If you decided to go Island Hopping in Palawan, First thing will come to your mind is to visit El Nido, Palawan. Known as one of the most beautiful islands in the world!  Now how do you find all those drool worthy spots you see all over social media?  If you are anything like us, we quickly became overwhelmed when we realized each beach/location was mostly available only by boat.  To further complicate it, many of the tour companies refer to these El Nido boat tours as A, B, C, D. El Nido definitely opened my eyes to how beautiful the Philippines is. What I loved the most is it hasn’t been urbanized yet so everything is so raw and natural, which is what I enjoy when visiting nature spots.  I hope this picture guide of our favorite 5 spots on the El Nido boat tours help you narrow down your island hopping destinations!

1 Small Lagoon (Tour A)

This is the lagoon where you see many of the shots online in kayaks.  To really get a true glimpse of the lagoon and not just the outside view, make sure your tour operator provides kayaks.  Upon lagoon entry, we quickly loaded into our double-person kayak.

There is a narrow opening that takes you into the heart of the small lagoon.  It’s a tight little squeeze, but the kayak fits if the tide is right.

Once inside, you can stare in awe at the beauty that surrounds you!

2 Big Lagoon (Tour C)

I’m so thankful to be able to do both El Nido Big Lagoon and Small Lagoon in the same day before changes implemented in November 2018. Not one to waste an opportunity, I chose the ‘kayak tour A’ option. When my time in Small Lagoon was complete we headed back out of the narrow entrance and paddled straight past our bangka as our boat mates re-boarded. One of the crew acted as a guide and we simply followed his lead. We proceeded single file along the coast of Miniloc Island towards El Nido Big Lagoon. The water was a little choppy, but it was a short 15 minute paddle and would even suit first timers.

Many El Nido boat tours hit the big lagoon.  If your tour operator allows, you can have a thrilling ride on the boat edge to get there. The water quickly changes color as you cruise deeper into the lagoon.  Many major movies have been filmed in this area due to its sheer beauty. Make sure your camera is ready, there are ample spots for photo opportunities as the boat coasts through the lagoon.

3 Secret Beach (Tour C)

My absolute favorite spot is secret beach.  Why is it a secret?  Well you need to swim through this hole to get there.  See that little opening glowing where the rock hits the water?  That is where we are headed!

Once inside, you are greeted with this setting.  See the little opening again where the rock hits the water?  This lagoon provided some of the clearest water we had seen while we were in El Nido.

4 Hidden Beach (Tour C)

A lush green island opens onto a secret beach, with ample shade, sun, and crystal-clear water.

Hidden Beach is one of the places you’ll visit when you book Tour C. It is far, but it is worth the trip because of its secluded location, fine white sand, and clear waters. It has a rugged appearance, giving it a raw appeal. Relax on the beach, swim in the waters, and just marvel at the stunning limestone surrounding it.

5 Seven Commandos Beach

7 Commandos Beach with its crystal clear waters on white sandy beach. Did you know? The beach was named after the 7 commandos who lived in the island. In fact, their names are even printed on the rocks at the island.

This island is the most developed one from the tours. There’s a beach bar where you can order drinks like the popular fresh buko (coconut), cocktails, fresh fruit shakes. There’s even a resort at the other end of the island.

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