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One of the Grandest Places on Earth: Palawan, Philippines

If you’ve been searching all your life for that perfect place to spend your long awaited vacation, then look no further. Travel on to the island paradise of Palawan, Philippines! Located in the south eastern part of Asia, Palawan is the largest province in the country and home to what is considered as the most beautiful island beach in the world, the El Nido. It is also known the world-over for having one of nature’s new Seven Wonder: the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River, which is the longest underground river in the world. However, it doesn’t stop there. There are other places in Palawan which may be a haven to the most adventurous spirit; coves, beaches, diving and hiking sites, lush virgin forests and natural rock formations, subterranean caverns, and heritage sites can be found across the different islands that make Palawan as one of the top tourist destination spots.

Curiously, Palawan is made up of a large central island that is surrounded by many smaller islands; the northeast group of islands of Calamianes (Coron, Culion and Busuanga) and the Cuyo Islands located in the Sulu Sea, Durangan Island and Kalayaan Group of Islands (Spratly) in the west, and Balabac Island at the south. Its provincial capital is Puerto Princesa. With about 56% of the province covered by pristine forests and about 11,000 sq.km. of coral reef sprawling its ocean floor, Palawan remains to be one of the most biodiversed islands in the country. 

Island-hopping may be a great idea, especially if you have limited number of days to explore the area during a short vacation. Your trip to the islands of Palawan will not be complete if you fail to visit its main tourist attractions. Coron Island has been known for its exotic scuba diving sites, most notably the sunken Japanese shipwrecks from the 1944 era. The citation from Forbes Travel Magazine naming the sunken warships as among the top 10 scuba dive sites in the world is a testament of the underwater grandeur that one needs to behold.

Hailed as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park (also known as the Puerto Princesa Underground River) covers an area of 22 hectares that serves as not just a host to the massive limestone karst landscape, but also as home to quite a number of terrestrial, flora and fauna species. This includes about 800 plant species, 252 bird species, including 30 and 19 species of mammals and reptiles, respectively. Bats, swiftlets and whip spiders are home to the caves as well. Visitors can avail of the 1-hour tour via the park-operated paddle boats, after securing a Visitor Entry Permit which is processed at the Underground River Booking office. Daily tours are from 8:30am to 3:30pm, except during extreme weather conditions. Other activities which visitors may enjoy include wildlife watching, jungle trekking, adventure caving, a tour of the mangrove forest, the Ethnographic Museum, and of course, the white sand beaches of Sambang, Panaguman and Marta Fe. 

Your island tour of Palawan will not be complete without visiting the sandy-white beaches of El Nido. For the 2nd consecutive year, El Nido was named as the most beautiful beach in the world. Home to at least 50 of the most beautiful white sand beaches in the area, locals and tourists from all over the world can enjoy swimming, snorkelling, scuba diving, or just explore the endless fascinating places that only El Nido can offer. That’s probably why the lagoons and white beaches have been featured in some of the biggest Hollywood films like James Bond’s The World is Not Enough, The Beach, and Bourne Legacy, to name a few.

You can never get enough of the beauty and grandeur of nature at its finest when you travel to probably Mother Earth’s Final Frontier - - - Palawan, Philippines.

In Search of Paradise is a travel documentary highlighting the exotic places, heritage sites, travel destinations in the Philippines, and the popular events in and around the Metro. Its aim is to provide a distinct view of man’s architectural masterpieces, as it is embraced by nature’s finest. The views presented herein are facts from the actual travel experiences by the author, interviews from local residents, and other documentation (historic or otherwise) about the chosen topic. It gives every reader a fresh and genuine insight that is unique on its own. Discover the beauty and grandeur of the Islands of the Philippines. Give us your thoughts about each article. 

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