Category Archives: Tourism

PHL Tourism: Looking At Brighter Side

Are you a tourism ambassador or heckler? Come join the growing number of citizens pushing the Philippine tourism bandwagon to the world. We are all in it together and when we really want something done, something happens—change.

The latest change we heard this week was a breath of fresh air. After almost six years of being named one of the “worst airports” in the world, the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) has finally lost its unpalatable tag.

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Boracay, Cebu, Palawan top list of best islands outside US

Image result for Boracay, Cebu, Palawan top list of best islands outside USBoracay, Cebu and Palawan have topped a travel magazine’s 2017 list of 30 best islands in the world outside of the United States.

Conde Nast Traveler (CNT), a luxury and lifestyle travel magazine based in New York, released the list on  Tuesday, following a survey conducted among more than 300,000 readers.

The three Philippine islands ranked higher than other world-famous islands such as Mykonos, Greece; Bali, Indonesia; Bermuda; St. Barts; Ibiza, Spain;  Capri, Italy; and Bora Bora, French Polynesia. Continue reading

“Best Island in the World” adds a spectacular race to the GSS!

Crystal clear water in amazing shades of blue, secret beaches with powder white sand, hidden lagoons surrounded by lush limestone cliffs and snorkeling sites teeming with tropical fish and other marine life, these are just some of the reasons why Palawan has been named the “Best Island in the World” by Travel + Leisure and Condé Nast for two years in a row. The Swimjunkie Challenge El Nido offers you the choice of a 4km or 8km swim in the turquoise waters of El Nido assisted by the Philippine Coast Guard and over 150 volunteers to ensure that you have an incredible and safe race experience.  Continue reading

Boracay, Cebu, Palawan top world’s best islands list in 2017

Image result for Boracay, Cebu, Palawan top world’s best islands list in 2017Boracay once again topped the list of the best islands in the world by the readers of an international travel magazine, and directly behind it are the Cebu and Visayan Islands and Palawan, also popular tourist spots.

The results of the Condé Nast Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards survey for the year revealed the small island off Panay Island, known for its white-sand beach and “thriving nightlife scene,” won the fancy of most of the more than 300,000 readers who sent in their votes. Continue reading

Russian envoy wants to promote Coron as tourist destination

Image result for Russian envoy wants to promote Coron as tourist destinationPUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Palawan — Russian Ambassador to the Philippines Igor Khovaev wants to promote the town among his compatriots as a tourism destination.

Khovaev, who arrived Tuesday in the municipality for a three-day cultural and language training-seminar about his country, was accompanied by consuls Denis Karenin and Carmi Garcia, and Department of Tourism (DOT) representatives Gloria Punzalan and Zenaida Potapurchenco, said Coron administrator Jonathan Dabuit. Continue reading

Beach party lovers brave stormy weather for first Oktoberfest in El Nido

EL NIDO – A stormy night didn’t stop the party by the beach at the Lio Tourism Estate in this Palawan town Saturday, as locals and foreigners alike braved the rain for beer and good vibes in the first Oktoberfest celebration here.

The El Nido beer fest took a departure from the usual loud Manila Oktoberfest parties as it sought to give the over 300 guests that night the perfect beach-side vibe.

The 2017 Oktoberfest here featured acoustic performances from Sud Ballecer, frontman of rock/jazz fusion band SUD; and El Nido’s local artist Lyka. Flair bartending duo Liquid Concepts also lit up the night with their performances.  Continue reading

Why Coron is the next big thing in Philippine travel

Coron Island Cove viewed from a ridge, often seen in postcards and travel magazines. LOUISE SANTIANO

“Visit Coron, Palawan—
where nature’s the best!
Mga luto na matitikman
pasado sa inyong digest;
mga isla na mapupuntahan
susulit sa inyong budget;
mga views na naggagandahan
sakto sa inyong gadgets…”

You probably must have heard that song rendered in a folksy beat on a popular travel show on TV.

