With more than 7000 tropical islands to choose from, the Philippines is a beach bum’s delight. There’s an island to suit every taste, from marooned slicks of sand in the middle of the ocean to volcanic fantasyscapes concealing hidden lagoons, to sprawling mega-islands such as Luzon and Mindanao. Sun worshippers and divers should head straight to the Visayas, where island-hopping opportunities abound and the perfect beach takes many forms. More adventurous travellers can pitch a tent on a deserted stretch of coastline in Palawan and play solo Survivor for a few days. We’ve all had it happen: your trip to paradise is ruined by torrential monsoon rain.
Rather than let the weather defeat you, in the Philippines travellers can embrace meteorological uncertainty and use it as an excuse to go with the flow. This is a place to dispense with advance bookings and when the going gets rough or wet, migrate to fairer climes. Domestic travel is cheap and fun and is best done spontaneously. Do your homework too – Palawan and the western seaboard are pretty darn wet from July to September, so go east during this time.