21 Best Puerto Princesa Tourist Spots & Things to Do: Popular River and Islands

Melanie Haiken

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Puerto Princesa Tourist Spots
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Puerto Princesa Tourist Spots boasts stunning natural wonders like the Underground River and Honda Bay. Palawan’s capital is rich in biodiversity, making it a must-visit destination.

Puerto Princesa serves as the eco-tourism center of the region. This city is a gateway to numerous adventures and unforgettable experiences, attracting travelers with its unique blend of urban conveniences and unspoiled natural beauty.

Home to UNESCO World Heritage sites and lush landscapes, Puerto Princesa offers a diverse range of attractions. The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park, featuring a majestic limestone karst landscape with an underground river, is a highlight for any visitor. Close by, island hopping in Honda Bay provides picturesque tropical escapades. Explorers and beach enthusiasts find solace in the pristine white-sand beaches and clear azure waters, while cultural sites like the Palawan Heritage Center deepen visitors’ understanding of the area’s rich history and cultural fabric.

Why Puerto Princesa Is The Best Tourist Spot?

Puerto Princesa remains an unrivaled gem for travelers seeking an enchanting getaway. Its reputation as a top tourist destination is well-earned, with the Subterranean River National Park highlighting the area’s natural splendor. This UNESCO World Heritage site captivates with its underground river, guiding visitors through a labyrinthine cave system.

Aboveground, the city’s energy and the surrounding pristine beaches offer a contrast to the serene journey below. Diverse wildlife, coupled with rich cultural experiences, ensures that each visitor leaves with unforgettable memories and stories to share, solidifying Puerto Princesa’s status as a bucket-list-worthy spot for adventurers and relaxation seekers alike.

Which Is Better Coron Or Puerto Princesa?

Deciding between Coron and Puerto Princesa for your next vacation destination in the Philippines can hinge on various factors including personal preferences and the type of adventure you seek. Both offer stunning natural beauty, but they cater to different tastes.

Coron is renowned for its world-class diving spots and enchanting lagoons, making it a haven for aquatic enthusiasts. Puerto Princesa, on the other hand, boasts the famous Subterranean River National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site, along with a more urban feel compared to the rustic charm of Coron.

Visitors looking for a mix of eco-tourism and city comforts might find Puerto Princesa more appealing. Ultimately, the choice depends on whether one’s interest lies beneath the waves or within the rich biodiversity on land.

21 Best Puerto Princesa Tourist Spots & Things to Do

1. Visit The Underground River Of Palawan

This natural marvel invites explorers to traverse through a limestone cave system aboard small paddle boats, guided by the soft glow of headlamps that reveal stunning formations shaped over centuries.

A symphony of bat squeaks and water droplets accompanies visitors as they meander along this subterranean waterway, making it an unforgettable element of the Puerto Princesa experience. The journey through this underground wonder not only offers a feast for the eyes but also serves as an educational experience, highlighting the rich biodiversity and unique geological processes that continue to sculpt this hidden gem.

2. Go Island-hopping In Honda Bay

Exploring the splendor of Puerto Princesa’s islands proves to be an unforgettable adventure for any traveler. Honda Bay’s glittering waters offer a gateway to several magnificent islets, each boasting its own unique charm. From the marine life beneath the waves perfect for snorkeling enthusiasts, to the powdery white sands inviting sunbathers to relax, there is an activity to satisfy every desire.

Discover Starfish Island, with its namesake creatures dotting the shoreline, and Luli Island, which vanishes at high tide, leaving visitors fascinated. With options to rent a boat for the day or join guided tours, your island-hopping journey in Honda Bay is sure to be a highlight of your Puerto Princesa trip, captivating your senses and leaving you with lasting memories.

3. Buy Treats At Baker’s Hill

Puerto Princesa offers a unique opportunity to indulge in local culinary delights, and no destination offers a sweeter experience than Baker’s Hill. This locale is renowned for its bakery which conjures up a delightful array of pastries that are both a feast for the eyes and a treat for the taste buds.

