Widely known as “The Last Frontier,” the archipelago of Palawan is a magnificent world that should be discovered slowly, feet wriggled into its pristine white sands, and its waters swam in with indulgence.
Palawan is the country’s largest province, spanning 1.5 million hectares. Bounded by irregular coastlines of fine white sand, its interior thrives with lush virgin forests and incredible wildlife.
Palawan consists of about 1,769 islands: the Calamian Island group to the north, the Cuyo Islands group to the northwest, and the Balabac-Bugsak group to the southwest. Scuba diving is spectacular because of its crystal clear blue-green waters teeming with marine life. Fall in love with the majestic hawksbill and green sea turtles, the delightful dugong or sea cows, and plenty of species of dolphins, whales, sharks and manta rays. Above water, there are many species unique to the place, like the Palawan bear cat, Palawan mongoose, Palawan peacock pheasant, fish-eating Palawan eagle, King cobra, and many rare species of parrots and butterflies. Other delighful creatures like the Calamian deer or the large Monitor lizards also thrive here.
Lustrous pearls of every shape and size are plentiful in Palawan. And all over El Nido, Coron and Pabellones Islands are swallows’ nests, costing up to US$3,000/kg, which are harvested as the main ingredient of the expensive Chinese delicacy bird’s nest soup.
How to Get There
Most airlines fly to selected points in Palawan like Puerto Princesa, Busuanga and Coron direct from Manila, Cebu and Caticlan. It takes an hour to reach Palawan by air from Manila.
Shipping lines also ply the waters from Manila to some points in Palawan.
Within Palawan, there are jeepneys to take you throughout the province, but time is flexible in these parts. Check with the resorts, which usually provide transportation like boats and jeepneys to and from your point of arrival in between islands.