Palawan, the great tourist center of the Philippines. It houses the popular tourist hotspots El Nido and Puerto Prinsesa, and the slowly developing Coron. Funnily, Coron town isn’t located in Coron Island.
Explore the Town
Coron town is a very provincial town. The small town has neither fast food joints nor 24 hour convenience stores as of the moment which make its rustic charm more pronounced. Their primary mode of transportation are motorcycles and big tricycles which tourists and locals fondly call “taxicabs”. This quaint town is littered with souvenir shops, dive shops, restaurants, and friendly locals. While exploring the area, we stumbled on beautiful trinkets to bring home, delicious street food, and deals on activities like paddle boarding, island hopping and a lot more!
Eat Fresh Sea Food
Being a coastal area, Coron is never devoid of fresh seafood. From shrimps, to lobsters, to a never ending variety of fishes, restaurants are well stocked with fresh seafood all year round. I especially love their charcoal grilled whole fish. Some places even have fresh seaweed or “lato” which is traditionally is made into a salad by adding local spiced vinegar, tomatoes, and onions. Fishes cost cheaper than chicken, beef, and pork, too so even more reason to try the freshest bounty of the sea.
I have a few places I regularly go to there, but my favorite is a place where all they do is grill fresh seafood. No nonsense cooking. Just pure fish flavor with the regular vinegar or saoy sauce to your preference for dipping. I am drooling just thiking of it!
Go Island Hopping
The island hopping in this small paradise is to wonderful. Most places offer as much as 4 combinations of destinations to go to. You can visit Kayangan Lake, Twin Peaks lake, and go snorkelling in the 2.5 kilometer wide coral gardens. You can opt to stay in white sand beaches, have prepared lunch on the boat in the middle of the sea, and visit sunken ships. Island hopping fees go as low as Php650 per person and normally don’t go above Php1,500 for the more premier places.
There are a lot of places to go to when Island Hopping. Because Coron has so many smaller islands around it, and amazing looking rock formations, it’s really is no wonder it has so much places that’s awesome for island hopping. To name a few: Kayanagan Lake, Twin Lagoon, and Skeleton Wreck. There are also coral reefs that span 3 kilometers in width! It was surreal!
Go Diving or Learn How to Dive
The magnificence of the underwater world leaves me speechless. If you are, in any way, love swimming, snorkeling, or underwater scenery, I totally recommend getting a dive license. It is heavy on the wallet, but I really believe that it is truly worth it. The PADI Open Water dive license costs a hefty Php17,000. It took me a while to save up for my dive licenses, but I love love love it.
Imagine feeling weightless, looking at the grandeur of the coral reefs up close, being able to literally swim with the fishes (and in the good way). Every time I dive, it takes my breath away. If you do decide to take up SCUBA diving in Palawan, I recommend Coron Divers. They are sweet, polite, and do all they can to make your diving experience fun, safe, and memorable.
Relax in Maquinit Hot Spring
Maquinit is a salt water hot spring. The hot spring, since naturally salted water, is said to have healing properties because of its many minerals. It’s a big place, but even then, you’d want it to be as solitary as you can to fully enjoy the experience. To get there, you either rent a van or ride a tricycle. The price of the transport is a bit steep relatively. Its Php300 for two people, but that ride is to and from the town to Maquinit. Half of the way to Maquinit isn’t cemented so prepare for a bumpy ride.
Its located at a higher elevation than the rest of Coron town. Aside from the ride to maquinit, there is also a Php200 entrance fee for adults and Php180 for students. You can stay in the hot springs for as long as you want, but you cannot bring your own food and drinks inside. No worries, the place houses a small sari-sari store where you can buy snacks and drinks.
Climb Mount Tapyas
Mount Tapyas is located in the town itself. It’s a relatively short trek, but you need to be physically fit to attempt this. With its 724 steps to the peak, it is worth it with the amazing view of Coron and its surrounding islands. Although I’ve never tried it, I bet climbing just before sunrise would be all worth it just for the breathtaking scenery.
Rent a Paddle Board
Paddle boarding, being a new sport to try. I’ve only actually tried it in Two Seasons Resort, Coron, but I have seen paddle boards being rented in different hotels and resorts around the area. They usually cost Php1000 per person, minimum of 2 people. A solo paddle boarder rental costs around Php1,300. You can try paddle boarding in the lakes and rivers near the town itself.
What’s great about paddle boarding is that you don’t need a lot of balance to ride on it. You can even use it as a kind of a boat. Like, sit on its side and not fall. Plus, most boards have a small place where you can put your things on it without it falling. Make sure to secure it with the lines, though! And don’t ever ever forget to waterproof your stuff~
For such a tiny town, this charming Coron really has a lot of activities for a multitude of tourists. Being a new tourist hotspot, I can imagine the list of activities to do in Coron can only multiply.
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