Last updated on January 18th, 2020 at 12:53 pm
El Nido is the most touristic in Palawan. We will write all the El Nido tourist spots that you can’t miss. There are many things to do in El Nido which you will surely enjoy in this El Nido travel guide. The most popular one is El Nido island hopping and we will tell you all our favorite El Nido tourist spots.
El Nido Travel Guide
Best Time to visit El Nido
The best time to visit El Nido is during summer. Summer in the Philippines starts from March to mid-May. Just expect the prices to be high because it is peak season. Also expect the number of tourists to be high during this time.
You can also visit El Nido from December to February as the skies are clear and rain is minimal. Check this website for real-time weather updates.
ATM’s and Cash in El Nido
El Nido is far from the capital city which is Puerto Princesa. There are a few ATM’s in El Nido and places where you can exchange your money.
We highly recommend for you to bring cash just in case ATMs are not working or not nearby. You can also pay for your accommodation in advance through online. The current exchange rate is $1 USD = 51 PHP. Click here to know the exact exchange rate.
Click here to have an idea how much money you need while travelling in the Philippines.
Wifi and Internet Connection in El Nido
If you are going to visit El Nido soon, we are warning you that internet might be difficult to get. WIFI is not that common and you are lucky if your hotel or inn has WIFI connection.
Nowdays is working better internet connection in El Nido especially in the town. For us the fastest connection that we found in El Nido was at Sea Cocoon Hotel where we could connect and catch up with work. The worst reception was around the accommodation in front of Cadlao Lagoon were internet was so intermittent.
Enviromental Fee in El Nido
There is an enviromental fee in El Nido 200 PHP or 4 USD that you need to pay for the island hopping. The permit will last for 10 days meaning you should pay only once and you can do all the tours and activities you planned to do in El Nido during those days.
Nowdays there is an extra payment if you want to visit Tour A with the Big Lagoon and Tour D with the Small Lagoon. You can’t visit both of them in the same day as before. And the entrance fee is 200 PHP each of them valid for a day apart from your environmental fee.
Daily Travel Budget in El Nido
For your daily travel budget in El Nido will be more expensive that other destinations in the Philippines. For transportation distances aren’t big but tricycle will charge you a flat rate of 100 PHP.
For food prices are affordable and you can get a meal in local restaurants (carinderias) starting for 80-100 PHP and 200-300 PHP in Western restaurants.
Prices for joining an island hopping will be between 1200-1500 PHP per person lunch included depending on the tour that you are joining Tour A, B, C or D. If you decide to do a private tour prices per boat will be starting around 8000 PHP for 2 people and adding 1000 PHP per extra person included lunch.
Prices for accommodation will be expensive for the quality. Cheapest prices per a room starting for 1000 PHP (cheaper than 1000 PHP you can find a dorm) and don’t expect so much for this. Getting good places to stay in El Nido 2000-4000 PHP for a room with breakfast included.
You can book an entire house or apartment with AirBnB! Click here to get a great deal off your first booking with AirBnB!
Travel Tip: Click here to know prices and schedule to book your bus/boat tickets online with 12Go Asia.
El Nido Tourist Spots
Now it’s time to go for El Nido tourist spots after this El Nido travel guide for island hopping, accommodation and daily budget travel in El Nido.
1. Big Lagoon
If you visit as a first part of the tour you will find so many people. As alternative we proposed to take a private tour between few people and you can visit places like Big Lagoon less crowded than with the island hopping tours. We recommend you to rent a Kayak if the boat that you are hiring isn’t going inside the Big Lagoon to have more time to explore. Big Lagoon is one of our favorite El Nido tourist spots.
It’s part of the Tour A and you have to pay 200 PHP entrance fee. If you want to rent a kayak for 2 people is 250 PHP and 300 PHP for bigger kayaks per hour.
2. Small Lagoon
As we mentioned above with the Big Lagoon, the Small Lagoon is always crowded so better if you go first thing in the morning or in a private tour. It’s not very big and you can go inside swimming with your snorkeling gear.
It’s part of tour D and you have to pay 200 PHP entrance fee to access there. You can go swimming and snorkeling or rent a kayak depending how far your boat is parking.
