Sunday, October 9, 2011

finding the best island beaches

years on-track and off-shore in search of the best island beaches in the country, i must say that setting the criteria alone is already a challenge. whether you give more credits to the sand quality or the availability of a good resort can be subjective.
but when i was on the shores of the islands in Bacuit Bay i would say that it was easy to declare that El Nido holds the best island beaches in the country. accessible but exotic. 
on our third stop of El Nido Tour Package A, we were to have our lunch at the island of Shimizu. meal was prepared onboard while we were swimming around the lagoons on our previous  stopover. freshly cooked fish, squid and some meat with bananas and watermelon on the side.
amidst the growing number of tourists visiting these islands, it is unbelievably clean. trees and shrubs around the area are dense green. the waters clean. indeed a top spot for a great escape from the urban lifestyle.
what impressed me even more was the fact that the boat man did not even brief us on keeping our garbage. it seems that it was each one's initiative of the desire of keeping the island paradise as it is, helps preserve the place.

few minutes after lunch, it started to drizzle and the boat man started packing and gathering all that was left over back to the boat. we boarded as we were off to the next stop which is Pangulasian island.  
even from afar, this island was stunning. thatched huts, beach chairs under towering golden coconut palms, kayaks and a well secured area. majority of the beach shore is private as it is part of the El Nido Resorts Group. a portion of the beach is open to the public and highly recommend snorkeling here.
Bacuit Archipelago in El Nido holds 45 islands with 3 islands occupied by the world class El Nido Resorts. the rest, offers exotic and hidden beautiful beaches. El Nido for now holds my highest rate for best island beaches.

El Nido Tour A:
Shimizu Island and Pangulasian island is part of El Nido standard Island Hopping package tour A which also includes a visit to Small Lagoon Miniloc island, Big Lagoon island, Hidden Beach and Seven Commandos Beach.
Tour A package cost: P700/head. 

how to get there:
>>>from Manila:
option 1: Domestic airlines fly daily from Manila to Puerto Princesa (1-hour flight)
option 2: Direct flight from Manila to El Nido via Seair (as of this post, direct flights are not available).
>>>from Puerto Princesa to El Nido:
option 1: Take a van trip from Fort Wally Van Organization to El Nido (6-hour road trip).
option 2: Take the regular bus trip from the Puerto Princesa Central bus terminal (7-8hours road trip)
>>>from El Nido van terminal:
option 1: take a tricycle for a short ride to your hotel or to the main beach area if you did not reserve for a hotel.
option 2: if you are willing to walk, the main town area is just a walk away. but i don't recommend this if you have big backpacks and if you have a limited time in El Nido. (15mins walk)
>>>for Tour A:
several travel agency along the main streets of El Nido offers standardized tour packages which includes island hopping and lunch.

island: Shimizu island and Pangulasian island
province: Palawan
gateway: El Nido Coast

escape factor: 
accessibility: 5.0
beach: 5.0
boat trip: 5.0
seascape: 5.0
topography: 5.0

isolation: 5.0
overall escape factor: 5.0

GPS location:

11^ 10" 46' N
119^ 23" 16' E


tina said...

Yey! first to comment! :) What's my prize? :)

Super inggit with your El Nido Series, kahit tipid mode ako, I must go here next year! :)

Ed said...

haha. may prize talaga tina? hehe

tagal ko nang gusto pumunta ng Palawan. nakabook na kami ng trip next year. hopefully matutuloy na. :D

thepinaysolobackpacker said...

hays. You made me miss El Nido. Definitely one of my favorite island in the Philippines and yeah, one of the best beaches. so kelan na ba tau balik dun? hehe

thepinaysolobackpacker said...

hays. You made me miss El Nido. Definitely one of my favorite island in the Philippines and yeah, one of the best beaches. so kelan na ba tau balik dun? hehe

Reena said...

ang ganda!

escape said...

>hi Tina, prize surprise! hahaha... i really hope that you will place it on top of your list next year. no regrets youll love it.

i also plan to return to el nido next year.

>Ed, sana nga matuloy na next year. palawan will not disappoint you. si Tina lang ang may prize sa mga unang nagcocomment.

>Ga-el, next year! plot na yan.

>Reena, wish you can go there too.

lakwatsera de primera said...

El Nido is the place I wouldn't mind being stuck for the rest of my life :)

Chyng said...

wow, 7-8 hours na bus ride. grabe. but im still interestd! sama ko jan sa el nido next year! alam ko bakit ka babalik.. hehe future settlement in this paradise. ^_^

Heart of Rachel said...

It's beautiful. I would love to go there someday. It would be nice to go to a beach that remains uncorrupted by countless hotels and commercial establishments.

Traveling Hawk said...

you have always so nice places to present, dong ho! I like this beach a lot.

blissfulguro said...

700 pesos?! pwede na noh? eh ilan naman kaya minimum? pano pag solo? wow...may balak ako? hehe

Batang Lakwatsero said...

waaah.. hndi pa ako nakakalakwatsa sa Palawan.. hopefully next year mapuntahan ko ito! sabit ako kung pupunta kayo.. :P

Asiong32 said...

El of my dream destination!

Photo Cache said...

my only criteria in "classifying" places i've been is how much the place affected me emotionally.

Pinoy Adventurista said...

wow! i haven't been to El Nido... Sana soon mapuntahan ko din yan... good to know that they have maintained the area clean despite the influx of tourists... sana lahat ng tourist katulad nyo, di na kailangan sabihan but knows how to dispose his grabage properly...

at perfect 5 sa escape factor mo ah... this must be the best beach in the country... :) i Must go here! :)

SandyCarlson said...

