If you are planning to visit El Nido Palawan, you have two options to reach this paradise on earth. If you are coming from Manila, fastest option is to take a direct flight to EL Nido.
The most common and affordable option is to fly from Manila to Puerto Princesa and do a land travel going to El Nido. yet, affordability comes with tolerating a little rough road condition for 5 hours.
If you opt to do a land transfer, you have the option to take a bus (Air-conditioned or Ordinary) or a van. In my research, I believe that It’s cheaper to take a bus compared to a van. But, a van is way faster than taking a bus due to few number of stopovers.
I had a number of experience when it comes to long land travel. The longest that I had was a 13 hours drive from Manila to Vigan so I expect these 5 hours travel a quick one. There are cafeterias outside the airport to grab a quick lunch in case you feel hungry before heading to El Nido.
The road going to EL Nido based on my observation is like the road going to Baguio or Bicol; zigzag and has many blinds. The first half of our travel was relaxing. Good road condition plus an awesome view of the countryside. If there’s a chance that your van will have a stopover at Halfway Cafeteria. I recommend you to eat here. They are serving good homemade Filipino food at a reasonable price.
The second half of our road trip is a different story. The road was partly cemented and not. It was indeed a bumpy ride added with more zigzags and blinds. You will even hear small rocks hitting the van.
Make sure to leave Puerto Princesa early. In our case, we leave late afternoon which, gave us a more challenging road experience. There are fewer streetlights on the road and the network signal is unavailable along the way. If you easily get dizzy, make sure that you have an available medicine. Food and water are also necessary. I rarely saw stores along the road.
Drop off point is at a terminal 10-15 minutes away from the port. Here you need to take a tricycle that will bring you to your hotel. Standard fare is 10php/head. If you are looking for a discounted hotel in El Nido. You may book by clicking the this link.
Van transfer prices typically range from 600-900php. Just use your bargaining skills and you can get as low as 450php. You can contact Rodel Badajos at 09362644818 or 09089014959.
It is highly recommended to arrange your land transfer in and out of El Nido before the date of your arrival.