Top Tourist Spots to Visit in Palawan
The Philippines without Palawan would be like a lost child without its mother. So immense is the list of the best tourist spots in Palawan, a true island paradise, that few would even imagine giving this dream destination a skip, and usually you’ll find yourself short on time to spend there.
So, whether you are setting your sights for the first time there or a repeat visitor, these stunning spots in Palawan will open your heart to this captivating island.
Top Tourist Spots to Visit in Palawan
If Palawan enjoys the reputation it has today, then it is mainly due to the presence of the subterranean river National Park, situated near Puerto Princesa. Accessible only by boat from Sabang, this underground wonder of nature, brings visitors up close to a variety of stalactites and stalagmites in weird formations, crafted specifically by Mother Earth.
Tubbataha Reefs National Park
Due to its strategic location, bang at the middle of the Coral Triangle, the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Tubbataha has rightfully earned its reputation as the leading biodiverse marine hotspot of the world. Home to a variety of sharks, dolphins, nearly 600 species of fish, divers flock to the waters of Tubbataha to get close to this amazing underwater animal life.
Bacuit Bay Islands
The stunning beaches and crystal-clear waters of El Nido and Coron are considered to be the jewel in the crown of this region of North Palawan. The principal attraction here are the Bacuit Bay isles, with Shimizu, Helicopter and Entalula garnering the greatest number of visitors. There are plenty of other islands to choose from, so if you are seeking a place to relax away from the crowds, you can also opt for a private tour of Palawan’s islands which will mean you could go to the more remote and secluded locations as well.
There are many lakes in Asia and even in the Philippines, but what sets Kayangan apart from the others are the clear and clean waters not found anywhere else. One can actually see several feet below the water’s surface here. A top tourist hot spot of Coron, the lake areas tend to get rather crowded, especially during the warm weather season. Diving enthusiasts are rewarded with spectacular below the surface views of rock formations, which are just waiting to be explored in every nook and cranny.
Situated adjacent to the tourist hub of Coron, this former colony for lepers, gives tourists a painful insight of the life of these inflicted souls, from way back in the 1990’s. Today Culion Island is totally leper free, but the dreaded past of those who were shunned by their families forever, haunts the residents even to this day. The remnants of the leper colony can be seen around the town, and the historical facts viewed in the Culion Museum and Archives.
Located in El Nido, the Small Lagoon may not be as little as the name suggests, but has enough of attractions to keep you busy all day long. The best way to navigate between the narrow openings lying among the limestone rock formations is by way of a kayak. Once inside the calm waters of the lagoon, visitors get the feeling of being transferred to a Jurassic Park type world, surrounded by towering cliff sides overlooking the azure colored lake in an atmosphere of tranquility and calmness.
Almost at the halfway mark between El Nido and Puerto Princesa, lies the beautiful fishing village of Port Barton. This Palawan destination has still not found its way on the radar of most tourists, but can turn into a top notch draw in the months to come. The beaches are alluring and devoid of people, perhaps it’s biggest advantage. The surrounding islands are perfect for outdoor activities, with Exotic island and German island leading the way.
Balabac is one of the hidden places in the Philippines that’s worth a visit when visiting Palawan. To get to Balabac from Puerto Princesa, you will need to make a transit stop in Rio Tuba, Bataraza where you catch boats to the islands of Balabac.
Calauit Safari Park
Calauit Island, just north of Coron, is home to this wonderful Safari Park, established solely to showcase some of the most endangered species of animals from around the world. Dedicated to the nation in the 1970’s by the then President Marcos, all the animals brought in from Africa as well as local endemic species have adapted well to their new home. Visitors get a unique opportunity to view some of the popular animals which thrive in a habitat similar to their homeland.
Palawan, from the point of view of attractions, is one of the best islands of the Philippines. No doubt, mass tourism is taking its toll, but these top destinations still hold a lot of appeal, primarily because of the excellent infrastructure. Even though these spots are located at different regions, it is entirely possible to cover them in one trip itself, say lasting about a week. Those who have ample time on their hands, should seriously consider staying for at least two weeks, to make the most of your Palawan holiday.
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