We often tend to overlook the gems right within our city, assuming we’ve explored them all. But in doing so, we overlook the beautiful and interesting spots we’ve actually never ventured into.
If you want to rediscover Metro Manila or take a friend around the urban paradise you call home, let’s start with a city in this bustling city in the north. If you want to know what to do in Quezon City, here’s an array of Quezon City attractions, from vibrant food neighborhoods to serene nature spots.
Image credit: @ciamaer via Instagram
If you want a quick rundown on what to do in Quezon City, visit Cubao Expo. Here, you can check out many different Quezon City attractions at once. This lifestyle hub is home to indie cafes, specialty restaurants, and vintage stores that you’ll surely have a fun time exploring its nooks and crannies.
Satisfy your appetite with a hearty meal at Habanero Kitchen + Bar. If you want to grab some drinks, there’s also the movie-themed speakeasy INT.Bar / EXT.Cafe and the dive bar Fred’s Revolucion.
Image credit: @clrnnsldd via Instagram
Beyond dining and drinks, Cubao Expo offers diverse experiences. Try pottery at Bumi and Ashe and hunt for vinyl treasures at Vinyl Dump. You can even shop zero-waste and get your caffeine fix at the same time at Katha Lifestyle Store + Cafe.
Address: 3 Gen. Romulo Avenue, Cubao, Quezon City, Metro Manila
Image credit: @artinisland via Instagram
Admiring art is one experience, but immersing yourself in it is an entirely different adventure. For a unique museum experience and aesthetic IG photos, head to Art In Island.
This mixed-media museum offers trendy projection art similar to that of teamLab Planets in Japan. T Each room features unique art installations, including one adorned with enchanting floating lanterns.
Art in Island is located near Cubao Expo so you can hit two birds with one stone. Tickets to the museum are priced at P800 (~USD14.11) each.
Address: 175 15th Avenue, Cubao, Quezon City, Metro Manila
Opening hours: Tue-Fri 11am-7.30pm | Sat-Sun 11am-8.30pm (Closed on Mondays)
Contact: (02) 7795 6256 | Facebook
Cafe Guilt in Tomas Morato.
Image credit: @cafeguilt via Instagram
If there’s one answer to the question, what to do in Quezon City, it’ll be food. Tomas Morato and Maginhawa are 2 distinct culinary hubs located on opposite sides of Diliman in Quezon City.
Tomas Morato is a hub for trendy dining spots, with popular restaurants including Tablo Kitchen x Cafe, Half Saints, and Borro. You can also find health-conscious options at places such as Cafe Guilt and Wabi Sabi Noodle House.
On the other hand, Maginhawa has budget-friendly restaurants serving international cuisine. Explore Vietnamese delights at Nam Nam, savor Mexican flavors at Buen Comer Poquellas, or try Japanese cuisine at Soru Izakaya. Pipino Veg is also in the area serving plant-based versions of well-loved Filipino dishes.
Image credit: @boondocks_brewing via Instagram
If you want to get in shape and do this outdoors, head to the UP Academic Oval to jog or bike. This 2.3km loop is shaded by lush acacia trees so you can comfortably get your steps in.
After your workout, enjoy the cool breeze under the trees at the Sunken Garden. Don’t forget to explore well-loved food stalls within the campus, including the iconic Mang Larry’s Isawan, or get your protein fix from the local magtataho (sweet silken tofu vendor).
You can also make the most of your visit at the UP Diliman campus by checking out exhibits at the UP Vargas Museum or watching independent films at Cine Adarna.
Address: University of the Philippines Diliman, Diliman, Quezon City, Metro Manila
Opening hours: 4am-9pm, Daily
Image credit: @pingpings.lechon via Instagram
There’s no better place to try the quintessential Filipino fiesta food lechon than in La Loma, Quezon City, which is dubbed the “Lechon Capital of the Philippines.”
Don’t be intimidated by the rows of roast pigs on sidewalks in the area. You don’t have to commit to a whole lechon. You can easily opt for a per-kilo serving.
Among the popular lechon businesses in the area are Mila’s Lechon and Lechon La Loma ni Aling Nelia.
You can also enjoy a smaller serving of lechon with rice at shops that have sit-down restaurants such as Ping Ping’s Lechon.
Chinese dishes from Foong Lan Garden.
Image credit: @eatspatriziad via Instagram
Binondo isn’t the only place in Metro Manila that boasts restaurants serving delicious East Asian flavors. Banawe in Quezon City also has plenty of East Asian dining spots, both time-honored and modern.
If you’re craving classic Chinese fare, Foong Lan Garden (formerly Lam Tin Tea House) is your go-to spot. They’re best known for their flavorful yang chow (fried rice) and variety of dim sum, including hakaw or steamed shrimp dumplings.
There are also modern restaurants in the area such as Uniku serving fusion dishes such as Taiwanese beef pizza rolls.
And when you’re in the mood for a cheap yet delicious and filling snack, don’t miss out on Muy Hong’s fresh lumpia (spring roll). Their lumpias are so fresh that they’re assembled right in front of you after you place your order.
Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Center.
Image credit: @benisonestareja via Instagram
If you want to be in nature without leaving the metro, there are 2 Quezon City attractions you can consider.
Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Center provides a tranquil escape with plenty of scenic spots for a picnic. But keep in mind that you’ll need to bring your own refreshments as there are no vendors on-site.
Regular entrance fee costs P30 (~USD0.53) while there’s a 50% discount for students. Admission is free for people with disabilities, senior citizens, and children below age 7. Foreign tourists, on the other hand, are required to pay P100 (~USD1.76) for entry.
La Mesa Nature Reserve.
Image credit: @gofarph via Instagram
For a more extensive natural playground, La Mesa Ecopark spans 27 sq km and has 2km to 10km trails for hikers and bikers. There are also a variety of birds that can be found at this park, making it a perfect place for birdwatching,
Entrance fee, inclusive of a trail guide, starts at P1,000 (~USD17.64) for up to 5 people with a P200 (~USD3.53) fee for every additional person.
Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Center
Address: Elliptical Road, Bagong Pag-asa, Quezon City, Metro Manila
Opening hours: 7am-5pm, Daily
Contact: 0910 304 0899 | Facebook
La Mesa Ecopark
Address: Novaliches, Quezon City, Metro Manila
Opening hours: Tue-Fri 6am-12pm | Sat-Mon 6am-3pm
Contact: 0909 100 3897 | Facebook
Image credit: Benjamin Diwa via Google Maps
The Pop-Up in Katipunan is another popular hangout spot for young adults in Quezon City.
This vibrant open-air food park features a variety of bars housed in stylish container vans. Live music is served in the evenings by DJs or bands.
Even before the sun sets, The Pop-Up offers a diverse range of dining options, including cafes and restaurants. Some of the notable dining spots in the area are Onlypans Taqueria and Tipple & Slaw.
Address: Katipunan Avenue corner Xavierville Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City, Metro Manila
Opening hours: 9am-2am, Daily
Whether you’re a seasoned city dweller or a tourist, this list proves that there are plenty of Quezon City attractions you can check out. It’s never too late to dig deeper into what to do in Quezon City. You never know if your next memorable adventure is just a stone’s throw away!
For a more cohesive list of things to do in the metro, check out our ultimate Metro Manila guide. Or if you want to explore beaches without traveling too far, read this list of scenic beaches near Metro Manila.
Cover image adapted from: @artinisland via Instagram, @cafeguilt via Instagram, @gofarph via Instagram
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