El Nido and Puerto Princessa in 5 Days and 4 Nights
We arrived in Puerto Princessa International Airport on Holy Thursday around past 8 in the morning and was welcomed by our van driver, Kuya Noel. Our van transport was arranged by Northern Hope Tours. From the airport, we traveled for almost 5 hours to El Nido. Roads are paved and we had several stops for comfort room breaks and lunch. We used this travel time to get much needed nap. We asked Kuya Noel to drop us off in Corong-corong, El Nido in the tricycle terminal which is near the resort where we will stay for the night. We had to go down some steps going to the beach area before we can reach the hotel but it was just a short walk and our hotel sent staff to help us carry our bags and take us to the resort.
Once you set foot on the powdery sand of Maramegmeg beach, you can feel the laidback vibe of Corong-Corong. We passed by many tourists sunbathing, paddle boarding, kayaking, swimming or just chilling with friends in the bars lined along the beach. The water is clear and the view of scattered islands from the beach is amazing.
Where We Stayed
We checked in at Orange Pearl Beach Resort. Our room is the Sea View Room at the 3rd floor of their new building and we love it! It has a spacious balcony with a spectacular view of different islands and Bacuit Bay. We wasted no time in flying the drone from here.
So far, they are the only resort in the beach area that has a modern looking 3-storey building. We were also informed that construction of the resort’s other building beside ours will be finished soon.
They also have a bar and restaurant facing the beach area. Orange Pearl also offers island hopping tours, massages, zip line and Waka-wakat tour to Villa Israel Eco Park in El Nido. The zip line post is just at the back of the building where we stayed. At night, there is a live band performance in the restaurant.
ORANGE PEARL BEACH RESORT
Sitio Marimegmeg, Bgy Corong Corong, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines 5313
Tel: +63 917 3280163
What We Did
Sunsets in Corong-corong are stunning. Our favorite spot to watch the sunset is at BeachShack which is just beside Orange Pearl while lounging in their comfy bean bags on the sand floor and sipping our cold drinks.
We were up early for a morning walk and then had breakfast at Orange Pearl’s restaurant. By 7:30AM, we checked out and transferred to El Nido town to be near the island hopping tours.
Where We Stayed
We took a tricycle from Corong-corong and asked to be dropped off at Rainforest Beach Hotel. Fare is 150 Php for one way and travel time is only 5-10 minutes.
Rainforest Beach Hotel is at the heart of El Nido town. Our beautiful room at the 2nd floor has a balcony and jacuzzi with a magnificent view of the islands and Bacuit Bay.
RAINFOREST BEACH HOTEL
Hama Street, Brgy. Masagana Zone III El Nido, Palawan, Philippines
Activity: Nacpan Beach by Motorbike
Our motorbike rental was arranged by Northern Hope Tours. The motorbike together with 2 helmets were brought to the hotel. One of us had to leave our passport with them and sign a paper. We need to give back the motor by 8PM. Tip: Choose a motorbike for rough roads and check if you have enough fuel before leaving town!
NORTHERN HOPE TOURS
(+63) 939-902-2216 (Smart), (+63) 927-735-3221 (Globe), (+63) 942-375-2441 (Sun)
We headed North and traveled in paved road to Nacpan for about 17 kilometers from El Nido before turning left to a sign that says Nacpan Beach Resort. From here, you need to pass very rough roads for about 15 minutes more. Be careful because there are holes or big rocks in the middle of the road that are not visible from afar due to dust. We almost fell off our bike once or twice. You will also need to cross narrow wooden bridges.
After a rough and dusty ride, you will know you are near the beach once you see rows of coconut trees towering the horizon. But before you can proceed to the parking area, you need to pay the environmental fee: 50 Php for locals and 100 for foreign tourists.
Nacpan Beach is spectacular. It's powdery white sand beach stretches for about 4 kilometers. The water is warm and clear. Near the parking area are sari-sari stores and restaurants. They also rent out chairs and day beds. Here is where most of the tourists stay. We had our lunch in one of the restaurants and then walked til the edge of Nacpan beach where the hills are. We stayed here more since there were not much people and there is also Calitang beach on the other side that's why this area is called Twin Beach. Before heading back to town, we passed by a hut selling fresh coconut juice.
Where We Stayed: Rainforest Beach Hotel
Activity: Island Hopping Tour A
Since this is our first day of the tour, we woke up early and headed to the office of GO PARADISE TRAVEL AND TOURS where we met Aletha, one of the organizers. After paying the environmental fee worth 200 Php each which is good for 10 days and filling out forms, she provided us towels and brought us to our boat which we shared with other tourists. Turned out that our boat was just a few steps away from our hotel. The boat was big and spacious. Our tour guides, Mel and Jeremy were awesome. They made sure everyone got to know each other and had enough photos! We love the food they served us for lunch in the island which consist of seafood, grilled meat and fresh fruits.
