Here Are 7 Interesting Facts About The Philippines
PHILIPPINES – Here are 7 fascinating facts about the Philippines for those who are considering visiting or are just curious about it.
The Philippines, the world’s second-largest archipelago consisting of 7,641 islands, is renowned for its 36,000 km of pristine white beaches, but there’s much more to discover beyond the sandy shores.
This diverse country offers visitors a plethora of experiences, from exploring the bustling capital, Manila, and historic colonial towns to embarking on island-hopping adventures and marveling at volcanic landscapes. To introduce you to this fascinating nation, here are seven intriguing facts about the Philippines.
For those interested in visiting or learning more about the Philippines, here are 7 captivating facts:
1. It boasts the world’s longest underground river.
Deep within the St Paul’s Mountain Range on the island of Palawan lies the Puerta Princesa Subterranean River National Park, a remarkable underground river stretching 24km beneath the mountains. This natural wonder is not only the longest navigable underground river in the world but also holds the distinction of being a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the Seven Wonders of Nature.
2. It has an astonishingly diverse language landscape.
With over 175 languages spoken in the country, of which at least 171 are considered ‘living’ languages, the Philippines showcases linguistic richness. Despite this diversity, English is widely spoken, with more than 52 million people making it the fifth largest English-speaking nation globally. Among the various languages, Tagalog, Cebuano, Ilocano, Hiligaynon, and Bicolano are prominent, and there are also four tribal dialects without known living speakers.
3. It boasts three of the world’s largest shopping malls
In the Philippines, shopping is a significant cultural phenomenon. Notably, the country boasts three of the world’s ten largest shopping malls, including SM Megamall, SM North Edsa, and SM Mall of Asia. The biggest among them, SM North Edsa in Quezon City, Manila, spans an impressive 498,000m2, surpassing even the size of the Vatican City. These malls offer more than just shopping, with attractions like sky gardens, simulated rivers, and cinema complexes.
4. An island with more volcanoes than towns.
Camiguin, a small island measuring only 14 miles long and 8.5 miles wide, stands out as the sole island on Earth with more volcanoes than towns. Despite its volcanic landscape, Camiguin is safe to visit, as the volcanoes have remained dormant since the 1950s. Tourists are drawn to its bubbling hot springs, beautiful white-sand beaches, and friendly locals.
5. It’s home to Asia’s first Basketball League.
Basketball holds a special place in the hearts of Filipinos, and its love affair with the sport began during American Colonial rule in the early 20th century when it was introduced into the public school system, initially as a women’s game. Today, basketball is pervasive across the country, with makeshift hoops on street corners and dedicated sports centers. The Philippines’ professional league stands as Asia’s first and one of the oldest in the world, second only to the NBA.
6. Jeepneys remain the most popular mode of transport.
Synonymous with the Philippines, Jeepneys are iconic and unique modes of transport. Originating from surplus Jeeps left behind by American troops after World War II, resourceful Filipinos transformed them into public vehicles capable of carrying up to 20 people. While they are gradually being phased out for more environmentally-friendly options, Jeepneys can still be spotted in vibrant colors adorned with slogans, making them a significant part of the country’s history.
7. Its national bird is the Monkey-Eating Eagle.
Although unfairly named, the Philippine Eagle is known as the monkey-eating eagle, though it primarily preys on pigs, snakes, and bats. This majestic bird, with a wingspan of approximately two meters, is one of the rarest and most powerful in the world. Killing a Philippine Eagle carries severe consequences, with a penalty of 12 years imprisonment.
Whether you plan to visit the Philippines or are simply intrigued by this captivating country, these facts offer a glimpse into its extraordinary diversity and cultural richness.
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