The Philippines is a nation comprised of over 7,000 islands and an internet search for “best islands in the Philippines” turns up 78,500,000 results, so picking the right spots can seem a little daunting. That’s why I thought I’d share my three favourite islands in the Philippines with you…
Cebu. The island and the name brings up images of blue skies, roasted pork, friendly smiles and sweet mangoes. It’s not hard to see why many expats retire in the ‘Queen City’. Cebu and its surrounds offer a winning mix of island life and big city comfort, at prices that don’t break the bank. It’s this balance of having your French croissants and eating them on a hilltop too, that makes Cebu special..
Right in the heart of the Philippines archipelago, on the Southwest corner of the island of Negros Oriental, lies Dumaguete. The name means to “snatch” and legend has it that pirates used to come to the island to abscond with not just the treasures of the land but all the beautiful unwed ladies living there. There are no more pirates, but that doesn't mean it’s lost its old world feel...
Michael and his wife Barbara moved to the city of Cebu on the Philippine island of the same name eight years ago and have never looked back. “We actually feel younger. My kids are amazed at the transformation in me,” says Michael. “We came here thinking we would quietly and warmly head “into the sunset”. We very quickly found that we were actually heading “into the sunshine”.
Sailing into the sunset to start a new life in a tropical paradise is the stuff of many retirees’ dreams. However, sometimes the fear that they’ll also be leaving behind First World amenities holds them back. But there’s a place where you can forget those worries…Cebu City, on the island of Cebu in the Philippines, is that place.
In the Philippines, your dollar stretches (and stretches and stretches). Around $1,400 a month will fund a lot of luxuries such as maids, gardeners, massages… And that figure includes rent too… To find the best-value rentals though, you need to go see for yourself. The rental market in the Philippines is a “boots on the ground” project. There is no online presence for most rentals so once you arrive start talking to everyone, expats and locals, to find the best opportunities. On my recent visit that’s what I did, and here’s a taste of what I found in my favourite parts of the country…