Tour A : Small Lagoon, Big Lagoon, Secret Lagoon, Shimizu Island, 7 Commando Beach.
Duration: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm.
GO PARADISE TRAVEL AND TOURS
Rizal Street Brgy. Maligaya – El Nido – Palawan – Philippines 5313
Smart (+63) 919-4142-126
Globe (+63) 995-4656-500
What We Did: Island Hopping Tour C
We woke up early and had breakfast at Sea Slug Restaurant. When we got back to our room, we packed our things and checked out before heading to our tour. The staff of Rainforest Beach Hotel were kind enough to keep our bags til we came back after the tour. We met Aletha and the group in the beach in front of Rico’s Cottages before getting on the boat. The group was not as big as the previous day. The boat was also different; it has its own kayak, sound system and grilling station. It seemed more of a party boat. Our guides were still the same awesome fellas Mel and Jeremy, with Ian included.
Tour C: Helicopter Island, Matinloc Island, Secret Beach, Star Beach, Hidden Beach.
Duration: : 9:00 am – 4:00 pm.
After the tour, we headed back to the hotel to wash and change. We got our stuff and went to eat at Tratoria Altrove while we wait for our 6pm van transfer, provided by Orange Pearl Beach Resort, that will take us back to Puerto Princessa that night.
We arrived in Puerto Princessa around 11PM. Our van dropped us off at our hotel. We checked in at the very hip Aziza Paradise Hotel. It was late and we were the only ones in their spacious open air lobby but their 24 hour front desk was very helpful and provided us everything we need. Our welcome drinks came out of nowhere and we were assisted to our room.
Where We Stayed: Aziza Paradise Hotel
We stayed at one of their Superior Premiere Rooms which includes:
Wi-Fi Internet access and LAN outlets
Private toilet and bath with shower
Mini-bar with complimentary bottled water
Sitting area with a desk
Hair dryer and daily newspaper available on request
We enjoyed our breakfast buffet in Aziza which starts as early as 6AM. It has an array of choices for bread, Filipino breakfast dishes, fruits and salads. There is also a station where you can have your egg cooked just the way you want it. Breakfast is served at Demeter Diner which can seat up to 130 people.
We also enjoyed chilling by the pool while sipping mango shakes from their Demeter Diner that we were almost tempted to just stay the rest of the day in the hotel. The staff are all attentive and accommodating. From simple requests to taking care of our luggage and van transfer, everything went smooth sailing.
AZIZA PARADISE HOTEL
BM Road, Barangay San Manuel
Puerto Princesa City, Palawan
Mobile Numbers: (+63 48) 434 2405
(+63) 917 678 8885 | (+63) 939 928 8363
Manila Sales Office:
3528 Unit 10, V. Mapa Extension, Barangay 602, Sta. Mesa, Manila
Contact Numbers: (+63 2) 255 5224
(+63) 917 879 6968 | (+63) 939 928 8362
What We Did
We initially planned to do the Honday Bay Tour for our last day in Palawan but since our flight back to Manila was moved earlier to 6:20PM the same day, we decided not to risk it. Instead, we opted to explore Nagtabon Beach by motorbike which is just 45 minutes away from the city. This beach is considered to be a hidden gem of the city. NorthernHope Tours, which also operates in Puerto Princessa, arranged for our motorbike. We didn’t need to step out of the hotel to look for rentals. The motorbike and helmets were brought to our hotel.
The road going to Nagtabon is paved up to the entrance of the beach. There are no environmental fees collected here. It is clean and looks like a fishing village. There were not much crowd when we got here, maybe because it was a Monday. The people around were a combination of locals and foreigners. The sand is powdery and the water is clear. We ate lunch in one of the huts in the beach that offer food. Lunch was grilled fresh fish, grilled liempo, rice and ensalada with buko juice. The locals are friendly and we had fun playing with the children. Even though it rained during our day trip, Nagtabon Beach was still beautiful and charming. We headed back to the hotel and arrived around 3PM. Our van transfer to the airport was scheduled at 4PM. We would recommend a day tour in Nagtabon for those who prefer less crowds and just chill in the beach. Exercise caution during months when the waves get high since there had been drowning incidents. We were told that many flock here to surf on seasons between October to February.
Check out our Palawan Travel Video below and safe travels!
Many thanks to Orange Pearl Beach Resort, Rainforest Hotel, Aziza Paradise Hotel, Northern Hope Tours and Go Paradise Travel & Tours! Our accommodations and tours were complimentary and all opinions, as usual, are our own. Safe travels! <3