The 10 Most Instagrammable Spots in Puerto Princesa, Philippines

Sunset at Isla Pandan, Honda Bay, Palawan
Sunset at Isla Pandan, Honda Bay, Palawan | © Katrina Escalona
Katrina Escalona

Don’t wait until El Nido or Coron to start sharing the gorgeous photos your followers are expecting from your Palawan trip. Hit up these top Instagrammable spots in the province’s capital and you’ll find your posts quickly raking in those likes.

Isla Pandan

There is certainly no shortage of pristine beaches in the province of Palawan — not even in the city of Puerto Princesa. One of the stops on the Honda Bay island-hopping tour, Isla Pandan flaunts sparkling clear waters and powdery-fine white sand. Throw on your favorite tropical attire, spread a colorful sarong on the beach, and snap away. Day-trippers normally stop by to grill up a lunch and head out to continue island-hopping soon after. Come earlier or stay until later in the day to have this beach all to yourself.

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Sabang Beach

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The Underground River

If it carries the official title of being a ‘Wonder of Nature’, you can be sure this place is a stunner. Accessible by hiking trail or a short boat ride from Sabang Beach, the Puerto Princesa Underground River is a stunning natural backdrop or even as the photo subject itself. Take your shot before entering the cave and enjoy the natural light and vibrant blues and greens from the water and trees.
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Nagtabon Beach

Highly popular among the locals, Nagtabon is only less than an hour’s drive from the city proper and is a great fix for any beach lover needing a dose of sand and sea – stat. Many will come by for the day on weekends to surf or hang out, but weekdays tend to be quiet, peaceful, and crowd-free — a perfect time to sneak in a quick beach photo op.

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Nagtabon View Deck

For a complete shot of the gorgeous Nagtabon Cove, place yourself far up on the Nagtabon View Deck. From here, not only can you really appreciate the flawless shape of the beach below, but at sunset, you also get the best seats available for the breathtaking golden hour.

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Love and Peace Deep Jungle Resort

This laid-back native resort stands within the jungles of barangay Maoyon, right by the Maoyon River. It was built to match its environment, with nipa hut-inspired accommodations, wooden furniture, and a bamboo platform overlooking the river that serves as a casual lounge and bar area. The great thing is that this picturesque jungle resort is not exclusive to its guests. Visitors can walk in, order from their restaurant menu and are then allowed to stay, relax, and enjoy their care-free atmosphere. For Insta-lovers, great photos can be taken swinging off their Tarzan rope and jumping into the river, kayaking or tubing down the river, or even just lounging around, cocktail in hand.

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Sabang Waterfall

Much lesser known than the distinguished Underground River, the Sabang Waterfall sits about a half-hour walk from the Sabang dock. The route is a rocky one so making the trip in sturdy shoes would be best. The 50-foot series of cascades ends at a small rock pool fronting the sea so visitors are guaranteed a beautiful view to accompany their refreshing post-trek dip. Because most Sabang tourists make a beeline for the Underground River and not much else, you’ll find that this natural attraction still remains below the radar and off the beaten path.

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Cowrie Island

Another popular stop on the Honda Bay island-hopping tour is Cowrie Island. Sip fresh coconut juice on its fine white sand and cool off in its surrounding blue waters, all the while taking effortlessly envy-worthy beach photos for your followers to adore.

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Luli Island

Despite the name, Luli is actually more a sandbar than it is an island. “Luli” is derived from Filipino words that mean “to submerge” (lulubog) and “to emerge” (lilitaw). And this is exactly what happens to it as the tide advances and recedes throughout the day. If Luli is on your Honda Bay island-hopping itinerary, ask your boatman to dock at a time of day when the tide is low and you’ll have a beautiful stretch of sand to frolic and take photos. They also usually have a sand castle set up for a photo to mark your visit.

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Mt. Magarwak

Not yet very well-known to tourists, Mt. Magarwak is a popular hike among locals. Because its difficulty is on the easier end of the spectrum and the views are rewarding, most especially at sunrise, locals will usually begin the trek before dawn and attempt to reach the peak by daybreak. A large cross marks one of the viewpoints, which is also another end point if hikers don’t wish to go all the way up to the summit. From up Magarwak, any photos of the surrounding views, from the lush greenery blanketing the hills to the sea and islands of Honday Bay, are sure to turn out great. Snap a selfie at the peak and show your followers your conquered feat.

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