This was hands down the highlight of our Puerto Princesa trip and I’m so glad we DIYed it. Doing a DIY Honda Bay Island Hopping Tour for us was more practical and economical. We could go on the islands we choose and we don’t have to conform to what has been set by operators or travel agencies and the rest of the group you get mixed with. The night before, we talked to a trycicle driver to get us to the port and take us back at around 4 or 5pm. I think we agreed on 400 pesos round trip for the 5 of us. We stopped by a snorkeling rental store and rented one snorkel each for 100 pesos.
At the port, we signed up for a small boat with a maximum capacity of 6. Then we waited for our name to be called. We bought supplies like water and snacks while waiting. Then we were given our boat man. There were 2 of them. I think our boat costs 1,200 for the whole day. The bigger boat costs more.
There are about 5-6 islands here but you can only go to maybe 3 or 4 at most. We went to 4 which was a bit of a stretch. Haha. So you have to choose. We asked our manong boat man and he recommended which islands we should go to.
Our first island is Luli Island. It got its name from the tagalog word Lulubog (sink) and Lilitaw (show) so maybe when it’s high tide, it’s not there?
There were a few huts here and also a big one where you can use the restroom and clean yourself with tap water but this was a snorkeling island and we had fun here feeding fishies.
Our next stop was Starfish island. I actually skipped this one because I was so tired so I stayed for a nap in the boat while they played here. Manong boat man got us some star fish for pictures. This is starfish island after all. After taking pictures with the starfish, they were returned to the sea. 🙂
Then off we go to Pandan Island. This is my favorite island. I wish we listened to the boat man’s recommendation and just stayed here for the rest of the day. It’s such a chill island.
If you want to rest, this is the place to be because it had a lot of huts.
We also had our lunch here. There was a store selling seafood but there were also people walking around and selling seafood. Then you can just have it cooked. We had some small oysters.
And some grilled fish..
After lunch, we swam a bit and did some snorkeling again.
Then we left Pandan Island.. so pretty.
Then we went to Cowrie island.
Cowrie island is more like a kid’s island. There weren’t a lot of places to sit and rest. There was a big bouncy thing in the middle of the beach where you can play or rent a jet ski. There was also a bar here. There were shower stalls which is good. Other than that, it was pretty bare. I wish we stayed at Pandan island. After maybe 30 minutes here, we left.
At the dock, we paid our boat man more than what was required since 1,200 is such a small amount for the boat, the gas and their services if you ask me. I think they deserve to be paid more so if you do go, please give them a generous tip. 🙂
We also saw our tricycle driver at the dock since he stayed there the whole day apparently. It was such a fun day. We enjoyed it a lot.
OTHER PALAWAN POSTS
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Puerto Princesa Tour: Crocodile Farm, Mitra’s Ranch, Baker’s Hill, Plaza Cuartel
Puerto Princesa market and seafood dinner
Underground River Tour