P.I. 2011: El Nido’s Plentiful Charms
El Nido lies at the Southern tip of the island of Palawan. The town of El Nido itself is somewhat tiny and is grappling with the influx of tourists from all over the Philippines and the world. But what lies around the town of El Nido is truly remarkable.
There is no electric power in the hotel from 6:00 AM until around 3:00 PM, so lazing around in the resort is not an option. You have to get up and out and see the beauty that surrounds! Charter boats are plentiful and very inexpensive.
There are probably dozens of tiny islands close to El Nido. Huge limestone cliffs rise out of the water, looking like the floating islands from Avatar. These islands are the real reason to visit El Nido. There are hidden beaches, hidden lagoons, places where you can swim with the fish.
And speaking of fish: YUMMY! After your day out on the water, make your way up to the El Nido Corner restaurant and check out the day’s catch. They bring the day’s fish out to you on a tray and you pick the one you like. Another El Nido specialty is stuffed squid, which you can find at Squido’s, a charming little spot run by an ex-pat Frenchman and his Filipina bride.
The people are so sweet. The hospitality begins the minute you step off the (tiny) plane in El Nido. There is, literally, a welcome wagon to greet you:
My first morning in El Nido. There is a very sophisticated photographic technique to get the dreamy look I got with the below shot. Yeah, right. We had AC in our room at night. When I went out in the morning, about 6:00 AM, the lens was completely fogged due to the humidity outside. I said hell with it and just took some pictures anyway. One of those things I’ll never be able to replicate.
The view from our hotel room window. The island surrounded by clouds is called Cadlao Island. Cadlao Island displayed so many looks through the course of my stay that it felt like a character in a play.
Cadlao Island redux:
Out on the water now: This is a typical limestone formation that you see throughout the area.
Stopping at a small island for a coconut juice. There’s nothing like a nice nappy rest on the sand next to some coconut branches.
Stopping at a different island to eat our packed lunch, we encountered some other dogs who did not have as nice of a domestic situation. These guys were starving. We gave them a bunch of food which they scarfed down in seconds. But they didn’t want any mango. Come on guys! Eat your fruit.
Our captain told us that the dogs swim from island to island looking for food. Now that would be a sight!
In a hidden lagoon, I spotted this structure.
Back in El Nido. CHECK THIS MONKEY OUT. He is the MAN!! Look how he is posing for me. Good looking bastard!!
Ah, well. Time to leave. Let’s catch a tricycle to the airport!
This picture was taken at the airport. No, not near the airport. At the airport. This is the same caribou that pulls the welcome wagon.
To see LOTS more pictures from amazing El Nido, please click HERE.
This is the last post from my 2011 trip to P.I. I am planning to return this spring, so hopefully by the end of the year or early next year I will have many more images from the amazing Philippines to share.