Present bad blood between China and the Philippines aside, the mainland Chinese still love visiting the Philippines. The Southeast Asian country won the 2012 Oriental Morning Post's annual World Travel - Special Trips Awards' "Best Tourist Destination" recognition. The award was given away last January 9 at the Twelve at Hengshan Hotel in Shanghai.
A communiqué from the Philippines' Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) considers the award to be a vote of confidence in the Philippines as a travel destination, justifying a series of new routes from China:
The award supports the consumers' renewed confidence in the Philippines, which remains to be a popular and sought-after destination among Chinese tourists. To cater to the ever-growing number of Chinese tourists traveling to the Philippines, Airphil Express reactivated its Shanghai-Kalibo charters on 30 November 2012; Zest Air on 10 January 2013; and Cebu Pacific will launch its maiden chartered flight from Shanghai to Kalibo on 11 January 2013.
For a couple of Philippines places worth visiting, check out our articles on Boracay (the up-and-coming beach and party haven) and el Nido (a beautiful, remote archipelago full of stunning limestone islands and pristine beaches). Better yet, check out our list of Philippines' off the beaten path destinations.