2022: Hello El Nido, Palawan

Finally!

I’m back here in the island.

Just a brief story though, pre-pandemic 2 years ago, March 2020, I visited the beautiful island of El Nido Palawan, I almost got stranded here when pandemic struck. Now, 2 years later I’m back with 2 of my friends (MayAnn & Vajoy).

Me, May Ann and Vajoy

Is this planned? Somehow.

When I visited Manila last February 2022, I got to meet my previous workmates now friends. We were at a coffee shop and voila! Before parting with them, we were able to booked a flight to El Nido. That fast! We’re trying to step up our yearly meetup instead of having staycations in Metro Manila, we decided to celebrate it somewhere airplane is involved. Lol.

Fast forward to September, Sam and LJ including their girlfriends cannot come due to other “much important” things. From 7, now to 3.

I met up with May Ann and Vajoy in Manila and we three flew together to El Nido. After how many years we were able to travel again together. What I mean was the last time we travelled three together was when we visited Hong Kong and Macau and that was like four years ago. Wew! Time went by so fast.

Although this was planned but it kind of unplanned last minute starting from the 4 love birds who weren’t able to come, no proper itinerary and the typhoon (unexpected). We even got stranded at Puerto Princesa because of it but all is well, after all we were able to leave Palawan happy and safely.

HOW TO GET TO EL NIDO, PALAWAN?

For someone coming from Cebu, I can literally book a flight straight to El Nido but then when we checked the flights back then it was a bit expensive so I opted to go to Manila and Manila to El Nido.

  • AirSWIFT Airlines can take you straight to El Nido from Manila via Lio Airport
  • The rest of the airlines will only take you to Puerto Princesa, from Puerto Princesa get a van or hire a van to take you to El Nido. It’s a 5-6 hours van ride with stops of course in case you need to pee break

WHERE TO STAY IN EL NIDO, PALAWAN?

  • Too many good places to stay in El Nido, from hostels to transients to hotels. You may book it via Airbnb, Agoda, Booking or even RedDoorz Hotel
  • We got ours from the tour agency, we availed for a tour package to ease us

WHERE TO EAT?

  • Too many good food in El Nido. We only stayed there for 3 days and what stood out the most is the restaurant in Lio Beach, ElNido Grill, near the parking area beside the Nacho jeep. When we told them that we’re going to eat with our tricycle driver, they told us that there’s free food for the driver. Good job to the restaurant for having the initiative. Sadly, we weren’t able to avail the crabs. 😦
  • The Lazy Hammock Cafe is a good place to chill. It’s coffee was bomb! It’s located near the Vanilla beach and the interior is pretty.
  • Gusto Gelato, best gelato in the island 😀 they offer dine in as well and food’s delicious.

WHAT TO DO IN EL NIDO?

  • El Nido will not be EL Nido if you will not do island hopping. We availed a tour package via ElByahe Travel and Tours and shout out to our tour guides KUYA CRIS & MACKY for the 2 days island hopping. Best tour guides we had, photographer/ videographer, entertainer and the FOOD, oh lala so yummy! It never fails.
  • If you know how to ride a motorcycle then you can rent a motorcycle and drive around the island. Nacpan Beach is quite far from the town, it would take an hour to get there so plan your day ahead. It would be unfortunate if you will not be able to visit Nacpan Beach. If you opted to hail a tricycle, it would cost you around $30-40 for the fare roundtrip.
  • Food trip in the town, drink and talk to locals
  • We had a day in Puerto Princesa, shoutout to Sir Mark for personally touring us around the city using his SUV, sosyal!

TIPS

  • Don’t forget to bring sunblock, shades and cap with you
  • Learn how to drive a motorcycle, it will bring you to places and it will cost you less
  • Souvenirs in El Nido is expensive, buy it at Puerto Princesa in case you will pass by there. If not, prepare for your haggling skills
  • Make use of social media like Facebook, we only knew that the tour agency we availed had a buy 1 take 1 promo on its tour packages
  • People in Facebook talk about how they visited the island and eventually got sick when they went home, awareness is very important so always check and look for good places to dine and eat
  • Make sure to bring a facemask with you always, it doesn’t matter if you’re going to wear it or not just bring one
  • Check the weather always, bring extra clothes and money in case you will be stranded
  • Globe network is not good in El Nido, might as well bring a smart sim with you
  • Practice CLAYGO at all times
  • “I’ve learned that true friendship continues to grow, even over the longest distance”

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