3. Snorkeling in El Nido
Since El Nido is a famous spot in the Philippines for its crystal clear white-sand beaches you have to try snorkeling. Don’t forget to bring your underwater or waterproof cameras or smartphones to capture the precious underwater moments. All the tours provide snorkeling gear but we advise you to get your own so you can do anytime snorkeling in the Philippines.
4. Nagkalit-kalit Falls
Nagkalit-Kalit waterfalls are located on the way to Nacpan Beach from El Nido town. It will take 30-40 minutes the hike from the main road each way. So you will need 2 hours for this El Nido tourist spot at least. The trekking is beautiful, make sure you bring water and proper shoes for this.
5. Nacpan Beach
Nacpan is a really long beach in El Nido with clear blue waters you’ll surely love! It may not be included in the tours but you can reach it by private boats or by motorbike and van. Travelers also love to play beach volleyball and soccer in this beautiful beach. There is an entrance fee to go to Nacpan Beach, around 30 pesos! It’s not crowded and you will find yourself more relax than around El Nido.
6. Corong Corong Beach
The best time to visit Corong Corong Beach is at sunset. It’s close to Las Cabanas and you will have to choose one of them where to spend your afternoon. You can rent kayaks to go around and there are a few bars to enjoy the drink while watching the sunset.
7. Sunset in Las Cabanas
Don’t forget to visit Las Cabanas Beach! The views are so breathtaking! You will also love how beautiful the sunset is in Las Cabanas. There are bars and it´s perfect for enjoying a beer. There are a lot of accommodations around if you prefer to stay here instead of El Nido town.
8. Cooking Class in El Nido
We know that Filipino food isn’t so popular as Thai food. But it’s really interesting to attend a cooking class. You can learn how to make adobo as Rachel in the picture above. There are a few places in El Nido offering this activity and it costs around 1200-1500 PHP. You will enjoy a tasty meal. Read here 57 Filipino dishes to try!
9. Kayaking in El Nido
You can rent a kayak in El Nido and spend your day going around the beaches. It’s an interesting activity, you can find kayaks for 500 PHP per day or 150 PHP per hour in the town. In the island hopping renting a kayak will cost 250 PHP per hour. It’s a popular activity to do in Cadlao Lagoon and Big Lagoon.
10. El Nido Party Boat
In our last day in El Nido, we had a boat party! Imagine we were partying while island hopping! Our itinerary was a mix of beautiful and quiet places in El Nido. Most of the places were empty. Free beers and cocktails and music to spend an amazing day island hopping.
11. Snake Island
Snake Island is very popular for having a long sand bar. This island is included in the TOUR B. Locals have another name for it, Vigan Island. You can walk along the sand bar and take a 360 degrees video or photo. It’s a magical place!
More El Nido Tourist Spots
12. Bukal Beach
Bukal Beach of Bukal Island is part of El Nido’s Tour D, but it is surely a place you’ll also love.It’s small comparing with other beaches in El Nido. But its beautiful and calm, making it perfect for enjoying the water while swimming or chilling at the beach. We had the beach for ourselves while enjoying a private tour!
13. Cadlao Lagoon
Cadlao Island has the highest peak at 609 meters above sea level and its the largest island in El Nido with a land area of 1,006 hectares. It’s part of the Tour D and now it’s more popular since they included the Small Lagoon in this tour. You can rent a kayak for 250 PHP to enjoy around. You can also enjoy swimming and snorkeling.
14. Hidden Beach
Hidden Beach is part of the Tour C and you have to look for the beach behind the limestone. It’s a beautiful beach with clear but it’s too crowded since it’s not very big. Make sure you bring your dry bag if you want to take pictures. You will have to swim to reach the beach since the boats can’t access to it.
15. Pinagbuyutan Island
Pinagbuyutan Island is one of our favorite El Nido tourist spots. It’s part of Tour B and its great for snorkeling, swimming and walk around. It’s usually quiet and we find the island perfect for taking pictures and flying the drone.
16. Filipino Experience
We loved the activities on the Philippine Experience. We had a fun Filipino Culture Day in a small village near the beach. We enjoyed a nice walk and we also learned about banana herbs, coconut trees, leaves and many more interesting more things.
After cooking and eating, we had more activities like climbing a coconut tree to dancing typical Filipino dances and playing Filipino games. Everything was well-organized and we really had so much fun!
