Experience the Romance of the Philippines: A Honeymoon Guide

If you’re searching for the perfect destination for a romantic getaway or honeymoon, look no further than the Philippines. This stunning island nation in the Pacific Ocean offers unparalleled natural beauty that sets the stage for relaxation and romance. The Philippines’ 7,107 islands offer endless possibilities for creating unforgettable memories with your loved one on your honeymoon or romantic getaway. 

Boasting some of the most beautiful islands in the world (think Boracay and the incredible El Nido Marine Reserve), The Philippines is a remarkable destination that will leave you in awe. While it may still be considered a hidden gem by some, the Philippines is a treasure waiting to be discovered.

Whether relaxing on some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, exploring the Chocolate Hills of Bohol or hitting the cosmopolitan city of Manila, the Philippines offers something for everyone. 

This comprehensive honeymoon and travel guide will assist you in planning your ultimate holiday or honeymoon to The Philippines, highlighting both popular tourist spots and hidden gems.

Get ready to uncover the best that the Philippines has to offer!

The Peninsula Manila, Philippines
Stay in luxury accommodation: The Peninsula Manila’s Grand Fountain.

The city of Manila

You’ll likely start your holiday or honeymoon in the capital city of Manila as this is where the international airport is located, and it is worth having a few nights here.

Located on the nation’s largest island – Luzon – you’ll enjoy the sophisticated city life, luxurious gourmet restaurants and vibrant art and culture of Manila.

Be sure to stroll through Manila’s old historic district, Intramuros. This is home to the World Heritage Site, San Agustin Church and its associated museum. Here you and your loved one can be blown away by the stunning architecture and fascinating ruins. Discover old religious artefacts, gaze at intricate paintings and soak in the sheer magnitude of the history surrounding you. 

For a particularly dreamy honeymoon experience, take a ride on one of the kalesas (horse-drawn carriages) around the old streets – so snuggle up.

Then head down to Manila Bay, a natural harbour, and witness the magnificent sunset. Walk along the palm tree-lined Roxas Boulevard that runs alongside the water, hand-in-hand in the balmy breeze.

If you’re looking for some luxury accommodation on your lover’s getaway, you can even stay at the very hotel the Beatles and Marlon Brando himself once stayed at in this area, The Manila Hotel.

Boracay Island

Boracay Island Beach, Philippines
Boracay Island beach

Boracay is one of the Philippines most popular for loved-up honeymooners. Its beautiful white-sand beaches and crystalline waters are the ideal backdrop for lying on the beach with a good book or splashing in the gentle waves. The aptly named White Beach is regularly named as one of the best beaches in the world for this very reason!

Boracay Island may be small, but it boasts 17 beautiful beaches, each with its own unique charm. Puka Shell Beach, located in the north, is a peaceful and serene escape from the crowds, with kayaking, paddle-boarding, and beach volleyball available.

White Beach, stretching 4 km along the west coast, is divided into three subareas, each with its own atmosphere. Station 1 is upscale and tranquil, Station 2 is buzzing with restaurants and shops, and Station 3 is a natural haven for budget travellers.

Boracay is a paradise for water sports enthusiasts. You can try your hand at windsurfing, kiteboarding, or paddle-boarding for an adrenaline rush. If you prefer a more laid-back experience, snorkelling and diving are great options to explore the island’s underwater beauty.

Boats and aerial beach view of Boracay, Philippines

A beautiful indulgence for honeymooners would be to book a couples massage at one of the luxury resorts on Boracay or have a candlelit dinner on the shore. Whatever your preference, Boracay has something for everyone.

Boracay’s sunset scene is spectacular and finishing each day with a romantic stroll along the beach is one of life’s simple pleasures when you honeymoon on Boracay. As the sun dips below the horizon, the atmosphere becomes magical with music and cocktails. To make it even more special, consider booking a private sailboat and enjoy the sunset from the ocean. Paraw Sailing guides are on the beach, ready to take you on a memorable journey.

To get to Boracay, you’ll need to fly into either Caticlan or Kalibo airport as there is no airport on the island itself. Caticlan is the more convenient option, but flights can be expensive during peak season and holidays. Once you arrive at Caticlan Ferry Terminal, you’ll need to purchase three tickets for the ferry, environmental fee, and terminal fee. These tickets can be bought at numbered windows. The total cost for the ferry ride to Boracay is around 200 Php.

