VIDEO| Virtual Vacation: El Nido, Philippines

Photos courtesy of Yasuhiro Muneno and Pixabay
Photos courtesy of Yasuhiro Muneno and Pixabay

VIDEO| Virtual Vacation: El Nido, Philippines

by Takahiro Takiguchi
Stripes Okinawa

Whether you’re working from home, sheltering in place or just staying home, if you’re like us, you’re probably dreaming of open skies, sandy beaches, tall mountains, or perfect powdery slopes. Our travel plans may be on hold, but that doesn’t mean we can’t dream up where we’ll go next.

Welcome to virtual vacation video series where we can explore destinations from the comfort of our homes.

Join us as we take a short virtual journey to El Nido, Philippines.

The great thing about this destination is that it is accessible from most of major cities in the Pacific theater via Manila or Cebu airport.

Often associated as the last out-of-the-way region in the Philippines, El Nido is located in the northern part of Palawan Island, about an hour flight from Manila. With about 50 small limestone islands scattered around the area, it is blessed with untouched mangrove forest, unique-shaped rocky mountains, white sand beach and turquoise sea water. Here you can enjoy great diving, kayaking, island hopping and other marine activities. This is definitely a wonderful place for a quick getaway.

Some of the must-see spots in El Nido include:

  • Big and Small Lagoons- These are the highlight of El Nido’s island-hopping tour. Tourists usually hop from the tour boat onto a rental kayak and explore the lagoons. The indescribable beauty of the ever-changing emerald sea water makes you feel as if you strayed into another world.
  • Cudugnon Cave- This large limestone cave is believed to have been used as shelter during World War II by Japanese soldiers. Today it is a great tourist attraction with rock formations inspiring a sense of wonder.
  • Puerto Princesa Underground River- A 6-hour drive from El Nido, Puerto Princesa Underground River is a UNESCO World Heritage site where more than 15-mile long river flows through a limestone cave. A one-hour tour on boat offers an adventurous experience of cruising the underground home of countless bats.

A visit to El Nido would not be complete without sampling popular rice dish, “paella,” steamed saffron-flavored glutinous rice with fresh seafood, chicken, olives and beans. “Adobo,” marinated in rich black broth flavored with vinegar and garlic and stewed with potatoes, carrots and onions is also a popular local food that you can’t miss.

I hope you enjoyed our virtual visit to the enchanting region of El Nido and that perhaps it's inspired your next trip. Stay safe and get ready to travel with us in our next video. Thanks for watching!

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