Standard check-in is 2PM and it was so inappropriate to sleep in SPIN’s lounge areas. It was only 9 in the morning and I was so sleepy from the night bus ride from Puerto Princesa. Someone from Northern Hope Tours texted me and asked if I’m already in El Nido. After I replied yes, the guide for my inland tours sent a message informing me that we will be starting the El Nido inland tour around 9:30.
Alfer, licensed tour guide from Northern Hope Tours, dropped by the hostel to check if I’m okay with the time and hopping on the vehicle was a sure answer. Road from town to Nacpan demanded for around 40 minutes travel time.
NACPAN – CALITANG TWIN BEACHES
Tourists weren’t around yet as I made my way to the beach. Considering that I only had few hours of sleep, the cool breeze was a temptation to avail a power nap under the shades of the cottages. Nacpan Beach is the longest beach in El Nido as per my guide but I wasn’t able to walk from one side to the other to measure its length.
There are restaurants near the beach that offer refreshments from shakes to fresh coconut juice and also serve fresh seafood and other viands for lunch.
Several islets and islands, including the one they believe to be a property of Manny Pacquiao, are visible from the long stretch of Nacpan Beach. Water is a bit rough sometimes that’s why assigned locals inform tourists to just go a few meters from the shore. With the waves, surfing and paddle boarding are some of the activities that can be done in the destination.
Nacpan – Calitang Twin Beaches became famous because of a photo of the beaches taken from a hill. This hill is located on the far end of Nacpan, left if you’re facing the sea.
The view is indeed panoramic. For some math folks, Nacpan and Calitang Beaches can be compared to a hyperbola but instead of being asymptotic, the beaches might meet. Never mind the mathematical terms. The grasses on the hill can be used as effects in taking a scenic photo for your Instagram account.
Sunset viewing is always a part of my itinerary and I really find time to search for the best possible spot to watch for it. On this El Nido trip, Marimegmeg Beach, where the famous Las Cabanas Resort is located, is the most suggested spot for sunset.
Foreigners enjoy the area by basking under the sun on their beach towels to get the color they’re aiming for. Numerous accommodations also set-up their bars to offer some cocktails, mocktails, fruit shakes, and other refreshments for the visitors.
I went to the place twice, on consecutive days, and had two different sunset scenes: clear horizon, and a cloudy one. We were able to go beyond Las Cabanas on the first day to take better photos. On my second visit, Saturday, the resort organized an event that required everyone to settle a fee of Php150 for you to get to the far end of their beach. The fee includes one free drink on the available cocktails and beers.
On my second day in El Nido, my guide from Northern Hope Tours arrived in SPIN Hostel while I was still enjoying my sleep. At 5:30 in the morning, I found myself at the starting point of climbing Taraw Cliff. Taraw Cliff is the highest point in El Nido and reaching the peak gives you a view of Bacuit Bay and the whole town of El Nido. Early morning is the best time to consider in trying the extreme activity.
There are no gears here so it is better to hire a guide that can assist and show you the right trail. Most rocks are sharp and pointed so you really need to be careful on your ascent. I suggest you bring gloves for you to easily grip on the rocks. The trail is not that difficult for people who don’t do this activity regularly. You just need to be super careful in every step you make to avoid any untoward accident.
Since it was early in the morning, the first part of the trail was kinda difficult as it was still dark and I had a hard time checking on the right rocks to grip and step on, but with the presence of my guide, I managed to climb Taraw Cliff without any bruises.
When you reached the peak, all hardships from the climb will be relieved by the stunning view of the landscape: boats on Bacuit Bay, the serene town of El Nido, and the endless horizon. These plus the sun slowly beaming the entire place.
Tourism office of El Nido requires guests to get licensed local guides before climbing Taraw Cliff to ensure their safety. Also, they discourage tourists to climb the cliff when the limestone rocks get wet from the rain as it becomes slippery.
These three destinations are only part of numerous inland natural attractions you can visit. Other destinations are Barotuan River, Nagkalit-kalit and Bulalacao Falls, Makangit Mini Underground River, Dewil River, Pangko Maritime Museum, and Balay Cuyo Museum.
For rates of inland tours, visit Northern Hope Tour’s website at www.northernhopetours.com or contact them via email on firstname.lastname@example.org or via mobile 09399022216, 09277353221, and 09423752441.