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Information about Underground River

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Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park, Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippines
Distance From City Center
13.9 km
High Season
Family Friendly
Average rating
Number of reviews

Puerto Princesa Underground River (PPUR)

Inside the Puerto Princesa Underground River in Palawan

Located about 80 km north of Puerto Princesa in Palawan lies an underground river known as the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park.

More commonly known as the Puerto Princessa Underground River, it channels its way through caverns and flows directly underneath the St. Paul Mountain Range.

It is bordered by St. Paul Bay to the north and the Babuyan River to the east. 

What to see

The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park is known for its amazing limestone karst mountain landscape and cave system.

Beautiful stalactites and stalagmites and several large chambers in the park never fail to keep tourists in awe. The cave system stretches to a total of 24km underneath the mountains, and the river itself winds its way through 8.2km of its entirety.

The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River was known to be the world’s longest underground river until the 2007 discovery of an underground river in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. Nonetheless, the National Park has a full mountain to the sea ecosystem and has some of the most important forests in Asia. In fact, it has a range of forest formations representing eight of the thirteen forest types found in tropical Asia.

There are about more than 800 plant species found in the national park. It is also home to a lot of bird species most of them are endemic to the site. There are also quite a number of mammal species that have been recorded in the area, as well as reptiles, bats, frogs, and sea cows among others. Regular tours allow tourists to enjoy until the 4-kilometer mark of the river. Beyond that point, a special permit has to be pre-arranged for the guests to continue the more challenging part of the journey where guests need to swim to be able to pass through the narrow spaces between the rock walls.

International Recognition

The Puerto Princesa Underground River is a protected area of the Philippines.

In 1999, it was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In 2012, it became a Ramsar Wetland Site. A Ramsar Site is a wetland site designated to be of international importance under the Ramsar Convention, an intergovernmental environmental treaty established by UNESCO.

In the same year, it made to the list of the New Seven Wonders of Nature, an initiative started in 2007 to create a list of seven natural wonders chosen by people through a global poll. In June 2019, PPUR was celebrated with a Google Doodle, a special temporary alteration of the Google logo to commemorate special events and notable historical figures.

Important Reminders

Helmets and life-preservers are provided and are required strictly to be worn during the entire duration of the tour, which is approximately forty-five minutes long.