Travel Palawan Philippines! Palawan Island, Philippines is the largest island of the Philippines. The island is half desert, so still undeveloped. You can enjoy the jungle, mountains, and white beaches. Palawan is an archipelago with 1,780 islands on the western part. Due to amazing landscapes and high bio-diversity, Palawan island is known as “The Last Ecological Frontier of the Philippines”. The northern part is characterized by incredible clear waters, white beaches, and many species of flora and fauna. The north side is characterized by limestone cliffs and many species of tropical fish and coral. You’ll find amazing snorkeling and scuba diving here. There are also five species of endangered sea turtles. In the jungle you’ll find about 100 different species of birds. Palawan is an amazing tropical destination to relax and enjoy yourself.
Main destinations are the capital Puerto Princesa, El Nido on the north of island and also Coron Island where you can relax and do good snorkeling and diving. Also San Vicente is an other top destination on Palawan island.Travel Palawan Philippines will provide you with an unforgettable vacation. Use our guide to start planning your Palawan Philippines vacation today. Visit all of the most beautiful Islands of the Philippines here, or visit us on Pinterest
Palawan Weather (When to Visit)
The Philippines have a tropical marine climate with a winter monsoon and a summer monsoon. Palawan does not experience typhoons, but is marked by two very distinct seasons: the dry season from December to May, and the rainy season from June to November. With a minimum temperature of 71°F on average, a maximum temperature of 91°F on average, and mostly sunny weather, Palawan enjoys a very pleasant climate throughout the year. The lowest temperatures fall in January, while the hottest months are April and May.
Essentials to Pack for Palawan
- Slip On Shoes Flip flops will see you through most of your Philippines trip. If you want to bring other shoes, slip-on shoes that you can slide off when you enter your hotel or guesthouse are your best bet. I recommend some lightweight espadrilles like these or some comfy go-with-anything Birkenstock sandals like these.
- Dry Bag You can buy a dry bag in the Philippines, but they only cost a couple of dollars and I wouldn’t trust them for long. I used mine to get on and off the boats (you usually have to walk about waist-deep into the water) but I wouldn’t have swum with it or taken it underwater. If you want a bag you can pack camera gear in to take into hidden beaches and lagoons, buy a decent dry bag before you go.
- Walking shoes. You’re going to be spending lots of time on boats and in the water, but there are also some fantastic hikes. So pack a pair of running shoes that will dry quickly if they get back but will also support your feet.
- Water shoes. Some of the islands are only accessible by boat. You’ll have to swim (or walk) a little way, so a pair of water shoes like these will protect your feet from stones and anything lying on the beach.
- Underwater camera. The AKASO EK7000 4K30FPS Action Camera will get you some amazing photos and videos.
- Toiletries The toiletry essentials you will want to pack are skin care or hair care (for out in the sun), mosquito repellent, hand sanitizer wipes, and sun screen.
- Reusable Water Bottle The Philippines is cutting back on plastic. Help them out and do your bit for the planet by taking a refillable bottle with you. Try this great stainless steel refillable water bottle.
Best Palawan Beaches
For an easy day trip out of El Nido, head north by tricycle or motorbike to this incredible, golden-hued, 3 km beach. Development is limited to a few snack shacks and some basic lodging. Enjoy the mellow atmosphere of this great beach. There’s a shuttle van from El Nido with eight trips daily. Click Here for travel planning information on Nacpan Beach of El Nido.
San Vicente’s signature attraction is a real beauty. It actually consists of three beaches – Long Beach 1, 2 and 3 – which combined yield about 14 km of almost empty golden-hued, sunset-facing beach. Long Beach 2 is the most glorious; it’s 50 meters wide, faces the sunset and stretches uninterrupted for 7 km, navigable by foot or motorbike.
This incredibly beautiful, jungle-backed, stretch of golden sand toward the north tip of mainland Palawan is the center of El Nido’s surfing community. The season is November to March and board rental is available through a couple of places, including at Duli Beach Resort. To get here turn off the off the National Hwy around the Km 294 marker and continue 3.5 km on a very rough road that ends in a slippery single track to the beach proper.
The adventurous will surely want to check out tiny Secret Beach, which can only be entered by swimming through a keyhole slot in the western wall of Matinloc Island (generally can’t be accessed in August and September). But be warned: the entrance is lined with extremely jagged rocks and coral – do not even think of swimming through if there are any waves around as an accident could well be fatal.
Tiny Sabang has a beautiful, wind-lashed beach, huge tracts of pristine jungle and a famous underground river that draws van loads of day-tripping tourists from Puerto Princesa. While the underground river is certainly worth doing, Sabang’s main appeal lies in its wild setting. The surrounding rain forest is part of the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park, and offers world-class hiking and bird watching.
Best Palawan Tours & Activities
4D3N Puerto Princesa & El Nido Experience
This 4D3N itinerary to Palawan is a unique way of spending the vacation on the island. You’ll get to experience the best of both destinations and you’ll still have plenty of time to discover more. Learn more about the 4D3N Puerto Princesa & El Nido Experience.
