Jet Lag is actually killing me! Said that (I had to), I wanted to tell you a little bit about my trip before I start sleeping forever.
First, I wasn’t really sure about this one. This destination was a little bit unknown for me and but it was quite exciting at the same time. Now I can totally recommend the Philippines to anyone who’s looking for a wild, adventurous and beautiful experience.
You will never have time enough to do a proper trip to the Philippines. There are so many islands with tones of things to do, see and discover. Anyway, this was my route across this country; we (@bieljuste , my partner for this trip) started in Clark where we arrived after taking an 8h plane from Barcelona to Doha and then another 9h one to Clark, you may think this is too much and exhausting… but trust me, we decided to fly there with Qatar Airways and they made it way easier. I think choosing the right company is important. There are so many differences between companies and having a comfy flight is not an easy thing to be found.
We did not spend more than a couple of hours in Clark, took a Jeepney (the cheapest way to move around) to the nearest SM mall and booked a flight from Manila to Cebu. Our first destination was Bohol and it took a long time to arrive there. You must be patient if you want to travel to the Philippines because there is a long distance between all the places you would like to visit.
We decided to visit Bohol because of the rice fields and the Chocolate Hills, It would have been nice to see the rice fields from the north, but we wanted to go to Palawan after that and the itinerary would have not been appropriate.
Once there we discovered Alona beach, a beautiful beach full of chill bars and hostels who offer a couple of attractive activities you will enjoy. You can go diving (actually you can go diving everywhere, I think the Philippines is one of the best destinations for divers), Island hopping, island exploring and do some hikes… we went to see the dolphins with the sunrise and after that we went island hopping. You can’t miss Virgin Island… what a dreamy place!
The Chocolate Hills and rice fields were our mission there in Bohol and the landscapes we saw were incredibly amazing. Such a virgin place… There are some small towns all the way where you can see the how people really live and there are not that many tourists and thats makes it special. I can say not finding a lot of tourists has been one of the best things about this adventure.
The fact that we made it all spontaneously, choosing our hotels and destinations while we were there made it a little bit hard to find flights available to move around the islands and that made us took a flight from Bohol to Manila so that we could arrive to Palawan. Domestic flights are quite cheap but I recommend to book them in advance ( if you’re traveling during high season mostly ). Our plan in Palawan was to visit El Nido, so much heard about this place and it was way more beautiful than what we were told.
We arrived to El Nido after taking 2 planes and a bus which is an amount of 10 to 12 hours… Crazy! And once there we almost had to sleep in the street because the whole town was fully booked ( a man told us about a room only for one night and after that everything became way easier ). Once there we got in contact with the family from The Boutique and Art Cafe ( http://www.elnidoboutiqueandartcafe.com ), this place is incredibly cool. It is all you need, you can have a delicious meal while you book a tour around the islands or a flight to anywhere around the country. It is such a warm place to spend some quality time. Strongly recommend you to do a stop there and have a chat with some other travelers or simply to relax and enjoy a drink or a nice pizza.
We did some tours around the islands, some of the most beautiful places in the world are hidden in the Bacuit Archipelago, full of small and wild islands. Tones of postcard landscapes in these lagoons and hidden beaches where you arrive through swimming into caves… I’m having goose bumps just remembering it. Damn it! It was too much to be real.
Another place I recommend you to go if you visit El Nido is Nacpan beach, incredibly long and beautiful. You have some bars but even if the bars part is crowded you will have place enough to run and run with your own self through these crystal clear blue water beach. And after that you should go to see the beautiful sunset at Las Cabañas beach, magic!
Our stay in El Nido was too good but something really special was waiting for us in a small island next to Busuanga. So we took a boat from El Nido to Coron town, 8h of a day trip in which we did not have an inside seat so we had to stay the whole time in the roof of the boat and of course… we got burnt!
After a night in Coron town we took another boat to the small private island of Bamboo, our next adventure was waiting. Bamboo Island (http://www.bambooislands.ph ) has become one of the most incredible experienes I have ever had. It is a super small island 1 hour away from the pier of Coron town. The island is sorrounded by crystal clear blue water and everything is Eco – friendly designed. The food was incredibly good and even if it’s a destination for kite boarders you can also enjoy the island by lying on a beautiful hammock or chilling around doing some paddle surf or reading a nice book by the silence of the sea waves and bird songs. I have so many good memories but lying on the biggest outside sofa I have ever seen before while feeling the bonfire and looking at the stars… One of the highlights of the trip without a doubt!
That was one of our last stops, after Bamboo island we went back to Coron Town where we decided to take a snorkelling tour around. We saw two sunken ships from the 2nd World War and tones of different fish swimming around the coral that has grown in these ships. Truly an amazing experience!
And not far from Coron town, in the north of the island of Busuanga we ended our trip in a beautiful hotel located in a small island surounded by white sand and good vibes, the Club Paradise Palawan ( http://www.clubparadisepalawan.com ). Sleeping the last nights of the trip in a cottage by the sea was really pleasant. We did not have to do more than 20 steps from bed to start felling the warm water from the sea. We enjoyed the food, sun and sea of our last days in the beautiful Philippines…
Another place to come back, so many good memories to be remembered! I can’t wait to go back to the Philippines and visit every single place I haven’t. A lovely country full of kind people and hidden places where Nature shows you how beautiful the world is!
Hope you enjoyed the trip with me!
Philippines, February 2016