Day 1 - Puerto Princesa City Tour

Puerto Princesa Travel Blog

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I left home the day before and stayed in Manila for a night. I met up with few friends and ended up drank by 2 am. Our flight to Puerto Princesa was at 7 am. This is the part of the travel that I really don't like - too early flights. Somehow, I was able to drag myself to the airport after only having 2 hours of sleep. I slept in the airport and slept though most of the 1.5 hours flight to the capital city of Palawan, Puerto Princesa. This place is actually a neighboring island from my place yet was not able to visit this place.

I have been a self-confessed addict to anything UNESCO (well, atleast for the sites declared in the Philippines).
I have not seen the underground river, and that was one of my agenda here. I have seen the 4 Baroque Churches which are scattered across the archipelago, 3 of the 5 clusters of the rice terraces that has been declared to be part of Banaue Rice Terraces and the old town of Vigan. So far, I have not seen the UG river and Tubattahah reef. To see the UG river was a delight and enough to make me excited to travel to Puerto Princesa.

We were picked up from the airport, travelled for 15 minutes to the hotel, checked in and left for lunch. For the afternoon, we booked a city tour. After having lunch at Chowking (haha, I had a sudden cravings for Chowking) and went back to the hotel for the 2 PM pick up for the city tour. I am not so excited about doing this, honestly. I would rather stay at the hotel and nurse my hangover and lack of sleep.
But my buddy was so pumped up, I had no choice but to join her for the city tour.

We first visited Palawan Wildlife Rescue and Conservation Center - formerly known as the Crocodile Farming Institute. This place is both a tourist attraction and a research institute devoted to crocodiles. About 30 to 40 minutes from the city center, the Crocodile Farm also has a mini-zoo, which features some of Palawan's endemic species of wildlife. One gets to see the skin and the skeleton of the largest crocodile recorded in the Philippines, Man, that was huge. Also, if you are brave or like the feel of reptiles, one can hold a baby crocs for picture taking and of course that goes with a price. There's just too many crocodiles but I bet there's a lot more crocodiles in the Congress and Senate than on this Conservation Center.
Oh I almost forgot, the biggest croc is the one in Malacanang Palace. Tehehe

After the reptilian experience, we then went to Iwahig Penal Colony - a good example of a true correctional institute. The Iwahig Penal Colony is more of a farming community rather than a prison. Inmates often live with their families and are allowed to toil their farms to earn a living. Carving out handicrafts is also a common preoccupation and mahogany handcarvings are a good buy for tourists. The colony is about 35 minutes from the crocodile farm. Even if this place is a correctional institute, there's no feel of danger. I bought an authentic prisoner's shirt that I have been so proud to flaunt here in Singapore. I guess a visit to this place is one that shouldn't miss when doing a city tour in Puerto Princesa.

After the encounter with bar-less prisoners, we went to Baker's hill for refreshment.
I think I consumed too many street food there - hotdog, squidballs, kikiam and a lot more. They have mini-zoo at the back with Palawan Peacock, a hen like bird and an owl. After this, we went to Mitra Ranch to see the Honda Bay from a far and lastly we went to the Butterfly farm. There, I got to hold a huge scorpion.

Then dinner time! We went to Kalui for dinner. This place was quite expensive for a local standard but one eats here for the experience, for the ambiance. And I liked it.

Then went back to the hotel to catch up on my much needed sleep. Next day was an early day too, by 7AM we would be going to the Underground River. Yahoo! Finally...
vances says:
Terrific blog, Apo --- brilliant documentary!
Posted on: Mar 25, 2010
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Puerto Princesa Hotels & Accommodations review
Casa Fuerte Bed & Breakfast
About them: Casa Fuerte is the newest Bali Inspired Inn in Puerto Princesa City Casa Fuerte offers 18 fully furnished Air-conditioned Rooms. A R… read entire review
Puerto Princesa
photo by: tj1777