The Philippines is hot all year round (except during the monsoons and tropical depression) but it definitely gets a lot hotter in the summer. Summer in the Philippines occurs between March to May and temperatures can go up to 30-40°C (86-104°F)! March is Fire Prevention Month and caretakers of senior citizens are encouraged to give their patients extra care as heatstroke is commonly happening at this time of the year. Before the implementation of the K to 12 programs, summer break for students used to be within this time then classes would start in June. However, nowadays most schools have summer breaks between June to August because of an academic shift to accommodate the adjustments made for K to 12 which is ironic since June marks the start of the wet or rainy season in the Philippines. But that doesn’t mean summer is ruined for everyone. Every day in the Philippines is an opportunity to beat the heat.
One of the most common things Filipinos do during summer breaks is to travel either locally or abroad which is usually what well-off families with children still in school do. If you’re not in that category, it is usually best to travel during the off-season where the fares are cheaper and places are less crowded.
Most local travel for Filipinos involves them visiting their hometowns and/or relatives in the province where life is more laidback and peaceful. There, they get to experience more traditional things and much-awaited family time. Before airports were available in most cities, most Filipinos would usually ride a boat or have a long road trip to their destination since they are much cheaper. This usually involves them waking up in the wee hours of the morning to maximize the travel time and to hopefully arrive before nightfall.
For the rest, local travel usually means going to a beach or mountain resort. There’s the beach for those who love to bask in the heat of the sun and there’s the mountain for those who prefer to cool off in areas of high altitudes.
For those who choose the beach but don’t intend to stay overnight, there’s always the popular option of island hopping. For this, Filipinos wake up as early as 5 AM depending on the travel time required, then they can approach boat rental services. Depending on how big the party is, they can get different boat sizes. The rental price is always negotiable and usually includes life jackets and boatmen who will bring you around for good dive spots, remote islands, and places that serve lunch. Don’t forget to tip them! It’s a must to bring foods and drinks of your own as boating is a long day ahead.
If the plan is to stay overnight, the Philippines has many beach resorts too! For those who don’t like to swim in salty water, they can sunbathe, relax and use swimming pools instead. Beach resorts also offer various amenities like diving lessons so make the most out of them! They also serve cold drinks like coconut drinks from a coconut shell and fruit shakes like mango.
For those who prefer the mountains, there’s the option of hiking and it also involves getting up and getting there early to get healthy sunlight. But for most, going to the mountains usually means heading to a mountain resort for day use and just chilling and maybe having some food and drinks while savoring the view. There’s also an overnight option where there’s no need for air conditioning since it’s colder up there.
For younger people who are on break, they usually use the summer as an opportunity to learn a new skill or to spend more quality time with friends and family. These include but aren’t limited to martial arts, cooking and baking, art classes, and swimming. These are productive and fun ways for them to get the best out of their time.
There are so many other summer things that can be done in the Philippines but these are usually the most common ones. After all, it’s always more fun in the Philippines, more so in the summertime!