Exploring the Puerto Princesa Underground River

I had the most amazing time in the Philippines since the last time I posted on Travel Chasers and I hope to share as much as I can with you. Today’s post is on the Puerto Princesa Underground River, which was named one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature in 2012 and declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It is located in Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippines and just a short plane ride away from Manila.

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Visiting the Puerto Princesa Underground River is a no-brainer if you plan to book a trip to Palawan. It’s popularity and tourism has risen since winning a spot in the New 7 Wonders of Nature. Tourists are able to take a boat ride into a massive cave through the longest river in the world. The river is approximately 8.2 kilometers long but tours only travel about a quarter of the way before turning back.

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Booking an excursion to see the river is simple and easy. You can either book it through a travel agency or straight from your hotel in Puerto Princesa. Pricing range around 1400-1600 Philippine Pesos per adult and approximately 500 Philippine Pesos less for children. Most places do not accept credit card so remember to bring enough cash with you to pay for your ticket and a tip for your tour guide. You will also be asked for ID so do not forget to leave without it either! The tour is approximately 45 minutes long but the wait times can take a few hours. Your best bet is to get there as early as possible.

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Getting there requires several types of transportation. You can take a shuttle bus that takes about 1.5-2 hours on a curvy road which takes you to the docks where you wait for your number in queue to be called to hop on a speed boat that will take you to the site of the underground river. While waiting, which may take another hour or two, there are stands selling food and souvenirs for your to purchase nearby. Once you arrive by speed boat, you will be given audio devices to take with you into the underground river. Do not be afraid of bumping into animals. The park is a protected area, which is home to many endangered species. You will have to wait in line one last time to get on a canoe with several other people.

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Honestly, I believe the tour is worth the wait as it is a once in a lifetime experience. Life vests are mandatory and you do not require any swim wear but your shoes will get wet and you may experience small splashes or drops of water along the way. I won’t spoil too much but do look up when you are in the cave, just keep your mouth closed!

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