clients to reaffirm how credible their work is.Check for their membership in organizationsOn the Web, it is so easy to find Philippine plastic surgeons who
are affiliated with established local hospitals. Having a license is a
good thing, but being a member of prestigious local and international
organizations makes that surgeon more credible. Their membership can be
your safety net in case you might experience trouble with your surgery.
It also means that he/she is updated with the latest research and
procedures in the field. But bear in mind that they also have higher
professional fee.Plastic surgeons in the Philippines has made sure to keep up with the latest developments andresearches
about the industry. They are knowledgeable and respected around the
world because of their education and expertise. So, next time that you
visit the Philippines, make sure to check out the medical tourism
industry. We are more than white sand beaches and fun people you know. 

Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Pia Velarde is a writing enthusiast.

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Philippines Economy

Local Philippines: Captivating Capiz

Simple and peaceful. That’s how the provincial government describes
what life in Capiz is all about on its website. For travelers looking
for a place to relax and unwind, this province in the Western Visayas
region is a must-go destination.

Covering an area of 2,594.64 square kilometers, Capiz is subdivided
into 16 municipalities and a city – Roxas. The province continues to be
one of the major travel destinations
in southern Philippines, thanks to its natural charm highlighted by a
labyrinth of rolling hills, pristine beaches, unspoiled beaches, and
isolated coves.

Capiz is also a magnet for seafood lovers. Dubbed as the “Seafood
Capital of the Philippines,” the province provides guests with a wide
selection of dishes made from its rich marine resources. Delectable
delicacies are available everywhere from a simple restaurant to posh
hotels and resorts.

With all these amazing attractions in the province, it is no wonder,
then, that Capiz is among the recommended tourist stops in most Philippine travel guides. The following is a sampling of the scenic spots to visit in the province.

Agtalin Shrine

Get amazed by a gigantic statue of the Virgin Mary at the Agtalin
Shrine. Located in the municipality of Pilar, the religious icon is
considered the tallest in the country at 80 feet tall. The International
Marian Research Institute listed the Agtalin Shrine as a premier
pilgrimage site. It is believed that some faithful with incurable
diseases were healed by praying at the shrine.

Baybay Beach

Baybay Beach is Capiz’s version of elegant Boracay beaches. This
gray-sand beach is a favorite weekend getaway of local residents and
tourists alike in the province. Aside for being a popular swimming site,
Baybay Beach is also a haven for food lovers. Various stalls selling
unbelievably cheap grilled fish, squids, prawns, and other marine
produce can be found near the beach.

Pilar Cave

Another must-see attraction in Capiz is Pilar Cave. This natural wonder
is believed to be a burial site of local folks before the Spaniards
conquered the Philippines in 1521. Ancient pots and other artifacts have
been discovered in the cave. Capiz has four more popular caves such as
the Suhoton Caves in Jamindan, Quipot Cave in Mambusao, Igang Cave in
Maayon, and Suhot Cave in Dumalag.

Tucad Reef

Tucad Reef is a submarine islet of seashells and corals topped with
layers of sand. Located some ten kilometers away from Pilar, this
natural marvel can be reached through a pump boat ride or by walking
during low tide. From its shallow and clear water, visitors can see a
patchwork of shells and corals in various colors such as blue, green,
red, and pink.

Aswang Festival

Capiz is known for the myth of aswang, a Filipino term for
ghouls, monsters, and witches. Held days before the Halloween, the
controversial but culturally important event seeks to change the
public’s negative notion towards the province as an aswang haven. Trade exhibits, cultural shows, and symposiums are staged during the festival.

A great way to conclude your Capiz vacation is to shop for various
products such as lampshades, candle holders, necklaces, and wind chimes,
made from Capiz shells. Already captivated by Capiz? Get your
Philippine travel guide ready, call a travel agency to arrange your
preferred accommodations and vacation packages, pack your bags, and head
to Capiz.

