Manila on a Budget: 10 Incredibly Fun Activities Under P500

Manila on a Budget: 10 Incredibly Fun Activities Under P500
people having fun at a theme park in sm moa by the bay
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Manila might just have you thinking that everything comes at a price. But believe it or not, you can enjoy Manila on a budget! From the amusement park and mini concert to cultural tour and food trip, these are just some of the cheap things to do in Manila!

Whether you’re on a tight budget or you’re just here for fun, Manila does have a few secrets that will save you a few pesos while not cutting on some fun.

We’ve rounded up 10 cheap activities in Manila that you will enjoy, with or without a travel buddy!

1. Attend a mini-concert

Photo from Greenfield District

You don’t need an admission fee to enjoy good food and relaxing music seriously! At Greenfield District Central Park in Mandaluyong, you can already enjoy both at a very affordable price. Lounge around the Greenfield District Central Park with a wine glass in hand while enjoying the live jazz bands that will fill the night with smooth music. This is definitely one of the most rewarding things to do in Manila.

Cost: Food prices start at P50

2. Try the extreme rides at SM by the Bay Amusement Park

a fun theme park in pasay

Located just outside SM Mall of Asia, SM by the Bay offers nothing but great fun with its exhilarating amusement park. The park comes with over 17 rides including the Mall of Asia Eye, a 180 feet Ferris wheel. If you’re game for a more thrilling ride, try the Drop Tower, where you’ll be strapped to a gondola that goes up a tower before being released to free-fall. What’s great about this is that, their prices won’t hurt your Manila budget!

Cost: P200

3. Have a food trip in Binondo

arch of chinatown in binondo

If you’re planning to have a food trip in Manila, the best place to go to is Binondo! Enjoy the Filipino street food and authentic Chinese food all in one place! From hakaw and toasted siopao to beef lamien and hopia. Plus, they’re so affordable so you can eat everything you want without breaking the bank. This is one of the best things to do in Manila, we tell you!

Cost: P200

4. Experience Venice through a gondola ride

a family enjoying the gondola ride in venice grand canal mall

You don’t need to book a flight to experience Italy. Just in Venice Grand Canal Mall in Bonifacio Global City, you can already feel the Italian vibe! You’ll get to experience the beauty of reconstructions of Venetian architecture and even the Grand Canal. The Grand Canal isn’t just for show though because you can book a gondola ride here. This is, by far, the most romantic and affordable activity perfect for Manila on a budget tour.

Cost: P500

5. Visit the National Museum of the Philippines

facade of the national museum of the philippines

Cheap things to do in Manila? How about free? Yes, visiting the National Museum of the Philippines is totally free! It was once said that a culture is defined by its art. The National Museum showcases some of the best and notable artwork in the Philippines. Archaeology, arts, zoology, botany and much more can be found here including Juan Luna’s Spoliarium.

Cost: Free

6. Tour Intramuros with a bamboo bike

People touring intramuros in bambook bikes | Photo from Bambike
Photo courtesy: Bambike

A trip to Manila isn’t complete without exploring Intramuros. Make your trip extra fun by touring Intramuros with a bamboo bicycle aka bambike. The bamboo bike rental starts at P50. If you’re looking for cheap activities in Manila that’s also educational and meaningful, don’t miss this.

Cost: Bike rental starts at P50

7. Shop at Divisoria

a crowd of people shopping at divisoria

The markets of Manila are sometimes as varied as the people. From food to daily necessities and trinkets, almost anything can be bought at one of Manila’s marketplaces. The most famous place to shop really affordable items is Divisoria! You can find almost everything here—clothes, souvenirs, fabrics, kitchenware, etc.—that’s priced for as low as P5! Pro tip, you’ll get more discount if you buy bulk orders and haggle more!

Cost: Prices start at P5

8. Party at Early Night?

Photo from Early Night?

Having an Early Night? That’s not a problem because you can already party as early as 5PM in Early Night? club! This bar’s chic pastel decor is calmly beautiful by day and becomes totally lit by night, transforming into a vibrant club decorated by neon lights. Located in Bonifacio Global City, it’s surprising that drinks here are very affordable, priced from as low as P60! Partying is one of the best things to do in Manila and to make it fun, you should know the right place to be!

Cost: Drinks start at P60

9. Watch a free movie

Photo from Cinematheque Centre Manila

The Cinematheque Centre Manila offers you the chance to catch some of the best Filipino and foreign indie films there are. It’s a great look at a more niche part of Filipino culture. The best thing about here is that, they offer free screenings! Check out their Facebook page to be updated.

Cost: Free

10. Go for a ManiLakad Tour

a horse carriage in front of malate church

Aiming for a Manila on a budget tour? We suggest you to try the Manilaks tour. Manilakad comes from the words Manila and Lakad (to walk). Unlike many other walking tours, Manilakad is more casual as the itinerary is not set in stone and participants can venture and explore if something caught their interest. The Manilakad tour lets you explore the other side of Manila: Malate and Ermita, where most of historic sites are located. It’s a good, nurturing 3-hour walk. You will get to learn more about the old parts of Manila. You can check out Manilakad’s Facebook page for more details.

Cost: Depending on your tour package

To make your trip more affordable, make sure to book the best budget hotels in Manila offered by ZEN Rooms where you can enjoy quality accommodation that definitely fits your Manila budget.

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