Palawan Travelogue: Puerto Princesa City, Underground River, and Honda Bay ♥

Knowing that each one of us is only here temporarily pretty much explains my restlessness. Swaying from one task to another is how I thrive which apparently prompted one of my girlfriends to write this

Still, I don't pretend to be Superwoman. As a fickle-minded girl who refuses to channel her energy on just one thing, I sometimes find myself wanting to have an escape. 

While I still have pending travel entries, my recent trip to Palawan is perhaps the simplest yet most captivating. Since I'm this type of traveler who packs too much researches a lot, please bear with my so-called tips. It's my way as well to give back to all the thoughtful travel blogs I've used! 

Nearly half of my return flight luggage was composed of pastries from Baker's Hill because they're that tasty and affordable. City tours likewise include Puerto Princesa's famed souvenir shops - Cora's and Delma's. These shops sell plenty of pasalubong - from pearls to danggit. However, tourists are only given 10-15 minutes to do their shopping (imagine that!).

Don't fret because if your hotel's near the city, you can easily go back to these shops by riding a tricycle for just P10 per head.

The crocodiles are not as abundant as Subic's but Puerto Princesa's farm permits you to hold a baby crocodile.

It was a simple visit which left me humbled. Each product is definitely a testament of the weavers' dedication. After all, it takes more than patience to painstakingly weave and get paid roughly P5.00 for every meter of hard work.

That moment, I felt lowly for those times that I complained because of my workload. I have nothing but admiration for the weavers so if you're there, the best way to help them is to patronize their products. From satchels to slippers, everything's of superb quality that even Calvin Klein once sourced his collection from Binuatan!

While not included in the city tour, Kalui is something which you shouldn't miss. Reservations are recommended because Kalui cannot always accommodate the number of its diners. I don't want to spoil the experience but I'm way beyond satisfied with the food and service. Its menu may be found here.

You will be travelling by land for two hours to reach Sabang Beach. There you'll be boarding a motorized boat. Brace yourself for a pretty exciting ride because of the surging waves.

Lengthy queues are inevitable. In our case, we had to wait for four hours since the Underground River tour was temporarily halted for 2 days. Hence, the influx of people in the port. There's a buffet restaurant as well in the port which offers lunch for those who availed of travel packages.

If you don't have waterproof bags for your DSLR cameras, opt for handy cameras because the 15-minute boat ride is quite unsteady. Stay calm and appreciate how the waves majestically crash onto the shore's rocks.

Upon arriving, you'll take a short walk to reach the Subterranean river. They will not call the path "Monkey Trail" if there's no abundance of such cute creatures. Be mindful though because they are very clever.

When they see or even hear the rustling of plastic bags, they think of food. My boyfriend was merely fixing the plastic souvenir wrappers inside his backpack when three monkeys suddenly clung onto him! Realizing they weren't chasing after munchies (but fridge magnets), they quickly let go of his arms and neck.

You'll be riding a paddle boat which can fit up to 9 people. If you choose to sit in front, you'll be tasked to hold the flashlight as you traverse the serene water. The river stretches up to 8 kilometers but the 45-minute tour only covers one and a half kilometers. 

Allow your bancero to kindle your imagination.He'll tell witty stories about the natural formations inside the cave - from a breathtaking cathedral down to Dora the Explorer's bangs. 

These banceros barely earn enough so if you're satisfied at the end of the tour, tipping is encouraged.

Prior to island hopping, you'll see several shops offering rentals for snorkeling gear (P150) and aqua shoes (P200). Wearing life vests is mandatory not just for your safety but also for the protection of the corals.  Three islands are included in the hop: Luli, Starfish, and Cowrie.

Is it necessary to coordinate with a travel agency?

There are many travel agencies in Palawan for your perusal. I have my own reluctances too with some agencies but Maple Travel and Tours is far from sneaky and overpriced! They have quick response time and the agents are really courteous. 

If you're planning to visit the Underground River, it's best to rely on agencies for they're the ones who know how to process the environmental permits. On the other hand, if you're a big group, you may opt for a DIY city tour. Since travel agencies only allot 4 hours for the city tour, you may hire a tricycle to have the luxury of time.

Though I’m guilty of bringing my work laptops, I thank Him for reminding me that everything has its appropriate time and Palawan is not a place to fuss over deadlines but a venue to be in awe of His creations. 

“I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in.” - George Washington Carver