When travelling in the Philippines, as with any foreign country, make sure you adapt to the local conditions. Staying hydrated, being wise in the sun, and having a healthy diet will keep you out of most trouble. Use common sense, and stay away from stray dogs and farm animals—often carrying rabies—and be particularly aware of hygiene.
Due to the heat, humidity, and general conditions normal for a developing country, you will have to make more of an effort to keep clean than you may be used to back home.
Though temperatures are generally warm, take care during the Amihan season, when cool winds are more likely to blow through–and you are kiteboarding and wet for most of the day. Pack a lycra or shorty to avoid catching a cold.
About 8 weeks before departure check – and if necessary, update – your vaccinations. For the Philippines, these should include Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis, Polio, Mumps, Measles, Rubella, Influenza and Hepatitis A.
In case of a longer stay or exceptional exposure, consider getting shots against Hepatitis B, Rabies, Typhoid Fever and Japanese Encephalitis. Definitely consult your doctor who will have updated information as well as know your personal and medical history.
Mosquitoes and the diseases they carry–like malaria and dengue– are common all over the country. But they are most rampant in rural areas during and right after the wet season. The easiest way to keep yourself safe is to simply avoid getting bitten. Bring mosquito repellent (with DEET) wherever you travel, light candles or mosquito coils at night, and sleep under a mosquito net in the provinces.
Going to the bathroom in rural areas, don’t be surprised to find only a bucket of water in place of toilet paper. Though westerners often find it hard the first time, those who have tried it reckon that washing one’s self local-style after using the toilet is actually much more hygienic and thorough than just using paper.
In Manila and bigger cities, there are lots of big hospitals, clinics, and good doctors. Most medication is available in drugstores. In the provinces, you can find smaller drugstores, but good doctors may be harder to get to. So consider these facts before trying your new radical Kitesurfing tricks in the remote spots.
© 2014 – 250k Kiteboarding