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By Helen Hernane


Tacloban has everything you need.

Nine years ago, Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) wreaked havoc in the City of Tacloban. Since then, the city has been working hard to rise from the devastation. Aside from rebuilding infrastructure and providing housing, the government is also looking to boost back the city’s tourism. Fortunately for tourists, there are plenty of places to visit and dining spots to try out.

MacArthur Leyte Landing Memorial National Park

Half an hour away from downtown Tacloban is the war memorial that commemorates General Douglas MacArthur’s historic landing during World War II. The landing represented the start of the American campaign to liberate the Philippines from Japanese occupation. On the coast, tourists can see seven life-sized bronze statues, one of which represents MacArthur. It is modeled after the iconic photograph taken by Gaetano Faillace during the A-Day Landing.

San Juanico Bridge

Everybody who has been to Tacloban City knows that visiting this bridge is a must. As the longest bridge in the country, San Juanico Bridge stretches from Samar to Leyte. It goes across the strait after which it is named and was inaugurated on July 2, 1973. The bridge recently also became a nighttime attraction with the completion of the San Juanico Bridge aesthetic lights and sound project. This is expected to bring in even more tourists and eventually spur economic growth.

She’s Amilia Café

“Our café is named after our inspiration, my daughter who was born with down syndrome. Amilia is the reason behind our café because it’s not just a coffee shop, it’s a hub for people who have the same struggles as her,” says the owner of She’s Amilia Café, Arlene Asturias. Last November 12, the café hosted its first “Advocacy Talk.” The event tackled empowered parenting, mental health, and intervention. Children got involved in sensory play and decorating activities. There was even a photo wall for everyone to enjoy. A portion of their sales went to parent beneficiaries who also have children within the autism spectrum. Aside from various kinds of coffee, the first disabilityfriendly café in Tacloban also offers pizza, smoothie bowls, burgers, pasta, rice meals, and breakfast meals. They also have a wide array of pastries—cookies, biscotti, cakes, and more. She’s Amilia is located at the corner of Avenida Veteranos and Paterno. You may also visit their other cafés— Jose Karlo’s Coffee and Rovinare by Jose Karlo’s Coffee.

Pacific Point Events Place & Resort

This one-stop resort has everything you could possibly need for a vacation— comfortable rooms, beach, al fresco dining restaurant, pool area, cottages, Queen’s Gambit Café, Studio88 Bar, and Tagpuan Beach Bar. Pacific Point also has three function rooms and spacious outdoor areas perfect for corporate events, conferences, and social gatherings. Tourists can also buy local products in their souvenir shop—buri bags and delicacies.

Slipstream Bike Shop and Café

Located on the first floor of ERC Building at the corner of Justice Romualdez St. and M.H. Del Pilar St. in downtown Tacloban, Slipstream Bike Shop and Café is the ultimate pit stop for bike lovers and enthusiasts alike. Visitors can grab a quick cup of hot or iced coffee (americano, cappuccino, latte, mocha, or matcha) or a nice cup of hot chocolate. They also have milkshakes and cakes. Aside from refreshments, you can buy bicycles, bike parts, and accessories, and even have your bicycle maintained by their in-house experts to round out an afternoon dedicated to appreciating the sport of cycling. Plus, loyal customers can get their 10th drink free. Customers are automatically entitled to a loyalty card after purchasing any of their drinks. With their free Wi-Fi and power outlets, anyone can visit the café to work, study, or relax.

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