And her fam­ily ex­plore the ex­tra­or­di­nary nat­u­ral won­ders of the Philip­pines.

Holiday with Kids - - Philippines - Pip moran

My kids are in ab­so­lute heaven. They are masters of their own ma­chines, rid­ing their rented ATVs along a shal­low creek bed, ex­plo­sive revs shat­ter­ing the air as they nav­i­gate a tricky turn up the bank. They are do­ing all of this in the shadow of a per­fectly cone-shaped vol­cano. A plume of smoke drifts end­lessly from its vent and dis­si­pates in the bril­liant blue sky, a re­minder that we are in the pres­ence of the Philip­pines’ most ac­tive vol­cano: Mount Mayon.

My (then) 10- and 12-year- old, along with the friends we are trav­el­ling with, are hav­ing the time of their lives. And de­spite my mild con­cerns about safety (I’m wor­ried about the ATVs, not the vol­cano), I’m rel­ish­ing the ex­u­ber­ance and the sheer joy­ous free­dom of this mo­ment in the land we’ve called home for the past eight years.

I live with my fam­ily in Manila, the coun­try’s lively, traf­fic- con­gested cap­i­tal. We love it here, but we also rel­ish any op­por­tu­nity to get out and ex­plore. This is the city you’ll ar­rive in, and it has its at­trac­tions – shop­ping is one of them – but my ad­vice is to de­part as soon as pos­si­ble. The best of the Philip­pines lies be­yond its chaotic cap­i­tal. And in this trop­i­cal ar­chi­pel­ago of more than 7000 is­lands, there’s a great deal on of­fer: pris­tine beaches, World


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