Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park: A Majestic UNESCO World Heritage Site

Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park: A Majestic UNESCO World Heritage Site

There are many tourist spots on Palawan island in the Philippines. You can find crystal clear sea, white-sand beaches, and the Gatorade blue lagoons. But one particular tourism destination that holds the best title among all is the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park. It is also known as the Puerto Princesa Underground River. The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park holds a place in the New 7 Wonders of Nature. It is also included in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites since 1999.

The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park is a conservation and protected area of the Philippines that has jaw-dropping and beautiful mountain cave formations, towering limestone cliffs, and pristine waters. Its ginormous area has rich biodiversity but only a portion of the river which is around 4.3 kilometers is open to tourists.

Many of the species found in the cave are endemic to the underground river system which includes bats, giant spiders, snakes, swallows, fishes, and more. In order to experience these natural wonders, visitors can book Palawan island tours which include tours to the Puerto Princesa Underground River. Going to these areas can be done on a day trip if you only have one day to explore. There are also many mountain and water activities that await you in nearby areas.

Tips before visiting the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park

  • Make sure to call the Tourism Office management before you embark on any trip or activities as the management only allows a limited number of people inside the river. This is for the conservation of the natural ecosystem inside.
  • Plan the trip ahead and get there ahead of time to ensure your spot.
  • Bring extra clothing and waterproof bags to put your items in since water drips from the walls of the cave.
  • Respect the management and local environment laws protecting the conservation of this destination.
  • Don’t move around the boat the entire tour to avoid falling into the water in the underground river.

How to get to Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park in Palawan, Philippines

To reach the underground river, you need to travel to Puerto Princesa, Philippines via air, land, or sea. There are flights from Manila to Palawan island with less than 2 hours of travel time. Once you are in Puerto Princesa, travel time to Sabang is also around 2 hours. It can either by van, jeepney, or bus transfer. Look for the jeepney or bus terminal information at the airport. If you book this experience through tours, van transfer is usually the best option. Once you arrive at Sabang Port, you will board a small boat to get you to the entry point to the natural river site and cave.

Barracuda Lake: A Haven for Diving Enthusiasts in the Philippines

Barracuda Lake: A Haven for Diving Enthusiasts in the Philippines

When visiting Coron Island in the Philippines, one travel spot you shouldn’t miss is the Barracuda Lake. The Barracuda Lake consists of an abyss of shallow blue waters surrounded by sharp and dark limestone cliffs and underwater cave. The lake was named when a large barracuda fish skeleton was discovered by scuba divers in its waters. Barracuda Lake is composed of both saltwater and freshwater. According to many review articles, it is one of the most famous diving sites for many divers not just in Coron, but in the Philippines. Here, you can also see the great views of the surrounding islands and the deep blue sea.

If you have read Coron travel reviews, you have most likely already read that Barracuda Lake is one of the best dive spots on the island. Both scuba and free divers can truly enjoy the depths. It has its own mesmerizing beauty unique to the place. The lake is about 40 meters deep to the bottom of the sea and is surrounded by sharp limestone cliffs. The lake will give you a clear and good view of what is at the bottom. There is also a 30-meter long cave below which is why many tourists are mesmerized to dive its clear waters. It is said that the resident barracuda can be found there. Most tours allow you to dive into this area so long as you have the proper gears for it.

It is also a good dive spot to explore because of its thermocline, where the water temperature changes at different layers. It actually gets warmer as you go deeper.

How to get to Barracuda Lake in Coron

The best and most convenient way to visit Coron is to take a direct flight from Manila to Busuanga Airport which takes around an hour. Once you are in Busuanga Airport, ride a van going to Coron town proper. Most tours offer private transfers to hotels in the town proper. From there, you can either join a group tour or hire a boat going to Barracuda Lake.

Another option is to ride an overnight ferry by 2Go Travels from Manila.

