Puerto Princesa is famous for its natural attractions and as a gateway to Palawan Island, particularly to popular destinations like El Nido and lesser-known spots including Balabac, Tabon Caves, Taytay, Port Barton, and San Vicente.

As the Philippines’ second largest city in terms of land area, there are many interesting places to see and things to do here. The urban center is compact and easy to navigate, while the vast majority of Puerto Princesa is occupied by verdant forest, soaring mountains, and a coastline fringed by vast mangrove forests, remote beach coves and scenic bays dotted with beautiful islets.

Headed to Puerto Princesa soon? Check out these top tourist spots and off-the-beaten-path adventures not yet discovered by tourist crowds. Many of these places, especially those found within the City Proper area can be reached on a half-day or 1-day city tour. If you want to add more sights to your itinerary, consider spending at least 2-3 days in Puerto Princesa.

Pro tip: To make your trip planning easy, I’ve included links to the locations on Google Maps. If you like a place featured below, click/tap on the links posted. Then, use the “save” feature on the Google Maps app. When you’re done, you can review all your saved locations on the map. This will help you get oriented on how to plan your itinerary and know the best places to stay, near places you want to go.

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1. Puerto Princesa Underground River

The Puerto Princesa Underground River is the most famous attraction of the city. It is included in UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites for its spectacular limestone karst landscape and remarkable biodiversity. It is also reputed to be the world’s longest navigable underground river. A paddle boat ride takes you to a section of the underground river, where you can enjoy views of massive stalagmite/stalactite formations and cave chambers. The Puerto Princesa Underground River is located in the quiet coastal village of Sabang.

Underground River tour package

Book discount hereSee more

Address: Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park, Sabang. Save on Google Maps.

How to go: The underground river is typically reached by joining a day tour from Puerto Princesa. Tour packages include round trip land transfers to Sabang, picnic lunch at Sabang Beach and mandatory park permit/registration/fees. Sabang Beach is approximately 74 km northeast from Puerto Princesa city center. Travel time is around 1 hour and 40 minutes by car. The boat ride from Sabang Beach to the underground river entrance takes around 30 minutes.

2. Sabang

During my first trip, the biggest reason why I spent a night in Sabang was to go on the forest trek to the underground river entrance via the Monkey Trail. It was an interesting off-beat experience for sure! Sabang has a lovely beachfront too. It gets pretty busy around noontime, but when all the day trippers are gone, you can enjoy the peaceful atmosphere without the crowds. When in Sabang, also check out the Sabang X Zipline, trekking to Sabang Waterfall, and paddle boat tour around the mangrove forest.

Where to stayTours + discounts

Address: Sabang Beach, Barangay Cagayugan. Save on Google Maps.

Sabang shuttle van fare

Airport to SabangPP Hotel to SabangEl Nido to SabangPrivate charter

3. Honda Bay Islands

Honda Bay is another famous tourist spot in Puerto Princesa. Here, you can find beautiful islets, reefs, white sand beaches and inviting waters perfect for swimming. While not as impressive as El Nido or Coron, Honda Bay is an excellent alternative if you plan to go island hopping near Puerto Princesa. The drive north from the City Proper to Santa Lourdes Wharf (the jump-off point to Honda Bay) only takes around 30-45 minutes. The most convenient way to go is by joining an island hopping tour package, which should include a visit to at least 3 islands, picnic lunch at the beach, land/sea transport and environmental/boat fees.

Honda Bay island hopping tour package

Book discount here

Address: Near Santa Lourdes Wharf. Save on Google Maps.

Honda Bay islands and attractions

Pandan Island

Starfish Island

Snake Island

Luli Island

Pambato Reef

Arrecife Island

Dos Palmas Resort, Arrecife Island

Cowrie Island

Makesi Island

Frazer Island

Barlas Island

Canon Island

Ramesamay Island

4. Dos Palmas Resort

Dos Palmas is a stunning island resort that exclusively occupies Arrecife Island. It’s the best place to go if you’re set on a splurge and you want to spend the night in Honda Bay. The luxury resort also provides day tours with convenient pick-up/drop-off from Puerto Princesa City Proper.

Book room discounts

Address: Arrecife Island, Honda Bay.

Puerto Princesa city tour

If you have a few hours or a full day in Puerto Princesa, check out these places found within or near the City Proper area. Many of these tourist spots are included in standardized half-day city tours. These join-in tours are popular and affordable, priced at only around P600 per person.

Puerto Princesa city tour package

Book discount here

5. Baker’s Hill

Baker’s Hill is famous for its freshly-baked and delicious local delicacies, perfect gifts/pasalubong for friends and family back home. Featuring well-maintained gardens (a sort of mini-theme park), Baker’s Hill is also a beautiful location to take photos for your Instagram and Facebook feed.

Address: Mitra Road, Brgy. Sta. Monica. Save on Google Maps.

6. Mitra’s Ranch

Located near Baker’s Hill, Mitra’s Ranch offers a scenic view overlooking the green landscape of the surrounding valley. It’s also a popular place for horseback riding and ziplining.