Local Philippines is your travel buddy. We have information
about the destinations, how to get there, what to do while in the area
and more! Destinations in the beaches or in the mountains, destinations
under water, destinations right at the middle of the urban hubFree Web Content, name it
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Local Philippines: Dazzling Davao

Exploring the beauty of the Philippines is always a thrill. This
Southeast Asian nation has been making waves in the tourism industry
with its wide selection of scenic spots, festive events, and
breathtaking man-made and natural attractions.

Most travelers think that the Philippines is only akin to the
beautiful beaches of Boracay and bargain-hunting and bar-hopping
adventures in Metro Manila. But most people often missed out on
exploring various tourist attractions in Mindanao. One of the leading
travel destinations in the southern region is Davao, one of the country’s most progressive cities.

Covering an area of 943.6 square meters, Davao is the perfect place
for travelers looking to experience an idyllic town setting at the
comforts of a modern metropolis. The city, which is three times bigger
than the entire Metro Manila, has a lot to offer. The “Land of Promise”
is home to pristine beaches, beautiful diving spots, historical sites,
and luxury resorts and hotels, among others. It’s no wonder, then, that
Davao has all the trimmings of an ultimate Philippine vacation.

To guide you to your Davao trip, the author came up with a list of the must-see tourist attractions in the city.

Mt. Apo
Towering over 9,650 feet above sea level, Mt. Apo is the highest
peak in the Philippines. This national park is a haven for birdwatchers,
as it is home to more than 270 bird species. Mt. Apo is also
considered an ideal hiking destination for the adventure-bound. Experts
said scaling this volcanic mountain is not a technical one. It may take
up to five days to reach the summit depending on your pace.

Philippine Eagle Center

Davao also allows tourists to get up close and personal with the
country’s national bird, the Philippine Eagle. Situated in Malagos, the
Philippine Eagle Center serves as temporary home and a breeding center
for the critically endangered bird. The Philippine Eagle, one of the
tallest and biggest birds in the world, usually feeds on flying lemurs,
wild cats, and squirrels.

Kadayawan Festival

The perfect time to visit Davao would be August, when the city stages
one of the most colorful festivals in the Philippines. Kadayawan
Festival is an annual thanksgiving celebration for a bountiful harvest.
Various activities, including street dancing, tribal parades, trade
fairs, flower shows, and horse fight competitions, are lined up during
the weeklong festival.

GAP Farming Orchard

You can also embark on a nature trip while in Davao. GAP Farming Orchard
is a perfect place to escape city life and pollution. It has
well-maintained cottages and camp sites, an Olympic-sized swimming pool,
and horseback riding facilities. Exotic flowers and tropical fruits can
be found in the garden. A giant one-eyed monster confined in a tunnel
built during the Japanese occupation is also a major attraction at the
resort.

There are many other things to do in Davao. For adventure seekers, a visit to Camp Sabros in Mt. Apo or to Eden Nature Park for a thrilling zip line experience is a must. For those who love swimming and other water activities, go to Samal Island, which is famous for its white-sand beaches. A Davao adventure is never complete without tasting durian, a fruit famous for its unique odor and thorn-covered husk.

Local Philippines
is your travel buddy. We have information about the destinations, how
to get there, what to do while in the area and more! Destinations in the
beaches or in the mountains, destinations under water, destinations
right at the middle of the urban hubPsychology Articles, name it and Local Philippines will
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Sightseeing Sites in the Philippines

With its wide selection of tourist attractions, the Philippines
is an ideal site for sightseeing tours. Home to colorful festivals and
exquisite natural wonders, this Southeast Asian nation has a lot of
visual treats to offer for travelers.

There are notable tourist spots to visit throughout the country’s
more than 7,000 islands. This is a testament that the Philippines ranks
among the top nations offering an impressive selection of sightseeing attractions.
Though internationally famous for its white sand beaches, this
predominantly Catholic republic also boasts of delicate colonial
architectures and breathtaking natural sceneries in almost every town.

