El Nido | Combination Tour A and C

It was already our last full day in El Nido and we still haven't experienced the most famous island hopping activity. I whispered a prayer that the weather will still be sunny and the waves will be cooperative. Luckily, everything went well. Thank you Lord!

time for some island hopping in El Nido

There are 4 island hopping tours in El Nido namely tour A, B, C, and D. The most famous tours are A and C. These include the lagoons, great beaches, best snorkeling spots, and breathtaking viewing deck of El Nido. Since it would be hard to choose between the two tours, we decided to do both on the same day. There are many spots to see but we just chose the ones that interest us and drop those spots that may be similar with the others. Now we had a plan!

el nido island hopping tour map - A, B, C and D

Small shops that offer island and inland tours are scattered in every corner of the street. The rate of island hopping tours in El Nido is standard. Tour A costs P700/pax and tour C costs P900/pax. Yes, the rates are per person. No need for minimum number of guests since the tour operators will be the one to look for joiners to fill in the boat. Combination tours are also available so no need to worry. Sounds good but we wanted to maximize our time on the islands that we prioritized to visit. We do not want to see every island that's included in the tour - umay factor naman yun. So to end this dillema, we rented our own boat. Feeling mayaman. ^_^

Combination Tour A and C
We got Northern Hope Ticketing and Island Tours boat rental and service. Ate Neriza - 0939.902.2216, the tour operator, accompanied us. The boat is really spacious, we could have invited her children too to join us. Anyway, we started the combination tour at 8:30am. A fee of P200 is collected to every tourist.

Our first destination was the Hidden Beach. It's a beach located behind these awesome limestone cliffs. A little effort is needed to go here, specially the waves are strong and sharp corals are everywhere. And it's really a must to wear aqua shoes.

entrance to the Hidden Beach

sensha na, lampa lang ^_^

The path is slippery and it has lots of big and sharp corals. It's your call if you wanted to bring your precious gadgets.

hello Hidden Beach

now it's not hidden anymore

There's not much people when we arrived. Good thing we visited this in the morning.

it's also a snorkeling spot

but no need to use some equipment, the water is just knee-deep

The corals are not in their healthiest form, but at least there are some. Aqua shoes are highly needed in this spot. Aside from the fish and corals, there are sea urchins too so be careful.

colorful corals

im a fan of sea anemone
yay, im excited to use my Canon D20 underwater camera for the first time!

Next destination of our choice was the Matinloc Shrine. This area is famous for its great top view. Make sure to visit this spot on 12noon onwards for better viewing. Against the light pag umaga. ^_^

way to Matinloc Shrine

posing for a shot before everyone gets here!
ang crowded ng islands sa el nido ^_^

This place has a sacred monument which was build to honor the blessed Virgin Mary. It used to be a retreat house as well. Unfortunately, the owners wasn't able to maintain this place anymore. Anyway, the spectacular view is not the shrine, but the view from top.

spectacular view from top
copied from Gladys, thanks girl!

Moving on, we headed to Secret Beach right away. This is the most memorable and exciting part of our island hopping.  Going through that small opening to enter the Secret Beach was such an adventure. Haha Simpleng buwis buhay.

the Secret Beach

We we're surprised to see a lot of "stranded" tourists inside. Well they are not really stranded, but they looked like it.

stranded in El Nido?

As you know, the opening is too small that only 1 person can pass there at a time. Take turns it is for those who will enter and those who will exit. 

 the place is not very spectacular
 but how you enter this beach is already a spectacular experience

At lunchtime, we settled at Talisay Beach. While our guide was leading us to the best snorkeling sites, the boatmen started to cook our lunch. Sarap ng buhay!

 to Talisay Beach

the combination of these limestone cliffs and blueish water kept me breathless

Honestly, the underwater world never amazed me. The corals are dead. The best part of this snorkeling is the view everytime I took my head out of the water. Grabe, ang ganda ng view on land. That's where Im more amazed.

daddy found nemo

garden of not so healthy corals

a brain coral

 i sacrificed my skin while hoping there'll be a great sighting of superior corals, but really there was none

the seabed looked gloomy by just having a few species

oh well, at least there are vibrant colored corals around

Again, the view under water may not be something amazing, but the limestone on the surface never failed to impress me.

im more impressed with the limestone formations

It's finally time for our lunch. Freshly cooked fish and pork are served. Lunch are usually included in the island hopping tour. For exclusive tours like ours, it's best to request your food choices. Additional rates apply opcors pag bet mo ang lobster and prawns.

