The Twin Beaches of El Nido

Rugged, craggy and muddy aptly describe the road to the remote twin beaches of El Nido. Getting here may be more of an adventure than you bargained for, but endure the hellish road, and you will be rewarded with bliss.

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The Twin Beaches of El Nido: Nacpan and Calitang Beach.

Delightfully nestled in Sitio Calitang,about an hour away from El Nido town center, the twin beaches of Nacpan and Calitang – once a secret hideaway of the locals – is emerging as a beach bumming haven. The atmosphere here is a world apart from El Nido town proper, which is saturated with hotels, shops and bars. The long stretch of powdery palm-fringed shore hugged by cerulean water make up for the lack of karts-punctuated sea. Just don’t go looking for water activities here as this part of El Nido is relatively undeveloped.

Although news of its astounding scenery and beaches has already been leaked to foreign investors (locals reported the beachfront properties here are now sold out), no new structure has been built yet. Even the nearby island fronting the main beach strip, which is reportedly owned by Filipino boxing champion Manny Pacquiao, looks desolate.

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Nacpan Beach beckons sun-seekers.

“Nacpan Beach will soon be the beach party mecca of El Nido. I think it will become El Nido’s version of Boracay,” Maricel, owner of Joaquinn’s Bed and Breakfast revealed. “Soon enough bars and resorts will start to mushroom there in the years to come.”

Most sun-seeking foreign tourists rush here by motorbikes. On a usual day, its cream shore is dappled with bikini-clad tourists that are either reading a novel or sunbathing, while others are swimming and cavorting in the beach. There are stores selling snacks, light meals and drinks but no hard-selling beach vendors (yet).

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Scenic view of the Twin Beaches.

Meanwhile, most domestic tourists come here to trek the promontory on the far end of Nacpan Beach, which offers a superb view of the twin beaches and its surroundings. The “Twin Beaches”, like any other twins, have unique and contrasting qualities. While Nacpan Beach boasts of crystal clear azure water sought by most tourists, Calintang Beach is a typical Filipino fishing village. Its sandy coast is overflowing with modest nipa houses and fishing boats.

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To get to Nagkalit-kalit Falls, which is included in the tour to the Twin Beaches, one needs to cross 7 streams and rivers.

How to get here:

Philippine Airlines fly to Puerto Princesa fro Manila. Take a tricycle or a multi-cab en route to San Jose Terminal. From there, you can either ride a passenger van or a bus to El Nido, Fare is about Php 460; travel time is 6 hours.

From El Nido town, you can hire a tricycle for Php 800 - Php 1,200 (possible if you are alone) or Php 1,500 (good for 4 passengers) to take you to “The Twin Beaches”. Included in the tour is the visit to the hot spring and the waterfalls – nothing special about these two attractions though.

Where to Stay:

Joaquinn’s Bed and Breakfast hosted my stay stay in El Nido. This family-owned inn is walking distance from El Nido port with a superb view of El Nido Bay. It has comfortable air-conditioned spotless rooms and breakfast is included. Contact: mobile#0905-432-4878/0919-537-4767 or e-mail joaquinnsbb@gmail.com

Gael Hilotin is the blogger behind The Pinay Solo Backpacker.