Manila is an especially lively and diverse city, with all kinds of different tourist attractions awaiting. Although a large number of the sights are historic, others simply offer a fun day out, suitable for all the family. Particularly popular is the Enchanted Kingdom and its Space Shuttle roller coaster, along with the awesome water slides and pools that make up Splash Island. To experience a little of the life and soul of Manila, spend time exploring the Divisoria Market and haggling over the prices, or alternatively, check out the various exhibits and performances found within both the Cultural Centre of the Philippines and the Nayong Filipino Cultural Park.
Many old and historical buildings are spread around Manila, offering a taste of the past. Dating back to the latter part of the 16th century, Fort Santiago was once used as a prison and now serves as a popular park. Of a similar age, San Agustin Church features its very own collection of religious art works, while much newer and equally impressive, the Manila Cathedral of today was built as recently as the mid-20th century, after five predecessors suffered at the hands of fire, war and earthquakes. For a touch of grandeur, the gleaming-white riverside Malacanang Palace will provide just that and is actually the residence of none other than the President of the Philippines.
Information about Manila's rich history and culture is on hand within the city's plentiful selection of museums. This is particularly the case at the National Museum of the Philippines in Rizal Park, where many important artefacts are displayed. A similar selection of treasures is housed within the Metropolitan Museum of Manila in the Pasay City area, although families with their children tend to favour an afternoon out at the Philippine Science Centrum or the Museo Pambata (Children's Museum). For a taste of either modern or local Filipino art, check out the CCP Contemporary Art Museum of the Philippines and the Art Gallery Philippines respectively.
There are lots of good reasons to leave Manila for the day, and the nearby beaches and resorts of Cavite are just one of them, boasting great tourist appeal. Excursions to Anilao are also popular, where scuba diving and snorkelling is often the order of the day. Less than an hour away, Antipolo City makes for a good day trip, being home to many excellent restaurants and superb panoramas of Metro Manila. San Fernando is just a little farther and famed for its December Lantern Festival, with both the towns of Taal and Tagaytay also being close by, along with Corregidor Island, which is steeped in military history.