Friday, March 11, 2011

A Five Days Trip at Palawan

One of my Dream Destinations
Puerto Princesa and El Nido, Palawan
by lakwatserong tatay

At last, after few weeks of continuous work. I finally got the time to make an entry to one of my dream destinations and share it to you. One of my most awaited trip finally came. Our departure date was February 13 (Sunday) at NAIA Terminal 3 via Air Philippines fleet. Our flight was supposed to depart at 7:30am but it was moved to 8am due to a delayed arrival of our plane. On this trip i prepared a 7K budget, i do hope it could enough for my whole trip..so lets watch out...hehehehe....We were composed of 12 persons, 11 adults and 1 kid (son of Eric & Jen). For our 1st day, we are divided into 2 group that are going to Puerto Princesa. We were the 1st one, composed of yours truly, wendz(photo guro), carlo & chris. the 2nd batch is rowel, liway, jen, eric, joaquim, grace, rhakz and zen. On our 1st day, our plan is to eat on a place where Puerto Princesa is known and experience the city tour of Puerto Princesa.
Our Fleet "Air Philippines"
Of course, upon arrival yours truly will not miss the opportunity to take my 1st time picture of Puerto Princesa Airport & My First Trip to Puerto Princesa.....^_^.  Before the next group arrived, three of us had already a breakfast at a carinderia near the airport. It is almost 10am when the 2nd group arrived. Kuya Ronald is waiting us outside waiving the banner with our Group's name written......we proceed to Manny's Guest House.....
L.T. @ Puerto Princesa Airport
After few minutes we arrived at Manny's Guest House, below is a photo-opps together with Kuya Manny, the guy with letter M on his shirt.
'D Trippers @ Kuya Manny's Guest House
Our first stop is Bilao't Palayok, one of the most famous restaurant in town of Puerto Princesa. This restaurant offers the classic Filipino dining experience as it has a country-style ambience complete with bamboo cottages. Guests can sit inside the cottages for a more private setting and enjoy Palawan's cool, fresh air. The restaurant specializes in grilled Filipino dishes, mostly pork, seafood and chicken.
Lunch @ Bilao't Palayok
After having lunch at Bilao't Palayok. Our City Tour started, our first stop was Binuatan Creations. Binuatan is "creation" in the native Cuyonin dialect. At Binuatan Creations, the guests experience first-hand how the locals transform grasses and fibers into sophisticated handloom woven products.
Pede na noh.....^_^ @ Binuatan Creations
Our 2nd stop is Rancho Sta. Monica, known as Mitra's Ranch. Strategically located a few minutes away from Baker's Hill, Mitra's Ranch gives its guests a wonderful view of the Honda Bay and other surrounding islands. It is owned by the Mitra family, a known political clan in Palawan.
Mitra's Ranch
My Dream Ranch....^_^
Our next is just few minutes away from Mitra's Ranch. Baker's Hill is small village-like private park place but is opened to public mostly students hang out at the place during breaks or week-ends since schools are just nearby the place. It’s called the Baker's Hill and it literally sits on top of a hill overlooking the city.
L.T. @ Baker's Hill
The next stop of our city tour is one of the most famous of them all. The croc's farm known as Crocodile Farm and Nature Park can be found some 30 minutes from the city center is the Crocodile Farming Institute which is both a tourist attraction and a research center devoted to crocodiles. This wildlife center also has a mini-zoo which features some of Palawan's endemic species like the Palawan bearcat and the long-nosed wild boar.
My Kissing Scene @ Crocodile Farm
This park is quite big but im really hoping that they make some enhancements or changes on their nature park area.Im not saying that is not so good but i do hope the management can make a rehabilitation on its park. But all in all the nature park trip and seeing such croc's like that was really such a experience.
So who want to go swimming....Let's go swim......^_^
Our 2nd to the last destination, was The Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm. According to our guide and sametime to be our driver, Kuya Ronald, the prisoners who are brought here are those who have served most of their sentence already. Meaning, they are the ones who wouldn't dare break the gates anymore for they will be freed in just a short period of time. Here, they are being exposed to a some sort of a normal community prior to their release wherein they get to participate in some livelihood programs and earn their own money.
Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm @ Palawan
For our final destination on our city tour of Palawan was Tiangge Tiangge, we you could buy some of the native products and delicacies of Palawan. We also passed by on Puerto Prinsesa Cathedral Church, Palawan Museum, Plaza Cuartel and Baywalk of Puerto Princesa. Actually we visited this places on our last at Palawan.
Time to buy some Pasalubong's....@ Tiange Tiange
