Did you mean?Try your search again
Twice I've been to this site. The first time I left my camera in my hotel room! Stupid! Stupid!
Visiting the St. Paul's Underground River is a must when you are in Puerto Princesa. It is part of UNESCO's Heritage Sites List. The caves are made of white and black marble. Our guide told us that million of years ago the caves were formed by the acids that dissolved the softer materials that made up the St. Paul Mountain Range. The continous trickling of mineral-rich water have helped form curiously shaped stalagmites, stalactites and columns. The monkeys and the big monitor lizards that own the park are an added bonus that make visiting this Park worth your while.
If you are lucky enough, you might have Mang Totong for your boatman. He is a funny man and really passionate about his work. He's been interviewed in various shows and knows the caves really well. He can tell you a lot of stories about the river and share his knowledge about the little explored part of the cave that is off-limits to ordinary visitors.
It is better to take an organized tour to St. Paul's (P1,500). This includes transfers (a/c van and banca), lunch and park permit and the services of a tour guide.
BTW, be prepared to have your bones rattled as more than half of the 2.5 hrs. travel is over rough unpaved road. Better borrow a pillow from your hotel so you can have extra padding for your head and back. :)
Updated Jul 14, 2008
Address: Saint Paul Mountain Range, Palawan
Island hopping in Honda Bay is a popular activity in Puerto Princesa. You can rent a boat for P1000 (US$20) for the whole day. Snorkeling gear can also be rented for P200 (US$4) in the registration office at the Honda Bay Pier. If you're not taking an organized tour which costs P900/pax (US$17) you can go to the market to buy food and have it cooked (costs P50 (US$1) per dish) in Snake Island.
The whole bay is protected by the DENR and the local Bantay Dagat. It is very well preserved area and the local residents are justifiably proud of it.
Snake Island is a good place for snorkeling as the island is very rich in marine life. Kids and adults alike enjoy feeding the fish. Starfish Island has some coral reefs. Luli Island has a high diving board set up where swimmers can take a leap into the sea. Or one can just sit on the board to watch the millions upon millions of fingerlings swarming around under the water. Bat Island is so named because it is mainly composed of mangrove trees that serve as home to thousands of fruit bats that spend the day hanging around but turn active upon sunset. To watch these bats fly off to find food is an eerie sight worth waiting for!
Updated Nov 25, 2008
Address: Honda Bay, Palawan
I learnt a lot about butterflies during our visit at the Palawan Butterfly Garden where they feature not only different species of butterflies native to the area but also the plants that sustain them. Adults and kids will enjoy this place. But remember to thread softly as the butterflies are numerous and often land on places that unwary visitors might step on them!
BTW, When you go visit be sure to smother yourself in Victoria's Secret scents like Pear Glace, Lavender or Bath and Body's Lavender scented lotion/spray. The butterflies absolutely love those scents. They will flock to you and follow you everywhere!!!
Updated Jul 27, 2006
And I don't mean the usual mangoes, bananas and pineapples, although they do have good quality supply of those in the PP Public Market.
I mean the hard to come by/expensive fruits like the Marang (Artocarpus odoratissimus Blco., Family Moraceae) and Tuba-tuba (I can't find the latin name for this one). Tuba-tuba looks like a santol and tastes like a cross between santol (Sandoricum koetjape Merr.) and mangosteen (garcinia mangostana, family guttiferae). You can get a whole marang for P13 (US$0.25), but I'm sure a good haggler can get better price than me! :). A kilogram of tuba-tuba costs P35 (US$0.66).
Updated Jul 31, 2006
When the war erupted in Vietnam in the 70's, thousands of Vietnamese fled their country and sought asylum in other countries. One of the "hospitable" ones who welcomed them was the Philippines where the "boat people or refugees" were given temporary living area in PP.
They were allowed to put up tents, and later build Vietnamese-style houses, near the airport. However, according to a VietVille local, these boat people were not allowed to stray away from their "camp" and did not enjoy the same freedom as the Filipinos (although some of them were able to marry Filipinos). In 1996, through the collaborative efforts of the Catholic Bishops in the country and the city & provincial government, the boat people were transferred to the present site of VietVille where they started building a community. Each family was given a small house on a piece of land and were accorded the same freedom as the locals.
Soon after however, their papers for migration to the US were processed and to date, only 6 families have remained. And as I moved around, I noticed that most of the houses were vacated and dilapidated. Tall grasses now occupy what used to be the basketball court. Still, the front area where the restaurant, church and souvenir shop are located is well kept and secured.
Updated Mar 24, 2006
Iwahig Penal Colony was established in the early 1900's and to this date is still operational. It is where criminals from other parts of the country were sent, jailed and forced to do hard labor while serving their sentence. Later on, the reformed ones are allowed to roam within the compound and mingle with the community while the "hard cores" remain in maximum confinement. Within the compound, there are farmstead tended by former prisoners who, after serving their sentence, have decided to stay in PP and start a new life.
A side story: according to my trike driver, there was a time when taking picture of Iwahig's recreation hall was disallowed. It was said that visitors who took pictures of the building were afflicted with serious disease. Hence, I avoided taking a photo but a "roaming prisoner" noticed my action and gave me the go signal to proceed.
Updated Mar 24, 2006
Farther up from Baker's Hill is Mitra's Ranch. It is owned by the Mitra family, a known political clan in Palawan who also produced a one-time senator of the country.
The ranch is strategically located as it gives the guests a sweeping view of Honda Bay and its islands. The resthouse perched on the hill's peak is being rented for parties and gathering. At the time of my visit, refurbishing is on-going.
Updated Mar 15, 2006
Our Lady of Immaculate Conception is the patron of Puerto Princesa. As such, the church's exterior is done in blue and white. I don't know but for some reason, its architecture reminds me of Manila's San Sebastian Church. I attended the English anticipated mass at 5:30pm on Saturday.
Updated Mar 16, 2006
Address: Rizal Avenue
It used to be known as the Crocodile Farm. However with the addition of other endangered species, it was renamed Palawan Wildlife Rescue and Conservation Center.
The preserved skin and skeleton of the biggest crocodile captured in Palawan is on display at the Center's lobby which is where the farm tour commences. The next part of the tour is to a small museum where pictures and information on crocodile farming are on display. The most exciting part is the "hands-on" where you can see live crocodiles and can even have your picture taken holding a small one. The last part is the tour of the zoo where, aside from crocodiles, there are ostrich, eagle, mynah, turtle and others.
An admission fee of P40 per person is charged which includes the 30-minute guided tour. An additional P30 is charged for the photo opp with the crocodile.
Updated Mar 16, 2006
In the outskirt of the city is a small house owned by an ordinary family and attached to it is a garden where hundreds of butterflies in different colors and sizes take shelter. The butterflies were "friendly and easy to capture". You may even take your picture with a butterfly at the palm of your hand.
A brief video presentation on the metamorphosis, care and handling of butterfly is available (but I skipped it) and family members are on hand to attend to questions by visitors. An admission fee of P25 per person is charged for the upkeep of the farm.
Updated Mar 15, 2006
Hibiscus Garden Hotel Puerto Princesa
1 Review and 206 Opinions This place is located in Manalo St. , not far from the airport and is owned by a French guy who...
Dolce Vita Puerto Princesa
1 Review and 40 Opinions I desperately want to warn as many people as possible about the Dolce Vita Hotel in Puerto Princesa,...
Puerto Pension Puerto Princesa
1 Review and 171 Opinions our one night stay in the hotel was quite pleasant.except for one instance of miscommunicaion where...