Planning your Palawan trip can be overwhelming at first, especially if this is your first time traveling in this part of the world. Where do you even begin? What’s step one? What’s the next thing to do?
I myself have traveled to many places in this world. I know that planning a trip can be such a daunting task. But hey, in the end, it’s still a smart thing to do! A smart thing to do by smart travelers. It just shows that you have an utmost concern for the place and the locals you will meet. You don’t want to turn your whole Palawan trip into a disaster, do you?
Although Palawan is becoming a bit quite attractive to young travelers who might not have a lot of money to afford some proper travel in their lives, in my humble opinion, what this region needs right now is more responsible and quality travelers. Those who respect the culture and help preserve Palawan’s nature. Those who can pay the right price for its beauty. Those who do not exploit. Those who can plan their Palawan trip way ahead of time.
Here are some 5 insider tips to help you plan a perfect Palawan trip!
Decide where you want to go
Palawan is an archipelagic province in the Philippines. The recognizable long stretch of an island on the map is about 450 kilometers long and 50 kilometers wide. It just makes sense to plan your Palawan trip way ahead of time because there’s more to it than meets the eye. Gone are the days of Kerouac. Gone are the days of randomly arriving in a place while holding Lonely Planet close to your heart. Backpacking style of travel is getting old and it’s not just sustainable anymore.
So, decide where you want to go to in Palawan. There are three major tourist destinations – El Nido, Coron and Puerto Princesa. Do you wish to adventurously cover all? It is up to you. Although, Port Barton is still worth visiting as the place remains untainted by hordes of travelers, too boring? Puerto Princesa is the gateway to other Palawan destinations yet very urbanized now. El Nido is the most popular place to visit due to the iconic spots around the Bacuit Archipelago, too touristy? While Coron remains as a scuba diving and WWII shipwreck haven, nevermind the chaotic town.
Decide the length of your Palawan trip
Deciding the length of your Palawan trip depends on your travel budget. If you only have 2 weeks of vacation from work, then it just makes sense to plan everything to ensure that you will have an unforgettable experience. In this way, you can book your flights way ahead of time to somehow reduce one of your biggest travel expenses.
If you know for how long exactly you will be in Palawan, you’ll be able to figure out how much you need to save or spend on adventure activities or sightseeing.
Choose the right Palawan tour operator
It goes without saying that choosing the right tour operator for your Palawan trip is the most important of all because you can’t just do everything on your own. You need a comprehensive tour operator that takes into consideration your interest and personality. An itinerary specialist who will help you every step of your Palawan travel planning. A local expert who will make sure that you’re having one hell of a great time in Palawan. You deserve more.
It is easy to get confused when choosing a tour operator as there are a lot of them offering the same Palawan travel packages or El Nido island-hopping tours. In this day and age, what you need is a more personalized Palawan travel experience. Take it from an insider, I’ve seen a lot of travelers getting frustrated due to lack of proper planning. The locals in Palawan are so used to seeing young travelers by now, thanks again to the Millenials’ travel bible – Lonely Planet. I have nothing against them though, all I want is to revolutionize travel and help preserve Palawan’s pristine nature. Remember the old adage – less is more?
Choose the best Palawan travel package
Apparently, choosing the best Palawan package and the right Palawan tour operator go hand in hand. Not all Palawan packages out there are for you. A whole-trip itinerary or a well-organized travel plan is what smart travelers prefer these days. As you find out what you truly deserve during your Palawan trip, the locals and nature in return, also get what they truly deserve.
A comprehensive operator will ensure that you book the best Palawan package that fits your needs. What you need is an all-inclusive package that covers almost everything – accommodation, personalized island-hopping tours, overland trips, transfers, local guides and wow moments.
Enjoy your Palawan trip
After choosing the right operator and the right Palawan travel package, it is time to have some proper fun! This is, of course, the best part of you Palawan trip, witnessing the beauty of Palawan’s nature in all its glory. From magical lagoons to pristine beaches, get ready to have an unforgettable tropical holiday experience.
Please use this blog post as a guideline, you can only trust the knowledge and expertise of a local expert. No glorification of some sort, just pure honesty straight to your heart. I am only here to set your expectations for your Palawan trip, simply because, you deserve the truth.
Karen is the local expert and itinerary specialist of Palawan AlterNATIVE. When she’s not traveling, she likes to immerse herself in a good book or blog about her life. Parts geek, parts scuba diver. Her other obsessions include things-to-do lists, cycling, solitude, and cryptocurrency. She currently lives with her cat in El Nido.