"A City of Striking Contrasts" Manila by asiantraveler

Manila Travel Guide: 2,212 reviews and 5,535 photos

In my eyes as a traveler...

Antiquated churches, steel and glass skyscrapers
Horse drawn carriages, jeepney's and cars
Mansions of the rich, shanties in the riverbanks
Devout catholics, a crazy night life
Age old traditions, modern day attractions
Catholic Schools, prostitute filipinas
Polluted and dirty, the most beautiful sunset
It's everything good and bad, what a great city!


On May 8 1570, a spanish expedition to manila left panay island (phils) under the command of Marshal Martin de Goiti. The expedition was consisted of 120 spaniards and 600 visayans. At that time, Manila was a rich moslem kingdom under Rajah Soliman and a civilized outpost of Islam. Soliman refusing to submit to foreign domination, defended his Kingdom against spanish invasion. The following year, a stronger expedition under Legaspi`s personal command appeared in Manila Bay. Realizing the futility of resistance to a superior foe, Lakan Dula of Tondo (Soliman's uncle) persuaded Soliman to accept spanish rule. Thus, Manila fell into spanish hand without a fight. On June 1571, Legaspi proclaimed Manila as the capital of the Philippines. He rebuilt it into a spanish city. King Philip II granted the new city a proud coat-of-arms and a charming name- insigne y siempre leal ciudad ( Distinguised and ever loyal city) The Filipino name however persisted. Until the present time, the city has been called Manila, from the native term maynilad meaning place where there is nilad- nilad is the name of the kind of plant that used to grow abundantly in the manila region.

the city of our affections

Manila is the capital city of the Philippines. But we Filipinos call Manila "The City of Our Affections." This phrase is taken from an old Spanish writing; but it also expresses a modern sentiment. Manila is an old city, may be older than historians can determine. Perhaps having been around for a long time give its "Poise and Grandeur."

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:lively, world class malls
  • Cons:pollution, traffic and big gap between rich and poor
  • In a nutshell:melting pot, shopper's paradise
  • Last visit to Manila: Mar 2008
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (14)

Comments (6)

  • mallyak's Profile Photo
    Mar 20, 2012 at 12:46 AM

    I recently watched some programmes on The Philipines On TV and very fascinated especially with the jeepny's as I am a great lover of Public Transport!It was a wonderful storey of a jeepny owner and driver and his life and ambitions.You have given a wonderful description of the city and ratings.Thanks richard!

  • toonsarah's Profile Photo
    May 17, 2008 at 1:51 AM

    A nice start to your VT pages. The sunsets look great.

  • ukirsari's Profile Photo
    Apr 25, 2008 at 6:23 AM

    manila! brings my memory back want to make my manila page very soon :) thanks for inspiring me with san agustin. oh how i miss city of manila.

  • ValbyDK's Profile Photo
    Apr 11, 2008 at 1:47 AM

    Hi Richard. Great photos from Manila.

  • matt10gonzalez's Profile Photo
    Apr 9, 2008 at 9:15 PM

    Oh yes! I agree too that Manila isn't all polluted- I've seen worst cities than Manila and you know what? I can't wait to move to Manila already! Wow! I wonder how it'll be! And great poem! It's true and funny!

  • Mar 29, 2008 at 6:48 PM

    Philippines oneof my favorite countries


“im just a little sparrow on earth.”

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