Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Best Beach and Snorkeling Spot in Coron

PALAWAN, Philippines For me, the best beach and snorkeling spots in Coron are in Malcapuya and Banana Island, respectively.

It's a challenge getting there. The one-hour ride seems forever. And because boats travel on open seas, the the water (and even the weather) can get rough.

Malcapuya and Banana Island are across each other. These are must-go-to destinations in Coron.

Sun, Sea and Sand
For me, Malcapuya is the best beach in Coron while Banana Island has the best snorkeling spot.

1. Malcapuya Island (1 hour away from port)
Friends have been recommending this forever. It definitely didn't disappoint. The highlight of this island would be the stretch of white sand. It's perfect to just bum around. You can opt to snorkel but there isn't much to see. There's jellyfish, too! Better to save your energy for Banana Island.

Malcapuya is owned by the same company that operates Boracay Regency and Alona Beach. In a few years, they'll be developing a big resort here. (Source)

I was not informed of such nice view in Malcapuya!
(Photo from

2. Banana Island (5 mins away from Malcapuya Island)
There were swarms of fish everywhere. Different colors, sizes, and species. I could've sworn that I saw a baby shark! There were even fish that I recognized from playing FishVille! It was that awesome. You can opt to go to the little island directly beside it called Malaroyroy.

Unfortunately, my photos didn't do justice to the beauty that I saw.

We were stranded on the island for around half an hour due to bad weather. Skies were extremely dark, the wind was howling, and the rain was strong. It was too dangerous to travel back to town.

With my new friends that I "adopted" that day!
(Sorry for the poor photo!)

As if nothing happened.
On our way back to town, the weather was so nice. We watched the sunset from our boat. 

Tour Costs
  • Php 950 / pax with Calamianes Expeditions & Ecotours (as of Sept. 18, 2012).
  • Inclusive of licensed tour boat, life vest, lunch, fruits, water, entrance fees, tour assistant.
  • Minimum of 5 people to avail Php 950 cost otherwise, cost increases.

I was the only one that day who wanted to tour Malcapuya and Banana Island with Expeditions. Since I was by myself, a solo tour would cost Php 3,000. This was way beyond my budget.

To save on cost, I tried hitching with travelers who happened to be going there on their own. I offered to pay for my share of the boat and to bring my own food. Sadly, they didn't want me to join them. 

I ended up renting my own boat and paying Php 2,570:
  • Php 2,000 - boat rental, tour guide, life jacket
  • Php 90 - lunch from Coron Public Market
  • Php 80 - two bottles of water 
  • Php 200 - entrance fee for Malcapuya Island
  • Php 200 - entrance fee for Banana Island

My wallet was dying but as the day went on, I realized that it wasn't so unfortunate that the group refused to let me hitch. Click here to find out why!

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