The singer-composer himself, Jonel Vergara, guided us on a tour of Coron recently, and for two days let us experience every activity and scenery enumerated in the song—from watching the sunset on the peak of Mt. Tapyas to eating cashew nuts on the roadside. Continue reading

Cable car in Palawan’s Underground River? No, thanks – management

NATURAL WONDER. The Puerto Princesa Underground River. Photo by Mara Cepeda/Rappler

PUERTO PRINCESA, Philippines – A cable car facility within the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park? It’s unlikely.

Park Superintendent Elizabeth Maclang said the management is not keen on the proposed facility and other similar attractions for tourists visiting the Puerto Princesa Underground River (PPUR), as suggested by the city government’s planning consultant, Palafox Associates.

Maclang said while they will consider the reasons raised by Palafox for the project, it will be “subject to approval” of the Protected Area Management Board (PAMB). Continue reading

Solon urges Duterte to renew BIMP-EAGA travel tax waiver

Image result for Solon urges Duterte to renew BIMP-EAGA travel tax waiverA lawmaker is to revive an old policy that waives travel taxes for anyone passing through Mindanao and Palawan ports to arrive at destinations within a Southeast Asian subregional economic bloc.

Davao del Sur Representative Mercedes Cagas filed House Resolution 1270 on September 4, urging President Rodrigo Duterte to renew the travel tax exemption policy that covers passengers arriving from the said ports to any destination in the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA). Continue reading

Palawan to spearhead formation of tourism cooperatives

Image result for Palawan to spearhead formation of tourism cooperativesPUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Palawan — The provincial government of Palawan is looking into the possibility of spearheading the formation of cooperatives to maximize expertise, skills and information in the development and marketing of the local tourism industry.

Victoria Ladica, cooperative development officer of the Provincial Cooperative Development Office (PCDO), said Tuesday there is currently no cooperative in Palawan that is directly related to tourism despite being one of two leading industries in the province. Continue reading

This Boutique Hotel In Palawan Is Now 100% Solar-Powered

746725_15071410310032240800.jpg“Qi Palawan” is now the first full-service, air conditioned resort in the Philippines to provide 24 hours power using only solar power

Sustainability has always been at the core of Qi Palawan’s ethos.  The resort was designed with fuel efficiency and sustainability in mind using bamboo, a fast-growing tree that does not require pesticides, and 100% local materials and labor.

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VIRAL: Canadian tourist to donate P1.2M in equipment to Coron hospital

HEARTFELT DONATION. Canadian tourist John Abou-Samra will be donating P1.2 million worth of hospital equipment to the Coron District Hospital. Photo courtesy of John Abou-Samra

MANILA, Philippines – John Abou-Samra, a Lebanese-born Canadian, has been saving up for a grand cruise around the world in time for his retirement in late 2017. But his plans changed after his visit in June to Coron, Palawan.

Palawan has been recognized by global award-giving bodies for its wreck diving spots, pristine waters, and rich marine ecosystem.

Samra wanted to find these out for himself.

Samra, who just came from a trip to El Nido, Palawan, was having the time of his life in Kayangan Lake, Coron, when his trip took an ugly turn. Continue reading

Why this new enclave in El Nido should be your next beach destination

EL NIDO, Palawan – If the gloomy weather is making you crave for the beach, here’s a getaway for all seasons.

The Lio Estate, a new development of AyalaLand Hotels and Resorts Corp. in a largely untouched corner of northern Palawan, is shaping up to be the next preferred beach destination in this tourist hub.

Accessible via a 55-minute direct flight from Manila, the enclave, the “first eco-masterplanned community” in El Nido, is a one-stop destination where guests may have both an adventure and a peaceful respite from the daily grind. Continue reading

SM Puerto Princesa set to open Sept. 15

Glass walls at the main entrance and linear overhang create an inviting appearance.

Known as the Philippines’ last ecological frontier, the province of Palawan is a natural wonder with its vast tracts of tropical rainforests and a huge expanse of marine wilderness.

In the heart of Palawan lies the city of Puerto Princesa, a tropical paradise with a bustling urban center ideal for business with leisure trips. Lush rainforests and white sand beaches are simply hours away from the city proper, where a banking, commercial, IT, and BPO boom have made it one of the country’s fast developing cities.

Glass walls at the main entrance and linear overhang create an inviting appearance.