After a tiring day of touring around Puerto Princesa, we go back to our resting place for the day, and spent for few hours and when the night come. Our group decided to go to a bar that is really common in Puerto Princesa when nightlife comes. We dine in at Kinabuchs, one of the Palawan's restaurant that offers interesting nightlife as much as it provides fascinating meals. It is a nice choice for chill out nights with friends. It is good place to hang around with good conversations. Kinabuchs completes the relaxing theme that any vacation should be about. It is a favorite spot for night-outers and those who love an active nightlife.
Dinner @ Kinabuchs Grill & Bar Restaurant
Here is our Itinerary and my expenses for our 1st day:
1st Day IT & Expenses
You might like to see the stories behind our Day1: Puerto Princesa & El Nido, Palawan Trip
For our 2nd day at Palawan, Our is now heading to a place in Palawan, where you want to always come back. The Town of El Nido, our group was really excited because we will be going in one of the most famous place in Palawan. El nido, is considered a magical place. From its ageless towering marble cliffs to its white sandy beaches with crystal clear waters, many said that it's a paradise. There are over 50 beaches to discover, so many in fact that sometimes you will feel that you own that island and being secluded private beach. You will also find enchanting lagoons with tranquil turquoise-green water, caves that can take you to hidden beaches, and a very diverse variety of wildlife.
Coffee break @ Dunkin Donut
Our group get up early for a very long trip that will take up to 6-7 hours, The start of our Road trip to El Nido, it really depends to your stopovers. Our first stop was, a coffee break along city street of Puerto Princesa at Dunkin Donuts. The sun is almost when our next stop happened, it was at Roxas South District of Palawan. On that stop, we had a few moments of photo opps, thanks to our photo guro...wendz...^_^....
Stopover @ Roxas, Palawan
One of our stop overs is the town of Taytay, which was used before as a main access when you need to go to El Nido, through their port. Now the highway to El Nido is been constructed and some part of it is being cemented by now. But before this town was the main entrance of El Nido. On this place you will the chance to see the Parish Church of Sta. Monica and Fort Sta. Isabel. Although the Town of Taytay, has it own sites to discover. we proceeded to our main goal to reach El Nido by noontime.
Parish Church of Sta. Monica
Me and Carlo, really enjoyed this stop over because of the scenic view from Fuerza de Santa Isabel. Here's a short description of this Fort Sta. Isabel.....
“The fort, which could accommodate six or seven hundred soldiers, was constructed on a high rock projecting into the sea and connected with the land by an artificial causeway. There was a passage with steps, and an incline by which the summit of the church could be reached some thirty-five or forty feet above the sea-level. By the side of this incline were two dungeons, now roofless. In former times these dungeons had only one small aperture to give light and air to both chambers. On the opposite (east) side of the entrance-gate was a large cistern with a fountain at the lower portion.The fort was one of the finest on Palawan Island, and had four bastions, those overlooking the sea to the north being semicircular, whereas the other two were angular. For its day it possessed some powerful iron artillery, such as one long five-inch piece dated 1812, and two four-inch (1823) cannon. A great number of one-pound bullets were used as mitraille in the big guns; possibly smaller guns were (page 112) in those times mounted upon the wall; or maybe it was ammunition fired at the fort by the Moro lantacas (brass cannon) in some attacks.The inside of the fort was at a slope, the north part being filled up to within five feet of the top of the wall. The two east turrets were reached by an incline, and a path was built all around the top of the castellated wall. The actual stone outer wall was no more than thirty inches wide, but it was filled with earth and thus made of great strength. The only building inside, which was formerly a chapel with two bamboo annexes, is now used as barracks for the constabulary force of seventeen men. The fort measures some forty paces square, and its walls was about forty-two feet high and vertical, except corner bastions at a slant, with a cornichon twenty feet above the ground all round.”
Fuerza de Santa Isabel of Taytay, Palawan
After almost two getting in a rough road, we reach the view deck of El Nido, Palawan. Yes this is it....in a short while, we will finally reach our dream destination.
'D Trippers @ viewdeck of El Nido, Palawan
At exactly 1pm, we reach our resort, Marina Garden Beach Resort, our resting place for 3 days. Although my stay in this resort not cheaper as my previous trips. I really recommend this resort because all of the staff are really accomodating and very courteous and helpful. This resort coordinated all of our activities at El Nido.
Bagay ba? hehehehehe.....
