Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippines: Travel Guide

After our tiring yet very fun tour in El Nido, we traveled back to Puerto Princesa for another adventure. Through a van, we left El Nido at 6:00 PM and arrive in PP at 11:00 PM. With 6 hours of sleep, we’re able to replenish our energy for another trip.

When to Go

The best time to go to Puerto Princesa is from December to March, the weather is cool and dry. April to May is good too if you don’t mind the hot summer. It’s not advisable to visit during June to November which is the rainy season because tours (such as Underground River and island hopping) can be cancelled when the sea gets rough.

In our case, we went June which is the end of summer and beginning of rainy season, plus the classes just started so the place is not that crowded.

How to Get There

Puerto Princesa is a major tourist destination in the Philippines. Thus, all major airlines have daily direct flights from Manila with PAL, Air Philippines, Cebu Pacific, Zestair and Tiger Airways. The airport is also within the city proper so most hotels and attractions are just a tricycle-ride away.

How Long to Stay

Three (3) days is enough to visit most of the tourist spot in Puerto Princesa, please see below my sample itinerary. But if you have more time, I highly suggest that you visit El Nido too.

What to Bring

If you’ll do the island hopping tour (e.g. Honday Bay tour), then underwater camera is highly recommended. You’ll definitely get wet in the island tour so do NOT bring your phone without a plastic cover, or you can just left it with your things in the boat. Bringing dry bag is also advisable.
On island hopping: food (lunch), life vest, and guide are included in the tours; while aqua shoes, mask & snorkel are available for rent. For those who don’t want to get tanned skin, you may need to bring your own sunscreen or rush guard.

We thought mask & snorkel rental is included in our tour, but in our surprise, it’s not. So we had to rent it, luckily we brought enough cash.
Don’t forget to bring or rent aqua shoes to protect your feet from sea urchins.

Where to Stay

Due to our short time to plan and book in advance, we decided to let Northern Hope Tour to book for us. They recommended us to stay in Green Villa Pension. The place is bit far in the town center, so you’ll need to ride a tricycle for P80. If you have enough budgets, then opt to stay in the city proper. This will expose you to the many restaurants, bars, and shops that the city can offer.

Green Villa Pension
Green Villa Pension

Getting Around

In case you want to visit places other than those included in the tour such as restaurants, bar or shops. You can find tricycle almost anywhere; you can hire and ask to take you on your destination. Multi-cab are also available in main roads and cheaper than tricycle. Just make sure to ask guidance on the hotel staff first on how to leave and come back by commuting.

Where to Go / What to Do

Below is the list of the activities we did and places we have visited in Puerto Princesa.

 

Where and What to Eat

Back in El Nido, I was already looking for the Crocodile Sisig but unfortunately it wasn’t unavailable. Luckily, it is we we’re able to taste it in the Kinabuch’s Grill and Bar. However, the infamous Tamilok was already finished when we ate at Kinabuch’s :(.

Credits to my friend Nestor for letting me use his picture of Tamilok.

Due to the limited time we have for this travel (because we also visited El Nido), we we’re only able to eat in Kinabuch’s Grill and Bar. Base on my research, Ka Lui is also one of the well known restaurant in Puerto Princesa.

Sample Itinerary and Budget

Below is a sample itinerary for 2 persons base on our trip in Puerto Princesa.

Sample Itinerary for 2 Persons
Time Description Transpo Amount
Day 1: Arrival
8:00 AM ETD: Manila (to Puerto Princesa) Plane
10:00 AM ETA: Puerto Princesa
to Hotel Tricycle
10:30 AM Check-in @ Green Villa Pension (3 nights) 3,000
Lunch at hotel
12:00 PM Half Day City Tour Tricycle 600
5:00 PM Back to hotel
7:00 PM Dinner @ Kinabuch’s Grill & Bar Tricycle 80
9:00 PM Back to Hotel Tricycle 80
Day 2: Underground River and Firefly Watching
5:00 AM Wake-up call + quick breakfast
7:00 AM Underground River Tour (P1,300) Van 2,600
9:00 AM Sabang Beach
Subterranean River
12:00 PM Lunch at Sabang Beach
2:00 PM Ugong Rock
Caving/Spelunking (P200) 400
Zipline (P350) 700
3:00 PM Mercado de San Miguel
MCA Market Mall Pasalubong
5:00 PM Back to hotel, rest and freshen up
6:00 PM Iwahig Firefly Watching (P1,000)  Van 2,000
10:00 PM Back to hotel
Day 3: Honda Bay (and Departure)
6:00 AM Wake up, quick breakfast
7:00 AM Honda Bay Tour (P1,100)  Van 2,200
Starfish Island  Boat
Luli (Lulubog, Lilitaw) Island
Cowrie Island
4:00 PM Back to hotel, rest, and freshen up
4:30 PM Check-out
to Airport Tricycle 100
5:20 PM ETD: Puerto Princesa Plane
Terminal Fee (P200) 400
7:20 PM ETA: Manila
Total (for 2 persons) PHP 12,160

Estimated expenses for 2 persons is PHP 12,160.00 excluding air fare and food. Please remember that we’re only 2 persons in our trip. You can still lower the cost by inviting more to your trip. And please make the necessary adjustments to match your flight schedule.

Have fun!

This post is based on my personal travel experiences and research for this trip. Please feel free to share your experiences, as well as, suggestions or your questions on comments below.

I hope this helps you on your next travel. Enjoy!

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