As the trip progressed strangers became friends. Particularly special was the effortlessness: perfect logistics, never having to worry about anything, and, of course, the charming and thoughtful way you organised everything.
Just 2 hours away from Manila is the world's smallest volcano, which is actually a crater island that rests on a lake surrounded by a larger crater. Quiet since 1977 and showing signs of coming back to life since the early 1990s, Taal is closely studied by the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology. Exploring the crater island and hiking to its opening is a great day trip from Manila, combined with some leisure activities in Tagaytay, the tourist town that overlooks the lake.
Meet An Asia Expert
From Our Blog
Our co-founder Jay Tindall has been visiting the Philippines for over 20 years. His favourite places? The rice terraces of Banaue, Sagada, and the beaches of Palawan.
One of the best vantage points of Taal Volcano is atop a horse as it follows a breezy trail on Tagaytay's open fields. Horseback riding in Tagaytay is a popular pastime, especially for locals escaping the city for a picnic on the fields overlooking the volcano.
Helicopter from Manila to Taal Lake and the spectacular Taal Volcano, the world’s smallest volcano. Situated within the lake, Taal Volcano is an active caldera covering 14 square miles of craters and cones, the heart of which is another lake, called Crater Lake, which contains another small volcanic island.
Explore the region's stunning geology up close, as you travel across the lake in a small wooden boat before ascending the crater on foot or on horseback.
Dinner in Tagaytay
Stay local for dinner, as Tagaytay, the town overlooking Lake Taal, has some wonderful restaurants. Sonya’s Garden is a romantic restaurant surrounded by lush herb and floral gardens, and Antonio’s serves eclectic fine dining cuisine in a multi-level house with terraces and verandas on a hillside.
Beginning in the bustling capital of Manila and finishing in the relaxing paradise of Boracay, this 13-day itinerary takes you through the Philippine’s must-see spots. Enjoy horse-drawn carriage rides, hike volcanoes, visit numerous UNESCO Heritage Sites and lounge on the beach on this balanced luxury getaway.
Begin your Philippines adventure by trekking to a volcano within a volcano and a lake within a lake. While the trip starts off active, finish your 13-day holiday by lounging on El Nido’s lush white-sand beaches. This is a luxurious adventure balanced with culture, history and of course, fun in the sun.
Island hop through the idyllic Philippines on this 16-day luxury tour. Visit several of the country’s historical heritage sites, relax on serene beaches and experience Latin-Asian fusion cultures. Gorge on fresh local food in the popular markets. Search for lively fish as you snorkel Palawan's active coral reefs.
Discovery Country Suites
Only an hour’s drive from Metro Manila, Discovery Country Suites is the perfect city escape, nestled as it is in the cool, relaxed Tagaytay countryside. This luxury bed & breakfast is a local and international favorite, having struck the perfect balance between the warm, friendly hospitality for which the Philippines is known, and services that could rival top international hotels. The exclusive hotel is home to just seven suites, each with its own unique theme, featuring cloud-like mattresses and incredible panoramas of the Tagaytay landscape, with the famous Taal Lake and volcano, as well as some of the country’s best golf courses, to look out upon. Gourmands will love that the hotel’s Restaurant Verbena has been highly-ranked in The Miele Guide for the past two years, among its many accolades.