In “5 things travelers hate about Manila — and how the city’s tackling them” deputy editor Niña Terol-Zialcita writes on about how her beloved Manila is cleaning up its act.

“5 things travelers hate about Manila — and how the city’s tackling them”

For travelers used to efficient public transport, wide roads and a general sense of order, Manila’s careening jeeps and buses, overflowing trash and a globally “hated” airport are a shock to the system.

Bill Davis, an American missionary and editor based in the Philippine island of Palawan, calls it “benign chaos.”

“That’s how it seems to many foreigners,” says Davis, who has lived in the Philippines for 30 years and visits Manila several times a year. “Frenetic activity. Almost inconceivable numbers of people everywhere you look. All in motion. Noise, music, voices … [Filipinos] have a tolerance for crowds and noise, and actually consider it masaya (fun) …”

Fortunately, the Philippines is waking up to the harsh realities underscored by world rankings and social media rants. Using our trademark ingenuity and resourcefulness, we are now starting to address some of the biggest things that travelers hate most about this gateway to the Philippine archipelago.

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Niña Terol-Zialcita

Niña Terol-Zialcita is a “Communicator, Connector, idea Curator, and Changemaker” who uses the power of words and ideas to advocate causes and promote the Philippines at its best. She is’s Deputy Editor, as well as Editor-in-Chief of asianTraveler, the longest-running travel magazine in the Philippines. When she is not writing, blogging, or traveling, Niña is conducting writing workshops with Writer’s Block Philippines, hanging out at art galleries and cafés, and performing poetry with her husband, percussionist and performance artist Paul Zialcita. She is also the author of the book "[r]evolutionaries: The new generation of Filipino youth and youth organizations".