September 26, 2012

Puerto Princesa, Palawan

This blog discusses only brief introduction about Puerto Princesa. My PPS trip will be seen on the next post.
Where is Puerto Princesa?
Puerto Princesa (FilipinoLungsod ng Puerto Princesa) is a city located in the western provincial island of Palawan, one of 80 provinces which make up thePhilippines. Though the provincial seat of government for Palawan, the city itself is one of 38 independent cities within the Philippines not controlled by the province in which it is geographically located and is therefore an independent area located within Palawan.
As of 2007, Puerto Princesa had a population of 210,508 people making it the most sparsely populated city in the Philippines. In terms of land area, the city is the second largest geographically after Davao City with an area of 919 mi² (2,381 km²).[1] Puerto Princesa is the location of the Philippines's Western Commandheadquarters.[2]

Palawan is part of Region 4B which is also known as MIMAROPA (Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon and Palawan). The main language or dialect uses in this region is Tagalog.
Today, Puerto Princesa is a popular tourist city with many beach resorts and seafood restaurants. It has been acclaimed several times as the cleanest and greenest city in the Philippines.[3]

It is so true that Puerto Princesa observes orderliness and cleanliness and they have Republic Act called "Anti Littering Law" that is being observed. There are corresponding consequences for the violators.
Anti Littering Law
1st Offense - 200php
2nd Offense - 300php
3rd Offense - 1,000php + 2 Months imprisonment
As we all know, Underground River is now officially included on the 7 New Wonders of Nature. It is located in southern part of the city, Brgy. Sabang where Ugong Rock Adventure is also. The cave has lot of different rock formations and your boatman will guide you throughout the tour. Tourists are allowed to explore the cave for 1 hour with the distance of 4.3 km. But if you are willing to explore the whole cave which has 8 km long, you can request to the local government and it will be scheduled. You will provide your own equipment as you navigate the area.
If you are a beach bummer like me, you can have island hopping in Honda Bay. Snorkeling is the main activity during the tour and especially in Pambato Reef, where coral reefs, clams and school of fish are. You will enjoy fish feeding and viewing the beautiful scenery under the sea. You can also visit and stay at Dos Palmas Resort, high-end resort in Arrecife Island.
Unfortunately, Snake Island is not included on the list of islands that you will visit. It was included before the government closed the island to make it commercialize or whatsoever. Anyway, Snake Island is popular because of his long stretch of sand bar that looks like a snake on aerial view.
You can also stay at Sabang Beach, just near the Underground River. One of the top resorts in the area is Sheridan Beach Resort and Spa.
If scuba diving is your first love, you can go to Tubbataha Reef. I have watched a documentary of Tubbataha Reef on I-Witness where Kara David, reporter/documentarist, explored the place. According to our guide, it was also enlisted or nominated on New 7 wonders of the world, however, due to some reasons it was out from the list. Maybe only divers can appreciate the place than the ordinary tourists like me. But indeed, it is a great place to visit to.
If you want to explore the whole city of Puerto Princesa, you can hire a private van or tricycle. You can taste their own version of milk tea, Bandung (rose syrup extract) and buy their popular hopia(mooncake) at Baker's Hill. You can also visit Mitra's Ranch where Gov. Mitra's resthouse located. You can have horseback riding and picnic as well. You can have a picture and touch baby crocodiles and have a self-guide nature tripping at Crocodile Farm and Nature Park. There is also Baywalk in the city where the old port was located and can have dolphin-watching by request. There is also a historic place where Japanese soldiers burned 143 American prisoners of war inside a tunnel during World War II. This place is called Plaza Cuartel. Near Plaza Cuartel, you can visit and have a short prayer for your safety on your entire stay in PPS at Immaculate Concepcion Cathedral.
If you want to try Tamilok (shipworm) and crocodile sisig, you can visit Kinabuch Bar and Grill. If you are looking for a nature-theme, relaxing ambience and eating with barefoot, go to KaLui Restaurant. All restaurants offer delicious seafood with reasonable price.
If Puerto Princesa is not enough for you and want to explore Palawan more, visit El Nido, San Vicente and Coron. These places have beautiful beaches to stay and have fun!
Au revoir! :)
*credits to Google for the pictures.

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