Our first activity was not actually plan. It was all about my curiosity because after lunch what we will gonna do. Aside from getting under the sun and stroll around the town of El Nido. Thanks to our Driver/Tour Guide Kuya Ronald, he suggested the Nagkalit-Kalit Waterfalls. So after our admission and having also our lunch with few preparations, we proceeded to our first activity, which is trekking and waterfalls exploration....^_^
'D Trippers @ Marina Garden Beach Resort
But of course, before proceeding to our first activity, photo opps is always present on our list of activities. Actually im really sad that time seeing so much foreigner on a local place. I do hope that more locals will visit this such scenic and beautiful places like El Nido, Palawan.
Shorelines of El Nido Resorts
Ok, let's get back to my story...hehehehe...Nagkalit-kalit Waterfalls is located in Pasadeña, 13 km from town proper. If you do not have your own transportation like rented van or auv's or you may try to rent a tricycle. But expect it really expensive. This is the entrance to jumpoff going to the waterfalls.
Entrance to Nagkalit-kalit Falls
It took us 1hr and 5 minutes to be exact to reach this waterfalls, of course yours truly is the sweeper...due to my experience of hiking, our group decided that ill be on the last....^_^...And because of that i had so much time to have some photo opps...hehehe..ill post it on a separate story about this falls. We stayed their for almost an hour so we could get back to Marina before it gets dark.
L.T. @ Nagkalit-kalit Falls
After a tiring day again. Most of the trippers got an early sleep but few of us, did not miss our first socials night by the bay of El Nido. Below is the itinerary again i've created together with my expenses that day...^_^
Day 2 IT & Expenses
You might like to see the stories behind our Day2: Puerto Princesa & El Nido, Palawan Trip
For our 3rd day, our first actual morning at El Nido, all of us got up early except from one of the tripper, who got hangover due to our drinking session last night....hehehehe....But of course, he doesn't have a choice, but to join the island hoping activity. Our first day island hoping tour is the Tour A, thanks to Cadlao Tours and Ate Beth...ill be back next year Ate Beth ha...my discount don't forget....
Our boat ride for 2 days of Island Hopping...."Kris Solo"
It was around 930am in the morning when our island hoping started, our first stop was the small lagoon.....Our first photo opps while in the seas of El Nido...hehehehe...
'D 1st Day
At first i thought we were on a traffic jam but this is on a different way. A traffic jam of boat while waiting for their passenger having gone swimming to small lagoon. Small Lagoon is located in the Miniloc Island. This lagoon has actually a small entrance that your option is to swim or rent some kayak going inside. But i do suggest get your own life vest and swim insde the small lagoon. It was really tiring and it really rewarding experience. Im not a good swimmer but i manage to swim in this small lagoon.
Boat parking space @ Small Lagoon
I really don't know why it called a small lagoon because for me it was really big lagoon to swim on, but after you will visit the Big Lagoon on the same island of Miniloc. You will see the difference...hehehehe....just wait for my separate entries regarding this lagoons and Miniloc Island.
'D Trippers @ Small Lagoon
After a tiring stay at Small Lagoon, our next destination and the place we will having our lunch is the Shimizu Beach. It was actually a fairly small beach and as per our boat driver and spotter, this beach is home to a huge bayawak, but where not lucky that time to see one...huhuhuhu....Shimizu's main attraction according to our other guide was having a beatiful marine life just a couple meters from the shore. Clams and colorful fishes are just around the waters of Shimizu.
'D Trippers @ Shimizu Island
Next stop is the Secret Lagoon Beach of Miniloc Island. This lagoon is a bit nice and small. But although this lagoon is small on its middle part is pretty deep. After a quick stop and photo opps along the its shoreline. Our next destination is the Big Lagoon.
Me, Eric & Carlo @ Secret Lagoon
Another part of Miniloc Island, where another lagoon is located and called as the Big Lagoon. For me its one of the scenic lagoon that i've seen although it has a narrow channel leading to the its lagoon. One of the boatman carefully led the way. Where i could see the treacherous shallow water and rock clearly seen at the transparent waters. Going though this channel led by walls of limestones on each side, i knew there would be something special. And as soon as we saw the waters graduate from crystal white to aquamarine and ending to a deep blue waters with a horizon on the limestones. One word came on my mouth......"wow", i was really lucky to this such scenic views of limestones, in fact this lagoon is sometimes used to be a wedding ground ceremonies, there is a place on here that has a deck that is floating in water serves as the stage for weeding celebrants....watch for my separate entry for this Big Lagoon...to know more and view it scenic limestones and deep blue waters....
