"PUERTO PRINCESA and PALAWAN" Top 5 Page for this destination Puerto Princesa by davidjo
Puerto Princesa Travel Guide: 334 reviews and 838 photos
When i visited Palawan as a tourist i realised i had found a special place. The plane flew over the islands off of the north, over El Nido, Port Barton then across the island over Honda Bay before slowly descending to land on the runway which starts at the sea. From your window you will see mountains, jungle and rugged seashore with idyllic beaches. Ex- Mayor Hagedorn has done so much for the city and is well known for his environmental concerns. The airport is only a 5 minute ride to the city centre, i say city but it's more like a town. Back in 1990 Puerto Princesa really was "The Last Frontier" as after you left town the road north was not surfaced, just a track going north through forest for 280 kms until you reached El Nido. To visit the Underground river you had to take a boat from Baheli or Port Barton, and there were only a handful of cars, the town was quiet and the only traffic going up and down Rizal Avenue were tricycles. There was a choice of a handful of guest houses and people from Manila were frightened to come here as it was known as a wild place, a malarial place and far away from the rest of the Philippines. That first time i saw Palawan in 1990 i knew i would return.
I returned in 1995 and opened up a restaurant guest house for backpackers but after the kidnappings in Honda Bay a couple of years later the tourists dwindled so i gave up the business, no point spending my time in an empty building waiting for the occasional visitor when i could be out enjoying myself. so the last years we purchased 10,000 sq. m. built a house and landscaped the area, planting many different types of fruit trees. So now we have our little part of paradise.We often take trips to the beach or ride the motorbike to all points in the island. We usually take a trip to a neighbouring country in S.E. Asia once a year and another domestic trip, but always pleased when i return to the City in the Jungle. we never get tired of the numerous visits to Sabang and trekking the Monkey Trail, or visits to some of the wonderful beaches. I am lucky to be able to settle here.
I am not sure if all the changes are good as i kind of love nature and not a city man, but where there were rough roads there are now surfaced roads. There used to be one flight a day, now there are 9, and in April Air Asia will also start flying here. There was one department store, now there are a few shopping malls open or being constructed. There were only a few cars, with occasional jeepney and tricycles were the normal way to get around town, now there are many buses,multi-cabs, minibuses and 100's of tricycles with traffic congestion. There were 3 gas stations in Puerto Princesa and now there are 25. There were 4 cinemas, now they have gone, we have countless stalls selling fake DVDs. There was one good hotel, now there are quite a few and over 100 places to stay. But now there is a dramatic increase in the number of tourists due to Mayor Hagedorn's wonderful campaign to introduce Palawan to the world by his successful endeavour in getting the Underground River recognised as one of the NEW 7 WONDERS of the WORLD.
- Pros:beaches, jungle, waterfalls, nature, cleanliness and low crime rate
- Cons:have to go via Cebu or Manila to visit other parts of the country.
- In a nutshell:COME TO THE LAST FRONTIER---YOU WON'T REGRET IT !!!
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