Palawan is one of the biggest islands in the Philippines. It is located at the west of mainland Luzon, and at the east of the South China Sea. Palawan comprises of tiny islands near its mainland. Its pristine blue coasts, white sand beaches are among the reasons why Palawan is a main tourist destination. The capital of Palawan is Puerto Princesa.
Puerto Princesa is located at the mid-section of mainland Palawan. The city used to be named as “Puerto de la Princesa”, meaning “port of the princess”, referring to Princess Eulalia of Spain. Its key position as a seaport used to serve as a port area for Spanish ships during the Spanish regime. Centuries later, Puerto Princesa bloomed into a city, thriving mostly on the prosperous tourism industry.
To reach the city, there are domestic airlines and charter planes that offer direct flights. Ships are also a viable option, but cruise ships are better choices because the sea voyage takes 20 hours.
The city of Puerto Princesa in Palawan offers the beauty of “eco-tourism”. Tourist spots in the capital, and in mostly Palawan, offer an array of nature activities, simply because the beauty of the city is simply natural. Its main attractions comprise of national parks, caves and underground rivers.
The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River is a river underneath the St. Paul Mountain. The river empties westward to the South China Sea. As they enter the mouth of the cave, visitors are greeted with different geologic formations underneath the mountain. Visitors can also take pleasure in bird watching, trekking and hiking.
The St. Paul Mountain does not only show its geologic history through the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River, but through its different caves as well. There are three main caves in the mountain—the Lion’s Cave, the Cawili Cave and the Daylight Hole. The Lion’s Cave is known for its lion-shaped statue on its entrance, when in fact the statue is a natural rock formation. The Cawili Caves offers spectacular limestone patterns. Lastly, the Daylight Hole is a cave that houses a pitch-black underground river with only the rays of sunlight guiding the rower the exit to the underground river. Basically, the natural highlights of Puerto Princesa are dependent on Palawan’s fantastic geological history, since Palawan is one of the oldest islands in the Philippine Archipelago.
Hiking and trekking are the most popular activities in the capital of Palawan. The Puerto Princesa Subterranean National Park offers forest tours for the family of nature-lovers. Lush green trees, cold streams and strenuous treks are available on the northeastern edge of Puerto Princesa. For those who plan to relax on the beach, boats and island hopping tools are available. Also, do not forget to check out the diving sites when hopping—as Palawan waters shelter the most wonderful marine creatures in the world!
Puerto Princesa is truly a haven for those who appreciate nature’s beauty. What the city boasts of is that its splendor is simply natural—a rare gift that should forever be preserved. Visitors in Puerto Princesa are always reminded of how truly magnificent and precious our nature really is.