'D Scenic view of Big Lagoon
The last part of our 1st day of island hoping, The Seven Commandos Beach, it has a long stretch of beach, that also snorkeling part just off the shore, that we tried on. But what's really interesting on this place is the small sari-sari store that sells snacks and fresh buko (coconut) juice for twice the price in the mainland.....hahahaha..But still, this place is a great place to chilax...(chill and relax) while viewing resting on the number of hammock and seats scattered around so you can take a quick nap or just rest for a while.
@ Seven Commandos Island
Again, another day ended on our stay at Palawan, below is our Day 3 Itinerary together with all of my expenses for that day.
Day 3 IT & my expenses
You might like to see the stories behind our Day3: Puerto Princesa & El Nido, Palawan Trip
It's the 2nd day of our Island hoping tour in El Nido, it was supposed to be Tour C, but due to the boatdriver and Ate Beth consent that the sea waters is not on our side. They recommend to do the Island Hoping Tour B, but it was reorganized and kind a different on the usual Tour B packages offered, thanks to Ate Beth owner of Cadlao Tours who is also accompanied us for our 2nd day of Island hoping together with his son.
Municipal Hall of El Nido, Palawan
But before proceeding to our 2nd day tour of island hoping, me, chris and carlo strolled around first in the city town proper and do some photo sessions...hehehe...
El Nido Church
One thing that i must not forget to tell you and must be tried on when your in El Nido is the El Nido Soup also known as Nido Soup that is made of saliva that been scattered in the bird nests, also called as birds spit, this bird is locally called as "Balinsasayaw". This soup is only serve on one of the carinderia's on town proper that will cost you for P200...quite pricey, but it was really tasty....hehehehe...^_^....
The Famous "El Nido Soup"
Ok, let's go back to our 2nd day of island hoping tour, our 1st stop was Pinagbuyutan Island, this island has a medium stretch of white sand, shallow shore that makes the water looks flat, and some rock formations on the other side. Where not quite lucky to visit this island because it was really wavy that time, so we just did was photography session and of course all of us is cam whores.
Pinagbuyutan Island
Next stop was the Cudugnon Cave and Cudugnon Cove, where we stayed for a while having our lunch that day. This cave is quite mysterious and intriguing place....it is only accesible through a small opening, we had to ankwardly maneuver ourselves and together with our cameras before you could get to the other side. But when you on the other side you will be overwhelmed to see elevated ceilings and chiseled interiors. Shafts of the light filtered down and illmunated the amorphous walls. Formed from millions of years of erosion, there is still uncertainty as to what the caves were used for. It said this cave was used as burial place of local natives of Palawan.
Do you see Eric @ Cudognon Cave
The highlight of our 2nd day island hoping tour is Snake Island. Appropriately named for it's winding "S" shaped sandbar. For approximately 5-10 minutes, one may also hike to the top of the island for a perfect view. This sandbars connects the island to the mainland and is more visible during low tide. And because of that, photo sessions happened again and cam whores are alive again. Below is one of the shot that i really like that taken by our photo guru....wendz.....
Snake Island
Here it is.....the snake island jumpshot....^_^......starting from left...eric...yours truly....chris....rowel and carlo..what do you think....
My Favorite Shot....Jumpshot @ Snake Island
Our 2nd to last tour was Natnat Beach, this beach is actually private owned beach that has own security personnel, and also part of Cadlao Island which is southern part of Cadlao Island. This beach offers also snorkeling activities few meters away from the shores and of course cam whoring is always present due to its beautiful rock formations along its shores.
Natnat Island
The last island that we will visit is the Bukal Island, the small island that stands separated from the Cadlao Island but not that far from each other, passing between them, you can see that so called Bahuras / Corals, different species of this corals can be found here and almost reaches the sea covers. Ate Beth also said that Cadlao Lagoon could be found in the heart of the island. We just stayed here, did some snorkeling activities and chilax for a while and of course.......photo sessions....w/ the cam whore members..
Bukal Island
Our 2nd to the last Itinerary and my expenses for that day. And that's the end of our El Nido Escapades, although it was a bit tiring acitivity, i will be coming back on this place to finish and visit all of the islands that i wasn't able to set my foot on......El Nido i'll be back....lakwatserong tatay...
Day 4 IT & my expenses
You might like to see the stories behind our Day4: Puerto Princesa & El Nido, Palawan Trip

