People who have been to this place have raved about its beauty. It really lives up to its expectations. It’s staying true to its promise of a paradise getaway. The photos we took did not really do much justice to what El Nido has to offer.  You have to see it through your own eyes. From the moment we went island hopping, the places we went to took my breath away. All of my worries went away. Honestly, I forgot about the city life. The beauty of El Nido is not only the crystal clear and emerald water, blue lagoon, coral reefs, limestone cliffs and white sand beaches but also the breathtaking view of it as a whole. It makes you want to come back and explore more. From what I learned, it has 50 beaches to be explored.

El Nido is a first class municipality of Palawan, a province from the Philippines. It comprises of 45 islands and islet. The towns of El Nido often serve as a starting point for travelers wishing to discover the Bacuit Archipelago. The towns are finally developing. El Nido (which means nest in Spanish) got its name from the tiny swiftlets that build edible nests out of their saliva in the massive limestone cliffs that surround the town proper. These nests are sold at extremely high prices for the famous Chinese delicacy bird’s nest soup.

El Nido is currently ranked #4 in Condé Nast Traveler‘s list of “20 Most Beautiful Beaches in the World.” CNNGo has called it the Best Beach and Island destination in the Philippines for its “extraordinary natural splendor and ecosystem.” –

The featured image is the town proper of El Nido, Palawan.

Let us hop on to the beautiful places we went.

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Sample El Nido Tour Map

DAY 1  (Tour A)

We availed the local tours to make the most of our travel. The tour guides were very friendly and helpful. They take care of their passengers well. Below are pictures of the boats that transport travelers like us to island hopping. This is the best way to explore the surrounding islands and islets.

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As soon as one of the boat crew manually veered off the boat, I could feel the excitement building in the air, ready to burst out like a cork from a bottle of champagne. The child in me wants to jump with joy after waiting too long for the other passengers to arrive but proper decorum must be observed from a lady like me.

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As the boat careened, we passed by many limestone cliffs.

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The Seven Commandos Beach

Our first destination was the Seven Commandos Beach. Because of too much amazement with the place, I forgot to ask the tour guide where the place got its name or I might not be listening. After googling the story behind it, it says that there were 7 soldiers who got stranded here during WWII. We’ll never know if its really the truth behind the name.

The first thing you’ll notice as the boat gets nearer to the shore are the rows of coconut trees from the pristine and white beach. Their leaves waved through the wind like they are beckoning you and welcoming you to get closer. It was a little crowded when we got there because this is the best beach to swim with its long stretch of white sand.

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Miniloc Island

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Big lagoon entrance, Miniloc island
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We sat at the bow of the boat so the tour guide can take our picture.
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Inside the big lagoon entrance, Miniloc Island

I for one thought that the water here was shallow but I was mistaken as soon as I alighted at the water. The kids are now confident in the water because they had a swimming lesson. I still have my fear in the water, especially if it’s too deep.
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Our lunch
The tour guides definitely have talents!

Secret Lagoon

After having lunch by the Miniloc Island, the boat took us to a Secret Lagoon. The entrance was just comfortable enough to enter the main lagoon. The color of the water here is different from the outside. It is murky since salt water and fresh water mix. I thought it was an underwater cave but it was really a lagoon.

Entrance of the Secret Lagoon
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With our tour guides
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Can you recognize the skull like limestone?
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Fresh coconut water to rehydrate

Small and Big Lagoon

This is the favorite part of the kids especially my daughter. The activity here is kayaking. It was the last leg of our island hopping journey. When we got there, there were already a lot of tourist kayaking. My husband and I rented the kayak for two and luckily there’s a kayak for the kids that will fit them all. We have to rent the small one for 400 pesos (almost 8 USD) and the big one for 600 pesos (almost 12 USD). At first, my husband and I have a difficulty steering the kayak but after a few minutes we got the hang of it. Oh boy! It was tiring after a few rounds. I had to ask my daughter to switch places with me since I noticed she wanted to paddle and her brothers were not allowing her. And my husband was exhausted already. I guess we both need to take our exercises seriously.


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That’s all for today! Next feature of my post is the second day tour. I hope you enjoyed looking at the pictures. It was definitely a great experience!