Travel: Coron in Palawan Islands is an exotic yet budget place to visit before you die

One Google search on ‘Palawan Islands’ and then a click on ‘Images’ will take you to a world you will be left wondering, if it actually exists. For long I have been on a mission to discover breathtaking places which aren’t branded (and hence much cheaper, less touristy, less crowded to explore). Palawan islands in Philippines falls in such category and out of the three hot spots – El Nido, Coron and Puerto Princesa – I selected the latter two to trace a family fun itinerary with mix of lakes, clearest water in Asia, best snorkelling points, powdery white sand beaches, jungle safari, close to airports (so no long road travel), easy hike and treks, hot water springs and an underground river rated amongst the seven natural wonders of the world. 

View of Coron from the flight. My first view and confirmation of my spot on decision.
I cover the best of Coron here, will write separate for Puerto Princesa and for El Nido you can read my traveller-blogger sister’s blog.

Stay & Tours

Coron’s scenic airport barely can handle two tiny flights at a time, the washrooms are untidy and often without water and travel to hotels at town Busuanga around 40mins.

 I will strongly, very strongly recommend a stay at Coron Bancuang Mansion and take a fully loaded package with transfer, trips, dinners, lunches, bfast and a penthouse stay. 

The hotel laid our dinner everyday at designated time by the sea breeze!
Macquinit Hot spring is great place to dip in for couple of hours specially around sunset
The staff are super excellent, their trips (arranged through Calamian travels) had great guides – Jomar & Ms Chris – who would guide you to best snorkelling points. Ms Chris even filmed our entire dream snorkelling experience, one of the four times we did snorkelling in two days. 

My Daughter praying in church In hands folded Hindu style. We as a family visit all places of worship and strongly believe there is only one almighty and he doesn’t come in different branded packages!
Dad and Son after climbing 500 odd steps on Mount Tapyas hill. 260 more steps to go!
View from Mount Tapyas hill. This is all part of the Coron town tour.
Calauit safari we did on day 2 and is fun for kids
The hotel gave us early checkin at 9am complimentary and their massage, snorkelling rental costs are much lower than market and to top it all they would keep the dinner ready everyday by the balcony over sea breeze. We did three personalised trips – Coron town trip, Calauit safari trip and Coron escapades trip and these four days, all inclusive cost us less than 1000USD = 1300SGD = 50000INR for a family of four.

I will end the talking here and let thirty odd of the best pictures say it aloud. In our week long tour of Palawan islands I didn’t see any Indian tourist or hardly any Chinese tourist. It was majorly western tourists who come all the way here. When half the worlds population (India and China) have missed it completely.

En route to Calauit safari
On same day as Safari we next went to Malcapuya island – our first time snorkelling experience – and easily the best we saw over two days.
Day 3 we headed to Kayangan lake, twin lagoon and host of other beaches and snorkelling points
En route to Kayangan lake your jaws will drop at the sights you see
An Australian model photoshoot got the crowds excited too!
All excited family boat ride amidst heavenly scenes
This the Kayangan Lake is rated the cleanest and clearest lake in Asia
For your eyes only
These were original colours of the sea as given by God
The joy of getting crabs for lunch!
Calamian travels arranged good quality and quantity lunch for a family of four in a personal boat
Daughters grow up real fast. My girl voluntarily going towards edge of boat posing as a robot.
The Dab. The Paul Pogba Dab. The dance step Dab as requested by my Daughter to make it the photo pose
Coron airport is so small that barely two small flights can operate on it at one time!

Palawan island Philippines is rated amongst top two most beautiful islands of the world consistently. Our ten day trip (also covering Puerto Princessa and Manila) cost us nett of 3600 USD = 5000 SGD = 250000 INR everything inclusive – flights, stay, tours, meals, shopping, gifts for friends etc etc.

Paradise visited

The new year is arriving. Hope the other side brings love peace joy to entire world

Dad Daughter Discussions
Reaching back tiny Coron town. Would be smaller than my village roots town Belda!

Entry to Philippines (all major entry cities like Manila, Cebu) are visa free for majority Asian citizens. Indians who are permanent residents at Singapore or have a Schengen visa stamp in their passport also have visa free entry currently. Which means NOW is the time to visit this amazing country.

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