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Visiting the Philippines had been on my bucket list for a very long time. In fact, I actually planned two trips to the island that fell through. Luckily, the third time’s the charm and I finally made it to the Philippines in November of 2018. The best part is that traveling in the Philippines on a budget is totally possible. No trip to the Philippines is complete, however, without a stop in El Nido! I’ve compiled a list of my 7 best things to do in El Nido.
The island can be easily reached from Coron by ferry or you can arrive via Puerto Princesa airport and take a van.
The 7 Best Things to do in El Nido, Palawan
1. Book a private island hopping trip
No visit to El Nido is complete without renting a boat and exploring some of the many nearby islands. Unfortunately, due to the high number of tourists in on the island, these island hopping tours can often get super crowded. This is why it is best to book a private tour!
2. Enjoy sunset drinks at Panorama
A visit to Panorama is a must if you’re looking for sunset views! The restaurant is beachfront with the perfect sunset view. Not to mention, the food is absolutely delicious and relatively affordable.
3. Take a yoga class at the Birdhouse
Because what is better than a sunset yoga class held high up in the trees? The Birdhouse is the perfect spot for a sunset yoga class or drink with a view.
4. Day trip to Nacpan Beach
A visit to the island of Palawan, is not complete without a day trip up to Nacpan Beach. Rent a scooter and take the scenic drive! Nacpan can be reached from El Nido town in approximately 45 minutes. Be sure to watch out for sheep and cow crossing, an accident should not be on your itinerary!
5. Get a massage
I love massages! In fact, I’ll even make the bold claim that getting a massage makes me happier than almost anything else! If you’re like me, then you’re in luck! There are tons of massage parlors in El Nido town and they are super affordable, with the average 1 hour massage starting around $8 USD. While in El Nido I recommend indulging in a full body massage after a long day of swimming and exploring in the sun.
6. Go for a sunset swim at Las Cabanas
Las Cabanas is voted by many to be the best spot to catch the perfect El Nido sunset. You’ll find the beach littered with tourists and locals alike as the sun starts to go down. We visited Las Cabanas on our first evening in El Nido and it was truly a magical evening. Swimming in the warm waves as the sky turned a golden color, drinking fresh coconuts with our toes in the sand – definitely an evening to remember!
7. Book a diving tour (one of the most popular things to do in El Nido!)
Diving is one of the most popular things to do in El Nido. My boyfriend booked a series of dives with Sea Sphere Dive Center and we couldn’t recommend it more! I personally wasn’t comfortable diving, so the company offers the choice of a snorkel only tour as well at a very discounted price of approximately $20 USD. This includes a full day on the boat, plus lunch.
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