6 Fun El Nido Palawan Activities to Do Aside from Island Hopping

6 Fun El Nido Palawan Activities to Do Aside from Island Hopping

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Dreamcatcher at Taraw Cliff & Zipline in Las Cabanas BeachPhoto from El Nido via Ferrata Canopy Walk ticket & Las Cabanas El Nido zipline activity

El Nido in Palawan is home to some of the Philippines’ most pristine beaches, beautiful islands, stunning limestone cliffs, clear turquoise waters, and historical caves, making it one of the top tourist destinations in the Philippines. This has also helped the province of Palawan consistently be included in travel publications’ lists of the world’s best islands.  

With its stunning beaches and islets, island-hopping in El Nido remains the most popular activity in the municipality, allowing visitors to explore several natural attractions and snorkeling spots in one day. You also won’t run out of options, as El Nido island-hopping tours have different routes that stop at different places.

But this municipality isn’t just about island-hopping, and there are plenty of other fun activities and El Nido tours you can add to your itinerary to make your vacation a memorable one. Check out our list of top things to do in El Nido apart from the usual island-hopping:

1. El Nido Island Hopping Party Boat

Party Boat in El NidoPhoto from El Nido island hopping tour party boat

If you want a different spin to the usual El Nido island-hopping tour, you can try booking a ride on an El Nido party boat. This is one of the best island tours in El Nido, especially if you want to meet new friends during your trip.

These party boat tours usually feature some stops that can be visited with El Nido Tour A, El Nido Tour B, El Nido Tour C, and El Nido Tour D, like Pasandingan Beach, Cadlao Lagoon, Bukal Beach, and Paradise Beach.

Unlike the usual island-hopping tours, El Nido party boat tours use bigger boats where passengers can stand up to mingle and socialize. Some boats are also equipped with water hammocks as well as speakers, and a music set-up to accommodate a live DJ set, allowing you to chill and listen to music as you go from one stop to another. Most party boat tours also include alcoholic beverages, so you can get a buzz while exploring El Nido. Just make sure you don’t get drunk for your own safety!

2. Lounge at Nacpan Beach 

Aerial view of Nacpan BeachPhoto from Nacpan Beach tour

One of the most popular activities to do in El Nido, Palawan, is to visit Nacpan Beach. For a hassle-free experience, you can book a Nacpan Beach tour that will also stop at other El Nido, Palawan tourist spots like Lio Beach and Bucana Fisherman Village.

Nacpan Beach’s cream-colored sand stretches four kilometers and is bordered by turquoise waters and tall coconut trees, making it one of the best beaches in El Nido. It can easily be reached from El Nido town proper via a land trip through El Nido transfers. Once you are there, Nacpan Beach activities you can try are swimming, surfing, or just lounging in the sand.

Other things to do in Nacpan Beach include sampling the local cuisine and enjoying a beer from one of the restaurants near the shore and climbing up the grassy hill to see a gorgeous view of the beach and its also popular neighbor, Calitang Beach.

3. Take a dip in Bulalacao Waterfalls

This famous El Nido waterfalls is usually part of the  El Nido land tour. Bulalacao Waterfalls is actually made up of two waterfalls, Small Bulalacao Falls and Big Bulalacao Falls. Because you need to hike through a forest to get to both falls, it is recommended that you arrange your trip via a guided tour.

The hike to the Big Falls can take around one and a half hours to two hours, so make sure you prepare properly for this adventure. Take note that the hike may not be allowed during the rainy season for everyone’s safety. The journey will be worth it, though, as the 70-foot cascade is picturesque. 

Small Falls is easier to reach and the hike will only take around 20 minutes. The pool of the smaller cascade is also better for swimming compared to that in Big Falls.

4. Ride the Las Cabanas Beach Zipline

Zipline in El NidoPhoto from Las Cabanas El Nido zipline activity

One of the popular adventure activities in El Nido, Palawan, is the Las Cabanas El Nido zipline. This activity in El Nido starts at Las Cabanas Beach, which is connected to nearby Depeldet Island via a sandbar. 

After climbing the platform and putting on the safety gear correctly, you will be attached to the zipline, and when you are ready, the staff will push you to get you going. You will zip above water and sand to Depeldet Island. You can choose to walk back to Las Cabanas Beach afterward or go on a return trip via a second zipline ride. 

Note that you need to wear breathable but not loose clothing for this activity. Also, ensure that you have no health conditions (like high blood pressure or epilepsy) that may make this activity unsafe for you.

5. Do the El Nido Via Ferrata Canopy Walk

View from Taraw CliffPhoto from El Nido via Ferrata Canopy Walk ticket

The El Nido Via Ferrata Canopy Walk is an activity that is done on Taraw Peak, the iconic cliff that can be seen from El Nido town proper. You can safely explore some areas of the cliff with the help of the canopy walk. 

Before you begin your canopy walk, your guides will give you a safety briefing and ensure that you are wearing your gear correctly. Once that’s sorted out, you will begin your canopy walk. You will be crossing hanging bridges and rocky paths and climbing steel stairs to get to the view deck. Don’t worry, as you will be strapped securely to the railings via your harness.

El Nido via Ferrata dreamcatcherPhoto from El Nido via Ferrata Canopy Walk ticket

The view deck is around 75 meters above sea level, giving you a stunning view overlooking Taraw Peak, El Nido town proper, and the nearby areas. If you want to spend time on the web- like Dreamcatcher, you would need to pay an additional fee.

6. Learn scuba diving in El Nido

Tourists scuba diving in the PhilippinesPhoto from PADI Divemaster Certification Course

Although not as popular as the diving spots in the neighboring Palawan municipality of Coron, El Nido is home to several places where you can learn and enjoy scuba diving in the Philippines. Scuba diving in El Nido is ideal for beginners, as you can book a Discover scuba diving course to learn the basics, like how to use scuba diving gear, breathe underwater, and communicate with other divers.

Most Discover courses include two dives, and in El Nido, you have several beginner dive sites that you can choose from, including South Miniloc, Twin Rocks, West Entalula, Paglibagan Island, Popolkan Island, Helicopter Reef, Natnat Beach, and Address Reef. You won’t need to worry about renting gear, as it usually comes with the dive package.

If you’re already an experienced scuba diver, you can book advanced courses, including a PADI Divemaster Certification Course and a Scuba Diving Refresher Course.

Book your El Nido, Palawan activities today!

Diving in El Nido, PalawanThere are many activities in El Nido, Palawan, that you can enjoy during your trip. The best tours in El Nido are ultimately dependent on the kind of experiences you are looking for, but for a hassle-free time, it is recommended that you book guided El Nido tours and activities.

If you’re still looking for where to stay in El Nido, you can book El Nido, Palawan resort packages that come with accommodations, and sometimes, even airfare, tours, and El Nido Airport transfers. Those looking to explore more of the province can also book Palawan tour packages.

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