Why the Philippines suits me

Some people say the food in the Philippines is disappointing. Nothing like the extraordinary and diversified food you get in Thailand, Singapore and other parts of Asia. For me that just isn’t true. One thing I like to do when traveling is to eat where the locals eat.

Sometimes that means the food doesn’t particularly suit me, but in a lot of cases I find great examples of local cuisine. (RELATED: A foreigner's response to 'I'd rather go hungry' girl

I love the various nighttime food markets in Manila. Something I wish we had back in Texas, where I am from. When I am in Manila, I always look up the food markets that are scheduled for the week and make plans to visit them.

 

The Midnight Mercado in Bonifacio Global City is one of my favorites, along with the Banchetto and the Sunday market in Legazpi Village. I get to sample a wide range of foods and meet some great people. (RELATED: Why I'm proud of my Philippine passport

I was warned to be careful as a foreigner walking around at night in Manila. Well maybe because I’m a big guy, 6’1, or maybe because I don’t get drunk and wander down dark alleys, I have never had any problems. The people I have met for the most part have all been friendly and helpful. 

Maybe some of that is because I don’t treat everyone as inferior and as if they need to cater to me, like so many tourists expect. I try to speak to everyone I meet, say hi to the waiters, please and thank you, just normal manners I was brought up with. I figure, I am a guest in your house. (RELATED: German traveler's 20 reasons to fall in love with the Philippines)

The beaches are my favorite place. I have visited a few, and there are many more I want to see. I enjoy seeing the all the tourist sites but what I really enjoy is a laid-back beach where there are few tourists and I can sample the culture. The Philippines offers many beaches just like that.

There are many more places in the Philippines I want to visit and experience, and it seems I just never have enough time. I guess that means more trips in the future.

All in all I would say my decision in 2009 to visit the Philippines was a good idea. I seemed to have found a place that suits me.  – Rappler.com