Thursday, July 4, 2013

Solo in El Nido: Things To Do

I am not adventurous when I am alone so this list is not out of the ordinary. Just a number of things I did/should have done in El Nido with my own opinion on how I can do them better next time.

1. Island Hopping

This is a no-brainer since it is what this place is famous for. 45 out of the 7,107 islands in the Philippines can be found in El Nido. People from all over the world travel thousands of miles just to swim in its waters.
Unlike the other island hopping destinations I've been to like Pangasinan, Sorsogon and Boracay, island hopping in El Nido will require you to choose from Tours A, B, C or D. Every corner of El Nido town has a travel company that offer these tours. 
If you are alone, you do not have to worry because they are going to be the one to create a group for the tours. If you are on a limited time and budget, there are combinations tours A-C and B-D. If you are on a group, you could also rent your own boat and choose your own island adventure. 
The most popular tour is Tour A-C and being the mediocre traveler that I am, it is what I choose. Although in my opinion, Tour A-C is too fast paced as you only get to stay at every beach for 30 minutes so you don't really get to enjoy each one. Combination tours is good if you are just after taking a lot of good pictures to show off but if you want to relax, swim and appreciate nature, doing tours A, B, C and D separately would be ideal. Or better yet, rent a kayak and explore.

7 Commandos Beach

Outside the Small Lagoon

Big Lagoon

Shimizu Island

On the top of Matinloc Shrine

Hidden Beach

Helicopter Island

2. Nacpan and Calitang Twin Beaches

If you are alone, renting a tricycle to Nacpan and Calitang beaches can be a bit pricey but it is well worth it. Php 1200 is the usual rate, but if you really want to spare some moolah, find a fellow solo traveler to go with you and to split the tricycle rent with.
The sand in Nacpan Beach is powdery white hands down, however, the waves could get quite harsh and not fit for swimming during rainy season. If you are just after a good tan, then this is the beach for you, remote, peaceful and quiet. 
It is better to go here early in the morning because it gets crazy hot here during noon. It is also advisable to bring your own food, there are restaurants here but there aren't many of them so i am guessing their prices are monopolized.

Nacpan and Calitang Not So Twin Beaches during rainy season

Nacpan Beach with the friendly but hungry dog that I shall name Doggie (I know)

3. Climb Mt. Taraw

If you do not mind having a few bruises then this activity is a must. Unfortunately, I do not have enough time so I was not able to climb Mt. Taraw but doing so will give you a picturesque view of Bacuit bay and the town of El Nido.

4. Find new friends.

There are heaps of tourists in El Nido that came from the different parts of the world. Do not waste a great opportunity to know people from an entirely different culture. Also, El Nido locals are the friendliest and funniest people. One way of gaining new friends is to greet everyone a "good morning" while on your way to breakfast. It's ok if they would think you're a lunatic, that might be the last time they would see you anyways.  


5. Sunset at Marimegmeg/Las Cabanas Beach

The photo below is a failure because I went to Marimegmeg Beach on a cloudy afternoon. Aside from Nacpan Beach, this is another uncrowded beach in El Nido which a Php200-tricycle-away from the town. I would suggest you go here at 4PM, swim its calm waters and explore its wide shores, then cap off your day with the perfect view of the sunset.

Marimegmeg/Las Cabanas Beach

The Solo in El Nido Series
Solo in El Nido: 4 Day Itinerary and Expenses with Solo Survival Tips
Solo in El Nido: Things To Do
Solo in El Nido: Romancing Nature in a Honeymooner's Paradise


  1. Replies
    1. Hi Kristine, this is on June 27, 2013 which is almost a year ago from today. :-)