After my little mini holiday in Boracay, it was time to get to the island of Palawan – first stop Puerto Princesa!!
So my travel story continues…
I’d been told by so many people i’d met along the way that Palawan was the place to be in the Philippines. I managed to find natural beauty and island hopping, mixed with power-cuts, rain storms and stray dogs.
My first task was to get myself to anywhere in Palawan from Boracay, which is actually trickier than it should be.
Okay so here was my plan…
So you’d have thought that there would be a direct flight from Caticlan or Kalibo (the airports near Boracay), to somewhere on Palawan.
Well apparently not..
Therefore I had to do the following;
- Get up at about 4am-5am 😦 😦 and get a boat over to the mainland (the red line on the map)
2. Take a minivan for about 6 hours with ZERO leg-room to the city of Iloilo (the blue line on the map). Eat some local food in a mall. Take a taxi to Iloilo Airport (pronounced ill-oh-ill-oh – Great name for a city 😛 )
3. Take a flight from Iloilo to Puerto Princesa! (The pink line on the map). When I arrived, I quickly learned that if you walk outside the airport for a trike, the price is about half. So I got a trike for about 60 pesos to my hostel.
So if you’re staying in Puerto Princesa, you should definately go to Sheebang Hostel. The staff are great, there are loads of other travellers, a 24/7 bar and table tennis. Seriously it’s awesome.
So I checked in, put my stuff down, and headed straight to the bar of course…
Anyway I sat myself down at a bar stool and started chatting to a Filipina that was on holiday from Manila. She was heading to Port Barton the next day, and then on to El Nido where she’d meet up with some of her family.
It must have been 6pm when we started chatting and she’d said she wasn’t drinking…
Well it turns out with a few flutters of my eyelids, I got her to have one cocktail, and then another, and then well some more. (Yeah i’m such an evil foreigner 😀 )
And in the process I got to learn some of my first tagalog words haha
Now all I had to do was say…
And the awesome dude behind the bar would take note of when I wanted more Red Horse beer!
And of course, when everyone was drinking, a ‘cheeers’
Anyway, basically because this girl normally works during the night she wasn’t tired at all which was great. I must have got through a crate of Red Horse, aswell as some random drinks like Baileys, Tanduay, shots, who knows!
I’d booked myself on a Honda Bay island hopping tour the next day to pick me up around 8am from the hostel reception so I set my alarm for 7am…
Well it got to about 4am and we were still at the bar together chatting away.
Eventually, after 10 hours of random bar chat, we went to bed together in the dorm. At which point I very much regretted the whole island hopping tour because by the time i’d started to sleep, my alarm tried to wake me up at 7am. When I say tried, well I was so drunk that despite the phone being on me, the Filipina now next to me had to get me to wake up – sorry dorm-mates!!
To my surprise, I did manage to get up, shower, get dressed, eat breakfast and get whisked away in a minivan for the island hopping around Honda Bay, albeit somewhat hungover. Turns out I was the only one from my hostel doing it today, so I was joined by a bunch of Filipinas who were all friends and family on holiday together.
Unfortunately and slightly surprisingly I have no pics from the day trip. There are probably about 5000 of them in existence somewhere as the Filipinas were stopping every 2 minutes to get a picture of us all, but seeing as I didn’t take any of their contact details and I left my phone at the hostel, I didn’t get any to keep.
I also didn’t bring any money with me which meant when we stopped at a dive shop on the way, I went without any foot gear or snorkels, so whilst swimming I was treading water to avoid coral and sharp rocks.
Eventually after 3 islands of
tanning burning myself, I got back to the hostel and started drinking again and playing table tennis. I made friends with a girl from South Africa and we had a few drinks whilst playing the ping pong.
In fact the next day, I just lazed around the hostel in preparation of going to El Nido
I got up late from another evening of drinking Red Horse, wandered around Puerto Princessa, and then played some people at table tennis.
In the evening, I made friends with a German guy called Max. He’d been travelling now for about 2 years and was also going to head to El Nido, so we talked about random heavy topics like the classic England v Germany rivalry, world wars and the Philippines so far.
We ended up drinking until around 2am and the next day we were going north to El Nido together.
Stay tuned for our El Nido adventure!