And the last day arrived, we had to wake up again early to back to Puerto Princesa and head back home to Manila. But before heading to the airport, as Kuya Ronald promise us, we had a quick stopover to the last 3 places that we just passed by for our 1st day city tour. The Palawan Musuem, The Immaculate Concepcion Church of Puerto Princesa and Plaza Cuartel. I will do separate post for this following places because i'm having problems uploading those pictures..all of those pictures is to follow...hehehehe...After doing a quick visit and stop. We go back to Kuya Manny's House, parting time and saying that we will gonna be back..to visit all of our missed places both in Puerto Princesa and El Nido, Palawan.
Lunch time @ Balinsasayaw Restaurant
After a day of long trip from El Nido, and a short tour of Puerto Princesa, we tried to dine in for lunch at Balinsasayaw Grill and Restaurant along Rizal Avenue. One of the best places to see and having some problems regarding budget in dining in. This restaurant offer meals for as low as P60. This restaurant offers authentic filipino dishces like calamares, grilled liempo and chicken, bicol express and many more. Upon dining on this restaurant the ambience is very homey and romantic.

After our sumptuous lunch at Balinsasayaw, Kuya Ronald brought us to the airport and by exactly 330 in the afternoon our group did the check-in procedures and boarded the Cebu Pacific fleet going to Manila around 530pm and arrived at Manila at exact 7pm. and again parting time always happen in a trip, most of us ride the shuttle service of Terminal 3 that has a terminal in MRT/LRT Station. And go back again to mountains of Antipolo.
Our Last Day IT & Last Day of Expenses and 'D Summary...^_^
You might like to see the stories behind our Day5: Puerto Princesa & El Nido, Palawan Trip
So after five days of staying in Palawan known as the "Last Frontier Destination", now i can say that it is really through and definitely ill be coming back.

