“In every outthrust headland, in every curving beach, in every grain of sand there is the story of the earth.”
― Rachel Carson
In my quest to find more adventurers like you, I had a chance to talk to Cris. He likes exploring beaches and enjoying the spectacular beauty of lagoons.
Among all the places he’d been to, he chose El Nido, Palawan. He was there for 3 consecutive years; 2013 – 2015.
So if you are planning to go there, here are some tips from him.
How long should I stay in El Nido, Palawan?
It is entirely up to you but Cris recommends to at least stay there between 4 days to 1 week. 3 days is simply not enough considering that you still have transportation schedules to follow.
From Puerto Princesa, it takes 5 hours just to get to El Nido. Despite the time it takes to get there, you will at least be able to relax once you get to your hostel which is about Php 750., a hostel-dorm type.
I am not sure what types of room you prefer but Cris have stayed in the same hotel every time he went there. He recommends Casa Cecilia. For years, he has not had any regrets. They offer American/Filipino breakfasts.
Also, the facilities are good and the price is affordable. A family room costs about Php 3500 per night. 5-6 persons can fit there. And if you divide that, how cheap would that be?
You must remember though, that El Nido is a popular choice among tourists around the world. So you need to book a room 3 months before the actual stay. Most hotels are fully booked.
On the other hand, if your trip is set quickly and you did not have time to prepare for your accommodation, you can still walk-in. Some tourists knock on houses and asks them kindly to rent them a room. If you’re lucky, you’ll find a place to stay.
Back in 2013, the tour packages were very cheap. Back then the price ranges from Php 650 – Php 750. Now, it is double the price. But still worth it.
Tours and Packages:
For years, they still have the same packages.
There are 4 tours available:
A Php 750
B Php 650
C Php 750
D Php 650
Imagine all that and double it. That’s the price now.
Which do you recommend?
Personally, I like combining A & C as include lagoons, sandbars and you can even go snorkeling. I also enjoyed eating on the boat.
The boat guy let us have fun around the boat while he prepared our lunch. There were shrimps, liempo and squid. Your money is worth every penny.
However, if you feel like eating somewhere else, you can find restaurants too. In the town center, it could be quite expensive. But if you are looking for a budget meal, just walk around and find some place a bit far from the shore. You can have tapsilog (tapa-sinangag-itlog) kind of meals plus fruit shakes!
What if I want to travel alone?
That’s fine. You can travel alone. But if you are on a budget, you get to enjoy the same thing with your friends on a cheaper rate. On the boat for example, you can be as few as two people and maximum of 20. The boat is quite big.
Thanks Cris for sharing your personal experience. What do you suggest they bring to this trip?
For me, I always bring my action camera. It is a must.
Of course, a pair of slippers, toiletries, powerbank, running shoes (since I run at least one day in all my trips)—yes, he is a runner, and a wet bag.
How much did you spend for transportation?
I was able to score plane tickets for only Php 2,500. You can get this through piso fare promotions.
From Manila going to Puerto Princes. Then a one-way trip to El Nido is Php 750.
What are the Do’s and Don’ts?
Avoid getting packages from unlicensed tour guides. It is unsafe and the places you can visit will be limited.
If you are a budget-traveler, avoid restaurants by the beach. It can be Php 250 per meal. Depending on your budget though, this price can be okay.
Ask tours from the hotel itself.
Make sure to explore the lagoons and sandbars
Bring a dry bag!
Make sure to withdraw or have cash prior to the trip. Some establishments accept debit or credit card but not all.
There you go guys! If this is something you want to do then go for it. If you have other experiences that you want to share, feel free to send us a message.