The best places to eat in the Philippines

We are a French foodie couple so of course for each of our trip there will always be a food post ;). Alexis loves taking pictures of food. Hence I dedicated him this post! If you’re about to travel to the Philippines and are looking for some idea about where to eat or what to expect, then this food post could be very useful to you. We are about to tell you where we enjoyed our best meals during our trip.

We heard a lot of negative comments regarding food in the Philippines before we travelled there. Though once there, we were positively surprised. In fact, you can find very good local options and a lot of asian and western restaurants. So don’t worry if you are visiting the Philippines, you will not have to eat rice and chicken every single day. Also, if breakfast is as important for you as for me, no panic either, there are always some sweet options with pancakes and syrup and/or bread.

We have listed our favourite food spots in the different islands we visited during our trip: Bohol, Dumaguete, Moalboal, Coron and El Nido. This includes a combination of some must-try restaurants, welcoming coffee shops, lively bars and some astonishing spots for sunsets.

A few useful tips

We usually use Google Maps to choose the places we want to go to. It is usually a good starting point to know if a restaurant is good or not based on their rating. However, not all of them are listed and you might find very good ones just by walking on the street.

We also read a lot of advice and tips on different blogs to find great places to try :). Have a look at our dedicated post with some links to different blogs which inspired us.

We recommend you to try the calamansi juice, which is essentially prepared with local lime. It is the best soft drink after an epic day. Therefore, we drink it almost every day ;).

Our recommendations in Bohol

Kasagpan resort – Our favourite breakfast in Bohol was the Kasagpan healthy breakfast – muesli, banana, coconut topped with a ball of peanut butter, served in a coconut shell :). In short, there was no better way to be welcomed in the Philippines.

Kasagpan, breakfast, Bohol, peanut butter
Kasagpan healthy museli breakfast

Note – the speciality food in Bohol is the peanut. Hence, they have plenty of peanut specialties so don’t hesitate to try them! This peanut butter was so tasty :), you have to try it.

Fox & The Firefly – It is near the Loboc river. We had a nice lunch there. It was recommended by a traveller blog. It is an eco lodge where we had lunch. The menu offers several tasty local options.

Fox & the Firefly, food, papaya
Green papaya salad at Fox & The Firefly

Oasis Resort – at Alona beach. It is a very busy area. We recommend this restaurant as the food was really tasty.

Our recommendations in Dumaguete

Flying fish – The food served in the cafe of our hostel was really good. That’s why we took all our breakfast there. For example, banana and chocolate pancakes and toasts with fresh fruits. We also had one lunch there. We definitely recommend to try it.

Sans Rival Cakes & Pastries – It is perfect for a tasty afternoon tea at one of the best bakery in Dumaguete. They have such a large choice of pastries for a very good price! Hence, you have to stop there if you go to Dumaguete and tell us about your experience ;). 

Sans Rival Cakes, Cinnamon Bun, Crumble Muffin, pastries, Dumaguete
Coffee break with Cinnamon bun and Crumble muffin at Sans Rival Cakes & Pastries

Lantaw Native Restaurant – It is a very tasty local restaurant recommended by some local friends. We recommend to try one Filipino speciality – the Kinilaw. It is a kind of ceviche with raw fish in vinegar, lime and spices. Sorry but we forgot to take some photos.

Red rocks – we rented a small cottage for 400 PHP. We enjoyed a really good lunch, even if the menu is limited to about 8 different dishes. The pork belly was delicious.

Red Rocks, food, pork belly
Pork belly and Fish fingers at Red Rocks

Our recommendations in Moalboal

Shaka – Perfect spot for an early breakfast. It’s one of the rare place to open from 7.00 am. They have a great choice of fresh smoothy bowls :). They also have a combo for 300PHP for any bowl and a coffee.

Lantaw Restaurant – The best moment to go to this restaurant is right before the sunset, the view is amazing. You can grab a cocktail then stay for diner. The food is really tasty and you can choose between Filipino / Indian / Indonesian and Chinese food. 

Smooth coffee – Perfect for an afternoon coffee break or to finish the day with something sweet. It was delicious! Super tasty cakes :). Unfortunately, the chef was not there so we couldn’t try the hummus cake but it sounds tasty too! So let us know if you try it ;).

Esters Bar – If you are looking for a nice bar to finish a beautiful day. We definitely recommend this one. It is a small place on the beach. Just with one cocktail you can feel tipsy… I am not kidding, they make strong cocktails ;)! They also have snacks and music.

Esters bar
Esters Bar

Our recommendations in Coron

Kulay Bowls – We had a nice diner in this recently new healthy restaurant. They have several options. It is also possible to make your own bowl for only 340 PHP. 

healthy bowl, prawns at Kulay Bowls
Prawn healthy bowl at Kulay Bowls

Lobster King – It is a local restaurant where a lot of Filipino like gathering. We didn’t try their speciality which is the lobster but we recommend the Kinilaw.

Sharky’s bar – Great venue with life music. We enjoyed an happy hour at Sharky’s bar with some nachos. We didn’t eat there but the portions looked very generous! 

Levine’s eatery – With the rooftop bar it is a perfect spot to watch the sunset. It is a nice bar for a nice cocktail after an epic day! But on the opposite we’ve heard the food is not recommended.

Our recommendations in El Nido

AngelNido resort – The view for the breakfast and/or for a drink at the sunset is amazing – the beach was literally just in front of us.

Breakfast, El Nido, AngelNido
Breakfast Pancakes and fresh fruits at AngelNido resort

Bella Vita – We watched a nice sunset. Drinking a beer with a pizza was perfect to enjoy the sunset :)! Therefore, we definitely recommend to stop at this restaurant. 

La Plage – we had diner there although it is an expensive restaurant in El Nido. We decided to choose a nice one, because it was our last evening. It was a mixed of Asian and French food – they had delicious fishes! For example, we tried the mussels and the fish in a banana leaf. And it was perfect for a romantic diner! 

Happiness Bar – The lunch was tasty and quite cheap. They have a lot of different pitas, falafel and of course some hummus. The staff was smiling and welcoming.

Food budget

The food is pretty cheap in the Philippines compared to Europe. As a result, our total budget for food was £430 = about 28,000 PHP for both of us for 17 days [as of February 2020]. On average a meal was about 250-300 PHP / meal / person. We spent about 15% of our total budget for food.

Nevertheless, the cost of a meal in touristy cities like El Nido is about double the cost for a meal in less touristy cities like Dumaguete.

In total, we spent £3,150 for 17 days = 1,385 PHP / day / person. See our dedicated post how your budget a trip in the Philippines.

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9 COMMENTS

    • Thank you Mohona. our favourite Filipino food was the kinilaw – kind of ceviche with raw fish and the famous pork belly with the lochon :)! And a great local drink is the Calamansi juice :).

    • I can’t agree more with you Monique. Having a nice meal with an amazing view and the cherry on the cake at sunset or at sunrise make it even more enjoyable :).

  1. As a seafood fan, Lobster King looks especially appetizing 🙂 Will keep this guide handy when I visit the Philippines! Thanks! 🙂

    • Thank you Jiayi – yes if you are a seafood fan – the Philippines is a good destination. There is a lot of fresh fish and different kind of seafood available in the local restaurants :).

  2. Love the idea of a ball of peanut butter on that breakfast. Hadn’t thought of something like that before. Bet it’s delicious. Thanks for sharing all these culinary insights. Makes me want to travel to this corner of the world.

  3. I was in the Philippines for a friend wedding a year ago and I miss the food! All those places look amazing the dishes on your photos are mouth-watering!

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