It’s a perfect tour to learn about the Filipino culture. We did ourselves and we had amazing time. If you want to book the tour send them and message on Facebook. Prices are around 1800 PHP. And for more information read their website The Philippine Experience!
17. Camping at the Beach
Camping in the beach while island hopping in El Nido is an amazing experience. It will allow you to see amazing sunsets and sunrises. The best way to do it is joining to an expedition tour. We did ourselves with Buhay Isla from El Nido to Coron 3 days and 2 nights.
It was amazing island hopping. Everything well organized, delicious food, great snorkeling spots and amazing islands to visit. Check their website for schedule and prices!
18. Swim at Lio Beach
Lio Beach is a quiet and beautiful beach to spend the day. We visited for sunset and enjoying dinner. The food was delicious and we enjoyed swimming. Great place to enjoy calm dinner outside El Nido town.
Going there from El Nido will take 10-15 minutes by tricycle and it will cost 200 PHP. There is also a free shuttle from The White House in El Nido town almost every hour.
19. Taraw Cliff
20. Zip Line in El Nido
Zip line is definitely an activity you wouldn’t want to miss. Zip lining through the best area for sunset is such an amazing adrenaline-packed experience. The prices are 700 PHP or around $14 USD for a one way ride. You’ll enjoy amazing views until you reach Las Cabañas where you can enjoy a bottle of beer at sunset time. There are many bars with loud music and the place is so beautiful.
21. Star Beach
Star beach is a small, secluded white-sand beach offering clear waters & snorkeling & swimming opportunities. Going to this beach is a part of TOUR C in El Nido. You will spend time here since it’s usually chosen for lunch time while doing the tour! If you want to enjoy Star Beach for yourself just avoid lunch time and you will almost not find people.
22. Pasandigan Beach
Pasandigan beach was perfect. Plus it was super picturesque! There is a nice area for snorkeling. Also you can explore the caves around with crystalline water. It’s usually calm and not many people visit this El Nido tourist spot.
23. Paradise Beach
This was our lunch stop area. It was a chill, quiet place where we felt like it was our own little island. We loved the service in the tour companies in El Nido. The guides will prepare you an amazing lunch and they will make sure you have all the comfort in the island, shades and all the things that you need. The water is so clear!
24. Nat Nat Beach
Natnat is a slang term for coconuts. This beach is full of coconut trees. The water is so clear and you can enjoy snorkeling. We tried that and got some nice shots underwater. One of the closest beaches to El Nido town you can even come here kayaking.
25. Sunset in Cadlao Resort
Every sunset in every spot in El Nido is so damn beautiful! We just loved the sunset there so much that we highlighted it. We promise that you will not regret seeing the majestic sunset in Cadlao. Have a bottle of beer to maximize the experience. For more sunsets in El Nido go to Las Cabañas, Corong Corong and Lio Beach.
26. Cadlao Beach
It’s a private beach but you can do snorkeling. They are shooting Survivor for the Netherlands. We stopped with the boat and we could spot a turtle. It’s really beautiful to swim around.
27. Nightlife in El Nido
El Nido was a quiet place. But due to the high number of tourists now, businesses are popping out everywhere. Nightlife in El Nido was good but don´t go to bed so late, tours are waiting for you early morning. Well don’t expect crazy parties as Thailand but you will enjoy. The Philippines nightlife in El Nido is one of the best with Siargao to have a drink.
Where to Stay in El Nido
Sea Cocoon Hotel is the top bed and breakfast according to Trip Advisor in the whole of El Nido. Make sure you check out their link here to see if it fits your budget. We had 3 good nights with them. They have an internet connection in the hotel which is quite challenging when traveling in El Nido so we were really satisfied with our stay.
We love the choices they have in El Nido that start from as low as 700 PHP per night in a dorm. You can get a room as ceap as 1200-1500 PHP. Cool, right? What’s even cooler is you can do also Airbnb. Click here to get a great deal off your first booking with AirBnB!
Travel Tip: Click here to know prices and schedule to book your bus/boat tickets online with 12Go Asia.
Let us know if we are missing any of El Nido tourist spots. Which one is your favorite El Nido tourist spot? Did you like our El Nido travel guide? If you have questions let us know in the comments below.
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