Apulit, El Nido: Honeymoon Heaven in the Philippines

After an eventful start to our honeymoon, Kev and I were ready for an idyllic retreat in paradise. A tranquil setting in unspoiled landscapes sounded just about right! That took us to Apulit Island – privately set within a pristine cove with a wide expanse of white-sand beach.

Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

Apulit Island, El Nido

Owned by El Nido Resorts, Apulit Island set in Taytay Bay in North-eastern Palawan. From Puerto Princesa Underground River, the car ride takes around 3-4 hours. Along the way, we traveled through windy mountain roads. It is highly recommended to take a motion sickness medication beforehand for those who get nauseas easily.

PP Underground River to Taytay Port, Palawan, Philippines

We said goodbye to Daluyon Resort early in the morning, hoping to catch the boat leaving Taytay Port at around 2:30 P.M. On the way, we stopped briefly at Roxas to recharge our energy at a local restaurant as well as stocking up some snacks.

Lunch at Tabing Dagat Restaurant in Roxas

Tabing dagat restaurant at Roxas, Palawan, Philippines

stop over at Roxas for lunch at tabing dagat restaurant

Surprisingly, Filipino food is highly similar to Chinese cuisine, especially those noodle and soup dishes. We had no problem adapting at all! What we loved the most was lechon kawali (Filipino crispy fried pork belly), where the pork fat was fried to a crips while the lean meat remaining moist ?

Pancit lomit from Tabing Dagat restaurant at Roxas, Palawan, Philippines

pancit lomit (chinese-filipino dish with fresh egg noodles in thick soup)

Lechon kawali from Tabing Dagat restaurant at Roxas, Palawan, Philippines

lechon kawali (filipino crispy fried pork belly)

Pancit guisado from Tabing Dagat restaurant at Roxas, Palawan, Philippines

pancit guisado (chinese-filipino stir-fried noodle)

Apulit Island Resort Waiting Area at Taytay Pier

After nearly 4 hours of long tedious car ride, we finally arrived at Taytay Pier at around 2 P.M. Upon our arrival, the El Nido resort staff greeted us in front of the resort waiting area and helped us carry our luggage in.

Apulit Island Resort Waiting Area, Taytay port, Palawan, Philippines

apulit island resort waiting area

The waiting area provided shade to hide away from the glaring sun, as well as refreshing drinks and snacks to keep us cool in the hot summer day. The piles of magazines and free wifi connection kept us entertained while we waited for other guests to arrive.

Apulit Island Resort Waiting Area, Taytay port, Palawan, Philippines

refreshment at apulit island resort waiting area

Quick Tour Around Taytay Town

With an adventurous spirit, I was tempted to explore the quaint and friendly town of Taytay. For security reasons, the kind resort staff appointed a security staff to accompany me and show me around the area.

Taytay, Palawan, Philippines

taytay

We passed by the historic Taytay Fort (also known as Fuerza de Santa Isabel) just around the corner. Built in 1667 under the Augustinian Recollect Fathers, the fort was used as a military station to protect the inhabitants from the attacks of the Moro pirates from Sulu during Spanish Colonization. Now the fort is under the supervision of the National Museum and open to tourists for an entrance fee.

Taytay fort, Palawan, Philippines

taytay fort

The unpaved, muddy roads with a series of old run-down houses alongside contrasted with the metropolitan cities many of us live in. But somehow, I appreciated the rustic small-town charm and the picturesque landscape. It reminded of my childhood years growing up in Penang, Malaysia.

Taytay, Palawan, Philippines Taytay, Palawan, Philippines

Accidentally, we walked up on a group of people who were arranging a cockfight. As fearless as I am, this type of cruel blood sport is one thing that I couldn’t stand watching. I quickly walked away to avoid the scene after taking a picture. ?

Cockfight in Taytay, Palawan, Philippines

cockfight

Apulit Island Resort

Soon we boarded on a boat that took us to the magnificent Apulit Island. But first on a motorboat, then transferred to a bangka (Filipino fishing boat)

Apulit Island, Taytay, Palawan, Philippines Apulit Island, Taytay, Palawan, Philippines

Typically the boat ride takes 40 mins, but the rough sea condition during the monsoon season prolonged the journey and took us almost 60 mins to get Apulit Island!

Taytay - Apulit

No kidding… it was a looooong ride bouncing up and down from trough to trough. But when the stunning view of the Apulit Island emerged, it was all worth it!

Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

apulit island resort, el nido, palawan

Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

apulit island resort, el nido, palawan

As soon as we alighted from the boat, the resort staff welcomed us at the docking area with refreshment drinks, cool towels, and bamboo crafts.

Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

docking area

Refreshment drinks and bamboo craft Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

each of us received a glass of refreshment drink and bamboo craft

To make us feel even more special, the staff gathered and sang a traditional welcome song before we stepped onto the sand of the enchanting island resort ?

Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

welcome song upon arrival

Then, a resort staff approached us for the check-in process and led us to our water cottage. The island has 50 water cottages that combine traditional Filipino architectural style with contemporary design.  Our cottage was located all the way on the other end of the cove near the limestone cliffs. For adrenaline-seeking individuals, you can sign-up for rock-climbing – that cliff is where the sport takes place!

Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

water cottages with a backdrop of limestone cliffs

Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

water cottages with a backdrop of limestone cliffs

The cottages are small but very comfortable, clean and well equipped! Each with its own air-conditioner, mini-fridge, wifi and washroom. Most importantly of all, you can enjoy warm sea breeze on your very own balcony with coral reefs and fish right beneath you!

Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

water cottage

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2-person capacity cottage with a single bed

Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

balcony overlooking azure blue ocean waters

From time to time, we spotted baby sharks roaming around the shallow water near the cliffs.

Baby sharks at Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

baby sharks

The resort especially caters to sporty, adventurous guests with a wide range of marine and land-based activities. You can dive or snorkel right in front of the resort’s vibrant coral reefs, swim with stingrays, baby sharks and sea turtles, go kayaking, sailing, rappelling or wander through Apulit’s 5 amazing caves. For truly daring people, brave your fear and jump from the 8-meter high cliff all the way into the ocean!

Island Hopping – Isla Blanca & Nabat Island

With crystal-clear waters and a wealth of marine life, you cannot give up on the opportunity to snorkel or dive in the Taytay Bay. We signed up with the Guest Activity Coordinator the day prior for an island hopping tour, which brought us to visit the 2 amazing islands nearby Apulit – Isla Blanca & Nabat Island.

Located 20 mins away from Apulit, Isla Blanca (Imbaladan) is a long coral white sandbar dotted by coconut trees. Its abundant amount of colorful coral reefs makes it a fantastic spot for snorkeling especially at the drop-off with a depth of about 40 meters.

Isla Blanca near Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

isla blanca

Isla Blanca near Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

isla blanca

Isla Blanca near Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

isla blanca

Nabat Island is home to the swiftlets (balinsasayaw), which is best known for using their saliva to build edible nests. Because the island’s white-sand beach is only accessible during the low tide, we could only jump into the surrounding and explore its majestic coral reefs.

Nabat Island near Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

nabat island

If you’re interested in the underwater world at those islands, check out this website for all the breathtaking photos!

Private Romantic Dinner at Apulit

One thing I love about all-inclusive resorts is that you don’t have to worry about what and where to eat. Breakfast, lunch, dinner are all included in the fee. However, if you want to have an unforgettable dining experience under the stars with your loved one, book a private dinner!

Kev and I enjoyed our last dinner at Apulit on the beach where we could make the most of the magical ocean view in our personal beach tent. We watched the gorgeous sunset, as we savoured an exquisite five-course menu brought to us by our personal waiter.

Sunset at Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

sunset at apulit island

Romantic private dinner at Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

romantic private dinner at apulit island

Romantic private dinner at Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

romantic private dinner at apulit island

Prices vary with the type of set menu and location of the dinner. Among the 4 different menu, we chose the Filipino menu to experience the exotic Filipino cuisine! The dinner was about P$1200 pp (excluding beverages).

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By the time, we headed back to our cottage and called it a night, we found a sweet message from the housekeeping staff, along with our next day’s departure itinerary. The itinerary detailed the time for luggage pick-up, room check-out, boat departure and estimated arrival time to our next destination. Very thoughtful and well-planned!

Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

sweet message from resort staff before bed

We truly enjoyed our 2-night stay at Apulit Island with El Nido Resorts. Undeniably, the view was awe-inspiring and we had the blissful beach escape of a lifetime. What made it special was its warm-hearted staff who took the extra mile to make us fall in love with this scenic island. Even though our stay was short, we couldn’t wait to go back again in the near future ?

Apulit Island, El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

beautiful afternoon at apulit island

**Tipping is a little different at El Nido Resorts: to ensure consistent quality service, individual tipping is not encouraged. However, you may leave tips at the front desk as a common fund for all the employees. 

If you’d like to visit this part of the Philippines, check out this post on top things to know before visiting El Nido.

About El Nido Resorts – Apulit Island

Website: http://www.elnidoresorts.com/apulit-island/
Social Media: Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

Planning an exotic beach honeymoon in the Philippines? Check out Apulit Island in El Nido. Enjoy the natural beauty the tropical island has to offer!

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14 Comments Leave a Comment »

  1. Beautiful. Looks like a perfect honeymoon spot!

  2. Wow – those little cottages over the water are gorgeous. What a beautiful place to visit 🙂

  3. it’s so nice! #weekend wanderlust

  4. You are finding such beautiful places! I love those bungalows over the water, and I would love to try that lechon!

  5. I would love to stay in one of these overwater bungalows. 🙂

  6. Oh wow, what a beautiful view and a lovely balcony to enjoy it from! Did you brave the rock climbing?!

  7. Pingback: Pangulasian, El Nido: Honeymoon in Philippines (Day 8~10) | For Two, Please

  8. Pingback: Miniloc, El Nido: Honeymoon in Philippines (Day 6 & 7) | For Two, Please

  9. Definitely looks beautiful although I’m not sure the bed would be comfy enough for me. I was really disappointed that we didn’t manage to get to El Nido on our recent trip to the Philippines 

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