Palawan Day 7 – El Nido

I fetched breakfast from El Nido Midtown Bakery – sugary bread – and then a coffee and banana bread from a lovely little pancake and waffle spot on the corner of the hotel.  

Today we went on a tour of Bacuit Bay – Tour A.  It’s simple in El Nido. You have 4 choices – A, B,C,D.  A promised a tour to a secret lagoon, a small lagoon kayaking spot, a snorkelling spot, lunch on a beach, and finishing up on 7 Commandos Beach.  We paid P1,200 each plus P200 environment fee per person, payable once only, even if you do other tours. Good quality snorkels and masks were free.  We needed to rent watershoes – P100 per pair. Well worth it, for we needed to wade 50m or so to the boat through a rocky, sea urchin minefield. There were 17 on our boat, not including the captain, chef, and guide.  A traditional wooden banka boat, like a water boatsman insect. We had a fun, friendly group. English and Welsh girls, a Ukranian couple, a Colombian couple, and a really friendly Portuguese guy called Carlos – from Porto, of all places!  There was also an Australian couple. We all bonded very well. The tour was fantastic, especially once the sun came out on the lunch beach. The fish lunch was good. Vendors in canoes or on the beach were doing a roaring trade selling coconuts with rum and beer.  

The highlight of the tour  was the kayaking spot, where, for P200, we could kayak through a pristine lagoon, although most couples were busy posing for selfies or doing various instaposes rather than actually kayaking.  Such was the beauty of the place. You could see right to the bottom – it was pure, pristine water. Like kayaking over an aquarium.  

This done, we headed for the lovely 7 Commandos beach – deep golden sand, palms and vegetation furnishing the white brown karsts.  

We bought a couple of rhum (as they spell it here) cokes – P50 a pop, from a little wooden shack – served in paper cups with paper straws, of course, for here they are serious about preserving the environment – the environment that sustains the tourism that sustains the locals.  

We wandered down to the plush Vellago Beach Resort, 350 euros a night, if you fancy it, and then back again to the boat after a good tour.  It was a perfect tour, all in all.

We returned to the picturesque Coron Coron beach, waded out, and then we headed into a couple of hotels to ask about availability, but I was unconvinced.  We got a trike back to town. For dinner we stayed in the hotel, had a lovely meal on the rooftop terrace, washed down with a couple of San Miguels. The ATM’s in town had run out of cash, and this place was handy in that we could stick the bill on the room and pay everything by card later.  A great day.

Author: Neil

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