d'modern crOX (lacoste decendants!) @ palAwan
you guys MUst check this out..
We were told that asia's giant crox was actually found at Tubataha reef in Palawan. It was 17 feet long. You can find its remains at Crocodile farm.
At crox farm .. you'll see how baby crox look from month 1 up. It was actually their feeding time when we went there. Crox have no concept of sharing. I saw how greedy they are.. heeeeeeeiiiii... now I know why Politicians are described as crocodiles.
In addition to that . . the exit leads to their zoo where lots of endagered species are taken cared of. It wasn't conventionally designed for safety. It' s actually a forest with caged birds, monkeys, cats, atbp.. (I didn't enjoy that part.. I was clinging at my my friends' arms so tight.. baka may ahas eh..)
Generally, it's worth visiting naman. You don't get to see sandamukal na crox everyday noh. You can take pictures with a baby croc (mouth sealed) pala for P20 lang.
- Budget Travel
- Farm Stay
- School Holidays
prestigious "mura" beach, Pristine!
once you've landed Palawan you can't wait to go Island hop'n.. or swim ur way to the famous underground river . .. and all that. . but, wait! hang on . .. there are other beaches nearby . . they're just a few steps (step . .sss a lotta step man!) away from ur hotel or you may wana go city touring on your own, kase if u book pa sa travel agency P500 agad un . .como estas dbaeyh?!
there's this white sand beach in Puerto Princessa called Pristine.. for only P10 you can make languy-ngoy to sawa na.. fantastic din nmn ang view.. and meron mangrove trail drama.. opz! P7.00/person lang po ang tricyle (city limit)
- School Holidays
- Budget Travel
Swim at Nagtabon Beach
This is a picturesque beach, lined with coconut trees located 35 kms north west of Puerto Princesa on the west coast. Rent a motorbike and turn off the road at Bacungan (just after km 22) then cross to the other side of the island on a dirt road, which will lead you uphill on a rocky track, then you will descend to the beach stopping to admire the spectacular views. You will probably find a few other day-trippers there, but there won't be many, due to the lack of transport and the bad state of the road. Unfortunately there is no longer any accommodation there and nowhere to eat, so bring your own food. Picnic tables under native huts can be rented for around 200 pesos a day. Fish for bbqing may be purchased from the fishermen who live at the small settlement at the southern end of the beach. Beware of the current.
The road across the island has now been concreted, enabling to get there much quicker. Only the last few hundred meters down the hill to the beach is a rough track and has to be driven with care.
PERMIT FOR UNDERGROUND RIVER
Due to Mayor Hagedorn's successful campaign to make Puerto Princesa's Subterranean River Park one of the NEW 7 WONDERS OF THE WORLD the booking office in Puerto Princesa is very busy and you must allow a couple of hours to obtain the permit. The office has recently been relocated to the Coliseum which is 2kms from the capital Building in San Pedro. An online booking system is supposed to be introduced about now so it is worth checking out if it is in operation yet.
Swim in Balsahan river inside the penal colony
While a visit to Iwahig Penal Colony is interesting, why not make a day of it, take snacks with you and go for a refreshing swim at Balsahan river inside the colony. The water is refreshingly cool as the river comes down from the nearby mountains. A selection of native bungalows dot the side of the river and can be rented cheaply, and the prisoners will serve you fresh coconuts and other treats, even help you bbq your own fish. The prisoners have dammed off the river and developed the area and the water is head high, ideal for cooling off after a hard day's sightseeing, cost of entry is 10 pesos. at the colony there is a souvenir shop, small eatery and you can interact with the friendly prisoners. At first they are in maximum security and as the years pass they are sent to work on the farm and eventually they can build their own native house where their families can come and stay.
UPDATE----We visited Balsahan today and the prices of the cottages have increased to 200 and 400 pesos (small and big). The prisoners have a fire going all the time and grilled our fish for us.
XMAS TREE, GRILLED FISH & XMAS MUSIC by the bay
If you happen to be in Puerto Princesa in December you should spend at least one evening at Baywalk where you can see one of the biggest Xmas trees in the country (although the frame is metal and the lights and decorations are attached to it), stroll along the bay while enjoying a cool breeze, sample the fresh seafood, enjoy a beer, all of this while Xmas music blares out at mega-decibels!!! What more do you want?
The food stalls at the end , nearest the harbour were offering San Miguel at 50 pesos, a sharp increase since i was there with another VT member in April. The fish on offer seemed expensive too, so we walked towards the Xmas tree where we found food stalls offering grilled chicken or fish for 100 pesos or less. The beers in this area were also only 40 pesos, a more reasonable price.
boat trip across the bay to Mangingisda
While you are in Puerto Princesa why not take a trip by bangka (outrigger boat) across the bay to Mangingisda (means fisherman in tagalog). At the pier there are a few small snack bars where you can enjoy a beer and a sandwich or even a simple filipino dish. It is a small pier bu there are always a few comings and goings so it's nice to spend an hour just hanging around the pier, or you can walk up to the village which is 500 metres away. The trip by boat offers you views of Puerto Princesa and takes less than an hour and costs about 40 pesos. You could even take your bike there and cycle the 40 kms back to town, bikes cost an extra 5 pesos. There are about ten bangkas a day and they leave from the Baywalk, just look to your right and there will be many boats there, just ask for the Mangingisda boat.