With its idyllic setting and endless possibilities for romance, Boracay is the ultimate honeymoon destination.

Cebu & Mactan Island

Cebu, Philippines
Cebu is full of history

You’ll be dazzled by Cebu should you include it on your Philippines honeymoon itinerary. Located in the Central Visayas region of the Philippines, it is a stunning province known for its abundance of islands and islets.

Cebu is one of the most developed provinces in the Philippines, ensuring it is a popular destination for tourists due to its diverse range of activities and attractions. With its stunning beaches, mountains, and canyons, Cebu attracts nearly two million visitors each year.

With its rich history as the first part of the Philippines to be colonised by Spain, Cebu City showcases a significant European influence that adds to its enchanting charm. Whether you’re exploring its historical sites or immersing yourself in its vibrant culture, Cebu is a must-visit destination for a memorable honeymoon experience.

A stroll around Fort San Pedro is also a captivating experience. This is an old outpost, which now lies in a beautiful kind of disrepair, surrounded by lush and green plant life.

For an incredibly romantic view of Cebu by night, head up to the Tops lookout and gaze over the twinkling city together. It’s certainly a beautiful, glowing image you’ll never forget. Grab a beverage and some snacks while you’re at it and make a night of it.

Shangri La Mactan Island
Fire twirling at Shangri-La’s Mactan’s beach

The main island of Cebu is surrounded by 167 islands and islets, each with its own unique beauty and appeal. Mactan Island, which lies a few kilometres southeast of Cebu, is one such island. When flying into Cebu City, you’ll actually land in Mactan, which is connected to the city by two bridges.

Mactan, also known as Lapu-Lapu, is a popular destination for honeymooners and those seeking adventure, relaxation and romance in Cebu, thanks in no small part to the extraordinary diversity of its coral gardens, with waters that offer some of the finest diving and snorkelling sites in Asia.

Mactan’s urban side means there’s a brilliant mix of nightlife, shopping and dining, but it’s also the place to go if you want to pamper and spoil yourself, thanks to lovely beaches and some of the finest five-star luxury resorts in the Philippines. 

One of the best things about including Mactan on your Philippines honeymoon odyssey is its easy accessibility. Unlike other remote islands, no long boat rides are required to experience the unique island vibe. It’s also a great starting point for island-hopping trips in the Bohol Strait between Cebu and Bohol.

Read more about what to do and see in Cebu with our travel guide.


Pier at sunset Siargao Island

Siargao Island is a hidden gem in the Philippines that is gaining popularity among locals but is still relatively unknown to tourists. While it is famous for its world-class surfing at Cloud 9 reef break, there is much more to explore on the island. Non-surfers can enjoy the island’s impressive nature, including the clear waters of Sugba Lagoon and beautiful beaches on island hopping tours.

Visitors come to Siargao to experience the surf, white-sand beaches, beautiful sunsets, and natural rock and cave pools. One of the most popular tourist spots on the island is Sugba Lagoon, which can be reached by booking a tour.

Siargao Island is accessible via Sayak Airport or fast-craft ferries from Surigao City seaport and renting a car once you are there is a reasonable option at around 2,500 pesos a day. Still, tricycles and habal-habal (motorbike taxis) are also available.

Don’t miss out on this hidden paradise on your Philippines honeymoon or holiday itinerary – but be quick if you plan to miss the crowds as the word is getting out!

Palawan, Coron & El Nido

Image courtesy of Club Paradise Resort, Palawan

Palawan, the largest province in the Philippines, is a stunning archipelago of 1,780 islands known for its incredible biodiversity. Dubbed the “last ecological frontier” of the country, Palawan offers honeymooners a range of unique experiences, from exploring underground rivers to swimming in hidden lagoons and diving among World War II shipwrecks.

Stretching from Mindoro in the northeast to Borneo in the southwest, Palawan is situated between the South China Sea and the Sulu Sea and takes its name from its largest island.

Amongst its many islands, Coron stands out with its crystal-clear lagoons, gorgeous coral gardens, and pristine white beaches. To fully immerse in the beauty of the area, a boat tour with an English-speaking guide is highly recommended. For diving enthusiasts, Coron’s waters offer an abundance of rare fish, giant clams, sharks, manta rays, sea turtles and a dozen World War II shipwrecks.

