Country Information on the Philippines

The archipelago of the Philippine Islands is located in the Western Pacific Ocean. In the south-west and just a few kilometers northeast of Borneo is the island Palawan, on which our volunteer programs are settled.

General Information

  • Population: ca. 100 million
  • Capital: Manila
  • Religion: Christian (90 percent), Islam (5 percent)
  • Official languages: Tagalog and English

A Brief Look at the History of the Philippines

The Philippines was first colonized around 25,000 BC. and up until the 16th century greatly influenced by immigrants from the Asian mainlands.

In 1521 the Philippines was discovered in the Western world by Ferdinand Magellan. With this discovery began the Spanish colonial rule only a few years later. In addition to the present name of the Philippines, this 400-year rule also brought Christianity to the native population.

In 1898, the Filipinos fought alongside the US to drive the Spaniards out of their country. The Americans gave them the assurance of a successful outcome along with complete independence. However, the US did not hold to that promise and from 1902 to 1946 the Philippines was an American colony. However, in 1916 the US gave the Philippines a limited self-administration until it was released into independence in 1946.

During the Second World War, the Philippines was occupied by Japan, but after only three years, it was recaptured by the US.

After their independence the Philippines became a presidential democracy, which in the course of its history has always been haunted by fights between various religious groups. However, the fighting was finally set to rest with a peace agreement in 2012. The Philippines today is a safe country for travel and volunteer work.

Climate & Best Travel Time

The Philippines has a maritime tropical climate all year round with summer temperatures of 21° C to 32° C. There are three different seasons: the hot, dry season from March to May, the rainy season from June to November and the cold dry season from December to February.