3 wonderful days in the El Nido area
The El Nido area is one of the prettiest areas I have been to so far. 3 days of hanging out in paradise and exploring the surroundigs was absolutely incredible. We have seen the best beaches, had delicious food, did awesome activities and went onto an unforgettable island hopping tour. The El nido area has definitely something in store for everybody. Maybe it is even one of the best areas you will find in the whole Philippines.
3 wonderful days in the El Nido area
Guys, just like always I can not claim, that I have seen everything in the El Nido area. I actually did not. We have seen a small percentage of what there is to see, but I could imagine, that we have maybe been to the best spots in the El Nido area without even knowing it.
There is so much more to explore. That’s for sure. But, if you take your time to hang out at the following places and do the activities, that we have done, you will have an absolutely brilliant time. Promised!
El Nido area: General information, how to get there and where to stay
The El Nido area is located in the north of Palawan. Palawan itself and especially the El Nido area are generally known for paradisaic beaches and landscapes. People consider it to be the paradise of the Philippines. It really reminds me of Thailand or some places in Australia.
The El Nido area is very touristic. Most of the money is made by tourism. Additionally the El Nido area is very known for its scuba diving spots. A lot of scuba divers come here to enjoy the unique underwater world. Most of the corals are still in good shape, which is very rare these days.
The weather is constantly very good, even though it is very rainy from June till August. The El Nido area has been inhabited by humans more than 22.000 years ago. First real colonies have been chinese. They came to the area in the 13th century. Filipinos speack Filipino and English. Their english is quite good compared to most other asian countries. You should not have any communication problems.
How to get to there
The El Nido are can be reached by boat, bus and even by plane. Me and my girlfriend came from Manila by boat. But first we took a plane to Coron Island. You can also fly. We payed about 180 $ p.p. for the a flight, which is quite expensive. A flight from Manila to the El Nido area or Puerto Princesa is about the same. The boat ride with the fast ferry takes about 4-5 hours (34 $). The journey with the slow ferry is much longer – 7-8 hours (29 $). Only lunch and one small water bottle are included. So make sure to bring something.
You can also go by bus from Puerto Princesa. It will take about 8 hours (7-9 $). Bring your jacket. Buses in Asia are always cold, because of the air conditioning.
Where to stay
You will find a lot of different places to stay at. Especially “Poblacion”, which is the pivotal point in terms of tranpostation, is full of hotels and hostels. You’ll find a wide price range. We stayed at Nacpan Beach in a small hostel called Where to next, which is very recommendable (15 $ p.p. – twin room). I also recommend to get out of Poblacion as quick as you can, because there are so much better places in the El Nido area. You can also find many other accommodations at other beaches and in the jungle, but from my point of view, you should stay close to a beach. Because that’s what the El Nido area is famous for.
El Nido area: Highlights
The El Nido area has a lot of highlights to bring to the table. We spent 3 days in the area so we had to focus on specific parts. Obviously we could not see everything, but we made sure to see the best stuff.
One of the main spots is Nacpan Beach. We went there straight after we arrived in the El Nido area. It is a 45 minute tricycle ride from the harbour. Once you have arrived, you will find this spectecular beach with a small bay next to it – Twin Beach. These two beaches are absolutely wonderful. Nacpan is one of the top 3 beaches I have seen so far!
Nacpan Beach is a very long, almost completely untouched, slightly curvey beach with light blue water and small mountains in the backround. Just perfect!
Twin Beach is right next to it. It’s basically a small bay with the exact same attributes – just shorter. Two incredible spots, where you can easily spend some weeks just hanging out, doing nothing. You can see more of it on my Youtube channel.
Another really beautiful beach you have to have a look at is Duli Beach, which is the next beach further up north. It is about a 30 minute drive with the scooter, starting from Nacpan Beach.
Short tip: Watch out while driving. Besides the main roads, you will only find dirt roads. It’s quite hard to drive on them.
Duli Beach is absolutely awesome as well. There is just 1 surf shop on an almost 1 km beach. How cool is that? You can rent surf boards for 5 $ per 30 minutes or just enjoy a completely untouched beach, which is almost impossible to find nowerdays. I went for a surf. It’s really good fun! The wave hight varies from 50 cm to 3 m. So it’s beginner and pro material, depending on the conditions.
All of these 3 beaches are almost inhabited, which is very nice. I guess, in a couple years it will be different. Tourism will take over sooner or later. So make sure to go there before it’s overloaded.
El Nido area island hopping
The island hopping in the El Nido area is a must do for everyone, who wants to see true paradise. You can choose between 4 different tours. A, B, C and D. All of them go to different beaches, lagoons and hidden caves. A tour costs 30 $. You can also rent a privat boat, which will be more expensive.
The tour that most people do, is a combinations out of A and C. That’s what we did too. It goes to 5 different magical places. You spend about 1-2 hours at each spot. The tour starts at 9 am. You will be back at about 6 – 7 pm. Good food, drinks and a whole boat crew are included. We had a very nice tour guide called “Joey”. I always get along with tour guides pretty well, because I always ask a lot of questions . I just love to get to know new places 🙂
Different island hopping spots
But anyway, the tour is just amazing. It really is. Even though it is a touristic thing to do, which I usually do not really like, it’s still very nice and a lot of fun. You will be amazed by the beauty. The spots that we went to were:
- Small lagoon
- Big Lagoon
- Hidden Beach
- Secret Beach
- Snake Island
We got lucky, that Joey brought us to Snake Island, because that is usually included in another tour. At the end of the tour you will most likely see a breathtaking sunset from the boat. You will also meet a lot of cool people from various countries. I write about the Island hopping tour in the El Nido area in detail in this post.
Ultimately I can tell you guys, that the island hopping tour in the El Nido area is a wonderful experience and I highly recommend it!
El Nido area: What I have learned
The El Nido area told me something very simple again, which is just common sense. For me, it is more of a reminder than a learning.
The most beautiful places are most likely the spots, that have not been taking over by tourism OR where people take care of nature!
Australia for example has many very touristic places, but the Australians take care of their enviroment a lot.
If you leave out cities, architecture and art, then nature is the only thing, which I consider to be/ that can be called „beautiful“ on our planet. Everything else does not have anything to do with beauty, even though you can find beauty in everything, if you look at things very closely.
And the best places in nature are the ones that are still untouched.
It is way harder to reach them…
It costs more to get to them…
It’s way harder to find them…
But the reward is priceless. So, if you have the opportunity to go to a remote place, than go for it. You can either go to very touristic places or spend some quiet time at inhabited spots. It’s up to you. I know what I would choose…
Want to know more about the El Nido tours? Read here