27 February 2014

And So Our Great Palawan Adventure Just Got Better! PART 2

It's funny because our 3rd day of activities in Palawan only started after lunch time but still, our itinerary for that day was so jam packed so I've decided to make it as one separate post.

Babs and I spent our morning at the resort with him snorkeling and me just popping cashew nuts in my mouth while I admire our view from our tree house. I mean, even if I wanted to snorkel at that time, the sight of jellyfishes all over the water scared me even if staffs from the resort said that those invertebrates were harmless.

Anyway, back to our day 3 adventure, after eating lunch, our van fetched us and together with our groupmates that day, our first destination was the most famous Immaculate Concepcion Cathedral in Puerto Princesa. Too bad we weren't able to take a good picture of that place. Old people say that if you visit a church for the first time, you can make a wish and that it will come true. But remembering that moment in Palawan now, I don't think I made a wish. Oh well, whatever I pray for anyway, God still gives it to me.

Moving forward, after the church, we went to Plaza Cuartel, a historic place where American soldiers during WWII were tortured and burned alive by the Japanese troops. Now, the place looks like a garden with trees and flowering plants everywhere although if one will really think about what happened in that location, one would not help but shudder.

After Plaza Cuartel, our group headed to the famous Binuatan Creations that sells handmade woven products made by the locals using indigenous raw materials. Visitors like us are given the chance to have a feel of how it is to weave mats and based on my experience, anyone who wants to weave should have lots of patience in his/her system plus a strong back (because it's a back breaking task in case you're wondering why a strong back. haha!).

Aside from seeing and experiencing the production floor, we also raided the pasalubong (souvenir) area of Binuatan Creations. Luckily, we found a really nice straw hat from the shop which I used on our island hopping activity the day after.

We proceeded with our day tour by visiting Mitra's Ranch in Santa Monica Heights which is owned by the late Senator Ramon Mitra's family. It has a nice viewdeck where people can see the entire Puerto Princesa from the hillside.

Of course, a visit in Santa Monica Heights will not be completed if we will not buy some yummy breads and pastries from Baker's Hill. And if only we have the luxury of time at that moment, I would have love to stay there for at least an hour to sample their other dishes at Baker's Kitchen. Maybe next time.

After filling our pasalubong hoard with breads and pastries from Baker's Hill, we continued our trip and found ourselves surrounded with crocs and other wild animals (mosquitoes included) at Palawan Wildlife Rescue and Conservation Center.

Our tour at the center kickstarted with a trivia about the biggest croc Palawan has ever captured and killed (or later died, I couldn't quite remember) with its skin pinned on the wall and its bones preserved in a humongous glass box. But I guess that historic croc will already be replaced by Lolong, also found in the Philippines, the largest croc ever captured in the entire world until last 2013 when the animal died and that's a different story actually.

So yeah, aside from seeing lots of reptiles in all sizes and shapes (we saw some crocs that have abnormalities in their physical appearances), we also enjoyed seeing some birds like ostriches (my first time) and an eagle.

Just a tip for future travelers, you should apply some mosquito repellant lotion to your exposed body parts before heading to this place because there's an awful lot of mosquitoes in there.

We capped off our tour by visiting Palawan's famous prison called Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm. Now, what makes it famous and special you may ask. It's the fact that prisoners are free to roam around this huge piece of land that even if they try to escape from this place, there's just no way they can do that. And of course, prisoners who are allowed to enjoy and bask in the sun earned their spots. And the special thing about this place is that prisoners who have talents are given the chance to use their gifts to become productive people and raise money. And for those who aren't as talented as their prisonmates, they can still help out by creating products that they can sell in their souvenir shop. Tourists can even mingle with some of the prisoners who are manning the souvenir shop.

It was already night time when we finished our city tour so we just ordered at Jollibee and ate our grub at the hotel.

Hope you enjoyed our 3rd day!

Find out what we did on our 4th and 5th day in Palawan! If you like sun and water, then you'll definitely enjoy my next post!

And if you haven't read the part 1 and part 3 of our Great Palawan Adventure, you can find them below.

And So Our Great Palawan Adventure Begins! PART 1

Save the Best for Last! Our Great Palawan Adventure PART 3


24 February 2014

And So Our Great Palawan Adventure Begins! PART 1

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Last March 2011, Babs and I flew to Palawan a couple of days after our wedding for our honeymoon. It was our first time to fly together not to mention that it is also our first getaway as a married couple so it was a really exciting experience for both of us.

We spent five days and four nights in Puerto Princesa, Palawan just to make sure we have covered everything that we need to check out, at least in the province capital.  So for today, let me share with you guys the activities that occupied our first two days in the beautiful province of Palawan!


