There are many things to do in Puerto Princesa, Palawan, especially if it’s your first time. Fortunately, the province has already reopened its doors to tourists to explore the area and its features.
When I went to Palawan for a fam trip, the event coordinators packed our schedule with activities meant to highlight the province’s culture. Although I had the chance to stay there for four days and three nights, it wasn’t enough to fully experience everything it has to offer.
On the first day, we saw the hotel we stayed at, HUE Hotel Puerto Princesa, celebrating five years in the tourism and hospitality industry. One of the many things we loved about the hotel was its accessibility to key destinations in the province. It’s 15 minutes from the Puerto Princesa airport, right next to a mall, and only a few minutes away from tourist sites, which we visited in the following days.
We always had an early start of the day to get the scheduled activities done, but it was somehow difficult to get out of our comfy beds. We stayed in deluxe rooms, suitable for single travelers and friends. There are single beds and twin beds available upon request. Their other rooms include a family room and a suite, perfect for those traveling in larger groups or wanting more space.
Each room has pops of bright colors and a modern vibe that allows guests to mix business with leisure (or bleisure). While the family and deluxe rooms have showers, the suite has a bathtub. HUE Hotel Puerto Princesa has 105 deluxe rooms, ten suites, and seven family rooms.
Yet the beauty of Puerto Princesa beckons, encouraging us to go out and seize the day.
Every morning, we start the day with a sumptuous buffet in HUE’s restaurant, LA-UD. They serve a variety of options, from healthy food, pastries, Filipino favorites, and homemade ham. And during our four-day stay, we had the chance to taste some of the restaurant’s specialties, including Tuna Tatake Salad, Chicken Binakol (HUE’s version of tinola in coconut broth), Pinakbet, Baby Back Ribs, and Crispy Pork Binagoongan, among others.
According to HUE Puerto Princesa General Manager Chris Guballa, the hotel uses locally sourced ingredients from farms around Puerto Princesa to support the locals and boost their economy.
During the second day, we further saw how HUE showed its dedication to uplifting the local community. They took us, the press, island hopping to three popular destinations, Starfish Island, Luli Island, and Cowrie Island. CML Travel and Tours Palawan, HUE Puerto Princesa’s official travel agency partner, led us on the exciting trip and ensured that we were well-equipped to enjoy the islands. We visited a local store that fitted us with aqua shoes and snorkeling gear.
Upon reaching Starfish Island, we took a leisurely dip in the cool water and went snorkeling to view the marine life. As we enjoyed swimming around, the members of CML prepared a seafood lunch using fresh ingredients caught along the seas of Puerto Princesa.
We later moved to Luli Island. The tour guide explained that the name is short for “Lulubog Lilitaw” because the island appears and disappears depending on the tide. It had Instagrammable locations, a diving spot, and floating cottages where tourists could relax. Last on our itinerary before returning to the hotel was Cowrie Island, named after the shell. The water was calmer and fit for tourists who wanted a leisurely swim.
For dinner, we went to Badjao Seafront Restaurant. The food there was fresh and savory. Our tour guide explained that it wasn’t a usual stop for tourists on a tight schedule, but it’s worth visiting. This information solidified that spending a few days in Puerto Princesa doesn’t even cover half of the places worth exploring. People always come back, or as the locals say, “comeback comeback.”
By the third day, we had the run of the city as HUE and CML took us on a city tour. We saw areas like the Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm, Balayong Park, and homegrown stores that focus on local craftsmanship, such as Rurungan sa Tubod and Palaweño Brewery. Our final destination was Kinabuchs Grill and Bar for dinner and drinks.
HUE Hotel Puerto Princesa wants its guests to experience the beauty of Puerto Princesa entirely, from the food to the people to the nature, especially now that the tourism industry reopened for visitors. They want tourists to come and return to the province with the hotel as the point of interest, given its strategic location.
Aside from being the jump-off point, HUE encourages its guests to stay longer and enjoy the amenities. One is the Aminah Spa which offers affordable massages to guests looking to relax. We tried the Traditional Hilot, complete with banana leaves, which took the strain away from our bodies.
There’s also their pool, located on the 5th floor and provides a great view of the city and poolside bar.
With HUE located at the heart of the city, guests can accomplish a lot during their trip. Whether it’s for business, leisure, or both, the hotel always has something to offer. And as the locals said, there will always be a “comeback comeback” from the guests.
Visit www.puertoprincesa.thehuehotel.com for more information.