a feast for 3

yey, may buko juice!
both of us were not fans of softdrinks

siesta time at Talisay Beach

We're so umay na to do some snorkeling but luckily we did. Our next destination - Shimizu Island showcased a lot of fish. No need to throw some bread, the fishies were very excited to welcome their guests.

canon delights me, always! 

school of fish at Shimizu Island

Along our way to the Big and Small Lagoon, we spotted this place with an orange tree. Lakas maka-autumn! We didn't think twice and docked the boat in this island to have our photo taken.

autumn in El Nido
anu ba yan, pumunta pa ko ng South Korea para maexperience ang ganitong foliage, meron din pala sa El Nido

The last destinations on our list was Miniloc Island, were the Big and Small Lagoon are located. For some obvious reasons, tinamad na kami bumaba ng bangka. Kakaumay naman kasi pare-pareho lang ang view. Peace. =P

Small Lagoon

Ate Neriza still offered us to go to some nearby beaches but we declined. We called it a day, solb na kami. I therefore conclude, combination tour A and C can really be done in 1 whole day. I cant see myself doing these island hopping tours on different days.

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Northern Hope Ticketing and Island Tours

Island Hopping Rates:
tour A - P700/pax    |    tour B - P800/pax    |    tour C - P900/pax       
combination tour A & C - P1300/pax    |    discounted rate for group of 4 - P800/pax
boat rental for 4 - P3,000/boat (lunch not included)
they also have a boat which sails from El Nido to Coron. schedule varies.

Thank you ate Neriza for the tour and discounted rates. I hope that the local government of El Nido may give an ordinance / protection to local operators like you. It's just fair that those natives of El Nido must be given priority compared to tour operators from Puerto Princesa and from Manila.

El Nido 4days 3nights expenses

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Overall, I was fulfilled and delighted to finally see and experience El Nido. Surely, it belongs to the top spots to see here in the Philippines. The clear blue water, breathtaking limestone formations, the laid back lifestyle, and the good vibe of the enthusiastic tourists are the obvious reasons why everyone hails El Nido. Im just a proud Pinay.

next post: Bellarocca Resort

44 responses:

Chyng said...

long weekends are made for blogging! Ü

next post: Bellarocca ♥

curiouskatrina said...

Really enjoyed viewing your photos! Makes me want to book a ticket to palawan since they now have a direct flight there from Iloilo (where I am from)

I Was Born in September

Anonymous said...

gandan naman..inspiration ka talaga Chyng

Anonymous said...

hello po!

ano pong mas maganda el nido o coron?


Chyng said...

for me, it's coron.

Arnie Monacillo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Arnie Monacillo said...

Hi Ms. Chyng sorry mali ung nasulat ko, ayon nga sana maging katulad ako sayo na ultimate blogger idol since 2009. Btw about nga dito sa post mo mapagabi o umaga ganda ng shots mo ung colors niya hindi exaggerated very natural..KUDOS!!!


Becky Ignacio said...

Minsan, ayoko na lang basahin yung blog mo e, kasi nagbabago isip ko sa itinerary namin. Lakas talaga ng impluwensiya mo saken. hahaha

Kunin ko rin sila ate Neriza :)

AnKamiL Yepuda said...

ikaw na talaga Ms. Chyng!!! ikaw na ang the best Pinay wanderer ever! thanks for sharing with us your posts! nakakainspire (at nakakainggit din. hahaha!) ang mga adventures mo! have a nice day! :)


Lea said...

Chyng, na surprise ako sa orange tree! Meron pala niyan sa Palawan. :)

I love your pictures talaga. Specially the ones at Shimizu island.

Kammier said...

Chyng, total damage pwede malaman? Thank you... :D

khantotantra said...

so sosyal. Renting ng sariling boat. Mukang mas okay nga yung ganun para mas kakaiba ang experience.

Chyng said...

el nido budget for 4 days - around 6,000 including airfare

Joven of Travex Travels said...


Anonymous said...

sadly, reading your blog about elnido made me feel like your not appreciative person, bloggin supposed to encourage other people to travel and appreciate the beauty of our country, but by saying "nakakaumay" over and over again seem makes your reader uninterested,..be more appreciative and optimistic. show other people your love for our country, not like some b...# who have high standard among others. this is just my opinion, tnx

Chyng said...

^ this blog is not department of tourism or any other travel agency. this blog is a personal website of a traveler who shares her experience, be it good or not.

yeah, as you said - be more realistic. not everyone will say "wow" and "this is the best trip ever!" after seeing el nido or other famous spots in pinas.

i appreciate those bloggers who can express the truth and not exaggerate things.

but again, to each his own my dear. =)

leandra / adbenturera said...

great tip to combine island tours lalo na kung gipit sa oras (i.e. bitin na leave days like me hehehe, kelan kaya ako mkakapunta dine haist).

love your pictures! awesomeness as always. looking forward to your Bellarocca posts! :)

ian said...

