Puerto Princesa Underground River: My First of the New 7 Wonders of Nature

My last day in Palawan started way early. I had to wake up a quarter before 5 since our tour guide will pick us up around 5 in the morning to go to the underground river.  Good thing J and I decide to take our baths the night before so we didn't have to wake up early. The hotel agreed to pack our breakfast for us since we didn't have time to eat breakfast. We had to check out that morning since after the tour, we're going straight to the airport.

So our guide pick us up at around 5 in the morning and hit the road to the Underground river. The drive lasted almost 2 hours, consisting of long zigzag roads going up the mountain. I thought we're going to an underground river, why are we heading up the mountain? About half an hour from the river, we stopped at a souvenir shop and carinderia. We decided to eat our breakfast there.

After almost half an hour drive again, we have arrived at the port where we'll ride the boat going to the underground river. I think the office is still close, as it was not yet 8am when we arrived there. We waited for awhile before we were boarded to our boat. It was only about 15 minute boat ride to reach the Underground river. The scenery going there was beautiful with view of the mountain and some rock formations.
Sabang Bay

Finally, we arrived at the underground river. We transfer to a small boat carrying the 6 of us, plus 4 of the guys that we're in tour with, plus our tour guide who paddles the boat. The ones sitting in front will be the designated navigator, which is actually the one who will carry the lamp. Continue reading here.

Welcome to the Puerto Princesa Underground River

Mouth of the Puerto Princesa Underground Cave

Puerto Princesa, Palawan: The Honda Bay Tour

Second day of my Palawan tour is the Island Hopping Tour. We woke up early to eat breakfast at the hotel, it's actually a complimentary breakfast. Breakfast consists of either American or Filipino breakfast served ala carte. While there's also other choices in the buffet such as some bread and omelets.  Since I'm not really a breakfast person, I just ate some scrambled eggs and pandesal, plus the fruits served with the Filipino breakfast.

Legend Palawan Breakfast

After breakfast, our tour guide for the day picked us up. Our first stop was the gear shop, where we had to rent some snorkeling gears, and aqua shoes as it was not included in the package. Rent of the Snorkeling mask is Php 150, plus the aqua shoes is another Php 150.
The first island we visited is the Pandan Island. The beach was really beautiful, with fine white sand and clear water. The water is really good to swim into, not too hot nor too cold.  After swimming for a while, we decided to try out snorkeling.  So we got our life jackets and snorkeling gears and headed out to the area where most people seems to be snorkeling. Continue reading here.

Pandan Island

Pandan Island Beach

Puerto Princesa, Palawan: The Shortest City Tour Ever

My trip to Palawan was actually planned by one of my friends in college. S was able to buy a deal in Metrodeal for only Php 6000 per person, if I remember correctly. Vouchers are really getting popular here in the Philippines, which I'm not really sure is a good thing, since it's so tempting to buy every deal they offer on impulse, which in the end makes you spend more.  Anyway, our deal included airfare, hotel accommodations and tours which included lunch, not bad.  The drawback is the Underground River tour was not included, so we had to pay additional Php 1500 for the tour.

It was a very good timing to go to Puerto Princesa, since it was just recently declared as one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature. I really wanted to go, before it gets more expensive and more people visiting.

We left Manila on Thursday morning. Our flight is scheduled to depart at 7:30 am, but of course it got delayed again. We rode the Airphil Express, which is one the budget airlines here in the Philippines, even cheaper than Cebu Pacific. The plane is ok,  not too small like what we are expecting. Like the Cebu Pacific, the airfare doesn't include food so you have to buy food from their carts if you go hungry. Good thing, we bought donuts while we are waiting to be boarded.

We arrived at Puerto Princesa at about half past nine in the morning. It was cloudy when we got there, and my friends told me there's actually an Intertropical Convergence Zone so there's a pretty good chance that it will rain. We were fetched by our travel agent and we rode their van to drop us off to our hotel. Our hotel is the Legend Palawan, how posh. Hahaha. Well the truth is, we are actually just staying at their budget hotel called Pads, which is also in the hotel building. The rooms are smaller, and simpler I guess, but we are free to use the hotel amenities and includes daily breakfast, so that's cool. We are not particular about our accommodations anyway, since we just use it for sleeping. As long as there's a bed, an air conditioner and a TV, we're ok. Continue reading here.
The Legend Palawan