Underground River Day Trip from Puerto Princesa City
Visit the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park, and paddle down the Puerto Princesa Underground River on this 8-hour tour. This underground river is one of the longest underground rivers in the world. Board a boat at the mouth of the cave at Sabang Wharf, and stop at the Buenavista viewpoint for views of the Ulugan Bay. You can also choose to upgrade to include a group or private trip to a ziplining experience at Ugong Rock Adventure Zipline and Spelunking. Learn more about the Underground River Day Trip.
Full-Day Honda Bay Island Hopping
Visit three of Honda Bay’s most beautiful islands on this full day tour, with optional upgrade to a private tour. First, visit Luli Island to swim, snorkel, or sunbathe. Move on to Pambato Reef for snorkeling, and catch sight of giant clams, colorful fish, and coral. Lastly, stop for lunch and relaxing on Cowrie Island. Learn more about the Full-Day Honda Bay Island Hopping Tour.
Puerto Princesa Fireflies Watching with Dinner
The Iwahig River is one of the best places in the Philippines to spot fireflies in their natural environment and cruising beneath a canopy of glittering fireflies is an unforgettable experience. On this evening tour from Puerto Princesa, glide along the river in a traditional paddle boat, enjoy magical views of the fireflies against the night sky, then tuck into a delicious dinner at a local restaurant. Learn more about the Puerto Princesa Fireflies Watching with Dinner.
Half-day Puerto Princesa City Tour
Become more familiar with Puerto Princesa and its main hangouts and highlights on this 5-hour tour, including round-trip transport from your city hotel. Along your tour route, visit eight destinations, including Plaza Cuartel, Immaculate Conception Cathedral, Baylwalk, Crocodile Farm, Baker’s Hill, Pasalubong Center, and Binuatan Creations Weaving Center. Learn more about the Half-Day Puerto Princesa City Tour.
Best Palawan Restaurants
Gypsy’s Lair Art Cafe
The Gypsy’s Lair is a hipster cafe and restaurant that serves authentic Thai cuisine, specializing in dishes like green curry, pad thai, and more. This place has nice interiors and contemporary paintings too by several local artists. Telephone: 63 918 909-5571 Web: Gypsy’s Lair Art Cafe.
One of the most popular restaurants in Puerto Prinsesa, Kalui is a native Filipino restaurant that serves traditional dishes with a unique twist. Some of their must-tries include the seaweed salad, sisig, lobster, and more. Telephone: 63 926 670-4410, or visit them on the web at Kalui Restaurant.
Kinabuchs Grill & Bar
Kinabuchs Grill & Bar is a Filipino bar and restaurant that is known to serve native and exotic dishes like tamilok, crocodile sisig, crabs, and more. Best to visit this restaurant at night to enjoy good food while chugging down some ice-cold beers. Telephone: 63 48 434-5194 Web: Kinabuchs Grill & Bar.
Badjao Seafront Restaurant
Badjao Seafront is a floating restaurant decorated with many Filipino handicrafts. It specializes in seafood fare like crabs, shrimps, squid, and so on. Because of its homey and cool ambiance, this is the perfect restaurant to go to with your family or special someone Telephone: 63 48 433 9912 Web: Badjao Seafront Restaurant.
Captain Ribs is a grill restaurant and music bar that welcomes diners in 2 cozy terraces and a comfortable lounge garden. Offering grilled meats and fishes, French and Italian dishes, and Asian fusion creations, it promises you that your first time won’t be your last. F Telephone: 63 926 712 1244 Web: Captain Ribs.
Best Palawan Bars
Sava Beach Bar
A contemporary cocktail bar/club worthy of El Nido’s status as a rising international starlet. Cocktails are expertly made with top-notch booze, and the bar menu features some of the best food in town. Try the chimichanga or baked mussels. Top DJs set the beachfront dance floor alight as the evening wears on. Telephone: 63 928 694 6743 Web: Sava Beach Bar.
Calling itself the only reggae bar in town (despite how often reggae is played on the beaches themselves), the Rasta Bar has lots of psychedelic colors and good beer. The establishment has a number of bands rotating through, so while the live music is a great attraction, on occasion you might find them playing something other than reggae. Since it’s located right on the beachfront, it’s hard to miss. Web: Rasta Bar.
Another reggae bar that’s famous on the island, Pukka Bar, features a live band each evening at 8 p.m. While the island is small, the bar is pretty well-known, meaning that you may need to show up early in order to get seats, since once the band goes on the elbow room gets tight. Telephone: 63 955 956-8178 Web: Pukka Bar.
Located further north along the island, this hidden gem might be overlooked by most tourists but has a lot to offer. Happy Hour runs from 5 to 7 p.m., and while there have been complaints when the bar runs out of beer, the cocktails cost about ninety pesos (just under two dollars) and margaritas and daiquiris are served large and cold. Web: Bacuit Grill.
The Beach Shack
The ubercool beach bar that makes Maremegmeg Beach (aka Las Cabanas Beach) tick. In the high season it assumes a Miami Beach vibe around sunset as it turns up the tunes and the pretty people flock to it. Telephone: 63 917 577 7513 Web: The Beach Shack.