17 comments:

Pinoy Adventurista said...

wow! ang dami nyong napuntahan ah... ang saya!!! =D

Anonymous said...

"wow"...ang ganda.....salamat sa informations, it will be a really big help.....

Anonymous said...

wow......kaiinggit ka naman...dami nyo napunthan....galing...

Chyng said...

wow 5 days in 1 post!
kasya pala 5 days ng El Nido -PP, ako kasi i booked 6. nagkamali yata ako! =)

Chyng said...

at btw, finally naka-segregate na yung labels mo! hallelujah! nafigure out mo din, haha

lakwatserong tatay said...

hello po sa inyong lahat......^_^
@mervin.....uu...pero kulang pa din ung 5 days..babalik ako next year pra sa mga nde ko napuntahan...hahahahaha...
@anonymous....thanks po for viewing...^_^
@anonymous....hehehe...thanks po.
@chyng.....nde ko po magagawa yung categorization kung di sa inyong 2 ni pinoy adventurista....pambihira ang tulong nyo...hehehe...saka kulang parin ung 5 days...
kasi balik pa ko next yr. sa PP & El Nido...pra sa Honda Bay, Underground & Dos Palmas sa PP and Tour C & D sa El Nido....5 days ulit....hehehehe...^_^

lakwatsera de Primera said...

grabe, ang galing, daming nyo nagawa at napuntahan at saludo ako sa note-taking skills :)

lakwatserong tatay said...

@ms. claire...actually bitin pa nga po...im really hoping na next year makabalik ako...hehehehe...para po sa mga ibang tripper na gusto rin po pumunta..nagshare lang po ako.....actually madami pa nga po ako ginagawa...super backlog na po...^_^

killerfillers said...

Ganda talaga sa El Nido! Ang sarap bumalik..hanggang ngayon nasa draft pa rin ung mga post ko.haha

lakwatserong tatay said...

@killerfillers...tama po kayo....im really hoping that i could get back to El Nido(but don't know when....hehehe!!!) Saka pareho lang po tayo marami parin ang nasa draft hindi lang po un palawan trip meron pang ibang place...^_^...thanks for the visit...

rockyford1000 said...

Hello,

Pwede malaman kung magkano island hopping sa el nido?

lakwatserong tatay said...

@rockford1000...depende po sa tour na kukuhain ng group niyo...
for ex. sa Cadlao Tours po.
Tour A & D is 700
Tour B is 800
Tour C is 900
Here's the link of the package that we got in Cadlao Tours.. you may copy paste this link..

http://xplorerboyz.blogspot.com/2011/05/small-lagoon.html

Pero if you would like to check all of the tour services in El Nido you may check this link, one of my blogs for El Nido.

http://xplorerboyz.blogspot.com/2011/05/el-nido-palawans-accomodations-and.html

Hope i've helped you....Thanks po...^_^

Anonymous said...

Hi Sir, me and my friends are planning on a 3N 2Days vacation in Palawan. Can you suggest a better places to visit? This would be our first time and we plan to have DIY IT.

Thanks!
-Grace

lakwatserong tatay said...

@grace, ahm san po ba kau sa Palawan, but if you're going to Puerto Princesa, the best spots that you could visit is 1st the Underground River, 2nd day is Puerto Princesa City Tour and island hoping and last day is day tour in Dos Palmas, you could go right beside the airport tourism office or you may want to contact Manny's Guest House, sulit po ang stay at ang bait nilang magasawa...i hope i help but if you really want more detailed IT, you may go to Just Email Me page so i could reply to you via email....^_^

Batangala said...

we've also had a five day trip to palawan covering bataraza in the south to busuanga in the north. grabeng nakakapagod.

i usually bring along my daughter and my wife to out-of-town trips, but this one was official.

on separate occassions, i was able to bring them to puerto princesa and el nido. i am still trying to get them to coron one of these days and probably culion, too.

dhimpz18 said...

hi! thanks sa blog very informative. just want to ask, paano kayo nag city tour? nag rent ba kayo ng trike? wala kasi ako nakita expenses for city aside from the foods during your first day.

thanks! :)

lakwatserong tatay said...

@dhimpz18

thanks po. im really glad that i've helped you. regarding po sa query niyo, included po siya sa package na nakuha namin php18755, (includes airport transfer v.v., overnight stay in Manny's Guest House (Puerto Princesa), City Tour in Puerto Princesa, Stop over in Town of Taytay, Palawan and 3 days van rent from & to El Nido, Palawan, including our trek to Nagkalit-kalit falls, we give our Kuya driver a little tip...^_^) so lumalbas po php 1705 each (11 persons), nakapackage po kasi yun kinuha namin...

hope i've answered your query...

thanks again..^_^

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