10 Best Things to Do in Zamboanga City | The Philippines

Being one of the central trading hubs in the Philippines, Zamboanga City is home to several local businesses. It’s easy to find large shopping malls and several markets in the town center. Despite the presence of urban neighborhoods, this Spanish influenced city also has a lot of natural wonders for you to explore. Here’s a list of 10 things you should do on your visit to the spectacular Zamboanga City.

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10 Best Things to Do in Zamboanga City | The Philippines

1. Merloquet Falls

Merloquet Falls
Source: Mr. Dy | Flickr

Resembling a prehistoric ruin, the Merloquet Falls will not fail to fascinate you. Encompassed by dense foliage and sprawling wildlife, the beauty of this waterfall is unparalleled.

There are multiple levels of cascades and the water generates a calming sound while brushing past the rugged rocks. Move to the largest segment of the waterfall to take a relaxing waterfall bath, or dive right into the pool beneath this wonderful cascade.

2. Great Santa Cruz Island

Great Santa Cruz Island
Source: outoftownblog

In contrast to most other islands, the protected Great Sta. Cruz Island is famous for its pink sand. This pink hue results from a prolonged period of surf erosion. This unique trait makes this marvelous beach an important location in Zamboanga City.

On the downside, this place isn’t open to the public. You will need to get security clearance from the Filipino government. If you can gain access, you will most likely have marine officers to escort you on your visit.

3. Paseo Del Mar

Paseo Del Mar
Source: MGM

The iconic Paseo del Mar boasts an endless boardwalk by the water. The scenery here is great, and you get to observe nature at its finest. Next to the boardwalk, you will find several shops, markets, cafes, and restaurants.

While you stroll through Paseo del Mar, you will also notice many food carts for you to grab a quick bite. The most interesting feature of this location is the dancing fountain that hurls water into the air at regular intervals. Come down to this place during the evening to enjoy the ambient atmosphere.

4. Fort Pilar

Fort Pilar
Source: Dennison Uy

Dating back to the 17th century, Fort Pilar was originally constructed and occupied by the Spanish defense. Upon arrival, visitors are introduced to a humongous courtyard comprising a broad walkway leading to the front door of the fortress.

As you make your way to the outdoor shrine, you will notice many white stars painted on the walls. According to local legends, Mary blessed this fort on her visit centuries ago.

5. Pasonanca Park

Pasonanca Park
Source: foodandtravelarefun

Pasonanca Park is noted for its enthralling scenery and calm atmosphere. This park’s primary attraction is the revered Zamboanga Tree House, constructed in 1963. You will be able to walk up the stairs leading to the treehouse and live out your childhood fantasies.

The park also features a swimming pool for children, complete with fun water slides. Next to this pool, you will also discover a magnificent waterfall. If you are in the mood for swimming, dive into one of the three Olympic sized swimming pools in the vicinity.

6. Rio Hondo Village

Rio Hondo Village
Source: rentalhousingdeals

On the outskirts of Zamboanga city, you will discover Rio Hondo village. A significant portion of inhabitants of this village are poor and live in dilapidated houses overlooking the water. Regardless of their financial condition, the locals are always hospitable to visitors.

You will be delighted to see several children playing around and engaging in activities such as fishing. You will also find many small vendors selling interesting handicrafts and art pieces nearby as well as food. If you want to fully experience the native culture, make sure to visit this humble village.

7. Canelar Barter Trade Center

Canelar Barter Trade Center
Source: Yelp

Canelar Barter Trade Center is a great place to go on a shopping spree as long as you are good at bargaining. This amazing market has a range of commodities from local souvenirs and showpieces to traditional clothing for men.

Other than that, you will also find reasonable sunglasses, shirts, and sandals. Many foreign tourists come to this place to purchase unique door knockers in a variety of animal-inspired shapes and sizes.

8. La Vista Del Mar

La Vista Del Mar

This is the best place to visit in Zamboanga city if you are on a romantic getaway. La Vista del Mar is a fine dining restaurant overlooking the immaculate sea. It is well-known for its exotic local cuisine and serene atmosphere. If you visit this place around the evening, you will also observe the sunset through the restaurant’s large windows.

After dinner, you can also, walk along the magnificent boardwalk with your significant other outside the restaurant. This place is renowned for organizing marvelous weddings. Make sure to try out the restaurant’s delicious signature dishes such as tuna belly and Lapulapu on your visit.

9. Caragasan Beach

Caragasan Beach
Source: mapio

Are you tired of visiting lonely beaches? Come on down to the lively Caragasan Beach brimming with tourists and residents of Zamboanga city. Soak in the cool turquoise water, or sit back and relax on one of the beach chairs. Everyone is hospitable and helpful, and you are bound to have a pleasant time here.

You can also observe a fleet of boats afar, bringing eager tourists and various commodities to the shore. If you visit the beach at night, you will be treated to a vibrant night market selling a diverse range of local dishes at reasonable prices.

10. Visit the different islands

Visit the different islands
Source: cebupacificair

The outstanding Zamboanga city is close to some of the Philippines’ most well-known islands. These islands look equally stunning, and you can even attempt to visit all the islands in one day.

There are plenty of boats rental services in the area that will allow you to hop between islands. These islands are famous for their wildlife habitats and biodiversity. Bring along your diving gear to enhance your experience.


In Conclusion, Zamboanga city isn’t just another concrete jungle! This beautiful city has a variety of captivating tourist spots nearby. The beaches are splendid, and there are a good number of parks and cascades for you to explore. The local cuisine is a treat to the taste buds. You won’t be disappointed if you spend your vacation here!

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