A week or so just before I left for India in 2012, I visited this paradise called El Nido in the northeastern tip of Palawan. There, I met Stepanka (in picture), a Czech woman, and Pedro, her Portuguese boyfriend (they now have a baby!). I did a one-day tour of the islands off the El Nido coast and got my seat in a boat where I am the only Filipino. I still remember the Russian guy (who claimed to be an astronaut but chose to be a trucker as it’s a more financially-rewarding job), and this guy who joined the tour but stayed on the boat (as he already saw most “visible” creatures under the sea in past travels), and this Canadian couple (who didn’t really say much but seemed happy and content). The tour was really worth it, to experience what a day in El Nido can offer. I vowed to return to El Nido one day and finally, tickets are booked! Though it’s not for a few more months, I am already looking forward to once again marvel in the natural beauty and diversity of El Nido and Palawan, above or under the sea.
(I didn’t really want to break my Backpacking South East Asia series but really, really want to share my recent trip in El Nido while the memories are still as clear as its waters.)
My heart really felt heavy when I left El Nido. And I am not saying this cause I’m being cheesy or anything. Truly, El Nido has captured my heart that morning as I walked on the beach, just basking in the calmness of the sea. The islands had such an effect on me that I just couldn’t stop myself from gazing in awe. To top it all, meeting people from different places and seeing cultures blend seamlessly right before your eyes is but an icing on the cake for a memorable El Nido trip. Continue reading El Nido: a paradise and a promise