Here is a guide to some of the best sightseeing destinations
in the Philippines.

Manila

Manila is not only the country’s capital but also the center of cultural
heritage. Explore the Philippines’ rich Spanish legacy with a trip to
Intramuros (Walled City), which was built by the Spaniards in the 16th
century. Inside the compound, you can find old places of worship such
as the San Agustin Church and the Manila Cathedral. Other points of
interest in Intramuros are Fort Santiago and Casa Manila. Also, never
leave Manila without visiting the Luneta Park, where a statue of
national hero Jose Rizal is erected.

Corregidor

Take a trip down memory lanes by visiting Corregidor, an island that
served as an important defense fortress for American and Filipino
soldiers during World War II. Some of the attractions in this historical
place include the Pacific War Memorial, the Battery Way, the Mile-Long
Barracks, and the Malinta Tunnel. It takes a shade over an hour to reach
Corregidor from Manila, where day and night tour packages are
available.

Baguio

Its unique attractions have made Baguio a renowned sightseeing
destination in northern Philippines. Dubbed as the Summer Capital of the
Philippines, the city is home to a dozens of scenic spots such as The
Mansion, Burnham Park, Session Road, Camp John Hay, and the Baguio
Botanical Garden. While plying the dizzying Kennon Road, have your
camera ready for some spectacular countryside views.

Legazpi

Legazpi, the provincial capital of Albay, is one of Bicol region’s top
tourist destinations. This first-class city is home to the world’s
famous Mayon Volcano, which is known for its perfect conical shape. The
year 1814 is said to be the volcano’s worst eruption. A remainder of
this grim past can be found at the Cagsawa Ruins Park.

Banaue

Another premier tourist destination in the northern region is Banaue.
This town of more than 20,000 people is the site of the Banaue Rice
Terraces, a 2,000-year-old man-made leveled surfaces carved into the
mountains of Ifugao. Don’t be surprised if gaze in wonder once seeing
this UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Bohol

Aside from its pristine beaches, Bohol is widely known for the Chocolate
Hills. These unusual geological formations are scattered in the towns
of Carmen, Batuan, and Sagbayan. The dome-shaped hills are actually
limestone covered with green grass. Bohol, which is located in the
Central Visayas region, is also famous for a tarsier sanctuary and the
Sandugo Festival.

Local
Philippines
is your travel buddy. We have information about the
destinations, how to get there, what to do while in the area and more!
Destinations in the beaches or in the mountains, destinations under
water, destinations right at the middle of the urban hubScience Articles, name it and
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Surfing In The Philippines

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Surrounded by water on all sides and with virtually 7,107 islands to
choose from, it is no wonder why the Philippines is a prime surfing
destination.
 
Not long ago, Philippine coasts were basically fishing villages
characterized with strips of rugged and untouched beaches covered with
rolling waves roughly sweeping its coastlines.  When surfing started
becoming a part of the daily lives of the fishermen, the practice spread
until more and more young people got into it.  Major Philippine surfing
destinations like Siargao pulled surfers from around the globe, but
there continue to be many undiscovered coasts where there are even
bigger surf as is the case with some Samar surf spots.
 