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What to do in the Jewel of the Philippines: Palawan

Constantly rated as one of the best islands in the world, Palawan, in the South West of the Philippines, has it all. Beaches, snorkeling, island hopping, scuba diving, hiking, and amazing local and international food.

Most people start in Puerto Princesa, the capital of Palawan, which is a great spot to head off to the rest of the island. With plenty of daily flights, it makes for an easier and cheaper place to fly into then El Nido or Coron. A lot of people come here to jump on a live aboard boat for diving trips to the UNESCO world heritage site of Tubbataha Reefs National Park.  Continue reading

Inside Culion, the Philippines’ “Island of No Return”

What used to be the gate that separates lepers from the healthy now welcomes visitors to Culion. All photos by Jessica BartolomeCULION, Palawan – A tall gate stands firm a few steps away from the port of Culion Island in Palawan, welcoming visitors to Barangay Libis.

Hermie “Pastor” Villanueva, a 47-year-old tour guide, stood under the gate. “Leproso,” he said, gesturing to one side of the gate. “Sano,” he added, indicating the other side.

More than a century ago, the gate served as a boundary between two worlds — that of the “leproso” (leper) and that of the “sano” (clean). It warned that you’re about to enter a leper zone. Continue reading

Limestones, moody waters, and a dash of history at the Calamian Islands

Kayangan Lake.CORON, Palawan — The chilly water was a welcome respite from the heat, coming up to our hips as we disembarked from our boat to the turquoise sea below.

We were on Taraw Beach, our first stop after arriving in Coron. The tour has barely started and we were already drenched.

Taraw Beach boasts of white sands and clear waters on the edges of a towering piece of rock you have to crane your neck to see. Continue reading

Dora no Explorer: Nickelodeon axes Palawan resort plan after outcry

coron palawamAmerican children’s television network Nickelodeon said Wednesday it had abandoned plans for a themed resort on an island known as the Philippines’ last ecological frontier following a backlash from environmentalists.

Nickelodeon said in January that it would build an “undersea attraction and resort” on Palawan island that would let fans “interact with the brand and the iconic characters they love,” including SpongeBob SquarePants and Dora the Explorer. Continue reading

Massive highway planned for Philippines’ Palawan Island

Lawmakers want to declare Pag-asa island cluster as special ecological tourism zone

A aerial photo of the Philippine-claimed Pag-asa Island, also known as Thitu Island. (AP / MANILA BULLETIN)Lawmakers want to declare the Pag-asa Island and its adjoining islands of Parola, Kota and Panata in the municipality of Kalayaan, province of Palawan as an ecotourism destination and protected area.

Palawan Representatives Franz Alvarez, Frederick Abueg and Gil P. Acosta Sr. said the Pag-asa Island Cluster should be declared as a special ecological tourism zone to promote and develop it as a tourist destination for domestic and international tourists. Continue reading

Palawan LGU says no one told them about Nickelodeon underwater theme park

The local government of Busuanga and Coron said no one approached them to discuss the proposed Nickelodeon underwater theme park.

In an interview with GMA News Online, Busuanga Mayor Elizabeth Cervantes said at first, they were not aware that Nickelodeon would be putting up an underwater theme park in Coron.

She said it was only through the news that they have learned about it. Continue reading

Roxaco to develop 87 hectares in Palawan

Roxaco Land Corp., the property development arm of Roxas and Company Inc., signed a joint venture agreement with the Sandoval family to develop an 87-hectare property in Busuanga, Palawan into a master planned resort estate.

RCI chairman Pedro E. Roxas said in a recent interview the project called Sananda Bay would be implemented in phases and would target various segments of the market including local tourists, business travelers and foreign visitors looking for quality resorts in Palawan. Continue reading

Fil-Chinese capitalists eyeing investments in Palawan

A group of Filipino-Chinese businessmen is looking at the possibility of venturing in fish port and water system development projects in this city, and tourism investments in the northern town of San Vicente because of their competitive advantages compared to other areas in the country.

Federation of Filipino Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (FFCCCII) vice president Mary Go Ng said their interest was kindled by a presentation Tuesday night of an interesting development master plan made by Palafox Associates. Continue reading