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Palawan Tourist Information



Time has stood still in Palawan.  Branded as the country's last frontier, Palawan has managed to preserve its fascinatingly natural habitat over the years.

Situated southwest of Mindoro and north of Malaysia's Sabah Island, Palawan is the country's largest province with its 1.5 million-hectacre land area.  More than a thousand islands and islets compose Palawan's territory making the province an ideal breeding ground for tropical flora and fauna.  Indeed, it is in Palawan where endemic Philippine animals like the bearcat, mousedeer and Palaway peacock pheasant co-exist with some of Africa's wildlife species such as the giraffes, elands, zebras and gazelles.

Palawan's population follows the same pattern.  Through the years, the province has attracted people of all backgrounds.  It is said that today's Palawenos are the result of 81 different cultural groups.

Many visitors have come to love this hauntingly beautiful province where the dramatic landscape is also amazingly diverse - from coral reefs to mountain ranges, stark cliffs of sheer limestone, rainforests abundant with rare wildlife, and unmatched underwater views acclaimed by leading divers.

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Tourist Attractions / Things to Do

Archeological Hunts
THoghseemingly untouched, Palawan has its fair share of history.  Go down Cuyo Island and visit the Cuyo Spanish Church Fort with its massive walls ten meters high and two meters wide.  Archeologists have also unearthed stone-age tools, Chinese burial jars and ancient ornaments in Palawan's numerous caves.

Beach-Combing
If the sun is your master, then Palawan is your refuge.  Visit the Balsahan or Tagbarungis Swimming Resort, Kalis Point, orbetter yet, get a taste of El Nido.  An almost utopian island resort, El Nido features black marble caves, tabletop corals, fantastic marine life and the requisite while sand beach.  Name after the swallow's nests which abound in its mountain caves, El Nido also feature one of the most delicious samplings of the freshest seafood in the land.

Calauit Island
Located on the northwest coast of Palawan, Calauit Island is a 3,700 hectacre game preserve and wildlife sanctuary.  Apart from indigenous species, the island also features African wildlife like giraffes, zebras and gazelles.  Sea turtles, seacows and a variety of marine life nestle at its shores.

Diving and Snorkeling
With its numerous islands, Palawan easily lends itself to diving and snorkeling.  Some ofthe more popular dive sites are Rita Island of Tres Marias, Pandan Island, Panglima reefs and Tubbataha Reefs.  A startlingly beautiful site, Tubbataha's charm is accented by the giant turtles and flock of birds which come to visit its shores.

Island-Hopping
Palawan consists of about 1,768 islands; the Calamian Island group to the north, the Cuyo Islands group to the northwest, and the Balabac-Bugsuk group to the southwest.  For the less adventurous, hie off to Honda Bay.  From there, you can take your pick of your own little hideaway from Cowrie Island and Pandon to La Isla Bonita and Isla de Nagusuan.  Amidst these islands lie lovely white sand beaches, exciting dive sites or just a quiet refuge to get away from it all.

St. Paul's Subterranean National Park
Beneath St. Paul Mountain lies a quiet underground river which snakes for about eight kilometers before opening up into a clear lagoon, then flowing into the South China Sea.  The Park also features the exciting Monkey Trail with its series of wooden paths to the forest.  The forest itself is a hotspot for tropical flora and fauna.  Monkeys, lizards and squirrels can be seen scampering away at the sound of human footsteps.

Tabon Caves
Called the "Cradle of the Philippine Civilization," the Tabon Caves are the oldest known habitation site in Southeast Asia.  In it was unearthed a skill that dates back to 22,000 years ago.

Travel

Getting There
There are twice-daily flights from Manila to the privince's capital, Puerto Princesa City, via Philippine Airlines and Air Philippines.  The flights take about one hour.  Puerto Princesa is only about one and a-half kilometers from the airport.  Daily chartered flights are also available to El Nido, Taytay and Busuanga in Northern Palawan.  Flying time is about one hour and forty-five minutes.

Getting Around
Tricycles and motorcycles with two-seater sidecars are the most accessible form of transportation.  There are also buses and jeepneys, but they are more often than not, cramped and crowded.  Rental cars are available in Puerto Princesa.  Go island hopping via pumpboat.

Staying In
The main hotel in the province is the Asiaworld Hotel located in Puerto Princesa City.  There are smaller but equally comfortable accommodations like those at Hilside Resort and Puerto Pension.  Lokewise, there are numerous island resorts scattered all over the province: El Nido Resort - Miniloc and Lagen Island Resort in El Nido; Club Noah Isabelle in Apulit Island; Taytay and Amanpulo Resort in Pamalican Island, Cuyo, Palawan.

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