a VirtualTourist member
Hi [VT member 93f85],
Me and my fried will be traveling to PP this June. This will be our first time to travel so I would like to seek your advice for the following:
1. Which is better, DIY or avail a package tour? If DIY, what is the best advice for us? If a package tour, could you suggest where could I find the best package (as much as possible we want to visit all the beautiful places in PP) but comes with a reasonable price?
2. The best hotel to stay? I would prefer the one which is accessible to all and comes with great amenities.
3. How much will be the estimated cost of our trip if we will be planning to go to Honda Bay, Underground River and etc.
Thanks [VT member 93f85] lot
Well, if you want to stay in the best hotel then i should not worry about travel expenses--it is cheap.
there are a few good hotels in Puerto Princesa of which Centro Hotel has good reviews, it just opened 6 months ago, but it is a little way from the centre of town where there are good restaurants etc.(2.5kms). In town check out Hibiscus Gardens or there is the Flores Hotel.
I would travel without an organised tour as transport is quite reasonable. Shuttle van to Sabang (underground river) is 350 on the minibus, park entrance 250 each, boat to park for 6 people 700 all in.Most people don't bother to walk thru the park via Monkey trail or Jungle trail, this is a beautiful hike through the jungle 9!hr 30 min), advise you to do this. Sabang is a wonderful place to spend 3 or 4 nights and there are 2 up market places to stay Daluyon and Sheradon, both around 5-8000 pesos. There are also places around 1000 or even cheaper.
Honda Bay you can get local transport to Santa Lourdes Pier, that's 12km from town, where there is a boat station with details of pruces for boats to different islands or island hopping, less than 1500. You could always stay at Dos Palmos resort on one of the islands.
From sabang share a boat up yo Port Barton, a coconut lined bay, I would advise you to spend a few days at Coconut Garden Resort on Cacnipa island owned by a Swiss chef, he can pick you up in his boat (1hr) at Port Barton. from Port Barton you can charter or share a boat to El Nido, good for island hopping, some expensive resorts on the islands, but in El Nido itself i recommend Makulay Resort, on a hill, beautiful view. From el Nido get a boat to coron and spend some time there, haven't been to Coron for a few years so can't make to many comments but there is a Brit who has a beautiful resort on Sangat Island (spelling???)
At the moment we have friends here from england and we will be visiting Sabang and Honda bay so i will update you later this week with further information.
2 No suggestion as there are plenty
3 Just allow 4000/day/person for overall expenses
I too suggest the trek to the underground river via the monkey/jungle trail. It’s tiring but that adds to the thrill. You may opt to return back to Sabang by boat. Stay a night or two in Sabang, there’s more to the underground river like caves, mangrove, waterfalls, zipline and of course beach! I love Sabang beach, one of my favorite beaches in the Philippines and those deserted little coves up north. Night swimming on Sabang beach is suggested esp when full moon because of the gentle slope and wide pure-sand beach, scary but one of the best moments of my life. Skip the tours, agencies and you will surely have an adventure of a lifetime.
I can get by with my 1,500 a day or less depending on your itinerary of the day provided I stay in a guesthouse. Visit Nagtabon beach as well while in PP. Not white sand but definitely one of the loveliest in the country.
A few comments from my research over the last few years.
1. June is low season.
2. read accom reviews on this site, tripadvisor.com and others. Hotels/guesthouses that attract my attention I then google them to see if they have their own website or comments from other sites. Being low season, prebooking is optional.
3. Underground River - I would book with a share tour if staying in PP. If staying at Sabang I would seek info from locals (eg accom.).
4. Banca boats: Sabang - Port Barton, Port Barton - El Nido. My personal notes are the result of reading travel blogs and googling which anyone can do. Banca boats charge a price (negotiable) whether there is 1 person or 5. If you can find others to share the cost that would be in your favour but being low season that could be a problem. I have read (more than once) that the boat trip between Port Barton and El Nido is very scenic.
5. As a general comment I would recommend booking on share tours to visit Honda Bay, Underground River etc, only for the convenience factor. If you have unlimited time then DIY away. Also, a place like Honda Bay may be beautiful to one person but not by another (I have read blogs by people who weren't enthused). Best to google and look at photos before making up your mind.
1. DIY - for city tour. You can rent a tricycle for Php 900 or less. If you will avail a package tour, it will cost you 600-800 per person. You may contact the Jake through 09192917138 for tricycle rent.
Package tour - for Underground river and Honda bay. The amount is standard to all and if you will add everything, it is just the same with DIY. You may contact Joseph of Wild Rock Travel & Tours as he gives discounts to early bookings. You may reach him through [email] (048) 4341290 or 09299609605.
2. I recommend Pension houses instead of Hotels as you might not be able to use all their aminites there. You may check Remari Pension - http://www.remaripension.com/index.html or Raq Pension - palawanislandtours.webs.com/....
3. Estimated cost per person is Php 2500 - 3500. Depends on the tour you are getting.
If you are an adventurous type of person, you might want to try Ugong Rock for cave spelunking. The road going to Undergound River is also going to Ugong rock.
Since you are going to PP this June, expect heavy rains in the afternoon. So, it would better to go to Underground river in the morning. You can do the monkey trail as well. In the afternoon, they do not let people walk there as the place is very slippery due to rains.