Hot to shop: Manila

The reason why a week in Manila was so manic: because I needed to discover the underbelly of the city, from the grandly named Mall of Asia to the street markets selling everything from seashells to Chanel.

It’s hot, it’s steamy … just the weather to spend in an airconditioned super-mall that is this shop-mad city’s specialty.

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Things that get me excited in the Philippines.

So I was in the Philippines last week, and in a post-tropics slump, all I feel inclined to show you is this picture. Now, it doesn’t look so amazing, but it IS. Yes, it’s a car park. But what a car park.

Manila is renowned for its filthy traffic jams, and there’s almost no room on the streets for the motorbikes, taxis and jeepneys – extended jeeps that are the local public transport – so this car park is the coolest. It stacks cars up along a wall, moving them up and down, and even left to right – like pieces of lego.

Hand on my heart, I can safely report this is the first time I have ever taken such a picture. It may well be the last…