Big Lagoon, El Nido
Big Lagoon, El Nido

El Nido, also in Palawan is a dream honeymoon destination. With its crystal-clear turquoise waters, pristine white sand beaches, and breathtaking limestone cliffs, it’s no wonder that El Nido has been named one of the best island destinations in the world.

The Bacuit Archipelago, accessible from El Nido, is home to 45 islands and islets, each with its own unique geological formations. Whether you’re looking to relax on the beach or explore the vibrant coral reefs, El Nido is the perfect honeymoon destination for couples seeking a paradise-like experience.

Read more about El Nido with this travel article.

Another noteworthy destinations in Palawan is Puerto Princesa, the province’s capital, although it is governed independently from the rest of the province. Here, visitors can marvel at a UNESCO-protected underground river.

The natural beauty of this region is truly awe-inspiring and will leave an indelible impression on visitors.


Bohol from above
Bohol from above

Known as the “Jewel of the Philippines,” Bohol offers stunning beaches, breathtaking geological formations, and mesmerising coral reefs. It’s the perfect place for nature lovers and wildlife enthusiasts to explore and discover the beauty of the island.

The symmetrical Chocolate Hills’ changing colours from brown to green are a must-see. Alona Beach on Panglao island, connected to Bohol by a bridge, is perfect for a romantic escape with its serene and silent beaches, white sand, turquoise waters, and brown mountains. It’s also one of the Philippines’ most impressive and affordable honeymoon destinations.

Rent a bike to explore exotic locales or take a boat ride to Balicasag and the Virgin Island – these are sure to be the highlight of your trip to the Philippines.

With easy access from Manila, numerous flights are available to this beautiful destination. Whether you’re on your honeymoon or just looking for a romantic holiday, Bohol is the perfect place to relax and unwind with your loved one.

Read more about Bohol with our first-hand travel article here.

Cultural tips and customs to be aware of

Street vendor Manila

When travelling to the Philippines, it’s good to be aware of the cultural customs and etiquette. For example, Filipinos are known for their hospitality and friendliness, so it’s important to reciprocate that kindness.

Dressing modestly is a sign of respect, particularly when visiting religious sites. Additionally, it’s considered impolite to use profanity or blasphemy as it may cause offense and lead to loss of face. So, it’s always a good idea to choose your words carefully and be considerate of the local culture.

When dining, waiting for the host to begin eating before starting your own meal is customary. Also, if you are invited to somebody’s house, do not refer to the lady of the house as ‘hostess’ as this has an alternative meaning in the Philippines that is offensive.

And when greeting someone, a simple nod or smile is often sufficient, but a handshake is also acceptable. Also, it important to note that it is expected that the elderly and those of a higher social status are treated with a higher degree of respect.

By being aware of these customs, you can show respect for the local culture and have a more enjoyable trip.

Best time to visit and weather conditions

Philippines boat

The best time to honeymoon or holiday in the Philippines is during the dry season, which runs from November to April. The weather is generally sunny and dry during this time, making it perfect for outdoor activities and beach trips. However, it’s important to note that the Philippines is a tropical country and can experience typhoons and heavy rains during the rainy season, from May to October. It’s best to check the weather forecast before planning your trip and to be prepared for any unexpected weather conditions.

As far as accommodation, dining and shopping go, there are plenty of options here. Dine on local Filipino fare, including lechon, a roast pig dish. You can also find plenty of tantalising international tastes around and about, so if you get a craving for an Italian or Chinese feast, you won’t be disappointed.

Visas for the Philippines

If you’re an Australian planning to visit the Philippines for your honeymoon or romantic getaway, you’ll be happy to know that you can enter the country without a visa for up to 30 days. However, it’s important to note that entry and exit requirements can change quickly, so it’s best to stay updated by contacting the nearest embassy or consulate of the Philippines for the latest information. As long as you meet all the necessary requirements and conditions, you should have no problem enjoying your stay in this beautiful country. Check Smart Traveller for updates.

Is your appetite for a Philippines holiday or honeymoon well and truly whet? Check out the Ten Best Islands and Beaches in the Philippines here!

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