Surfing Spots in the Philippines
 
The beauty of surfing in the Philippines is that while it is starting to
become popular, there are still pretty much undiscovered surf spots. 
That being said, you will never run out of places to surf in the
Philippines.  Below is a guide to help you plan your next Philippine
surfing trip:
 La Union
This coastal province at the northwest of Luzon has a series of beach
breaks for beginners and occasional challenging point breaks for skilled
surfers. It is one of the closer surfing destinations from Manila and
has a pleasant atmosphere even for beach combing.  Surfs in La Union
have standard line up of 100 m from shore. Waves start at 1 meter and
can swell up to 6 feet. Waves can close out after a strong typhoon.
 Baler Bay, Quezon, Aurora Province
Nestling in the east coast of Aurora Province, Baler is physically
unattached from the rest of the Philippines. To get there takes 6 hours
by four-wheel-drive vehicle, and passing through rough roads in the
mountains down to the bay of Baler.  The ride can be exhausting but
getting there promises a remarkable view of surf all over the stretching
brown beach of the bay.  The town faces the deep blue of the Pacific
Ocean, which gives it the surf that it is renowned for.
Surfing in Aurora is limited by your access to the sites that are
there.  For perfect surf you need not look too far, but should you want
do some exploring, you can hire a banca to help facilitate this.
 Siargao Island, Surigao del Norte
Many surfers have asserted that Siargao has the best and most consistent
waves in the Philippines.  In this regard, this famous surf spot has
made its way into the international surfing circuit.  The highly
recognized surf breaks, commonly known as Cloud 9, are reputed to be the
best breaks in the Philippines and all over Asia.  Due to the island’s
thriving development, more resorts have sprung up and surfers from all
over the world have become a common sight.
 
The Siargao International Surfing Competition happens every year in
October.Zambales
Zambales is a province on the west coast of Luzon north of Manila. 
Zambales is part of the Central Luzon Region or Region 3.  The
opportunities for surfing in Zambales are enormous.  The entire
coastline offers adventurous surfers many possible surfing breaks.
 Catanduanes
Its strategic location in the course of Pacific typhoons give
Catanduanes the crashing waves that surf enthusiasts the world over
flock to, including the famous Majestic wave that crashes the shores of
the island from the depths of the Pacific Ocean.  This break on to an
offshore reef 200m from Puraran Bay is known to be unpredictable but
once present, it kicks off one of the fastest, right-handed and the
hollowest wave of more than 6 ft.  Beginners should be aware that this
wave can sweep you closer to the reef.  Thus be always prepared to
experience cuts and scratches.
 
Best Times to Go
 
Philippine surfing is both temperamental and seasonal, so it is
important to know the best time to come surf or you may be
disappointed.  Conditions vary depending on location.  In general, the
best time would be from July to November, when surfing competitions
across the archipelago are mostly held.
 
With these in mind, you can choose to surf the east coast or the west
coast.  The east coast probably gets the better surf.Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Local Philippines is
your
travel buddy. We have information about the destinations, how to get
there, what to do while in the area and more! Destinations in the
beaches or in the mountains, destinations under water, destinations
right at the middle of the urban hub, name it and LocalPhilippines will
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The Future of IT Outsourcing in the Philippines

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In a nutshell, outsourcing can be defined as the delegation of in-house core and non-core functions of companies to other providers that possess expertise in delivering specific services.Over the years, the Philippines has become the new Mecca of business process outsourcing. In fact, it is identified as the third biggest industry in the global arena. Eighty percent of BPO operations are concentrated in the call center industry. The country takes pride in its expertise in customer service and technical assistance functions. These strengths must be the qualifications for the Philippines to be tagged as the “Call Center Capital of the World”. The IBM Global Locations Trend in New York, released a report in 2010 confirming the lead of the country against its major competitor—India. The Philippines now has 350,000 call center representatives serving industries in banking, travel, telecoms and others.Since 2006, there has been a significant growth in the outsourcing business. Figures show that the Philippine outsourcing industry annually expands by 46 percent. In relation to this, Raja Mitra, consultant for World Bank, conducted a study with more focus on the Philippines information technology business process outsourcing (IT-BPO). He predicted that if the government would succeed in developing this sector, the outsourcing industry could go up to or over $50 billion by 2020.Apparently, the Philippines has been triumphant in outperforming such that it eventually became an attractive destination not only for outsourced voice core functions but for delegating non-voice services like information technology. In his report, Mitra also mentioned that 5 percent of the Philippines’ total gross domestic product (GDP) in 2010 came from the outsourcing sector. He even expressed confidence in the IT industry. He believes that it can contribute to raise GDP up to 11 percent if the government can direct more efforts in strengthening the country’s IT sector to make it more adequately advanced for IT-BPO to flourish. Such efforts would eventually result in an unprecedented growth in the country’s economy.  Admitting that the outsourcing industry has provided employment for many Filipinos, Mitra stated, „It is important to simultaneously develop the IT, telecom, education and other knowledge economy sectors and to enhance the potential synergies between BPO and other ICT sectors and that so both in terms of external and domestic markets. Such a development offers significant promise it can contribute importantly towards achieving sustainable and inclusive economic growth“.At the moment, the Philippines IT industry is said to still be developing. But as the competition in the software development sector intensifies and US-based companies search for ways to lower overhead costs, the industry sure has a bright future ahead of it. In Philippines case, if the government will just be able to positively deal with the challenge of strengthening its IT infrastructure, the country will reap the benefits of more opportunities of attracting foreign investors to put up their business centers in the Philippines and start outsourcing their IT functions in a country with a lot of potentials in terms of its skilled IT workers and economic agility. There should be no setbacks for outsourcing clients as Philippine outsourcing companies remain to exemplify reliable and quality services, high international compliance, and competent professional workforce in the information technology sector. Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Catherine Alibanban currently writes for Agents of Value, an established webmaster staff leasing company that offers value-for-money services in SEO / link building, virtual assistance, content writing, web design, webmaster, web development and programming support.

