Surviving Summer in Metro Manila

Apr 10, 2017

Traffic and heat during summer in the city

Contributed by Michelle Regalado


At 2:00 PM today, the temperature rose to 34° in Metro Manila. PAG-ASA announced the official start of summer just last week and we’re petrified to know how hot it’s going to be at the height of the season. I mean, think about it - last weekend, the drones of vehicles didn’t flock to the famous near-Manila getaway until afternoon. Clearly, no one wanted to be out and about midday. Our neighbours only started walking their dogs at 7:00pm, even then the air was so hot, the pups and their owners got exhausted quickly. Sunblock, umbrellas and those Sunnies can only do so little in protecting you from the boiling air that seems to come from everywhere, including the ground beneath you.

Almost all of us are going to hit the beach or take a flight to cooler countries but let’s admit it, you still have to go to work for most of the summer. The most common way to stay burn-free while in the city is by heading to the mall. Imagine centralized air-conditioning, ‘fresh’ fruit shakes, creamy frappes and iced cafés all around. The downside, crowds. The mass of people entering the mall isn’t exactly your ideal weekend. But when in Manila, you don’t have to limit yourself to what the mall has to offer. We put together tried and tested ways to survive the summer heat in the city. Give these a try and tell us how well they work for you.


Stay cool this summer with ice pop

Snack on Ice

Summer for Filipinos is made cooler with halo-halo and ice candy (or ‘ice pop’). We suggest you do these at home using fresh ingredients like fresh orange juice, buko, watermelon, and melon & milk ice candy. Halo-halo is going to be a bit of a challenge so you can settle for the likes of mais con hielo or sago gulaman. Get started on cooling off with dessert recipes from Panlasang Pinoy.


Air cooler to stay cool this summer

Cool it, don’t Condition it

Air coolers work differently from air conditioners. Air coolers cools a room or a certain area of your house through evaporation of water. In order for that to happen, most air coolers will require you to place water in the air coolers’ tank, sometimes ice or cooling pack is added to it to make the cooling effect faster. While these can’t work around humidity but this is particularly convenient for those who will not be using air conditioner for most the year anyway. These are usually moveable so you can roll it around the condo to wherever you are. Check out these Air Coolers in Lazada where you can find one at less than P5,000.

Stay hydrated to survive the heat this summer


Drinking a lot of water is not bladder-friendly and can make us bloat but with the humidity and heat from sunrise to dinner-time, it is best to keep hydrated. Start getting those tumblers with a convenient handle to help you carry it in the car or while commuting. If you’re the type who sweats easily or goes in the field quite often in the day, we suggest getting drinking tumblers that are light but can keep the liquid’s cool temperature longer. Also, give Gatorade a try instead of water especially in the afternoon.

Wear light colored clothes to stay cool this summer

Wardrobe Change

Well, that’s an exaggeration, but you should dress up according to the season even when going to work. Try A-line skirts, flowy dresses, polos in lighter material and light colored clothes. If you can manage it without violating any rules at work, wear a shirt during your commute then change to your corporate top as soon as you get there. If it’s extra cold in the office, leave a thick enough jacket and scarf in your desk or locker. Check out these light-colored quarter or long-sleeve blouses from Zalora.

Twinkle Toes ballet classes for kids this summer

SMILE Group activities for kids this summer

Galileo Enrichment Learning Center for kids this summer












Keep Kids Busy

Extreme heat + boredom = irritable kids. Give your kids something to look forward to outside of the home that will keep them sharp and excited about time away from school. For the kid who likes dance and music, we suggest Twinkle Toes Ballet and Music Academy. For the kid who works best with creative learning, we suggest Galileo Enrichment Learning Program in Libis. And for the kid who likes to build and create things, give SMILE Group a try.

Benel Archery indoor archery for summer

Indoor Sports

Summer is traditionally that time of the year we used to learn new things as kids. We don’t think that should stop just because you started adulting. So, step up the game and start learning something new this summer. We recommend Archery because you can do it indoors. Yes, you can do it indoors! No fear of awkward tan lines and sunburns. We recommend checking out the range at Benel Archery.

A-1 Driving school this summer

Drive Around

Well it wouldn’t be practical to hit up Uber all day just to stay cool but you can use this to start learning how to drive, properly. Whether or not you have a ride, it’s best to learn what drivers experience when on the road, what things to call out to our Uber driver and for emergencies. A-1 Driving has a large fleet of car types that you can use and has a comprehensive course to make sure you get as much practice hours as you need.

MARES Philippines scuba diving this summer

Stay Underwater

Going to the pool is not as exciting as it used to be, especially if it is in the city. Give yourself a new reason to go to the pool and experience it in a new way by learning how to scuba dive. Scuba diving lessons start in the pool with basic, safety and fun skills training. Most dive shops in Manila who offer diving lessons have complete indoor facilities including a 15ft to 20ft deep pool. One of our favorite in-city dive shops who offer scuba diving lessons is MARES Philippines.


There are so many more activities you can come up with to survive the heat in the city before you go to your weekend summer vacay. What’s your go-to cooling activity during the summer? Share it with us, we’d like to give it a try too. For more summer gift and activity ideas, visit Gifted.PH.

Summer vacation in the Philippines