Visitors are especially fond of the hopia, a traditional Filipino pastry that comes in a variety of flavors. The charming park-like setting of Baker’s Hill also provides a serene backdrop for those wishing to enjoy their confections on-site, while the quaint shops present an ideal chance to select edible souvenirs that are sure to impress friends and family back home.

Baker’s Hill stands as a must-visit for anyone seeking to savor the flavors of Puerto Princesa.

4. Lounge In Puerto Princesa Beaches

Embracing the serene beauty of Puerto Princesa’s beaches offers a blissful retreat for travelers and locals alike. The soft, powdery sands serve as an inviting canvas for sunbathing, while the gentle whisper of waves provides a soothing soundtrack for relaxation.

Coastal gems often boast a backdrop of lush palm trees, creating a tropical paradise that beckons you to unwind and revel in nature’s splendor. From the marine life ideal for snorkelers to the tranquil spots perfect for solitude seekers, the beaches in Puerto Princesa cater to a plethora of seaside pursuits.

As the sunlight kisses the horizon, the changing hues of the sky reflect upon the water, presenting a picturesque moment not to be missed by any visitor.

5. Watch Fireflies In Iwahig River And Irawan River

As dusk settles, the banks of these rivers become aglow with the flickering lights of fireflies, creating a mesmerizing spectacle that resembles a star-studded sky.

This natural phenomenon, a result of the fireflies’ bioluminescent activities, provides a unique eco-tourism adventure for visitors. Booking a guided river tour not only ensures a safe and informative evening but also supports the local conservation efforts to preserve this enchanting nocturnal show.

Be sure to bring a camera with good low-light capabilities to capture the wonder, though photos hardly do justice to the experience of watching thousands of fireflies dance in the nighttime air.

6. Drink At Palaweño Brewery

Delving into Puerto Princesa’s culture becomes even more exciting with a visit to the Palaweño Brewery, where travelers can savor the unique taste of locally crafted beers. This boutique establishment stands as Palawan’s first and only craft brewery, offering a selection of beers that are as rich in flavor as they are in storytelling.

Guests often find themselves enamored by the array of choices, which include options infused with local ingredients, paying homage to the island’s lush biodiversity. An evening spent here is not just about enjoying a cold drink but also about immersing oneself in the community’s passion for quality and innovation in brewing.

The inviting atmosphere at the brewery provides the perfect backdrop for both creating new memories and relishing the unique tastes of Palawan.

7. Go Spelunking Or Ride A Zipline In Ugong Rock Adventures

Immersing oneself in the beauty of Ugong Rock, adventurous travelers find joy in the thrills of caving and ziplining amidst the limestone landscape. This natural wonder not only offers the excitement of navigating through stunning rock formations but also the unique experience of hearing the reverberating ‘ugong’ or echo sound it’s famously named after.

The adventurous can ascend through the cave using ladders and ropes, guided by the expert locals, to reach the summit where an exhilarating zipline ride awaits. Gliding across the lush greenery provides panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. Embracing both adventure and cultural insight, Ugong Rock Adventures stands as a testament to the rich natural tapestry of Puerto Princesa, beckoning the courageous to explore its depths and heights.

8. Visit The Crocodile Farm

As one explores the wildlife attractions in Puerto Princesa, the Crocodile Farm is a must-see destination that offers an up-close encounter with these prehistoric creatures. Ideal for families and nature enthusiasts, the farm provides educational tours that enlighten visitors about the conservation efforts for Philippine crocodiles, which are considered endangered.

Guests not only learn about the crocodile’s life cycle and habitat but also have the opportunity to see a wide array of other endemic species, making the visit a rich experience in ecological awareness. The facility’s commitment to research and preservation projects serves as an excellent example of sustainable tourist attractions.

9. See The View From Mitra’s Ranch

Situated on a hilltop with a panoramic vista of Puerto Princesa, Mitra’s Ranch offers a unique opportunity to enjoy breathtaking views while savoring a sense of serenity away from the city’s hustle. Visitors are invited to unwind amid the sprawling greenery, where the horizon stretches endlessly before your eyes.

The ranch is not only a retreat but also an adventure playground, featuring zip lines and horseback riding, allowing for an engaging experience with nature. Its accessibility to tourists makes it a must-visit location to capture the quintessence of Palawan’s natural beauty and to build memories against a backdrop of stunning landscapes.

