El Nido is a picturesque coastal town situated at the northernmost tip of Palawan, a must-visit island province of the Philippines. It has been recognized as one of the most beautiful beach and island destinations in the world, and for a good reason.
With its stunning natural beauty, clear waters, limestone cliffs, and pristine beaches, El Nido is a breathtaking destination that attracts nature enthusiasts and thrill-seekers alike, making it one of the best places to visit in the Philippines. With thousands of islands, beaches, and lagoons in El Nido, it might be difficult to plan your El Nido tours itinerary.
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The best way to visit the top El Nido tourist spots is by joining El Nido island hopping tours. These tours take visitors on a boat ride to explore some of the best islands in the Philippines, lagoons, and beaches in just one day.
El Nido island hopping tours are grouped into 4 different routes (A, B, C, and D). Each El Nido island hopping tour offers a unique experience showcasing different attractions and experiences in this Palawan destination.
For first-time visitors to El Nido, selecting the right tour to add to your itinerary can be a challenge, especially if you're short on time. To ensure that you make the most of your vacation after booking your flight to El Nido, we have compiled a list of the best El Nido boat tours which can be booked either as a private or shared tour, depending on your preference. Additionally, lunch is usually included in the tour package.
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El Nido Island Hopping Tour A
Best for: If you want to visit the most popular tourist spots in El Nido, Palawan
Attractions Included: Big Lagoon, Shimizu Island, Secret Lagoon, Seven Commandos Beach
Experience the beauty of El Nido, Palawan through El Nido Island Hopping Tour A, the most popular island hopping tour in El Nido and regarded by tourists as one of the best El Nido lagoon tours. The island hopping tour A in El Nido will take you to some of the most breathtaking Palawan tourist spots such as the famous Big Lagoon, where you can swim in its crystal-clear waters surrounded by towering karst cliffs.
The tour also stops at Shimizu Island, where you can lounge on white sand beach and snorkel in its azure waters. The tour will also take you to the Secret Lagoon, a hidden natural pool that can only be reached by passing through a small opening in the surrounding limestone cliffs. Last but not the least is the Seven Commandos Beach, a laidback beach where you can enjoy activities and picturesque views. In hindsight, El Nido Tour A is one of the best Philippine itineraries.
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El Nido Island Hopping Tour C
Best for: If you want to visit the best beaches in El Nido
Attractions Included: Hidden Beach, Matinloc Island, Secret Beach, Helicopter Island
The second most popular tour in El Nido is El Nido Island Hopping Tour C, which takes you to some of the best beaches in Palawan. Whether you book an El Nido private tour or shared tour, this activity starts in Hidden Beach, a pristine white sand beach surrounded by karst cliffs that can only be accessed through swimming or kayaking. It is considered one of the best beaches in El Nido.
Afterward, you will visit Matinloc Island, where a religious shrine offers an unobstructed view of El Nido’s islands. Then, you will head to Secret Beach, accessible only by swimming through an opening underneath karst cliffs. The El Nido Tour C ends on Helicopter Island, known for its crystal-clear waters and unique helicopter-like shape when viewed from above. It is one of the best spots for an El Nido snorkeling tour.
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El Nido Island Hopping Tour B
Best for: If you want to visit a sandbar, caves, and beaches in El Nido
Attractions Included: Snake Island, Cudugnon Cave, Cathedral Cave, Popolcan Island
If you want a combination of some of the best beaches, caves, and sandbars in El Nido, then book the El Nido Island Hopping Tour B. Considered as one of the best island tours in El Nido, this activity features Snake Island, one of the most popular El Nido attractions. You can enjoy a pleasant walk on its powdery white sands, which forms a beautiful S-shaped sandbar connecting the two islets.
Cudugnon Cave, your next stop, is where you can explore interesting rock formations and go snorkeling. The next tourist attraction is Cathedral Cave, which resembles a grand cathedral with its rock formations, stalactites, and stalagmites.
Finally, at the end of El Nido Tour B, you will visit Popolcan Island, which is famous for its snorkeling spots filled with schools of colorful fish and vibrant marine animals. It is also an attraction often included in an El Nido snorkeling tour.
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El Nido Island Hopping Tour D
Best for: If you want to visit the popular Small Lagoon and other underrated beaches in El Nido
Attractions Included: Small Lagoon, Nat-Nat Beach, Cadlao Lagoon, Paradise Beach
If you're looking for a more exclusive island-hopping experience in El Nido with fewer travelers, the ideal tour for you would be El Nido Island Hopping Tour D. This tour includes a visit to Small Lagoon, one of the most popular attractions in El Nido, where you can enjoy kayaking and swimming. Since this tour is the least booked, you'll likely encounter fewer visitors, giving you a more private and serene experience.
Nat-Nat Beach, one of the best Philippine beaches, is perfect for snorkeling, with colorful corals and marine life. Cadlao Lagoon boasts turquoise waters and towering limestone walls, while Pasandigan Beach is a paradise with unspoiled crystal clear waters. Finally, Paradise Beach, the last stop in the El Nido Tour D, features powdery sand, coconut trees, and coral reefs.
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Experience the best of El Nido with these tours
One of the main reasons why you should visit the Philippines is because of El Nido in Palawan, as this tropical island offers an array of breathtaking Luzon tourist spots perfect for a vacation, from the picturesque Snake Island to the stunning waters of the Big Lagoon.
Whether you choose El Nido Tour A or C, or the less popular island hopping tours like El Nido Tour B or D, you can expect a memorable experience when booking these best tours in El Nido, Palawan.
For those looking for other things to do in El Nido aside from island hopping in El Nido, various El Nido scuba diving packages are available, while those looking for relaxation in the best El Nido hotels can find comfort in the various Palawan resorts packages and all-inclusive Philippines vacation packages.
You can also reach your hotel or destination effortlessly on the island when you book El Nido airport transfers. Lastly, the local cuisine in El Nido is a treat for food lovers, and there are plenty of options on where to eat in El Nido.
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When creating your Palawan itinerary, it's worth considering exploring nearby destinations too, such as embarking on a journey from El Nido to Coron to fully immerse yourself in the wonders of Palawan, instead of comparing which island is better like Coron vs El Nido.
For those planning a Philippine 3-week itinerary, it is recommended to book Philippine guided tours that can help you navigate the top destinations in the Philippines. Numerous vacation packages for couples and luxury vacation packages that include Philippine island hopping tours are also available for those seeking a more indulgent travel experience.
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