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Local Philippines: Nothing Less in Batanes

If there is one place in the Philippines where you can experience a
calm, serene, and idyllic vacation, it should be Batanes. Covering an
area of 219.01 square kilometers, Batanes is the northernmost and the
smallest province in the archipelago. Batanes may be small in size but
it is big in natural resources. A patchwork of green fields, reeds, and
stone houses brings tourists in this cozy paradise to another dimension.

Batanes, which is surrounded by bodies of water, can be reached
through a one-hour-and-forty-five-minute plane ride from Manila. Fresh
winds and cool breeze welcome visitors in the province, which is often
described as a premier tourist destination in most Philippine travel guides.
What separates Batanes from other island paradises in the archipelago
is that it satisfies the most demanding travelers even without giant
shopping malls, posh resorts, luxury hotels, sublime events, and hip
bars.

Home to the great Ivatans, Batanes is composed of ten islands and is
subdivided into six municipalities. Its tourism industry is buoyed by
natural features such as a subtropical climate, magnificent landscapes
and seascapes, and rich cultural heritage. Here is a sampling of what to
do and see in Batanes.

House of Dakay

The stone houses of Batanes are surely a visual treat for tourists. The
most photographed and frequently visited of them is the House of Dakay,
which was built in the 18th century. Located in San Jose de
Ivana, this fabled house survived a strong earthquake that leveled the
entire town. It has been declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Building.
House of Dakay is currently occupied by an 82-year-old woman who is
fondly called Lola Ida.

Mt. Iraya

Mt. Iraya is an active volcano situated on Batan Island. At 1,900 feet
above sea level, the mountain houses a spring water where the town gets
its drinking water. Expert climbers said Mt. Iraya is perfect for
hikers and wannabe mountain adventurers. It is home to the Batanes pit
viper, an arboreal snake that it endemic to the province, and to dozens
of exotic fauna and flora.

Ruins of Song-Song

Another must-see attraction
in Batanes in the Ruins of Song-Song. These are the remains of a
village in the town of Uyugan after a tidal wave out an entire community
in 1954. The group of destroyed lime and stone houses is located just
several meters from the Song-Song beach, which is comparable to other
great beaches in Luzon and those in Visayas and Mindanao.

Sabtang Island

A common travel tip to Batanes visitors is not to forget a trip to
Sabtang Island. It has unspoiled white-sand beaches, steep mountains,
and deep canyons, making it one of the 12 Best Destinations in the
Philippines as recommended by the Department in Tourism in 1994. This
beautiful island southwest of Batan can be reached by a 30-minute boat
ride from Radiwan Port in Ivana.

