El Nido seems to be a far flung place when I first heard about it. I was so ignorant about this place that the first thing that comes to my mind whenever I hear the word El Nido is an expensive resort. But now that I’ve been here for a couple of weeks already, I know that this paradise on Earth is accessible and can be a cheap destination too.
Here’s how you can get here:
Unfortunately as of now, only Seair serves the Manila-El Nido-Manila route by air. There seems to be no competition as of now although sometimes a chartered flight flies here too (check ITI Air).
Alternatively you can fly from Manila to Cebu to Puerto Prinsesa via Cebu Pacific Air, Zest Air or Airphil Express.
Once you get to Puerto Prinsesa, you can either take the bus which will cost you around P350 or take the shuttle van which will cost you around P600. They are only available at 5AM, 7AM and 9AM. If you don’t get to catch the bus or the van, you can then contact Fort Wally if they have a special trip in the afternoon. The special trip will cost you around P700.
On our way to El Nido, we stopped by a terminal to pick up more passengers. Unfortunately those passengers didn’t show up and some guys in the terminal asked us to add P500/person more to cover the cost. Together with the other passengers we politely decline to pay more since it isn’t our fault that their expected passengers didn’t arrive.
There’s a ferry service that brings passengers to El Nido and vice versa via Atienza Shipping. The cost is around P1000 and the travel time is around 28 hours. Their contact number in Manila is (02)2438848 and their El Nido phone number is 09185666786/09056445041.
EL Nido – Manila: M/F Departs at 12MN
Manila – El Nido: T/F Departs at 6PM
If you have more than a month to travel and enjoy the beauty of Palawan, I suggest you start your trip by flying from Manila to Coron and then hop on a ferry to El Nido and continue on to Puerto Prinsesa overland. From Puerto Prinsesa, you could just catch a plane back to Manila. Both Manila to Coron and Puerto Prinsesa is being served by local carriers such as Cebu Pacific Air, Zest Air and Airphil Express. You will definitely see most of the famous tourist spots here if you take this route.
Photo Credits: Pic by Frameless World