I’d say this was really the heart of our trip to Puerto Princesa. After all, the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park is one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature. And it’s not every day you can go to a place that was inscribed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Right?
The travel to Sabang from Puerto Princesa is approximately one hour. We arrived at a mini-port with boats that will bring us to the Underground River.
From Sabang, we rode a boat to the Underground River. When we reached the island, we were ushered to a cottage to rest for a while and enjoy the surroundings before we rode another boat that will bring us inside the Underground River.
There were also lots of monkeys in the area. They were not caged and they walk freely like everybody else. They even entertained some tourists. However, our guide told us not to touch them since they are wild monkeys and they might strangle us to death.
Also, we were told to be on guard with our bags since monkey’s there are known to be the smartest and fastest pickpockets. Actually, when we arrived at Palawan, our driver told us that Palawan has a zero crime rate. There wasn’t even a police on guard in any corner we went to. However, there are many cases of theft committed by monkeys.:P There’s no law that can imprison a monkey if they steal your belongings so just be cautious with your stuff anyway.
There were a lot of tourists that day so we had to wait for like hours before we were able to enter the river. So we took our time taking pictures.
So after seems like forever, our group was escorted to our boat so we can finally enter the Underground River.
- The river smells like shit – bat shit. Literally. So, if you’re not ready to smell the aroma, stuff your noses with lots of cotton before the boat enters the river.
- You will certainly get wet during the whole duration of the tour. The ceiling of the cave continuously drips with water. Unfortunately, not everything that drips is water. Do not ever open your mouth once you’re inside. Coz if you do, not only will you get to drink all kinds of liquids inside the river but also you will get to taste bat shit and all other kinds of shit mixed in the water. So, take heed of my advice unless you really want to taste bat shit.
- It would be difficult to take pictures inside if your camera is not waterproof. Get one of those plastic cases for phones so you can take pictures without compromising your phone.
Bat Shit 😀
The Pegasus stalagmite, named after the mythical winged creature in Greek mythology.
Rock formation named Candle. It is one of the largest and tallest stalagmites in the Puerto Princesa Underground River.
Holy Family Formation
A Jesus Christ image rock formation.
A jellyfish rock formation.
The cave’s ceiling
There were so many rock formations inside. Unfortunately, we were not able to capture everything. You will definitely find various kinds of rock formations inside – mushrooms, corns, puso ng saging, jellyfishes, fruits, animals, historical faces and even a Tyrannosaurus Rex head formation.
After 40 minutes, we reached the end of the publicly allowable and navigable length of the underground river and made a U-turn. Going beyond requires a special permit from the government. You need to be a geologist, biologist, researcher, etc. to go further.
After the tour, we had our lunch at a nearby resort before we headed back to Puerto Princesa City.
Overall our Underground River experience was great. It was mind-blowing. And it’s really nice to experience that we actually went to a World Wonder.
Also Read: My El Nido Escapade