Puerto Princesa, Day 3 & 4: Baragatan Festival, 2-Day Itinerary & Scenic Restaurants to Try

Finally, here's the last installment of my Puerto Princesa, Palawan blog posts! On our last 2 days in the city, we visited the world-famous Underground River, scenic local restaurants, watched the Baragatan Festival, went to the Crocodile Farm, Baker's Hill & attended the launch of the Palawan Travel & Tour Fair. Stories & photos below!

1st Stop: Underground River Park

Woke up early since we have a pretty packed schedule on our 3rd day! We were picked up by our assigned van and the ride to Sabang Port took around 2 hours. After getting down from our van, we then boarded a boat going to the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park or Underground River Park. 

Boarding our boat at Sabang Port

Van and boat mates! 

Awra muna sa beach! Clear emerald waters & limestone cliffs at my back. 

Group pic muna with the PP crew! A mix of bloggers, vloggers, instagrammers, Tiktokers. Love us haha! Miss you guyz!

The world-renowned Puerto Princesa Underground River, a UNESCO Heritage Site, is 8.2-kilometer long but only 4.3-kilometer is allowed for exploration or tour visits. This natural wonder is so well-preserved for hundreds of years now! The river's diverse ecosystem is home to different species like bats, swallows, crabs, fish, snakes, etc. The magnificent underground cave boasts of jaw-dropping cave formations (stalactites & stalagmites), limestone cliffs & pristine water. 

Aside from helmets & lifevests, we were also given an english audio guide! This is now how they conduct guided tours. No more live commentary by boatmen. It is to preserve the cave more!

The whole tour took around 45 minutes! No flash photography and no talking to be able to fully immerse yourself in this amazing experience. 

Look up but don't open your mouth! Hehe. Can you see the bats? 

Love the narration and stories about these natural wonders! 

Tour over! Hello boat mates! hehe

2nd Stop: Cacaoyan Forest Park & Restaurant

Located a few kilometers away from the Sitio Sabang wharf is Cacaoyan Forest Park Restaurant, a place where you can eat authentic local food while also enjoying some nice scenery! It was my first time to go there and I immediately fell in love with the place. It was only after we finish eating that we discovered the beautiful, photoworthy park inside the resto!

Love the interiors and all the artworks displayed

Buffet lunch!

They also served one of their delicacies, TAMILOK! 

Contrary to popular belief, Tamilok are not worms, they are actually a type of oyster or mollusk! I did not try it though coz I didn't want to upset my stomach that time, but they said it tastes like oyster. Only difference is that it lingers a bit in your throat coz of its length.

After eating, or before eating, you should check out their beautiful forest inside! Whether it's to relax, enjoy some fresh air or take artsy photos, you would defnitely enjoy all the spots inside this resto/park! All the structures are made from local light materials, so it is very eco-friendly. Wish we had more time here coz we were not able to check out the whole place. Can't wait to go back here!

Bali vibes!!!

3rd Stop: Baragatan Festival

The primary reason why we're in Puerto Princesa is to attend the Baragatan Festival! We watched performances by different municipalities for a few hours, and it was so much fun! The performances, costumes, props --everyone prepared really hard and gave it their all. Bravo and congrats to everyone who participated! It was such an amazing way to showcase each town's rich heritage, culture & traditions through perfectly choreographed street dances!

The Baragatan Festival is a month-long celebration of Palawan's rich culture, heritage and traditions. Baragatan came from the local word "bagat" which means "to meet or get together". This fun & vibrant festival is a gathering of different cultural/local groups in the whole of Palawan, showcasing their colorful history, unique stories, and also serves as an opportunity to show their products & geographical identities. The festival lasts for a few days and the celebration includes colorful parades, local arts & crafts, mouthwatering delicacies & dishes, beauty contest, bazaar and street dance competition.

Was also able to try the famous Noki Nocs halo-halo!!! OMG, truly the best I've ever tasted. Pls come to Manilaaaa. 

4th Stop: Kinabuch Bar & Grill 

I don't have photos from our dinner at Kinabuch, am sorry hehe.  We just ate and chatted for almost 2 hours. The food served were delicious though and the ambiance was nice, too. Will definitely eat here again when I go back!

(from Kinabuch's FB page)

After dinner, we had a few drinks at Tiki Resto Bar! 

On our last day in town, we visited a few stops and attended an event before we headed to the airport...

1st Stop: Palawan Wildlife Rescue & Conservation Center / Crocodile Farm

The Palawan Wildlife Rescue and Conservation Center (PWRCC), also known as the Crocodile Farm, is the only wildlife rescue center in Palawan, located in the key city of Puerto Princesa. Since its opening in 1987, the center, strategically located on a vast 10-hectare land, has rescued over 300 animals found injured or seized by local authorities, and eventually released after reviving and rehabilitation efforts. Still, a significant number of species are currently kept and taken care of onsite. The PWRCC has been a family favorite for both locals and tourists, as it provides informational tours, and is tagged as an addition to the ultimate nature trip at the country’s last frontier. (source)

The Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis) and Saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) are the two endemic crocodile species in the country, and the last creatures to represent the Dinosaur Age. Reports of exploitation and further decline of these species gave rise to the Philippine government to save these species along with other wildlife animals in Palawan and the diverse, wild and rare flora.

Obsessed with my Solace Vibe rope sandals! 

Team Puerto Princesa!

2nd Stop: Baker's Hill

Located on top of a hill at Brgy. Santa Monica, this picturesque place is not just a popular pasalubong center that sells Pastillas Hopia and other delicious pastries, it's also a botanical garden, leisure farm (vibe is Willy Wonka meets Alice in Wonderland hehe) and restaurant. They're open 7am to 8pm everyday!

After walking around, taking photos, appreciating nature & all the beautiful artworks, I bought pasalubong from the bakery! I don't usually buy pasalubong but I wanted to try their Pastillas Hopia and other pastries. If you have a sweet tooth you will love it! It's too sweet for me so I was only able to eat 2 hehe. Finished the cashew tart though! :)

Love this corner, very Korea/Japan!

Lawiswis is a homegrown eco-store and restaurant located in Brgy. Irawan, Puerto Princesa. It is a cozy resto with a homey vibe that serve delicious local dishes! It's also not just a resto, they also sell a variety of local & organic products like vegetables, fruits, meat, juices, bread, body and bath, handicrafts, food supplements and herbal oils.

Guests are required to take off their shoes and wear slippers

You can also seat outside

You can also read books while waiting

A delicious feast prepared by the owner! 

4th Stop: Palawan Tourism & Travel Fair

Our last stop before heading to the airport is the launch of the Palawan Tourism & Travel Tour in Robinsons Place Palawan. The event, organized by the Provincial Tourism Promotions and Development Office (PTPDO) and the Palawan Tourism Council (PTC),  aims to highlight their programs and initiatives to help bring back tourism in the “World’s Best and Friendliest Island”.

President of the Palawan Toursim Council Mr. Rey Felix Rafols said, "More than the destinations, Palawan is also about the people & culture."

They have booths showcasing each municipality

... and different activities you can do in the province

And this is where our eventful 4 days in Puerto Princesa ended! After the event, we left for the airport immediately. Thank you again DOT Mimaropa, especially to Marc & Abi, for this epic trip & experience. Truly one for the books!  I can't wait to go back to Palawan especially Puerto Princesa! :)

Click HERE to view all my Puerto Princesa, Palawan posts!

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