5 Things to Do for First Time Puerto Princesa City Visitors
So you’ve just booked a ticket to Puerto Princesa, Palawan. Great! Time to plan your trip. Never been to PPS? Don’t worry, this guide is for you!
Visiting the Puerto Princesa Underground River is usually on top of everyone’s Palawan bucket list (read Team Out of Town’s tips in planning your PPUR tour).. if not going to beach. I can’t blame them. Palawan is a paradise that is home to the world’s most beautiful beaches and one of the Seven Wonders of Nature.
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But before immersing yourself with water activities or heading back home, get acquainted with these city gems.
Know Palawan’s Historic Past
One of the popular tourist destinations in Puerto Princesa City is the Immaculate Conception Cathedral located along Rizal Avenue. Unlike the typical Catholic church, this one is painted blue and has a unique architectural structure.
Just across the church is Plaza Cuartel, a garrison of Spaniards that became a military fort of Americans during World War II. It became the site of Palawan Massacre in 1944 were around 150 prisoners were burned to death by the Japanese. Today, it is part of the town plaza complex with a nice view of the sea.
More areas of interest from Sir Melo’s Heritage Tour last February 2016.
Rent a fun kart for P500 and do 10 laps around the 1,350 km long track of the Palawan International Circuit. Scooters are also available for rent at P250 per day.
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Eat like a local
A friend of mine who recently went to Puerto Princesa told me to try Noki Nocs’ Halo-Halo. Luckily this was the first meal that we had went we landed, along with pizza, and boy it was one of the best!
Head over to Ka Inato for lunch and try their version of Chicken Inasal, best with atchara and soy sauce-vinegar dip. You can drop by here for your last meal in the island before heading to the airport.
Another local favorite is Kinabuch Grill & Bar, a laid back restaurant and full bar where you can eat both classic and exotic food. How about Crocodile Sisig or Tamilok for dinner or midnight snack? They have a large TV screen by the parking lot where you can watch sports.
Of course, when in Puerto Princesa, eating at KaLui is a must! This seafood restaurant has great ambiance and equally delicious food. Take off your shoes, place your order and check out the art collection on your way to the loo. Don’t forget to make a reservation for sure seats, especially for dinner time.
Drink artisanal beer
Cheers to an adventurous day with a bottle of locally-made ice cold beer! Palaweno Brewery, the first and only microbrewery in the province, offers five variants of their specialty craft beer called “Ayahay” for P150-P170 per serving. Choose from Ambog Ale, Palawan Wit, Pawal’an, Hunter, and Ayahay IPA. If you’re not sure which one to try, the owners and/or staff would gladly help you pick based on your personal preferences.
A trip to Baker’s Hill will satisfy both your tummy and your Instagram feed! While most people go here to take home baked goods (don’t forget the hopia!), you might want to spend an hour or two exploring. From a hugot tree to life size sculptures, a mini zoo to a viewing deck, you’ll never run out of spots to take your OOTD and group photos.
Drop by Binuatan Creations for local handicrafts. The souvenir shop sells keychains, ref magnets (P35 each or 3 for P100), fans, wallets, bags, table runners, etc. Drop by the factory and experience traditional weaving firsthand from the lovely makers.
For last minute shopping, go to MCA Pasalubong Center (formerly known as LRC 908 Market Mall). This is where I bought Palawan-printed shirts, pearl jewelry and more keychains.
Thankfully, our trip to Puerto Princesa City was not limited to activities related to MIMAROPA Festival. I’d be sad going home when I barely scratched the surface. Our itinerary might have been packed and tiring (because of early call times and late nights) but we still had fun! All thanks to Department of Tourism MIMAROPA and Tourism Promotions Board.
Have fun on your upcoming trip to the center of mainland Palawan!
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Puerto Princesa is an hour away by plane from Manila. Philippine Airlines/PAL Express operates daily flights from Manila to Puerto Princesa and vice versa. PAL Express also offers direct flights to and from Cebu and Clark.
Note: all rates mentioned are as of November 2016.
- Top Tips for Planning Your Underground River Tour
- Hotel Review: Canvas Boutique Hotel in Puerto Princesa City
- Puerto Princesa Heritage Tour Day 1: Visiting Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm
- Puerto Princesa Heritage Tour Day 2: Visiting Palawan Special Battalion WWII Museum and more
- Puerto Princesa Heritage Tour Day 3: Visiting the Underground River of Puerto Princesa
- Puerto Princesa City Is Lovelier The Second Time Around
- Blue Palawan Beach Club in Puerto Princesa: A New Resort in The “World’s Best Island”