Eight reasons why you absolutely must go to the Philippine island of Palawan!

Blue water, swaying palm trees and white beaches. In the morning you make a boat trip along a lagoon where you swim with turtles and kayak above coral, in the afternoon fresh fish is served on a desert island and in the evening you take a massage on the beach. Life is not that bad! That’s how an average day looked like when we travelled for two weeks through Palawan, a beautiful Filipino island! In this blog, you will find eight reasons why you should ab-so-lutely go to Palawan!


1. The versatile nature!

Waterfalls, limestone rocks, jungle: Palawan has everything! After we relaxed on the beautiful beaches in the area of Port Barton, we drove to the north, towards El Nido. Here you will find colossal limestone rocks. The various bays are surrounded by this granite overgrown with green plants. You can also find beautiful waterfalls here. Finally, Coron’s environment is different again. Here you will find dozens of tiny islands which look like turtles on the water. More inland it sometimes reminded us of the hills of Tuscany, green and vast.

The waterfall we visited was the Nagkalit-Kalit Falls, about an hour’s drive from El Nido. This place is nice to combine with a visit to Napcan Beach, which is a little further away.

2. A tropical paradise

Palawan is a tropical paradise on earth! You eat fresh mango in the sun under a palm tree. And you drink milk from a coconut and there is an abundance of flowers. However, tropical also sometimes means a tropical rain shower. These are heavy but quickly pass by. I remember a rain shower which overtook us while we were scootering with our friends Jorinde and Tim. Quickly we stopped at a little bus stop to shelter while the rain fell from the sky. Ten minutes later everything was cleared up again and the sun was shining as if there had never been a drop of rain!

3. Palawan has a very nice and warm population

I can not remember a single Filipino that did not look happy. They were always willing to help us, to show the way and to tell about their history! Because the Philippines are not as touristy as some other places in Asia, you are not being trapped or attacked by people who want to sell something. People sometimes approached us on the beach for a boat trip, but when we indicated that we were not interested, the cheerful salesmen were not pissed at all, but simply smiled with an “okay lady, maybe next time”! Absolutely great!

4. Diving and snorkelling are the best here!

It is with a reason that Ries got certified to dive here: The water is nice and warm and clear, you could stay here all day long! There is beautiful coral, you see seahorses, thousands of coloured fish and with a bit of luck a turtle! During our boat trip with Buhay Isla, we saw, among other things, tableaux of coral, Nemo fish (anemone fish) and even a sunken ship. The latter, you can find a lot in the vicinity of Coron, mostly Japanese ships from WW2.

Ries got his diving license in Port Barton at Aquaholics Dive Centre. He paid € 320 for this. In El Nido and Coron, you can also get your PADI or SSI from various organizations.

5. There are many cool Island hopping tours

Around Palawan, there are dozens of tiny uninhabited islands. We visited some of them during a number of island hopping tours that we did from Port Barton, El Nido and Coron. During such a boat trip, you sail from island to island. Sometimes you stop at a lagoon for swimming, you sail along islands full of caves or with clear lakes, or you stop at an island that is simply so beautiful that it almost feels fake. At the latter, it’s time for lunch. In no time, there is a mouthwatering lunch served on the beach. It is a mystery where this is prepared and if you ask, the Filipino cook proudly points to the tiny kitchen on the boat you just came from. There you sit, on the beach in the shade of a palm tree with freshly caught fish, juicy fruit and local vegetables. Oh and wauw, than I’m not even talking about the multi-day island hopping tour that we’ve done with Buhay Isla. Think this above, but without other tourists, with a super nice group and just so much delicious food!

In Port Barton I did a boat trip together with friends. Whichever it was, I do not know anymore. The price was € 10 pp.
In El Nido we did boat tour A. Boottour D also seems to be very nice. We paid € 11 pp for this.
In Coron we did a tour with Calamianes Expeditions, along Kayangan Lake and Twin Lagoon. Price: € 15 pp.
Finally, we did a three-day boat trip from El Nido to Coron with Buhay Isla. Price € 285 pp.

6. The Philippines are relatively cheap!

Okay, the Philippines are certainly not the cheapest country in Asia, but nonetheless it is not expensive for Western standards. We paid an average of € 28.5 per night (for a two-person room). Here we slept in some places luxury, for example in Coron in the  Sunz & Coron resort with a swimming pool (for € 35 for a double room). In Port Barton we slept pretty basic, in the Deep Moon Resorts, (only € 11 per night) but in cute cabins on the beach!

Eating is also not expensive. For about € 5 pp you have an excellent evening meal and for € 3 you can have an extensive breakfast. You can rent a scooter for about € 8 per day and a boat trip is only € 10- € 15 per person.

All in all, the Philippines are certainly not an expensive destination!

7. You will find here the cleanest and clearest lake in the world: Kayangan Lake

In the Coron area you will find several islands with special lakes. There is a lake, the Barracuda Lake, which has a changing water temperature due to its mix of salt and fresh water. The top layer is a lot colder than a few meters deeper. And at 14 meters there even seems to be a difference of 10 degrees: you swim between layers of water of 28 degrees and 38 degrees. This temperature difference is so big that it is even visible to the eye. Diving seems to be spectacular here.

A perhaps even more beautiful lake is the clear blue Kayangan Lake. This lake is seen as the cleanest and clearest lake in the world. You can see meters deep from the edge. You come here, by first climbing a rock for about 10 minutes via a winding staircase, after which, at the top, you will see the Kayangan Lake dozens of meters below. The blue water stands out against the gray rocks with green vegetation. This lake also consists of both fresh and salt water, which ensures that there is a lot of special life under water. From dozens of tiny fish to decent big fish. You can also find large rock formations under water.

8. You already fly to the Philippines for just 400 euros (from Europe)!

Yes, you read that well! I see almost every week offers coming by, where you can fly for € 400 or even less, from Europe to Manila. Manila itself is not really a place where you want to stay for a long time, but from there you fly in less than an hour to Puerto Princessa or Coron Airport in Palawan. For this price, you certainly do not have to stay at home! For more information about how we book cheap flights, have a look at the blog I wrote about this: My secret for super cheap airline tickets.


Okay, ready to book your trip to Palawan? Here you will find our itinerary for two weeks of Palawan.

I also wrote a travel guide full of tips for fine hotels, nice restaurants and cool activities! You can find that travel guide here!


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eight reasons why you most definitely should go to the island Palawan


Here you will find all my blogs on The Philippines

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