TRAVELBOOK.PH'S GUIDE TO EL NIDO

TravelBook.ph's Guide to El Nido


Learn how to get to El Nido and what to do when you get there with this simple guide.

By Mathew S. Chan
February 13, 2015


 

The island of El Nido in Palawan is a tropical paradise, perfect for those looking for an idyllic environment that will get them away from the busy vibe of the city. If you’re not sure how to get there and what there is to do in El Nido, here is a short guide to help you out.

HOW TO GET TO EL NIDO

There are 3 ways of getting to El Nido:

BY AIR

  • This is probably the easiest and most convenient way to get to El Nido, but it is also the priciest.
  • There aren’t any commercial flights that fly directly to El Nido except for Island Transvoyager Inc. (ITI)
  • ITI offers at least 3 flights to El Nido daily at PHP 6,750 (one way) with a 10kg weight limit on baggage including hand luggage. 
  • You can send reservations to their email at flights@elnidoboutiqueandartcafe.com.

BY LAND

  • This method still requires traveling by air. You’ll have to take a flight from Manila to Puerto Princesa, which typically costs around PHP 4,000 for a one-way ticket.
  • Once you are in Puerto Princesa, you can take a van transfer that will take you to El Nido such as Lexus Shuttle (you can book transfers via TravelBook.ph here). 
  • It takes about 5 to 6 hours to get to El Nido from Puerto Princesa with at least 2 stop overs (one for food and one for bathroom).
  • The van transfers can range from dropping you off at the marketplace (from which you can take a tricycle to your respective hotel) to taking you directly to your hotel.

BY SEA

  • This is the longest way to get to El Nido from Manila.
  • You can take a boat via 2GO Travel to get to Coron from Manila, which costs around PHP 1,000 one way. This takes about 12 hours. From Coron, you will then take a smaller local boat to El Nido, which takes 8 hours.
  • This type of travel is ideal for you if you are fond of cruises and are on a tight budget.

 

WHAT TO DO
  • El Nido has lovely beaches, good for just hanging out and chilling under the sun. You can also go snorkeling, a popular tourist sport, or explore nearby cliffs.
  • Island hopping is the top activity in El Nido. There are four standard package tours with different places to go and things to do, the popular options being Tours A and C. Tour A takes you around Miniloc Island’s lagoons and beaches, while Tour C includes places like Matinloc Shrine and Secret Beach. You can get a combination of all the tours highlighting the best sites per set. 
  • Visit the palengke if you love fresh seafood.
  • For something different, rent a motorbike (PHP 400 – 500 per day; you are in charge of putting gas) and drive around El Nido.


BASIC TIPS
  • El Nido experiences daily rotating brownouts (please check the schedule with your hotel depending on when you plan on going). This is usually not a problem because it happens around morning to early afternoon when you’ll most likely be out of the hotel.
  • Bring as much cash as you think you will need because only a rural bank is available in El Nido. There are no ATMs at the moment, so if you are coming from Puerto Princesa, withdraw your cash there. Some establishments do accept credit cards, but it’s safer to come with cash.
  • The nearest major hospitals are in Taytay and Puerto Princesa.