The Philippines is full of natural beauty, including gorgeous beaches, hills that look like candy drops, amazing waterfalls, old rice terraces and reefs full of marine life.
But visitors aren't likely to see such wonders unaccompanied, as the locals are very outgoing. They consider solitude seekers an oddity—Filipinos prefer to have company.
Travelers to the Philippines will be included in bayanihan, the Filipinos' term for their communal spirit. The locals' jokes, smiles and laughter will be shared with their visitors—such friendly people are rare. Travelers who care more about exploring a culture and making friends more than visiting tourist sites will be pleased with the Philippines.
In rural areas and on some southern islands, travel can be a little hazardous, but most of the country, especially tourist areas, is safe. The government has worked hard, and fairly successfully, to curb petty street crime, tourist scams and dishonest cabdrivers. Security is strong, especially in shopping areas and hotels—all people who enter such places are checked. It's wise, though, for visitors to stay aware while traveling in the Philippines.
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