Basco Cathedral

Built in 1783, the Church of Sto. Domingo de Basco is the oldest and
the most important church in Batanes. The church, locally known as Basco
Cathedral, is designed to withstand strong typhoons and earthquakes. It
is dedicated to the Immaculate Conception, the municipality’s
patroness.

Other notable travel destinations in Batanes are Di-atay Beach in
Mahatao, Chewa Cave, the Sumhao Wind Turbines, and San Jose Church.
Aside from sightseeing, tourist can also do trekking in the Marlboro and
Naidi Hills and surfing at Madiwedved in Mahatao.

Local Philippines is your travel buddy. We have information
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and more! Destinations in the beaches or in the mountains, destinations
under water, destinations right at the middle of the urban hubBusiness Management Articles, name it
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Local Philippines: Zestful Zamboanga

Located seven hundred kilometers away from Manila is a land known to
many as Asia’s Latin City. But aside from its rich Hispanic past, this
tourist hotspot is one of the centers in the fields of commerce, trade,
finance, health, and education in Mindanao. Synonymous to nature,
beauty, and variety, Zamboanga City is the place to be if you’re looking
for a different kind of adventure in the Philippines.

Zamboanga City might not sound music to the ears of the
adventure-bound. Other than its diving sites, the highly urbanized city
offers no particular spots for mountain climbing, caving, and other
outdoor recreations. Nonetheless, Zamboanga always amuses its visitors
with its natural charm and appealing attributes.

While most Philippine travel guides caution tourists about security
risks in Zamboanga City, the local travel industry remains a force to
reckon with. Last year, visitor arrivals in the city reached 321,581, a
1.5% growth from the 2008 figure. The local government attributed the
improvement to the opening of new tourist attractions and continuous
promotion of other scenic spots and festivals. Mushrooming resorts and
hotels that offer various accommodations are also contributing factors.

Here are some of the places and events that make Zamboanga City one of the major travel destinations in the Philippines.

Fort Pilar

Fort Pilar is one of the famous landmarks in Zamboanga City. Built by the Spaniards in the 17th
century, this military fortress was used to defend the city against
pirates and raiders coming from different parts of Mindanao. Fort Pilar,
which was originally called Real Fuerza de San Jose, now houses a
shrine of the Virgin Mary. Rumors have it that the Blessed Virgin made
miraculous appearances in the fort.

Paseo del Mar

One of the newest additions to the growing list of attractions in
Zamboanga City is Paseo del Mar. This bay walk area, which opened to the
public last year, provides a magnificent view of the famous Zamboanga
sunset. It has several stalls rented by concessionaires, a police
outpost, a travel information center, and a mini-port for tourist boats.

Santa Cruz Island

Visitors in Zamboanga should not miss out on Santa Cruz Island. It is
famous for its pink sand beach, one of the very few of its kind in the
world. The island, which has been declared a protected area, is a magnet
for diving enthusiasts. Its crystal-clear water is perfect for
underwater photography. Santa Cruz Island is just 20 minutes away from
downtown Zamboanga.

Metropolitan Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception

Feed your soul with a visit to the Metropolitan Cathedral of the
Immaculate Conception. This place of worship, located beside Ateneo de
Zamboanga University, is considered one of the modern cathedrals in
Asia. Inside the church can be found a marble statue of the Immaculate
Conception designed by national artist Napoleon Abueva.

Yakan Weaving Center

Zamboanga City is also known for its colorful fabrics with intricate
patterns. The best way to discover how these indigenous clothing are
made is to visit the Yakan Weaving Center. The facility, located just
across the La Vista del Mar Beach Resort, displays and sells various
products made from pineapple and abaca fibers such as clothes,
placemats, coin purses, and bags.

One of the travel tips
experts frequently give to visitors in Zamboanga is to look for
accommodations and vacation packages that suit your budget and
preference. Another is to always get information about the security
situation in Mindanao.

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and more! Destinations in the beaches or in the mountains, destinations
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