When you’re in Manila you have several options for sightseeing and activities. We have mentioned Fort Santiago, Manila Bay and the Upside Down museum in other posts. That’s not all that Manila has to offer. Star City is the name of an amusement park in the neighborhood of Pasay, metropolitan Manila. With an estimated size of 380.000 sq ft (35.000 m2) the Star City amusement park can be a day program full of activities. Over 40 different attractions and an approx. 1,5 million visitors per year gives more insight in its popularity.
Star City was established in 1991 and 70% percent is covered and air conditioned. With attractions like the Zyklon loop roller coaster and the Jungle splash waterway, the kind of roller coaster where you hang underneath the rail instead of in a car over it. A double deck carousel and an approx. 62 meter high wheel (like MOA eye at Manila Bay) with airconditioned gondolas. A dungeon of terror and bumper cars and boats. Star City has a lot to offer for all kinds of visitors of different interests and ages.
How about safety standards in Star City? There is a long list of incidents. In 2006 a 13 year old died from falling of the wild river (Jungle Splash renamed). A man died in 2009 after a 15 meter fall from the Star Flyer. 2010 was the year of Zyklon loop’s turn with an electrical malfunction. In Feb 2018 it was the Star Flyer with a 15 min during electrical malfunction which made people hanging all that time and in June of the same year a man died from a fall of the giant star wheel.
Star City Prices
Star City prices vary from activity to activity. You can enter the compound on a ticket price of 80 peso ($1.60). On such ticket you can stroll around but aren’t able to get into one of the activities. A Ride all you can pass cost you 490 peso ($10) and gives you the possibility to go in any ride you can at the park. A year pass can be obtained for 2000 peso ($40). All other attractions can be done for below the given price of 490 peso each. Some attractions are charged with 250 peso and some a bit more or less than that. Of course, when you plan to take five different rides, you will be much cheaper with a Ride all you can pass than to pay for them separately. Star City gives you a nice different outing from all the other usual sightseeing places.
Venice Grand Canal
One of the most wonderful places to visit in Manila is Venice Grand Canal. As the name indicates it is some sort of copy of the canals of Venice in Italy. Developed by Megaworld and owned by McKinley this place is also known as Venice Piazza, Venice Hill and McKinley Hill. The construction completed in 2015.
Venice Grand Canal basically exist of a shopping mall, botanical garden, car parking, the Blue Leaf Pavillion for events, bars and restaurants. This together with condo/apartments and a 5 star hotel. Once you arrive with a Grab car and stand in front of the building where the entrance is, you’ll be impressed immediately by its design and size. This entrance is free of cost. No tickets are to be purchased. You can walk around freely along the canal and enjoy the restaurants and shopping areas.
What is not free of cost is to take a tour with a gondola. A typical Venice boat with boatsman to paddle you around. When you google for prices you get to several amounts mentioned. Some people mention 250 peso while other say 500 peso. Let’s clear this up here. The price for a Gondola as per June ’19 is 400 peso per person. When you are alone or with two, you need to share the Gondola with others. You can get a private Gondola for 600 peso per person. Everybody who has traveled here or there knows exactly which nationalities can be bad company to share a boat with.
Halfway the tour you get to change sides in connection with the boatsman who takes pictures of all passengers from their own phone’s or camera’s. The boatsman of the Gondola’s are friendly. They offer an umbrella for the baking sun and shoot pics for you. The one thing that you could see as negative in the design that it isn’t a circle shaped waterway which makes it has a dead end and is not of really big size. This means that you can do the tour within approx. 15 minutes. A few minutes to the one end and turn back to the other end. That makes it not a cheap tour but certainly it is a special tour and for Manila a not to miss place to hangout.