Langogan is around km 82 on the northern highway, so if you are hiring a motorbike stop there for a swim. There is a bridge and 50 metres before it there is a track leading to the sea(200m). The beach is pebbly but the water is deep and good for swimming. Swim towards the mouth of the river and enjoy the cool water. Wander around the fisherman's village where you will see fish drying in the sun. There is a sari-sari store just before the bridge for cold drinks.
ISLAND HOPPING IN HONDA BAY
Take a trike or jeepney to Santa Lourdes where you can hire boats to the islands in Honda Bay. There is a booking office there with a list of the prices to various islands, it is well organised so that the boatmen take their turn so the money is spread fairly. Reasonable snorkeling at Snake Island. Arrecife island has up-market accommodation (Dos Palmos) on it, rather expensive and some of the other islands (Starfish Island and Meara Island) have more reasonable accommodation. All the islands have sandy beaches and are good for swimming. If the weather is bad and the sea is choppy head for one of the nearer islands such as Pandan as more than one tourist has dropped their camera in the sea.
UPDATE 14 Sep 2014
If you look at the second photo you will see the latest fees for island hopping, entrance fees and other important information. In the coming month i hope to write tips about each individual island so please look at these for the latest information.
BEACHES IN THE CITY
There are several beaches within 5 kms of the centre but most are shallow water, but they are very busy especially at weekends or holidays. There is usually a small charge(10 pesos) to enter and then you can rent a bungalow for something like 200m pesos. Pristine Beach and White Beach are probably the closest but BM Beach is also good, but only at high tide as there are bungalows in the water which is around 3 feet deep. Alcohol and snacks are available at all the beaches. Good place to meet locals especially if you bring a bottle of Tanduay rum! There are three resorts that are on the beach but a little more expensive, Microtel, Dankayan resort and Puerto Aventura Resort. All offer accommodation.
- Budget Travel
Baker's hill is around 6 kms out of town on the southern highway in Mitra Road which is one of the more expensive areas in town to live as the road runs along a ridge where there is a breeze and good views of the sea. There is a bakery/garden there that has a restaurant and food stall, souvenir shop, fun statues, plenty of shrubs/plants and really well landscaped, a children's playground too. Very popular place at the weekend, no entrance fee and don't forget to purchase some of the delicious cakes/breads on offer at the bakery.
- Budget Travel
CANOPY ZIP LINE AT IRAWAN FOREST
The new Eco Park is located at Irawan, just over the bridge before the crocodile farm. Just take the first right after the bridge and follow the road for 2 kms to you reach the check point where you can park your car and sign in. Drive another 4 kms through the forest and you will pass another checkpoint where they will inspect your paperwork before arriving at the staging area. There is a big native building where you can rest, take a refreshment while the instructors fill you in on safety procedure. There are 3 zip-lines, 100m, 300m and 900 km, costing around 800 pesos. It is supposed to be the longest zipline in Asia. There is also a massage hut, bird feeding station, skywalk and several other interesting attractions
EVEN THE DEAD PAY RENT
There are four cemeteries in town, two private and two government owned and there are rather sme strange customs. The two city cemeteries are bursting at the seams while the m newer private cemetery is located on a prime piece of real estate overlooking the sea with the mountains in the background. Both are located in an area of town called Parola but are vastly different. The city cemetery is where the poorer people are laid to rest, normally in tombs above ground but in the newer cemetery the dead are buried underground. Whereas the city cemetery is overgrown and not looked after well, the new cemetery is exceptionally well maintained.
The cost of burying someone in the private cemetery can be as expensive as in Europe and there are many hidden charges such as taxes on the plot of land. There are payments that must be made annually, and if not, the remains of the dead may be removed. I believe that in the city cemetery rent must be paid after 5 years. In some parts of the country i have seen evidence of this, with a skeleton lying in open view on top of a tomb.
What a strange coincidence. After writing this review today, my wife returned home from the cemetery today to see her father's grave and saw some bones scattered around, including the skull!
KIM'S HOTSPRING RESORT
We enjoyed a pleasant afternoon here where we rented a hut with a private tub for 4 hours, costing 500 pesos. although we were only two persons the price was good for up to 7 people.There are 5 or 6 tubs and a few overnight bungalows with sleeping quarters upstairs and a private tub downstairs, ranging from 750 pesos to 1,200 pesos. There was also a restaurant selling Korean and local food at very reasonable prices. There is a public hotsprings next door which appeared to be closed judging by the state of the property, and there was Marcos hot spring on the other side but it was crowded and loud music was booming. All are located around km 12 on the northern highway, just after the turn off for the boat trips to Honda Bay.
Travel to km 20 on the highway south until you reach Iwahig River, cross the bridge and you will find some bungalows on the right where you can hire a boat with boatman, spend an hour on the river and be mesmerised by the 1000's of fireflies. Not for me but some people find this interesting. Firefly watching can be booked at some hotels and travel agents in town which also includes a dinner and pick up from your hotel. I am not quite sure what the present prices are but you can also turn up on the spot and they will arrange for a boatman to take you firefly watching, but again i am not quite sure if you will be able to join in the dinner buffet. Of course you can only do this at night, but if you are on the way south during the day it is quite a nice place to stop for a few moments. Many locals fish in the river also, but my friend recently tried his luck and only caught a fish the size of his finger!
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