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philippine culture | celebrations | family traits | heritage | philippine society

UNESCO World Heritage Sites recognized several sites in the country:

• Baroque Churches of the Philippines
• Historic Town of Vigan
• Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park
• Banaue Rice Terraces
• Tubbataha Reef Marine Park

Tribes and minorities

Certain indigenous groups such as the Negritos, Mangyans, and Manobos who are living in remote areas of Luzon, the Visayas, and Mindanao have largely retained the pre-Hispanic beliefs of their ancestors. Having been somewhat isolated from mainstream society, their cultures differ greatly than that of the majority of Filipinos.


Filipinos cook a selection of foods influenced by both Castilian-Mexican and Asian cuisines such as:

• Adobo typically pork, slow-cooked in soy sauce, vinegar, crushed garlic, bay leaves, and black pepper corns
• lechon (whole roast pig)
• lechon baka (roast cattle)
• chorizo sausages
• asado
• menudo
• chicharon
• torta
• empanadas
• adobong baboy
adobong manok
• tsokolate (chocolate)
• polvoron
• pan de sal (breadrolls)
• mani (roasted peanuts)
• avocado
• ensaymada
• mais (corn)
• paksiw (fish, cooked in vinegar and water, some spices like garlic and pepper)
• patatas (Potato)
• pescado (fried or grilled fish)
• balut ( boiled egg with duckling inside )
• pancit canton / pancit palabok

Native Filipino and regional cuisines include the following:

• sinigang na baboy / sinigang na baka
• pinakbet
• kare-kare
• dinuguan
• paksiw
• kilawen
• pinapaitan

Filipinos are fond of liquor. The most popular are San Miguel Beer, Ginebra San Miguel, and the lambanog, tuba, and basi.
A standard Filipino meal consists of at least one viand (ulam in Tagalog) served with boiled or fried rice (kanin), which is eaten much like Westerners eat potatoes. Filipinos may be the only people in the world who regularly use spoons together with forks, as opposed to knives and forks in Western culture. They also eat with their hands, especially in informal settings and when eating seafood. Click here to know more about Filipino Foods and Filipino Recipe.

Native Games and Sports

The national sports in the Philippines are Sipa and cockfighting. Boxing, billiard, basketball, chess, ten-pin bowling and soccer are other famous recreational sports. Boxing, billiard, basketball and soccer are popular among Filipinos, with almost every barangay or barrio in the country having at least one boxing ring , billiard table, basketball court and soccer field. The Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) was founded in 1975.

The sports boxing, billiards (notably nine ball), ten-pin bowling and chess is where the Filipinos have gained enormous international success. The people's champions include heroes such as Francisco Pancho Villa, Manny Pacquiao, Mansueto Velasco, Flash Elorde, Efren Reyes, Francisco Bustamante, Rafael Nepomuceno and Eugene Torre are among the top 3 to 10 best athletes, players in the world and all time.

The Palarong Pambansa, a national sports festival, has its roots in an annual sporting meet of public schools that started in 1948. Private schools and universities eventually joined the national event, which became known as the Palarong Pambansa in 1976. It serves as a national Olympics for students, with victors from competitions at the school, province, and regional level rising to participate. A recent (2002) event included the following sports: soccer, golf archery, badminton, baseball, chess, gymnastics, tennis, softball, swimming, table tennis, taekwondo, track and field, and volleyball are starting to gain great public interest in the country.

There is also a traditional type of Filipino Martial Arts called kali, which was first developed and used by tribes in Mindanao and later spread to the northern regions of the Philippines long before the Spanish colonization. A much simpler form was developed in reaction to Spanish limitations on the possession of weapons called eskrima (from Spanish escrima) and arnis de mano. These simplified styles were also developed so that they could be taught to many at once which is why they are referred to as a soldiers art like karate and not a warriors art like judo or its derived, kali.