The moment we landed in Puerto Princesa, we directly checked in at Dangkalan Resort, our first accommodation during our stay in the province. Don't worry, I'll create a separate post about our Palawan accommodations to give you some ideas on where to stay if ever you've decided to explore the province someday so just watch out for that. For our first day, we opted to just stay at the resort, take some rest, click lots of pictures and enjoy the place. You see, we stayed at a beach front tree house so what more can we ask for for our first day right?

Once we have fully settled down in our tree house, Babs quickly got his snorkeling gears on and tested the waters. It was good that during our stay, the sea was calm and that during afternoons, the water would creep back to the ocean that the place where Babs was snorkeling sometime at noon was gone and we could see all those tiny white crabs and other shell creatures come out of the sand as if the Earth just gave birth to hundreds of crustaceans! So yeah, we enjoyed our long walks by the seashore, taking jump pictures and other goofy snaps because we are silly like that.

We headed back to our room once dusk fell, cleaned ourselves up, ate dinner and readied ourselves for our first major adventure the following day.


During our second day in the province, Babs and I woke up early to experience the Palawan sun rise and it was just so beautiful especially with the kind of background that we have (tree house, low tide, fresh air, birds merrily chirping, cool breeze, sound of the rolling waves up ahead and the melody from the swaying leaves), ah! Perfect!

After admiring the perfect sun rise, we headed back to our room, prepped up, ate breakfast and waited for our tour van to arrive. We like DIY travels but this time, we hired a travel agency to take care of our accommodations and tours so that we can just relax and enjoy our entire honeymoon adventure.

Before the main attraction of the day, our adventure kick started with a quick Mangrove paddle boat tour. Basically, we got on a boat, our boatman paddled and talked about the mangrove forest and that how we should not worry about crocodiles because the area where we are at that moment is croc-free. He also mentioned that we should look out for snakes hanging in tree branches above us but that we should not be scared because snakes are nocturnal animals so they are sound asleep while we're touring around. Now that I'm reminiscing about that time, the most unforgettable moment that I have in mind is the general silence of the forest that can make you (or at least me) go crazy if you'll stay there for a long time. You can hear sounds every now and then from our boatman, the paddler (is there such word? haha!), birds, monkeys and other wild animals lurking in that area but the general atmosphere is eerie stillness.

After our Mangrove paddle boat tour, our group went to a nearby resort to eat lunch. After eating lunch, we just could not resist ourselves from taking a few snaps because the waves and the palm trees and blue skies are too hard to ignore.

Upon reaching the Sabang port, we were then guided to our roro (motorized boat) that will take us to the main attraction of the day and of Puerto Princesa. Do you know what it is? It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the New Seven Wonders of Nature. It is the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park located in the Saint Paul Mountain Range. So what is a subterranean river? Basically, it is an underground river. How awesome is that right?

The trip from Sabang Port to the underground river site took us around a good 15-20 minutes. At the park entrance, we trekked our way to the main loading site. It was just a good 5-10 minute walk depending on whether you are interested in checking out some other mini attractions in the site like the komodo dragons and some playful monkeys.

Inside the cave, it was pitch black if not for the super spotlight that every boat has. Someone from the front part of the boat is tasked to hold the spotlight and follow the instructions provided by the tour guide as to where should the person point the spotlight. Luckily, Babs and I were seated in front and I got the spotlight control.While navigating the cave, bats were flying everywhere and thank goodness it's dark inside because if I can see all of them swarming us, I don't think I'll last that long in there! So yeah, the boatman/tour guide showed us different stalactite and stalagmite formations that looked like different things such as vegetables and even the Holy Family. I could not remember how long the underground river tour lasted but it definitely was an experience although it's not something that I'd like to do again in the future. Once is enough as they say.

So I've finally covered days 1 and 2 of our Palawan getaway and I hope you guys enjoyed it. If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to write on the comment section. Up next is the rest of our activities during days 3 to 5 so see you next time!

Click below if you want to directly go the second and third installments of this three part blog series.

And So Our Great Palawan Adventure Just Got Better! PART 2

Save the Best for Last! Our Great Palawan Adventure PART 3
Save the Best for Last! Our Great Palawan Adventure Part III - See more at: http://ankamilyepuda.blogspot.in/#sthash.UokHHyux.dpuf
Save the Best for Last! Our Great Palawan Adventure Part III - See more at: http://ankamilyepuda.blogspot.in/#sthash.UokHHyux.dpuf
Save the Best for Last! Our Great Palawan Adventure Part III - See more at: http://ankamilyepuda.blogspot.in/#sthash.UokHHyux.dpuf