El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

I decided to book a flight to Palawan 4 days before the actual departure date.. A friend messaged me up on facebook just saying hi a...

I decided to book a flight to Palawan 4 days before the actual departure date.. A friend messaged me up on facebook just saying hi and I invited her. Unexpectedly, she said "book it!".  More peeps joined us so I ended up with 8 spontaneous friends travelling with me. 

It was pretty difficult and time consuming to book a flight and look for accommodation for 8 friends.  The fine hotels are already fully booked and I had some troubles booking at Zest Air.

Still, I successfully booked everyone and made all the arrangements. As they say, persistence is the backbone of any success. :)

Let's start with the expenses:
  • P2,750 round trip flight to Manila - Puerto Princesa (vv);  Late bookings are P3,400
  • Round trip van transfers from Puerto Princesa to El Nido (vv) - P12,500 (P6,500 PP to El Nido, P6,000 El Nido to PP) - It's actually priced at P7,000 one-way but I bargained for the price.   If you're travelling alone, you can go for shared transfers.  It's P600 one-way. [Renting the whole van is more expensive but it's much more comfortable - yes, you need more space if you're travelling for 6 hours! :)]
  • Hotel Accommodation - We stayed at Ipil Lodge Hotel.  P2,800 for superior rooms (with seaview) and P2,300 for deluxe rooms (garden view) - good for 2 persons.  For rates: http://www.ipiltravelodge.com/e.rates.html

Hotel review:  I had no regrets booking at Ipil Lodge. It's a modern hotel with nice beddings (I like white sheets!).  The room is pretty standard but it's clean.  There's no TV and electricity runs from 2pm to 6am but it's tolerable.  The resort is not at the beach front, but it's just a block away so it's still walkable (really close actually). 

Contact 0908 880 2867 to book rooms.  They also arrange transfers and tours.  Really easy!
They accept credit card and it's pretty safe to give them the credit card details.

There are several tours to choose from: Tour A-D
You can book the tours from the hotel or when you get to El Nido.  There are lots so don't worry much about it. The tours have standard prices because they are regulated by the government. Super Cool! 

Tour prices:

Tour A - P700
Tour B - P800
Tour C - P900
Tour D - P700
Trekking - P500 per guide
Environmental fee -P200

The tours will take whole day!

All tours include lunch and distilled water and even towels.  You can request  them to buy beer - but you have to pay them early.

Here's our itinerary:

Day 1 - Travel from Manila to Puerto Princesa (5.45am flight).  Travelled by land to El Nido - took us 6 hours, arrived around 2pm. And then drink and relax for the rest of the day.  :)
TIP:  You can actually go for an Underground River tour before going to El nido.  

Day 2 - Tour C.  Go for Tour C when the weather is good because waves can be chaotic.  Slept at 7pm. :) TIRED!

Day 3 - Tour A.  Slept at 9pm. TIRED AGAIN!

Day 4 - Paddle Board in the morning (P250/hour).  Travelled back to Puerto Princesa at 9am.   Stopped by at TayTay and Pasalubong center.  5pm flight back to Manila. 


The crew - different folks, different strokes

El Nido town - beach front

Big Lagoon

The tour included lunch.  The tour guides brought fresh goodies (pork, fish, squid, shrimp, fruits, veggies) and grilled them at some beach area.  Yup, we brought lots of beers too. :)

Lunch was so filling.

Matinloc Shrine

Yup, I climbed up and hurt myself. The rocks were knifelike!!!

Those who built Matinloc shrine were paid by fish.

Miniloc Island Hotel - 5 star!

Lunch time - 2nd 

7 Commandos beach 

Huge Yacht!

Small Lagoon

Wood worms. ew! (eaten like oysters)

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