Known as the Shoe Capital of the Philippines, Marikina City has a lot more to offer than your next affordable, high-quality shoes. Since this city is just near our hometown, Rizal, I’ve spent a lot of time here because of the good restaurants, interesting museums, and a green park and sport center to just chill out and breathe some fresh air.
It is one of the cleanest cities in Metro Manila and there’s so much to do that the mall. Here’s how you can spend one whole day in Marikina City.
6 AM – Jogging at Marikina Sports CENTER
Jogging is a great and healthy way to start your day. And the good news is, unlike other famous jogging paths in Manila, you don’t have to worry about cars running you over or smoke from jeepneys. Marikina Sports Center is an enclosed, safe and clean place for people looking to pursue a fit lifestyle.
8 AM – Breakfast at Rustic Morning
Rustic Mornings by Isabelo is one of the famous and best all-day breakfast or brunch place in the whole Metro Manila. You’ll appreciate how quiet, and romantic the ambiance is. It has a rustic and homey vibe, with good food in generous serving.
10:30 AM – Marikina Shoe Museum
Since you’re already in the Shoe Capital of the Philippines, it is only right to drop by the Shoe Museum to learn more about shoes, how these are made and to view the shoe collection of Imelda Marcos. BONUS: It is just a walk away from Rustic Morning.
11:30 AM – Drop by Parish of Our Lady of the Abandoned
Also, a few minutes from the Shoe Museum is the lovely parish of Our Lady of the abandoned. You can just drop by, light some candles and take a moment to pray.
12:30 PM – Book Museum cum Ethnology Center
Another unique museum in Marikina that is worthwhile to visit is the Book Museum. It is owned by the same owner of the Rex Publishing Company and houses some of the world’s rarest books including one of the first books published here in the Philippines, one of the smallest books in the world, and even a small Little Prince book. Entrance fee is only P100 and it is located in Marikina Heights, Marikina.
2:00 PM – Late Lunch at Lilac Street
Lilac Street is said to be the “Maginhawa Street” of Marikina. Since there are a lot of restaurants and cafes along Lilac, you might have a hard time choosing where to eat. But my personal favorite is Brad & Pit’s Ribshack: the food is good (and mostly American), they have generous servings and, most of all, it’s affordable. You can also get some crepe desserts from Crepeman Cafe which can also be found on the same street.
If you want to check other Marikina restaurants and their menus, foodpanda has a great set of options. Yes, they’re not just a delivery website, they also have a good list of featured restaurants for every city (and not just in Metro Manila) which include menus and reviews. You can also check out their online magazine which is updated with the latest food trends.
4:30 PM – RiverbankS Marikina
The best spot in Marikina in late afternoon would be the Riverbanks Center. It is connected to the Riverpark where you can sit and chill in the grass or bike (There’s a bike for rent around!) along Marikina River. There’s even a carnival nearby you can check. But if you’re not a fan of the outdoor then you have the mall that houses outlet stores of some branded shoes like Adidas and Sebago. There are also tiangges (especially this Christmas season) for your authentic Marikina shoes, clothes and toys.
8:00 PM – Dinner at Lamp Quarters
And of course to cap the day off, take your dinner at my favorite food park in Marikina – Lamp Quarters. There are numerous restaurants to choose from here but I love Dong Juan. Their pastas and burgers are worth a try. After your satisfying meal, head off to it neighbor cafe, Bubba Lab for some milk tea or frappe fix. If you happen to drop by on Saturdays, you might enjoy an open mic night.
And that’s it! This is how you can spend a productive day in Marikina City. In case you fell in love with this place, there are apartments for rent in Marikina to spend the night for you to have an extra day to explore more of the good restaurants around.