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8 Must-Visit Places to Immerse Yourself in Nature

These green spots are more accessible than you think

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Photography: @qcajperalta and @khrizzev on Instagram (Main Photos)

How many times have you planned to book a trip to the province just to see lush surroundings and towering trees? With traveling becoming a must for those who need a break, the reality of work and responsibilities can get in the way. If you're in need of quality time with Mother Nature, we found eight spots that will surely quench your thirst for an adventure. Look up these places and see how you can visit each! You might be surprised—you can easily drop by these parks before your next big flight:

1. Greenbelt Park

Where: Ayala Center, Makati City

Free entrance

 

Amidst the shops and restaurants that pepper the cluster of malls in Greenbelt, there is a small patch of green known as the Greenbelt Park. A perfect place to take that much needed breath of fresh air after a day of shopping or work, Greenbelt Park features a koi pond, trees and plants, plenty of seating, and the beautiful Chapel of Sto. Nino de Paz.

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2. Terra 28th

Where: 28th Street, Bonifacio Global City

Free entrance

 

The dynamic landscape of Bonifacio Global City not only offers malls, restaurants, and indoor entertainment—within its photo-friendly space is Terra 28th. A park that features interactive art installations, Terra 28th brings back our favorite Filipino street games such as Luksong Baka and Habulang Taya all set in a luscious green area that you'll surely enjoy.

3. RAVE Rainforest Adventure Experience

Where: F. Legaspi Avenue, Maybunga, Pasig City

Entrance Fee: Click here for the complete list of rates.

 

From inviting pools to quiet walkways and exhilarating activities such as zip-lines and wall climbing, RAVE Rainforest Adventure Experience has it all. Found within busy Pasig City is this multifaceted gem of a place that promises to cater to whatever nature fix you are craving for—for a minimal fee.

4. Intramuros

Where: Intramuros, Manila

Free entrance

 

The Walled City might not be as magnificent as it was before, but it doesn’t mean that it’s any less beautiful. Home to different schools, churches, and commercial establishments, the oldest and most historic district of Manila is not without its charming gardens and green areas. Take a stroll around Fort Santiago and enjoy the ruins and pocket gardens by yourself, or ride a kalesa as you take in the rich history of this Manila gem.

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5. La Mesa, Ecopark

Where: Novaliches, Quezon City

Entrance Fee: P40 for QC residents (just present proof of residence), P50 for non-QC residents, and P20 for QC students. Quezon City senior citizens and children who are below the 3ft. height requirement can avail of the free entrance.

 

This 33-hectare park was initially built to save the La Mesa Watershed Project—a source of potable water for people living in Manila. More than just a public park, the La Mesa Ecopark allows you to enjoy different activities like biking, swimming (P80 for adults and P40 for children), fishing (pay for your catch for P80), and yes, even bungee-jumping (P120). It’s the best place for weekend family bonding.

6. Ortigas Park

Where: Emerald Avenue, Ortigas Center, Pasig City

Free entrance

 

Ortigas Park is a respite from all frenzy happening in the area dominated by skyscrapers. The cozy park is smaller than other urban parks like Ayala Triangle, but that doesn't mean you can't have enough greenery to admire. If you live nearby, it’s the best spot to get some quiet time after work or even during your break time. Don’t forget to check out the concrete wall carvings of the Ortigas Family as well the Zen waterfall wall.

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7. Quezon Memorial Circle

Where: Diliman, Quezon City

Free entrance (some attractions may require fees)

 

We're sure you're familiar with its large mausoleum that houses the remains of former President Manuel L. Quezon, but did you know that the Quezon Memorial Circle also has a museum called QCX, restaurants, and two amusement areas called Pedal and Paddle and Circle of Fun? Aside from these features, the QC Memorial Circle also has plenty of walking trails and gardens. Visit the place during weekends for a chance to experience the flea markets, and don’t forget to drop by the plant stalls, too!

8. Freedom Islands

Where: La Huerta, Paranaque and Daniel Fajardo, Las Pinas City

 

If you pass through the Coastal Road going to the south of Manila, you've probably seen the small area that's off the main road filled with trees. Known as the Las Pinas-Paranaque Critical Habitat and Ecotourism Area, it is composed of two islands—the Freedom Island and the Long Island. Collectively known as the Freedom Islands, the 175 hectares of mangrove forest serve as a stopover for migratory birds from countries like Japan and Siberia. Since this is a protected area, access is limited. Help preserve the place by joining the clean-up drives and events held by organizations like the Save Freedom Island Movement. You can also contact the Conservation and Development Division at (02) 435-2509 to inquire how you can help.

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