El Nido, the second time around

(PERSONAL)

El Nido the second time around.

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Hidden Beach as part of Tour C package of our El Nido escapade 2019
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This quick 2 minutes hiking to Matinloc Shrine
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Nacpan Beach

Not until I visited Siargao Island last February 2019, El Nido has been my favorite beach of all time. It was my favorite island and it also plays a significant place in my travel life – since it was where I had my first solo travel ever.

Also ReadMy first solo travel in El Nido, Palawan for 5D / 4N (full itinerary, budget, and tips)

Related : SIARGAO TRAVEL GUIDE : My Solo Escapade for 6D/5N

*I updated my travel guide based on my recent travel and included additional options to look out for your packages.

Nacpan Beach was one of my favorite amongst the beaches in the Philippines. It was a perfect way to beach bum and to enjoy the beach front while reading a book nor sipping for that coconut treat with you.

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my BFF Trina and Me

“Kuya Php 300 pesos nalang dalawa” I remember Trina haggling for that 2 nice set of couch in Nacpan intead of Php 500 pesos, constantly saying

di naman kame foreigner — POOReigner lang kame”  and out of the blue, the supervisor then agreed into it! HAHAHAHAHA!!!

This is how my second El Nido escapade seems to revolve for the entire week.

I had the opportunity to visit El Nido once again but this time with my best friend (*all the way from Dubai) – Trina 🙂  *another back story, Trina was my travel buddy during my first escapade at Iloilo-Bacolod-Guimaras I remember how unprepared we are with our travel that time circa 2016. We run out of money, literally no food for dinner, no plans and all for the boat transfers, we splurge unconsciously and didn’t really know how to travel on our own!!!! Hahahaha!! But we certainly learned a lot from that experience.

Also readIloilo-Bacolod-Guimaras (5D/4N full itineraries and budget)

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CABUGAO ISLAND | way back 2016 as our first trip together
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Altrove is love!!! Pizza and pasta forever

Anyways, going back to El Nido.

What could have been the best memory that I got considering I am visiting this place the second time around?? — well, how can I forget how chill and relaxing our trip was. Eating the best-seller pizzas from Altrove two nights in a row, splurging into our comfort food for pasta, overlooking a beach front with a good set of breakfast from Puka Beach Hotel, and swimming and floating into the beautiful beaches and islands around.

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Hidden Beach
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Breakfast is served at Puka Beach Hotel

I have always been too independent when it comes to my travels, I researched a lot, talk a lot, ask questions a lot, and save and book for everything in as much as I could. But having Trina the entire week gave me the chance to really relax and savor the moment while we are vacationing, I realized that it pays a lot when you have a travel partner who has the complete opposite of your strengths, we certainly move based on our expertise hahaha!! Share all those separate travels that we had, and exchange stories for new set of itineraries.

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Never not eating with this girl

El Nido on the other hand still look as radiant as the first time I get to see it, it’s blue crystalline water at Small Lagoon would always be enchanting!!! Our kayak activity to get to explore in these gatorade blue water is pretty impressive.

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kayaking all the way to the Small Lagoon | Php 300 for 2 pax
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This is one of my favorite in El Nido!!! | Small Lagoon

Swimming and snorkeling the entire time until our skin turns 2-3 shades darker after the week. Thank goodness for the aloe vera gel! For all those sunburnt skin hahaha!!!

Relative to being one of the best island in the world, please do expect a lot of tourists wherever you go, manage your time and itinerary properly, book in advance if you could and search for the resto and food you might be craving for. So you get to set your expectations as well.

Meanwhile, if you are a sunset lover as much as I am, sunsets on one hand would always be special at Maremegmeg Beach where you can stay around and walk barefoot as the sand touches you. There were actually quite more activities to do, but I think I got that covered the first time around when I visited the place. While beach bumming is still perfect at Nacpan Beach. You can be at this both beaches via habal or motorbike or via tricycle (a three wheeled motorbike)

*Also readNacpan & Marimegmeg Beach Day Tour in El Nido, Palawan

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Sunset sesh beside this Maremegmeg Tree

What is nice about El Nido, it can easily be reached via Puerto Princesa — though it takes around  5 – 6 hours travel time all the way to El Nido proper, booking via http://www.klook.com would do the trick. You get to decide and determine your van schedule based on your flight schedule.

Trina and I actually also explored Puerto Princesa after four days in El Nido, trying to navigate this part of Palawan. I’ll be posting soon that unforgettable Underground River experience of ours in Puerto Princesa as well. So stay tune for that!

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Also read : *Underground River at Puerto Princesa blog post to follow

From El Nido, you can then catch a ferry for 3 – 4 hours going to Coron at the same time. So if you are really planning to start backpacking Palawan, you may really do so.

In terms of expenses, I feel that I have saved better during my solo travel the first time since I only stayed in hostel as well. If you wanted to check how beautiful and how cool a hostel can be check out Spin Designer Hostel.

Also read :  Spin Designer Hostel – Where to stay in El Nido?

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This sunset view from our hotel room 

It was certainly the first time I experienced the hostel industry and since then even outside the Philippines I tend to book and look for hostel places first as it is cheaper, plus an avenue for you to meet new people from different nationalities is a plus factor for hostels. But anyhow our 4 days accommodation at Puka Beach Hotel was also really one for the books.

Imagine the beach view every morning and every sunset just across our room which makes it extra special.

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http://www.ilovenats.com | @nathaliecsalcedo CIAO!!! 

AS a whole, you see visiting a place the second time around is like watching a film on repeat.
You get to notice and see the small details you missed out the first time, it’s like seeing everything in another perspective, travelling in a different time and a different phase —- oooohhhh El Nido, you are truly a gem to see ☀️

P.S from Trina Bulgar’s post ~~~ “It’s been 4 years since our last trip together.
It was also the very first leisure trip, neither school nor work related.

Young, idealistic, zest filled yuppies, we braved Visayas with our motto “bawal magpahinga” as long as we know the name of the province, we can reach it.

Little did anyone know, the best part of traveling with YOU is the planning.
We know how to sync our interests and transform it into a tailored fit itinerary.

From sharing notes way back in college to exchanging itineraries. My college best friend is now my best “travel mate”. (cause KIM is the best “travel buddy” hahaha!! )

Nonetheless, we wouldn’t choose to go to all the places together.

Instead, we will meet and travel to those places we choose to go together and trade our takeaways to those we didn’t.

I miss you Talia, I’m blessed that I found someone who’s so much like me in so many ways. S.M.I.L.E.

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excerpt from Trina’s Facebook post :Told you, super gandang ganda ako sa photo na ito. Like it captured all our team work and collabs way back college. Ganern level. Tas super candid like we are in our most natural state. So thanks dun sa katabi natin sa bangka na umagaw pa ng life vest ko :p” 

If you wanted to see the actual places I’ve been, check out my IG story highlight – under Palawan @nathaliecsalcedo 

Hope this helps you too.

Follow me on IG @nathaliecsalcedo and send me DM if you have other questions!

I also update my FB Page @ilovenatsblog

xoxo,

*All photos were all original from the blogger

 

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