Nowhere Else: Palawan Island, Philippines

Palawan, Philippines: El Nido Bay

The Palawan island cluster is slowly becoming the must-see tropical paradise. It’s the largest island province in the Philippines, and is mainly divided into El Nido, Coron, and Puerto Princesa.  Here are a few cool facts about the island that make it a one-of-a-kind destination spot.

The Untapped Environment

Palawan Island, Philippines: El Nido Bay
Palawan Island: El Nido Bay

‘Palawan’ loosely translates to ‘Land of Beautiful and Safe Harbor.’ It’s a historical reference to trading ships, but the name has taken a new meaning over the years. The island cluster enjoys a unique natural environment of lush jungles and dazzling marine life, and the native Palawenos are committed to its preservation.

An Underground River System

Palawan Island, Philippines: Puerto Princesa Underground River
[/media-credit] Palawan Island: Puerto Princesa Underground River

Palawan’s famous underground river network is an unparalleled mountain-to-sea experience. Each boat comes equipped with a search light, allowing you to see the cave’s stunning cathedral-like ceiling of stone structures. The river has gained worldwide recognition; It was named an UNESCO World Heritage Site (1999), and one of the New 7 Wonders of the World (2012).

Exotic Wildlife

Palawan Island, Philippines: Coron Bay
Palawan Island: Coron Bay

All of Palawan is as home to hundreds of endemic creatures. Every so often, researchers discover a rare species. Because of this, you’ll find multiple sanctuaries for endangered species of turtles, dolphins, birds, and forestry. Coron Bay, north of the island, is also the Philippines’ largest marine sanctuary. Take a traditional bangka boat out into the waters and explore the vivid ocean life through a guided scuba diving experience.

A Secret Beach

Palawan Island, Philippines: Matinloc Beach, or the 'Secret Beach'
Palawan Island: Matinloc Beach, or the ‘Secret Beach’

If you’re lucky, your tour guide will let you in on some of the island’s best kept secrets. This particular beach is well hidden beneath the limestone cliffs. You’ll have to swim underwater through a narrow rock tunnel. Be careful, because the waves can get quite strong. But when you finally break through the surface, you’ll find yourself at Matinloc Island, a quiet snorkeling paradise.

Crocodile Sisig 


Palawan Food: Crocodile Sisig
[/media-credit] Palawan Food: Crocodile Sisig

Every place has their local culinary specialty, and Palawan is no different. Sample their Crocodile Sisig, a sizzling plate of minced crocodile meat. Eat it like the Filipinos by drizzling calamansi and soy sauce.