This is the diary of our amazing trip to the Philippines! We went there for 16 days and it was a great discovery…
So after a long flight and a night in Manila we decided we wanted to go directly to our first island Palawan in the village from El Nido. We flew wit Air swift for this first domestic flight and it was ok (but quite expensive).
First stop : El Nido
We spent 5 nights there and the initial purpose was to do some kitesurfing and discovering of the islands around. Unfortunately Kite surf was not possible as the wind was too weak so we decided to explore the place. We stayed in an hotel a bit away from the town which was good in a way that the town is not very pretty and very loud from the tuktuk. So we used a scooter the first days to get around which happen to be quite tiring. Then we decided to rent a car and I will clearly advise it if you want to move a lot around (but prices are almost the same than EU).
- Island hopping : Big & Small Lagoon , Secret lagoon was great! I advise strongly to do a private tour with a guide to avoid being with tons of tourists. Ours was the following: Isla Paraiso, WhatsApp: 09498811798
- The Birdhouse which is a glamping hotel with rooms like a tree house, a restaurant and a yoga studio with the best view of the area, food was great but I recommend to go for lunch to better enjoy the view
- Tombok which is a typical Filipinos food but well done with a modern twist. I really enjoyed their food
- Lio Beach which is an hotel complex with several restaurants super nice for day or night
- Cala in the Frangipani hotel very intimate and super good local food. I had some white fish cooked in coconut milk
- Duli Beach was our favorite, it’s north El Nido and good for surf. Super quiet and laid back. I advise the lunch at Duli resort.
- Santa Monica beach which is east and 40 min from the town but also quiet and super beautiful, we stayed at the Qi Palawan resort there which I recommend but far from everything at night.
- Marimegmeg Beach located next to El Nido is a smaller beach but super cool vibes with hotels and restaurants
- Corong Corong beach for sunset
Second stop: Siargao
So we left on Friday morning to fly back to Manila and then take an other company to fly to Siargao. I was very stressed as we ve been told that flights could be easily delay or cancelled and on our last day in El Nido we experienced a storm so you can imagine my level of stress the night before. Thank god our 1st flight only got delayed from 1 hour and we took a margin of 3h for the connection. For the 2nd flight we took Cebu Pacific which a highly recommend but again super pricey.
We had a real crush on this island and honestly we would have only stayed there if we had known. Indeed what’s great about this place is that you can do many things easily. The town is General Luna and is full of amazing restaurants, bars, café, hotels with so many variety of styles and food. Then you have Cloud 9 which is the spot for Surf and has a great Australian vibe. Everything is quite close so you can walk, hop in a tuktuk or rent a scooter in less than 15 min to go anywhere. For the activities you also have a great choice, either surf or even kite if the wind allows it, Yoga with so many amazing studio, snorkeling or scuba diving or just discovering a lot of spots. We stayed at the Isla Cabana Hotel which I think is one of the best resort of the area and with a great service and pools.
Here is what we did:
- Surf in Jacking hole to learn its a great spot
- Magpupungko Rock pool
- Sushi Nori
- CEV: Ceviche & Kinilaw
- Isla Cucina (one of our hotel restaurant)
- The Surch at Cloud 9 great for breakfast or lunch
- Shaka for breakfast bowls
- The Wok
- Miguel’s Taqueria great for cheap and good tacos
- La Carinderia mix of Italian and filipinos food
- And so many more …..