Address: Mitra Road, Brgy. Sta. Monica. Save on Google Maps.

7. Palawan Tribal Village and Butterfly Farm

Popular among tour groups, this is one of the interesting tourist spots in the city. It is divided into two sections: the Tribal Village, which offers a cultural interaction with members of the Palaw’an tribe; and the Butterfly Eco Garden, which showcases the variety of tropical butterflies and other insects from the southern region of the Philippines.

Address: Palawan Butterfly Ecological Garden and Tribal Village, Brgy. Sta. Monica. Save on Google Maps.

8. Puerto Princesa Baywalk

This lovely promenade is the perfect place to watch scenic sunsets. There’s also a food park, where you can sample local Palaweño and Filipino dishes.

Address: Sandoval St., Puerto Princesa City Proper. Save on Google Maps.

9. Plaza Cuartel

Historic Plaza Cuartel is the site of a ruined garrison and tunnels, which now serve as a grim reminder of World War II atrocities.

Address: Taft St, Puerto Princesa City Proper. Save on Google Maps.

10. Immaculate Conception Cathedral

A short walk away is the Immaculate Conception Cathedral, a Gothic-style church painted in lovely pastel blue. This historic place is the site of the first mass in Puerto Princesa.

Address: 58 Rizal Ave, Puerto Princesa City Proper. Save on Google Maps.

11. Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm

Going to prison is not something you ordinarily imagine doing during your holiday. The Penal colony in Iwahig, however, might change your mind. This open-air prison is one of the top tourist spots in Puerto Princesa. Here, you can find inmates freely roaming the grounds, tending the farm and going about office-related work.

Address: Barangay Iwahig. Save on Google Maps.

12. Iwahig Firefly Watching & Mangrove Forest

Iwahig is also home to a vast mangrove forest. A paddle boat night cruise along the Iwahig River offers a close-up view of glowing fireflies swarming around the mangrove trees.

Iwahig firefly watching tour package

Book discount here

Address: Iwahig Firefly Watching Mangrove Ecotourism And Wildlife Park, Barangay Iwahig. Save on Google Maps.

13. Puerto Princesa Bay cruise & dolphin watching

Puerto Princesa Bay is a playground of dolphins and other marine creatures. Dolphin watching tours are popular between the months of April and October when sightings are more common. A cruise around Puerto Princesa Bay also offers a chance to enjoy scenic sea views and meet the Badjao Tribe (a community of sea gypsies).

Puerto Princesa Bay cruise package

Book discount here

14. Go on a food trip

With vast open seas surrounding Puerto Princesa, you can look forward to indulging in fresh and affordable seafood. Don’t miss the tuna steak/special of the day set at Kalui and local specialties at other native-style restaurants in the city including Badjao Seafront and Kinabuch’s.

Where to eat and drink in Puerto Princesa (top seafood restaurants and bars)

KaLuiAddress: 369 Rizal Avenue, Puerto Princesa City Proper. Save on Google Maps.

Badjao Seafront RestaurantAddress: Abueg St, Puerto Princesa City Proper. Save on Google Maps.

Kinabuch’s Grill and BarAddress: 369 Rizal Avenue, Puerto Princesa City Proper. Save on Google Maps.

Ka InatoAddress: Km 4 Puerto Princesa North National Highway, Puerto Princesa. Save on Google Maps.

Palaweño BreweryAddress: 82 Manalo St, Puerto Princesa, 5300 Palawan. Save on Google Maps.

15. Try Chao Long

Chao Long is a Vietnamese-influenced delicacy that you should try in Puerto Princesa. This noodle dish was introduced by refugees who found their way to Puerto Princesa during the Vietnam War. The most popular places to try it is Bona’s Chaolong Haus and Vietville. Restaurants like Rene’s Saigon serve variants of the dish including seafood Chaolong.

Top Chao Long restaurants in Puerto Princesa

Bona’s ChaolongAddress: Manalo St, Puerto Princesa City Proper. Save on Google Maps.

Rene’s SaigonAddress: Rizal Avenue Extension, Puerto Princesa City Proper. Save on Google Maps.

VietvilleAddress: Barangay Sta. Lourdes, Puerto Princesa. Save on Google Maps.

16. Puerto Princesa museums

Museums in Puerto Princesa

Palawan Museum — Houses exhibits devoted to Palawan’s cultural heritage. It is one of the best places to learn about archaeological findings related to the Tabon Man, one of the earliest settlers in the Phillippines.Address: Valencia Street, Puerto Princesa City Proper. Save on Google Maps.

Palawan Special Battalion WW-II Memorial MuseumAddress: Rizal Avenue, Puerto Princesa City Proper. Near Old Passenger Terminal Building of Puerto Princesa Airport. Save on Google Maps.

Palawan Heritage CenterAddress: Fernandez St., Puerto Princesa City Proper. Near Palawan Provincial Capitol. Save on Google Maps.