Whether you’re seeking a moment of tranquility or an afternoon of excitement, Mitra’s Ranch delivers both against the canvas of a majestic Philippine skyline.

10. Take A Moment Of Silence At Plaza Cuartel

Plaza Cuartel, a historical landmark in Puerto Princesa, offers visitors a poignant reminder of World War II’s brutal legacy. This once-functional military base now stands as a somber memorial, where travelers can pay their respects to the soldiers who perished here.

The restored ruins and a small, informative museum provide context to the site’s past, while the serene surroundings invite a moment of reflection. Wandering through the lush gardens, one can sense the poignancy of the events that unfolded in this tranquil spot, making it a must-visit for those interested in history and the resilience of the human spirit.

11. Stroll At Puerto Princesa City Baywalk Park

The City Baywalk Park offers a serene retreat from the hustle and bustle of urban life. Visitors can leisurely wander through the beautifully landscaped paths, appreciating the stunning views of the ocean that stretches out into the horizon.

With its calming ambiance, it’s the perfect setting to watch the hues of the sunset painting the sky. Locals often gather here, participating in leisurely activities that range from jogging to indulgent street food feasting. The park’s atmosphere is charged with a gentle energy, making it an ideal spot for tourists to immerse themselves in the local scene while enjoying the gentle sea breeze.

12. Visit The Iwahig Prison And Penal Farm

Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm offers a glimpse into a different kind of rehabilitation center. Unlike traditional correctional facilities, this open prison in Puerto Princesa stands out for its tranquil setting and the surprising amount of freedom entrusted to inmates.

Tourists are often intrigued by the concept, where inmates engage in farming activities, showcasing their handcrafted souvenirs and even interacting with visitors. Not only does this unusual site challenge typical perceptions of penitentiaries, but it also provides a serene environment for those incarcerated, fostering a sense of community and responsibility as they prepare for their reintegration into society.

Whether you’re interested in the historical aspects or the present-day functioning of the prison farm, a visit here is sure to be both thought-provoking and memorable.

13. Explore Palawan Museum

The Palawan Museum is a cultural gem worth visiting. This repository of history and art gives tourists an intimate glimpse into the rich cultural tapestry of the island. As you wander through its exhibits, you’ll uncover ancient artifacts and ethnographic collections that showcase Palawan’s diverse communities and their traditions.

The museum, housed in a historic building, presents an array of relics dating back to the Tabon Man—considered one of the Philippines’ oldest inhabitants. Engaging displays tell a story of the island’s past, from wartime events to the evolution of its indigenous people, ensuring a visit here is both enlightening and captivating.

14. Butterfly Garden And Tribal Village

Puerto Princesa offers an enchanting experience at the Butterfly Garden and Tribal Village. This serene sanctuary showcases a dazzling array of butterflies, providing visitors with a glimpse into the delicate balance of Palawan’s ecosystem.

As you meander along the garden paths, the flutters of colorful wings create a mesmerizing spectacle. Nearby, the Tribal Village invites travelers to step into the lives of the local indigenous people. It’s a profound cultural encounter where traditions and customs come alive.

Guests can observe firsthand the craftsmanship and daily routines of the community, fostering a deeper appreciation for the cultural tapestry that is unique to this island paradise. Whether you’re a nature lover or a culture enthusiast, this spot is an unforgettable slice of Puerto Princesa’s rich heritage.

15. Learn History At Palawan Heritage Center

Delving into the rich tapestry of the island’s past becomes a fascinating journey at the Palawan Heritage Center. This repository of culture and history showcases a wealth of artifacts, traditional crafts, and detailed exhibits that colorfully narrate the story of Palawan.

Visitors gain an appreciation for the region’s diverse heritage, with interactive displays that offer a window into the lives of indigenous communities and the evolution of the province. Whether you’re a history buff or simply curious about the island’s background, the center provides an enlightening experience for all ages, ensuring that each guest leaves with a deeper understanding of Palawan’s unique legacy.

