Long before, I thought “paradise” is just somehow utopic.
Not until I set foot in El Nido, Palawan in the Philippines!
My heart caved in because there was too much beauty, too much awe.
I have travelled some parts of the amazing archipelago but I have to say that somehow, I found a piece of Neverland + home in El Nido.
Well, if you Google up photos of the islands, you may think, “ah it looks like the beach in Thailand, too!” That seemed like my initial impression as well.
Any time of the day, freedom is yours
Mornings were glorious. I have forgotten the long trip to get there. Each new day brought a sense of freedom and rejuvenation in my heart. Close your eyes, imagine the clearest of seawater, the humbling rock formations sheltering shrubs, the breath-taking sunrises and sunsets... the easy life that you truly deserve. Imagine you in your most relaxed day marveling at the most beautiful seascapes you have ever laid eyes on. All of this you can only experience in El Nido. Diving, snorkeling, island hopping, swimming, dipping, basking under the skies... these are all the activities I’ve tried doing while there.
I just bummed around and feel like the Queen of the world!
Mid-days are best spent enjoying the local food – from fresh seafood to mouth-watering topical fruits, there is no other place to indulge in a sort-of-hedonist life but there. The locals, you can always see them smiling and living their simple lives. I’ve seen how some of them would be in their little sailboats setting out to the vast crystal seas.
Afternoons are perfect for chilling, sunset-gazing!
I can still recall how I felt so good while sipping fresh coconut juice while inhaling the sweetest memories I’ve made while being alone in the nature and while sharing stories and good wine with new friends. The smell of salt, the sinking of the sun...ah, it’s a place on earth that I have fallen deeply in-love with. A spot I’ll always point down on a map to anyone who’d ask me where paradise is.
Evenings can be romantic and dreamy in the islands!
The stars are out, I was just there, taking in the grandeur. On some nights, I’d stay in a hammock and sway with the wind. Do not miss out on meeting fellow travelers too. Nights in El Nido are also perfect for small parties and late-night conversations about life, love, and everything in-between.
Why I’ll always go back
The Philippines is geographically on the other side of the world for me. But to tell you the truth, I can imagine myself staying there for a little longer. I can imagine waking up to the sound of the waves and sleep with new dreams in El Nido.
I want to take more boat rides and laugh with friendly boatmen. I want to learn more from the simplicity of the island life. I want to enjoy what most people seem not to realize during the busy days – the value of time.
Things to do in El Nido:
- Walk along the coast until you find the hidden beach "Las Cabanas"
- Rent a motor bike and explore the backland
- Have a drink at Art Cafe or Mezzanine El Nido
- Stay the night at The Alternative
- Try the tunel dive with Oliver from Tabanka Divers or rent a kayak.
- Go Island-hopping in the Bacuit Archipelago. They offer tour A, B, C and D. All of them are amazing.
- Say hello to Isabel and Hugo from France at "A little Corner of Paradies"
- Buy a piece of land and open up a guesthouse
- Enjoy a fresh mango shake on the street
El Nido's Airport is 10km north of town. You can fly via Manila to El Nido or you fly to Puerto Princesa and take a van from there.
Travel tip shared by Travelicia