17. Trekking and outdoor adventures

Experience exhilarating adventures at Ugong Rock including spelunking and ziplining. Explore Hundred Caves, a new eco-tourism site in Palawan.

Ugong Rock adventure + zip line package

Book discount here

Hundred Caves day tour package

Book discount here

Mt. Magarwak sunrise trekking package

Book discount here

Puerto Princesa Balsahan River Trek

Book discount here

18. Puerto Princesa waterfalls

Though not as grand as other waterfalls in the Philippines, there are several waterfalls in Puerto Princesa that might be worth a visit.

Bacungan Waterfalls trekking package

Book discount here

Bacungan FallsAddress: Barangay Irawan.

Bonton FallsAddress: Barangay Irawan.

Irawan FallsAddress: Barangay Irawan.

Sabang FallsAddress: Sabang Village.

Tibag WaterfallsAddress: Barangay Bacungan.

Olangoan FallsAddress: Barangay Binduyan.

Salakot FallsAddress: Barangay Napsan.

19. Puerto Princesa waterparks

Waterparks are a relatively new attraction in Puerto Princesa. If you’re traveling with friends and family, here are places to go for a day of fun.

Waterparks in Puerto Princesa

Kamia Bay resortAddress: Binunsalian Bay, Barangay Luzviminda. Save on Google Maps.

Astoria Palawan WaterparkAddress: Kilometer 62, North National Hwy, Barangay. San Rafael. Save on Google Maps.

Astoria Palawan Waterpark admission ticket

Book discount here

20. Nagtabon Beach & West Coast Beaches

If you explore Puerto Princesa on Google Maps, you’ll see a lot of secluded beach coves, especially along the western coast. These beaches remain undeveloped because of their remote location. Nagtabon Beach is one of the more accessible options, reached within a one hour drive from Puerto Princesa city center. It’s a great place to go if you’re looking for a beach with a local vibe.

West Coast Beaches + Puerto Princesa Bacungan Waterfalls tour package

Book discount here

Address: Brgy. Bacungan. Save on Google Maps.

Puerto Princesa west coast beaches

Nagtabon Beach

Talaudyong Beach

Kalaodion Beach

Buksayan Beach

Tagcawayan Beach

Maratapi Beach

Sabang Beach

Manlipien Beach

Arkadia Beach

Panaguman Beach

Ipatdan Beach

Napsan Beach

Nagtabon Beach or Talaudyong Beach Car Charter

Book discount here

Puerto Princesa scooter rental

Good option if you want to explore these beaches and other Puerto Princesa sights independently.

Book discount here

21. Puerto Princesa beaches and coastal views

Here’s a list of beaches and beachfront resorts within or near the city center.

White Beach / Silica Beach / Nasin-aw BeachAddress: Barangay Bancao-Bancao. Save on Google Maps.

Princesa Garden Resort private-beachAddress: Barangay Bancao-Bancao. Save on Google Maps.

Kalayaan BeachAddress: Barangay San Pedro. East end of the Puerto Princesa Airport runway. Save on Google Maps.

BM Beach — Beachfront of Blue Palawan Beach Club & Chez Rose Beach Bar and RestaurantAddress: Barangay San Pedro. Save on Google Maps.

Clarkville BeachAddress: Barangay San Pedro. Save on Google Maps.

Emerald Beach — Beachfront of Microtel by Wyndham & The Emerald Playa Beach ResortAddress: Barangay San Manuel. Save on Google Maps.

22. Palawan Cherry Blossoms

On my summer trip to Puerto Princesa, I was really excited to see Palawan cherry trees, locally known as Balayong, in full bloom. The best area to see the beautiful pale pink blossoms of Palawan cherry trees is the area surrounding the Palawan State University campus, in the area of the planned Balayong Park.

Address: Balayong Park, Brgy. Tiniguiban. Beside Ramon V. Mitra Sports Complex. Save on Google Maps.

Other places of interest in Puerto Princesa

Palawan Wildlife Rescue and Conservation Center (Crocodile Farm)Address: Barangay Irawan. Save on Google Maps.

Binuatan Creations (Weaving Loom Center)Address: Puerto Princesa South Road. Save on Google Maps.

Freedom Park at the City ColiseumAddress: Peneyra Rd, Barangay San Pedro. Save on Google Maps.

Places to visit in Puerto Princesa

Puerto Princesa tourist spots, things to do in Puerto Princesa, where to go in Puerto Princesa & more.

Note: Destinations featured above are not listed by rank.

What places have you added to your bucketlist? Have you been to beautiful places in Puerto Princesa that should be on this list? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments!

Where to Stay in Puerto Princesa

Cheapest ratesBest reviews

Where to book

Book your room with these trusted booking sites. I use them frequently to grab rock-bottom prices & enjoy convenient bookings. Click below to confirm the lowest prices:

Booking.comAirbnbAgoda

Book sooner rather than later if you already have your dates set. Cheaper-priced rooms and hotels with high reviews tend to get fully booked faster, especially during busy days like weekends, holidays & peak tourist seasons.

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