Things to Remember When Diving in Barracuda Lake

  • Please note that there are no tricycles or taxis in Busuanga Airport. Make sure to read some travel reviews or contact a guide before you visit Coron so you can book your transportation as well as diving tours in advance.
  • You need to climb up a few meters before you can reach the lake. Make sure to hire a guide who will get you there and help you in case you bring dive gears.
  • Review the details of the Coron tour you select before you start exploring the islands. Reading some reviews can help you find the best deals and spots to go to.
  • Stay in a hotel or beach resort that is near Barracuda Lake if you want to go there as early as possible.
The Crystal Clear Waters of Kayangan Lake

The Crystal Clear Waters of Kayangan Lake

If you search Coron island in Palawan, Philippines, the first photos you will most likely see on the Internet are these overlooking views of beautiful limestone islets surrounding a crystal-clear lake. This majestic and jaw-droppingly beautiful place is called Kayangan Lake. Kayangan Lake is often dubbed as the cleanest lake in the Philippines. It is 70% fresh water and 30% sea water. According to travel reviews, this lake is one of the most popular and most visited spots in Coron Island, Palawan, Philippines. In many travel reviews, Coron is also considered one of the best islands to visit in the country.

The lake is home to rich marine life and a variety of exotic fishes including the blue-fin tuna, the rainbow-colored barracuda, the long-finned pilot fish, the small blue tunny, the common scuba fish, and more. It has been a popular place for diving for many generations in this part of Southeast Asia and is a popular attraction for scuba divers.

Activities you can do in Kayangan Lake

Kayangan is also known for its snorkeling. It is famous for its excellent coral reefs and diving opportunities. The local dive shops and restaurants provide different kinds of dive equipment that can help the divers to explore the underwater beauty.

You can go on a tour of this lake and do several activities. You can simply swim around the area, snorkel, dive, or hike the overlooking mountain for the best panoramic view of the entire lake. The lake view is amazing from above.

If you choose to dive, make sure that you have a guide to check on you since there sharp rocks under the water that could easily cut your skin if you’re not careful.

Important notes before embarking on this tour

  • Many tour operators offer Coron Island Tours but make sure to only book reliable ones. Read some reviews to avoid getting scammed. Read some reviews to also get a general idea of what to expect before getting there.
  • You are free to swim around the lake area but be respectful of marine life.
  • Book the earliest tour of the day to get the best view of the area and the sea. 6 to 7 AM is a good time.
  • Some day tours offer different places to visit so check on your operator first if you are free to visit other spots like Coron Bay shipwrecks, Twin lagoon, and other nearby beaches.
  • Be careful when hiking the steps towards the lake since it can get slippery. The steps are also quite steep.

A guide on how to get there

Kayangan Lake is located on Coron Island in Palawan, Philippines. The best way to get there is to travel by air. There are direct flights available from Manila or Cebu to Coron Island. Once you are in Busuanga Airport in Coron, ride a van going to the town proper. The town proper is a good place and is a highly recommended spot to look for accommodations. There, you can look for tours going to the lake and nearby beach and islands tours. You can either charter a private boat going to Kayangan Lake. Or you can also join a Coron Island group tour where the lake is included. The Coron Island Tour usually includes other places like Coron Bay Shipwrecks, Twin Lagoon, Malcapuya Beach, and a lot more.

Enchanting El Nido Lagoons You Should Visit

Enchanting El Nido Lagoons You Should Visit

If you’re not into beach resorts, you can still have a memorable and relaxing stay in El Nido, Palawan. When you search for activities to do in Palawan, Philippines, the first ones to appear are the stunning El Nido lagoons. Surrounded by towering limestone formations, each of the El Nido lagoons is definitely a sight to behold.

You can explore these lagoons in a day if you book an island hopping tour package. Each tour package is different and some offer most access to the big and small lagoon area. You can also check out nearby beaches in the area.

Here are El Nido lagoons you should visit when in town.

Small Lagoon (Tour A)

As the name implies, the small lagoon is small but it is considered a noteworthy destination because of the impressive view of the limestone and rock formations surrounding it.

Big Lagoon (Tour A)

The Big Lagoon is one of the best and popular spots to explore in El Nido. Big Lagoon is also one of the common lagoons included in a beach hopping tour. Here, you will be mesmerized by the majestic limestone formations and emerald waters. The lagoon is good for a kayak exploration or for a good swim. The big lagoon is popular with big groups. At times, many people kayak their way to this part and have a great lunch on the beach. You can explore it in a day along with other spots in El Nido.

Secret Lagoon (Tour A)

The Secret Lagoon is a small pool of water tucked in one of the most beautiful beaches in El Nido, Palawan. It is only accessible via a small hole in one of the karst rock formation. At times, if it is high tide, you will have to swim to check out the Secret Lagoon. It is a great place to swim around or bring a kayak.