16. Ride The Sabang X Zipline

Embark on an exhilarating journey over the lush landscapes of Puerto Princesa as you take on the Sabang X Zipline. This adventure offers a unique aerial view of the breathtaking scenery below, making for an unforgettable experience. Feel the rush of the wind and the thrill of the height as you glide through the air, with every safety measure ensured for a secure flight.

Whether you’re an adrenaline junkie or a nature lover looking for a different perspective, the Sabang X Zipline delivers a fusion of excitement and picturesque vistas. As one of the must-do activities in the area, it effortlessly mixes adventure with the natural beauty of Puerto Princesa.

17. Appreciate The Architecture Of The Immaculate Conception Cathedral

The Immaculate Conception Cathedral stands as a beacon of history and spirituality. Its magnificently crafted façade, accented by stained glass windows and azure trimmings, invites both the faithful and curious eyes from around the globe.

This historical landmark, built during the Spanish colonial era, is not just a place of worship but also a testament to the rich cultural tapestry of the city. Visitors often find themselves captivated by the cathedral’s architectural grandeur, reflecting a fusion of local and foreign influences.

Whether bathed in the golden glow of the sun or illuminated by serene evening lights, the cathedral remains one of Puerto Princesa’s most photographed edifices, beckoning tourists to explore its quiet aisles and reflective ambiance.

18. Go On A Mangrove Paddle Boat Tour

Embark on a serene journey through the emerald waters of Puerto Princesa by taking a mangrove paddle boat tour. Glide silently beneath a verdant canopy of mangrove forests, which are critical to the local ecosystem. Guides often share their wealth of knowledge on the fascinating flora and fauna that thrive in this unique habitat.

As you navigate the twists and turns of this tranquil river, keep an eye out for the diverse wildlife, including colorful birds and the occasional fish darting beneath the surface. This tour offers a rare glimpse into the rich biodiversity and natural beauty that Puerto Princesa is known for, making it an unmissable experience for nature lovers and adventurers alike.

19. Cacaoyan Forest Park

Cacaoyan Forest Park, beckons nature lovers with its lush landscape and serene ambiance. This hidden gem serves as a sanctuary for wildlife and offers visitors an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.

Enthusiasts can immerse themselves in the rich biodiversity of the park, where towering trees provide a canopy for an array of bird species. Eco-friendly activities such as guided nature walks and educational tours provide insight into the conservation efforts that help maintain the park’s natural beauty.

Whether you’re an avid photographer or simply in need of some tranquility, Cacaoyan Forest Park presents a perfect blend of adventure and relaxation amid Puerto Princesa Tourist Spots.

20. Astoria Palawan Water Park

Astoria Palawan Water Park means diving into a world of excitement and relaxation that complements the natural beauty of Puerto Princesa. This island oasis offers a refreshing escape with its thrilling water slides, wave pools, and lazy river that invite both adrenaline seekers and those looking to unwind.

Families flock here to create memories, whether splashing around in the kid-friendly zones or lounging on the sun-kissed decks. Surrounded by Palawan’s lush landscapes, the water park isn’t just an attraction but an experience, seamlessly merging the island’s charm with the joy of aquatic entertainment.

It stands out as a must-visit destination for those who want to add a splash of fun to their tropical getaway.

21. Kamia Bay Resort

Kamia Bay Resort beckons adventurers and tranquility-seekers alike. This eco-tourism hotspot, renowned for its aqua park—one of the largest in Asia—promises a blend of exhilarating activities and serene moments. Guests are invited to explore the lush landscapes on a bike or kayak, basking in the unspoiled beauty of Puerto Princesa.

With its commitment to sustainability, the resort ensures a minimal ecological footprint while providing a haven for marine life enthusiasts eager to dive into the underwater wonderland. Catering to families and thrill-seekers, Kamia Bay Resort stands out as an essential pit stop on the journey through Puerto Puerto Princesa Tourist Spots.

Conclusion

Exploring Puerto Princesa offers a blend of adventure, culture, and tranquility. Its enchanting mix of Puerto Princesa Tourist Spots caters to all, from the Underground River to serene island retreats. Make your next journey one for the books in this slice of paradise where nature’s beauty shines at every turn.

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