Pardon the title. It’s the first thing I could think of to start this post. I bet that’s been used a lot of times, too. Well, here’s the second part of my story about our second day in Palawan.
If we’re coming from our lodge, Lio Beach is the first one to reach that’s why we went to Nacpan beach first and then just rode back here. It’s much easier to find since the entrance is just along the highway with a huge tarpaulin. The good news here is there’s no fee. Just tell the guards at the checkpoint that you’re going to Lio beach and they’ll tell you where to turn.
After passing the checkpoint, go straight and then turn right when you reach a T-junction. Just follow the road and you’ll reach a rotunda. Just turn right from there and you’ll see an entrance with a wooden pathway and is surrounded by trees. We actually went around the rotunda by mistake and then headed on the left direction, only to find the El Nido airport (a.k.a Lio Airport) at the end of the road where we were stopped by a guard. If budget is not an issue, you can take a direct flight from Manila going here and avoid the six-hour van ride from Puerto Princesa, although it costs about four times or more than the Puerto Princesa flight.
A Forest-y Entrance to Paradise
If you’re coming from Lio Airport, then you must be rich because the flights there are damn expensive. But that’s not the point. You’ll just follow the road and then go straight past the rotunda where we took a wrong turn, and you’ll find the entrance I’m talking about. It’s like a little forest pathway leading to Lio Beach.
The wooden pathway is just a one way lane for vehicles. A guard on one end would signal the guard on the other end if there’s a vehicle passing. You’d have to wait for all vehicles to pass before you could go in and you’re not allowed to stop(in case you’re planning to take photos around the tiny forest path) until you reach the exit. I mean, I’m not sure if you aren’t allowed to, but if you’re a considerate human being, you’d know that there might be vehicles waiting to pass so you should just keep going.
Another Freshening Sight
Once you exit the forest path, just turn left and just follow the road. Soon enough, you’ll reach Lio Beach.
It has a much easier route than Nacpan Beach. To be honest, just a few minutes after arriving in Lio, I felt more excited to be here than in Nacpan. It felt more lively and colorful because of the displays we found there. Plus, there were restaurants. I mean, real restaurants and not just small food shacks like those in Nacpan. Now, this is my own opinion, alright? Like I’ve said on part 1 of my story, we haven’t fully explored Nacpan Beach. Still, I really liked Lio Beach better.
Beautiful Sights and Easier Access
Compared to Nacpan Beach, Lio’s waves aren’t too strong, probably because its shallow area is much wider. We only walked around the area close to the entrance and didn’t explore too much because we just wanted to finally eat. But despite that, I could easily say that Lio Beach is a better choice than Nacpan Beach. It’s just so nice here and it’s much easier to access. No difficult roads to encounter on the way, unlike Nacpan.
I’m not saying Nacpan Beach is no good and that you should just skip it from your bucket list. I’ve mentioned on my last post that it’s a fantastic beach, too. I think of Lio Beach and Nacpan Beach as two different moods. If you’re feeling active and adventurous, I’d recommend you take a motor ride to Nacpan beach and get through the different roads like we did, and as you get there, wrestle with the strong waves. But if you’re more on just taking the day off and you just wanna relax on the sand, feel the waves on your feet, feel the wind- which was a bit too strong during our visit- and bask in the sun- which was kind of impossible during our visit- then Lio Beach is the way to go.
Swine Flu Ain’t a Thing
If you’re not from where I live, or any parts of Central Luzon, then you’re probably just as clueless as the people in Palawan about the African Swine Flu thing that hit recently. It’s a disease viral only to pigs but not to humans. Still, people got afraid to eat pork after the news broke. We were one of those people.
After walking around and looking at the different restaurants, we’ve decided to eat at this seafood restaurant called The Red Crab Alimango House and ordered… pork.
I don’t remember how we ended up ordering two different pork dishes, the Sisig Negrense and Lechong Kawali. Wait, I remember now. I wanted to eat squid, and there were different squid dishes but when we asked the waiter what their bestsellers were, somehow everything ended up with what we had ordered. But don’t be afraid to follow your gut if you’re not familiar with the food here. Our food was great, and everything else seems so as well.
Shiela asked if swine flu is an issue in the area- which she also asked when we had dinner at Amos Restaurant during day 1– and the waiter answered with a confused, “Huh?” Same reaction from the guys at Amos. We tried to explain the current issue with pork from where we live and the waiter just replied with something like, “Uh.. yeah, that’s a pork dish. Yes.” Obviously, the said virus never reached the island. Good news.
I may not have been able to have seafood(aside from the fried rice with crab or something, if that’s considered one) but there are no regrets with our orders, especially the Sisig Negrense. It’s a bestseller for a reason. I’d recommend you try this restaurant if you’re visiting Lio Beach. The other restaurants are just as expensive, so it’s your choice. The pizza restaurant here also seemed enticing but, I mean, come on, which mall in this country doesn’t have one?
UPDATE: According to Shiela, what we had was “Shrimp Fried Rice”. How could I forget that??
Just when we were done eating, the strong wind began to blow again and then another rain.
I didn’t mean to look so ignorant in the video. I think the mango juice was so delicious that I got engrossed in it and became unaware of the storm that was happening.
Be Seeing You Again, El Nido
After our appetite, I also made sure to sate my eyes by having one final look at the beauty of Lio Beach. The trees, the sands, the few art displays, the sea, and the islands. If we’d get another chance, I’d love the opportunity to come back here and, hopefully, during a nice sunny weather, visit the other islands and lagoons, too.
We got back to the lodge at around 2:30 PM. We were already checked out at 12 PM but they allowed us to use the common bathroom to wash up. After packing up our things, we bid farewell to Mr. Rodriguez and the staff, and thanked them for the wonderful accommodation during our stay. Here’s Rodriguez Lodge’s Facebook Page if you’re looking for a place to stay in El Nido.
That concludes our El Nido adventure. We arrived at the van terminal at 4 PM and spent the next six hours on the road back to Puerto Princesa, where our last adventure awaits us the next day.
Thanks for reading! What would you have done if your whole itinerary for the day got cancelled?