Cadlao Lagoon (Tour D)

One of the best spots to visit on an island hopping day tour is the Cadlao Lagoon. Most people review this as the best place to witness the beauty of the Philippines. Here, the lagoon has an opening to the sea so you can see the emerald waters from the lagoon turn into blue towards the sea.

Travel guide to El Nido lagoons

You can go to El Nido in 3 ways:

There are direct flights from Manila to El Nido Lio Airport. Travel time takes a little over an hour.

The second option is to take a flight from Manila, Philippines to Puerto Princesa. From Puerto Princesa, take a private van or car to El Nido. The land trip travel time is roughly 7 hours.

The last option is to ride a ferry bound for El Nido if you are coming from Coron Island.

Things to Remember Before Going to El Nido Lagoons

You don’t need to book your tour in advance. Once you arrive in El Nido, you can easily find tour operators near the beach area offering a package to the lagoons and beaches. You can also book through hotels.

The best time to visit is during the summer months which is from March to May to avoid bad weather conditions. The beach is also stunning during the summer months.

Lunch is included in most tours, but make sure to check out with your guide to know in advance. Bring extra snacks and water just in case.

Tours can vary and some hotels may offer it differently from other operators. Be sure to review the inclusions.

It is highly recommended to read a review of a specific tour online to know which places you’d want to visit.

5 Stunning El Nido Beaches You Should Visit

5 Stunning El Nido Beaches You Should Visit

El Nido is a popular tourist destination in Palawan, Philippines. The lagoons, hiking trails, and particularly, the beaches are considered the best in the Philippines. Because of the outstanding beauty of El Nido beaches, it is often featured in many travel magazines and travel reviews.

The best thing about El Nido beaches is you can go on day tours if you have limited time. You can even go island hopping in one day to a big and small lagoon in one day. El Nido is a popular place, not just for resort and island hopping tours, but they also have a good sea food culture and local activities located anywhere on the island. So whether you are looking for a good, quiet place to relax or party in a resort, you can find a place for you when you travel to El Nido, Palawan.

Here are five must-visit El Nido beaches you should check out when in town.

Nacpan Beach

Nacpan beach is the most popular beach in mainland El Nido. It is a 45-minute drive from the town and is accessible via private van, car, or motorcycle. You can also charter a tricycle to get there but it may take an hour to reach the beach. Nacpan stretches for up to 4 kilometers long and has fine white sand and turquoise waters. It is a great spot to chill for its very calm environment.

Las Cabanas Beach

Las Cabanas beach is a popular beach resort which is around 5 kilometers from the El Nido town proper. This beach is known for its creamy white sand and the majestic coconut palm trees that line up the area.

Seven Commandos Beach

Seven Commandos Beach is one of the popular destinations included in El Nido island tours. Here, you get to enjoy crystal-clear waters and a view of unique limestone rock formations. There are also 5 secluded rooms available in one corner of the beach if you wish to stay here.

Dolarog Beach

Dolarog Beach is the most remote beach in El Nido and is not readily accessible via van or tricycle. You can only get there via boat or if you walk with a guide. Nonetheless, you will be rewarded with an outstanding view of the Bacuit Archipelago.

Lio Beach

You don’t actually have to go far to see the mesmerizing El Nido beaches. Lio Beach is located right at the airport so you can definitely splash in the water one last time before you say goodbye to the island.

How to get to El Nido

There are three ways to get to El Nido, Philippines. You can go for a direct flight from Manila to El Nido Lio Airport. It takes a little over an hour to reach Lio Airport. From Lio Airport, ride a private van or tricycle to reach the town center. It takes around 30-40 minutes from Lio airport.

You can also take a flight from Manila to Puerto Princesa, and then travel by land to El Nido which takes roughly around 7 hours.

The last option is via ferry if you are coming from Coron Island.

Important notes to remember before going to any El Nido beaches

Check if the weather is good in the area or in Palawan island before you travel to any of the beaches.

Look for a resort located near the sea area. This way, you are near the beaches and you can find all sorts of water activities and meet people without going that far.

Check out for Palawan island tours that include island hopping in the small and big lagoon in El Nido. The small and big lagoon is pretty accessible near El Nido beaches too.

Respect the local people and avoid throwing your garbage on any of the beaches.

Prepare for a long and rough ride if you are coming from Puerto Princesa to El Nido. There are stops along the way, but better bring your own food and water for the long ride.