Parang nakapunta na din ako, yung ma-didissapoint nko pag pumunta ako tapos di ganito kaganda makikita ko. hehe #perfectweather

Dong Ho said...

konti nga lang yung may magandang snorkeling spot pero sabi nila mas ok daw sa el nido ang scuba diving.

i agree that it is from the surface to the karst that makes the view fantastic.

Earl said...


michymichymoo said...

Beautiful El Nido! Next project ko yan.hehe. :P


Tria said...

Lately, I've been thinking a lot kung pupunta pa ba ko ng El Nido. From what I've read: beaches - El Nido; underwater - Coron. Twice na ko nakapunta ng Coron and I love the place. Gusto ko din sana sa El Nido pero dahil sa post mo na to, baka hindi na lang hehe. Nakakaloka din kasi yung accessibility, or the lack thereof, ng El Nido :s

Elal Jane Lasola said...

Nanghihinayang ako na wala akong dalang underwater sa El Nido. Hahaha Paraiso talaga ang El Nido. Kaka inloveeee.

blissfulguro said...

tihee! i'm so eksoyted!!! :)

Nicole said...

tulad ng dati, nakakainggit! sana kapag napunta kami dun nandun din ung orange tree! :)

Untied Escape said...

Yung friend ko naman Mas bet ang El Nido kesa Coron...Hays, kelangan makita both para ma judge...haha! dipende nga nmn tlga sa knya kanyang taste yan...

Uyyy ganda ng underwater cam mo...ganda rin ba cya kahit wala sa water? gusto ko ma check...

Anonymous said...

Hahanapin ko yang Autumn effect na yan! hahaha

Thanks Ms. Chyng!

Anonymous said...

hi chyng!

nalungkot naman ako na mas prefer mo coron.hehe.pero dahil dyan next project ko na ang coron after el nido. thanks for being real!:))


ardee sean said...

gandara ng el nido... wait for me gusto ko rin puntahan jan.. cant wait for part 2.. :P

The Nomadic Pinoy said...

Di ko man lang alam pwede pala i-combine ang Tour A & Tour C. But I agree, kahit ako, mag-sasawa na doing all tours hopping all over the islands. Dapat may diversion in between.

Gracie said...

This will be my guide if ever I'll go and visit this place next year, hopefully!

Manong Unyol said...

ang ganda sobra kakainggit lugar na yan.. paradise... maganda or pangit man ang shots talagang maganda ang lugar iba talaga kapag nature lover kahit ano maganda lakas ng impact.. nice ma'am great photos :)

joan | the backpack chronicles said...

dahil sa pictures ko mas lalo kong namiss ang El Nido. Gusto ko bumalik! Pero before that, Coron muna!

Tsina said...

Ang sobrang ganda naman dyan sa El Nido. Gusto ko din makapunta! :)

SunnyToast said...

I love your underwater shots! perfct!

irishfoodloveandjourneys said...

can't wait for our el nido adventure! thank u so much for this travel blog! :)

Ron Hubsch said...

I totally agree with you Chyng....effort ang paggora sa secret beach...my co-pexers & I tried na mag-swim at lumusot sa mga holes na malapit sa "opening" ng beach...super fun!

Anonymous said...

from your summary of expenses in el nido... is an ac room in telesfora just 1500 for 3 nights? or is it 1500/night? thanks!

Chyng said...

hi, the 1500 os good for 3 nights for 1 person only. the room costs P900 per night (good for 2 pax), niround off ko lang. hehe

Anonymous said...

Hello Chyng!

We will be on El Nido next week and I am curious about bringing DSLR during Island Hopping, is it advisble to bring it? or is there any gadgets to keep the camera safe?

Thanks a lot.


Chyng said...

yes you may bring your dslr. there are spots lang na di mo yun madadala sa pababa. like secret beach, surely basa camera dun. hehe

kim buenafe said...

El Nido is really beautiful! I cant believe di ko pa nararating yun considering na home province ng mom ko ang Palawan. haha! so excited to see it! thanks for the tips. very handy, chyng! :)

Anonymous said...

Hello! I hope you get to read this. I'm going to El Nido by the end of January and I plan to take tour A or C. I'm just wondering if it's safe to bring my DSLR onboard during the tour? Is it ok to leave it on the boat when we're underwater, especially when we go to the hidden beach? :) - Martin

Chyng said...

Hi! You can bring your DLSR, except in hidden beach or secret beach ata kasi you have to swim thru... =)

Just leave the camera in the boat for this instance.

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