One of the most enjoyable moments of traveling Palawan for me was catching a longboat from Coron to El Nido. We paid 1,200 Php per person to jump on this 20 person boat and venture down the South China Sea, catching magnificent views of the hundreds of islands and villages sprinkled throughout.
Each moment I have entered a new form of transportation on this trip I’ve suffered from my general, “oh shit” mindset. Especially since I have already had an experience getting sea sick on a tiny tuna fishing boat of the coast of Puerto Vallerta, motion sick in a van transporting us up the coast of Quintana Roo, and air sick on a flight to Kansas City, Missouri. And by sick, I mean puking. Vigorously. Fortunately for us, the boat from Coron to El Nido seemed more like a tour than a means for mass transport – and I have yet to get “sick” in that way yet. The longboat had a restroom and about three feet of bamboo extending from each side allowing all of us to lie on the deck and nap next to the flowing water, or walk around and view the island sites. We’ve become accustomed to island time. This boat that was intended to be five hours very quickly turned into about seven.
When we got to El Nido, we were delighted. It is a perfect little beach town with a stunning backdrop. El Nido’s beach front is about one-half (0.50) mile long. The mountains surge out of the water beautifully. The beachfront turns into a true beach town party once the sun starts setting. Every restaurant has live music, all the tables are in the sand, and all the fresh catches of the day are brought for your picking. The town itself has an adorable little “downtown” street that hosts an array of good food, motorbikes to rent, and activities to book.
One afternoon we took a tricycle out to Las Cabanas beach. The beach front is wonderful. White sands and clear waters. The sunsets are like nothing I’ve ever seen. It’s here where I was introduced to my first jelly fish sting. It really wasn’t that bad. I peed on myself. Added a little coconut oil. All was well.
We spent only a few days in El Nido, but in hindsight we should have spent longer. Unfortunately, two of the days spent there my body was not responding well to the new change in lifestyle, perhaps some uncooked seafood, or all of the above. Had we not flown to Cebu after Puerto Princesa, we would have rerouted to add a few more days on to El Nido.