El Nido is located at the north of Palawan in Philippines. It’s the starting point to discover Bacuit archipelago – said to be one of the most beautiful bays in the world.
By: Pauline from @hibiscusandnomada
How to get to El Nido
From Manila, you can take a direct flight with Air Swift for 4800php (95$), one-way. The journey takes only 1h.
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What to do in El Nido
Island hopping is the most famous activity in El Nido. As for Coron, every agency offers the same package with prices around 1200php (24$) with lunch included. During island hopping, you will discover the most beautiful beaches and islands of Bacuit archipelago.
You will get opportunities to explore the underwater world doing snorkeling in one of the best spot in the world.
Tour A – Small Lagoon, Big Lagoon, Secret Lagoon, Shimizu Island, 7 Commando Beach
Tour B – Snake Island, Pinagbuyutan Island, Entalula Beach, Cudugnon Cave
Tour C – Helicopter Island, Matinloc Shrine, Secret Beach, Star Beach, Hidden Beach, Talisay Island
Tour D – Ipil Beach, Cadlao Lagoon, Paradise Beach, Pasandigan Beach, Natnat Beach, Bukal Beach
El Nido is very touristy so don’t expect to be alone on the beach. Especially on Tour A and Tour C which are the most popular. Anyway, don’t miss them! Must-see ♡: Small Lagoon, Big Lagoon, Secret Beach, Talisay Island, and Star Beach.
If you want to take a break between two island hopping tours, you can rent a motorbike for 250php (5$) to explore the surroundings.
Driving in the direction of Nacpan Beach will make you discovering the countryside of the region with its beautiful green rice fields, buffalos, children running everywhere and small villages. Nacpan is an endless white-sand beach with coconut trees all around and some waves to play in. From there, you can walk to its twin sister, Calitang Beach.
Tips Bring aqua shoes to avoid sea urchins and jelly fish! And withdraw some cash before arriving on the island since there are only few ATMs.
How much time do you need in El Nido
4 days are enough to explore El Nido and the Bacuit archipelago. But if you have both time and budget then you can stay longer to chill. When is the best time to go? The best time to visit El Nido is during the dry season which is from December to May. But note that April and May can be very hot.
Where to stay in El Nido
If you want to stay close to the center, then I definitely recommend you Hakuna Matata Hostel. It has dorms with 6 beds for 300php (6$) and twin private rooms for 800php (16$). The place is small and very basic but it might be the cheapest option in town.
If you want to stay in a more peaceful place, then reach Corong Corong, which is a small fishermen village only 2km from El Nido. There you can find little bamboo hut for 250php (5$) facing the beach.
Where to eat
El Nido has more occidental type of restaurants than local food and usually they are expensive. So if you are on a budget, you can go to Silog Republic, they have noodles, chicken, and popular silog which known to be the easiest meal to prepare – fried rice, egg, and chicken, pork or fish – Filipinos eat it for breakfast.
Why should El Nido be on my bucket list?
El Nido might be one of the best destinations in the world! With its limestone cliffs, white sand beaches and wonderful coral reefs, the Bacuit archipelago will leave you speechless and you will remember it all your life.
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