Wow! Those beaches are gorgeous. The rock formations take my breath away, as does the color of the water.

tndcallphilippines said...

oh wow. what a beautiful place. The Philippines is incredibly beautiful.

Pietro Brosio said...

Absolutely wonderful beaches, great landscape there.

Axl Powerhouse Network said...

master ang ganda ng mga shaped ng mga cave astig... i want to go there too :D

Pinoy Travel Freak said...

wow, what a coincidence. I just posted din about our island hopping tour A. :-)

agreed, El Nido has the best beaches talaga. currently on top of my list.

pusangkalye said...

depende talaga sa criteria yung beast beach na yan at depende sa tao.if you have all the time in the world syempre mas maganda ang mga exotic beaches.pero weakness ko talaga tong mga karst na to.karst diba? it adds GRANDNESS to the beach eh kaya tong El Nido beach na to.masasabi ko lang. award!!!hahaha

gillboard said...

looks really beautiful.

nakakainggit ako na napupuntahan mo mga ganyang lugar.

Kura said...

hindi ko talaga to palalagpasin next year. Mura na rin nga pala ang package. Matinding leave lang sa tagal ng biyahe. Excited na ko! Buti na lang talaga it's time everyone flies ika nga ni Cebu Pac hahah! Nagpromote? Mga dream destinations lang dati, abot kamay na.

Salamat sa details dom!

- Yvonaut -
Das sind Raphael und Yvonne

Amazingly beautiful Islands!
Great shots!
I will definitely visit this blog again in the future!
Greetings from Switzerland
Yvonne and Raphael

escape said...

>Lakwastera de Primera, same here.

>Chyng, tama balik next year. hahaha... alam ang rason kung bakit babalik.

>Rachel, it's impressive how they kept most of the islands out of development. id be glad to see your photos there soon.

>Traveling Hawk, youll love it even more when you'll go there.

>Blissfulguru, yes P700 is worth it. not sure of the minimum number because they would usually include you to a group if you're planning to take the tour alone. or if you have the budget you can actually pay the entire boat.

>BatangLakwatsero, sure. sabihan ka namin.

>Asiong, it was also for me. go when you get the chance.

>Photocache, wow! on some trips it does work for me too.

>Mervs, it sure deserves a perfect score. it's a top spot but coron can come close. aabangan mo ang pagpunta mo sa el nido.

>Axl, i hope that you will be able to go there too.

>Pinoy Travel Freak, nice. tatlo tayo nagpopost ngayon about el nido.

thanks for dropping by eskapo.

>Pusangkalye, yes karst nga. lalong gumaganda yung beach dahil diyan. maganda talaga dun kaya sana makapunta din kayo.

>Gillboard, makakapunta ka din. dami na ring seat sale kung inaalala mo yung budget.

>Malditang "Kura"cha, bawal ang unpaid promotion dito. lol. next year na pala plano mo. hindi mo pagsisihan ang pagpunta mo dun.

docgelo said...

PhP 700 for a tour of paradise?
wow! you're one blessed man to have experienced all this, dom!

i like 2nd and 3rd photo!
ang sarap kumain ng nakakamay sa pananghalian nyo! :D sulit na sulit!

i will make this post a reference whenever time comes we can explore el nido too...thank you for sharing!

SunnyToast said...

hay...ka miss tuloy maligo sa dagat. I agree with you El Nido holds the best island beaches in the country. accessible but exotic:)kahit di pa ako nakaka punta dito sa mga post stories at pictures ng blog traveler like really shows!

Kaya big thanks to blog traveler kahit pano feeling ko nakapunta na ako:)

Mitch said...

hay just like Coron..Kailan naman kaya ako makakapagpa book sa El nido. Sarap talaga kumain ng nka kamay sa tabi ng dagat!hehe. Good thing, the island maintained its cleanliness.


Namimiss ko ng magbeach. Ang gaganda ng rock formation sa el nido. Wow! The best ang mga kuha as usual, Idol! :)

Christian | Lakad Pilipinas said...

hay it seems everyone had already visited el nido except me! =P

Pinay Travel Junkie said...

I think people felt/feel/will feel the need to keep the place clean kapag ganito kaganda. Hihi. It's awesome that there's no need to tell them that.

ardee sean said...

beautiful. mahihiya ka magkalat. sana maalagaan. dinatnan mo maayos eh dapat lang maayos din siyang pagalis.. :P

flipnomad said...

one of my fave places :-) hope ma maintain yung ganda ng el nido :-)

Bengbeng said...

i too wouldnt mind being stuck here for at least a short holiday. probably b beyond my budget to stay longer haha

The Nomadic Pinoy said...

If your boatman did not even advice you about not littering - that's something local officials there has to also emphasize among independent boat operators. Oftentimes, visitors need constant reminders of the "leave no trace" dictum.

Raft3r said...

ang sarap ng food
yun agad napansin ko

pimalai said...

I've heard that El Nido was great. But I never expected it to look that good. I give the place two thumbs up and 10 out of 10 on all fronts.

broome accommodation said...

Me and my family are in the middle of planning a trip to the Philippines. We originally were looking at Boracay. After seeing this post, I literally turned around and said, "Forget Boracay, this is where we're going". I am so looking forward to the trip.


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