Puerto Princesa, Palawan: Honda Bay Island Tour

HONDA BAY ISLAND TOUR

Puerto Princesa, Palawan: Honda Bay Island Tour

Honda bay is a famous tourist destination in Puerto Princesa City.  Aside from being the largest bay in the city, it has also the most islands among the bays found here comprising of 18 islands and islets + a reef. The bay is also very accessible since it is only 30 minutes away from the city proper.

Most people who have visited Honda Bay only knew the islands open for island hopping tour namely: Cowrie, Pandan, Starfish and Lu-li islands. But there’s more to Honda Bay.

PRE-TRAVEL GUIDE

Where to best exchange currency?

It is best to exchange currency in your country way before your trip. Try to plan this too when booking plane tickets.

Buying Pocket WiFi?

Klook also provides this. Without hassle, you can either choose to pick it up at airports.

You can check and book it here

HOW TO GET TO PALAWAN

    1. ENTRY POINT MANILA (NAIA)

    1. By Airplane (Cebu pacific, Airasia or Philippine Airlines)
      • Direct flights area available.
      • Travel time is around 1 hr and 15 mins.
    2. By Ferry (2-GO)
      • It has 2 trips in a week. (Tuesday and Friday at 1:30pm)
      • Travel Time is about 30 hours.
      • Minimum Price is around PHP 1200 (SGD 30, $ 24, € 20) – PHP 1800 (SGD 45, $ 36, € 30).
    1. ENTRY POINT CEBU (Mactan Cebu International Airport)

    1. By Airplane (Cebu pacific, Airasia or Philippine Airlines)
      • Direct flights area available.
    1. ENTRY POINT CAGAYAN DE ORO (Laguindingan Airport)

    1. By Airplane (Cebu pacific, Airasia or Philippine Airlines)
      • Flights are available with a stop-over in Cebu area.
      • Flight Duration is 2 Hours 30 minutes.

ALL ABOUT HONDA BAY

Where is HONDA BAY?

 Honda Bay is found in the island of Palawan. 

Getting to HONDA BAY?

It is recommended to take the whole day to enjoy the Island-hopping tour.

Available options:

  1. You can book a tour (the easiest to do and most hotels in Puerto Princesa offer their clients tour packages here)
  2. You can do it yourself.

Renting a tricycle for the whole day for PHP 500 (SGD 12.5 ,$10, € 8.3) is the best way to go to the area because there is no hassle in riding the tricycle considering you did not want to change your wet clothes . It will take you to the port and will wait for your return.

TIPS!
You can ask your driver to stop at one of the stalls to rent snorkeling gears prior to arriving to the port. Most likely the driver will suggest it to you.

At the Sta. Lourdes Wharf, you can rent a boat from PHP 1,000 – 1,500 (SGD 25 ,$20, € 16.7 – SGD 37.5 ,$30, € 25) depending on the tour you are choosing. You will have to pay environmental fees.

sta. lourdes wharf honda bay palawan
Sta. Lourdes Wharf at Honda Bay Palawan

As of February 2017, the fees were raised from PHP 40 (SGD 1 ,$0.8, € 0.68) to PHP 150 (SGD 3.75 ,$3, € 2.5).

TIPS!
each island has an entrance fee that varies between PHP 50-75  ( SGD 1.25 ,$1, € 0.8 – SGD 1.9 ,$1.5, € 1.25)

Islands in Honda Bay + Reef

  1. Pandan Island– Pandan is named after the pandan tree found in abundance in the island. Pandan has white sand beach, excellent coral reefs and colorful marine life. The island also has a bar, seafood market and dive shop.

    Travel time via boat from the wharf: Approximately 30-40  minutes

  2. Luli Island – Lu-li was coined from the phenomenon taking place in the island. The name was short term for the Tagalog words “lulubog-lilitaw”  literally means “appear-disappear” which is what happens to the island depending on the tide.
    Travel time via boat from the wharf: Approximately 15 minutes
  3. Bat Island – The closest island from the wharf. It is closed for island hopping activity since it is regarded as protected area being the home of giant fruit bats.
    Travel time via boat from the wharf: Approximately 5 minutes.
  4. Meara Marina – Another private island not open for island hopping. Considered to be one of the longest island in the bay. The island has a long stretch of white sand beach hidden by mangroves.
    Travel time via boat from the wharf: Approximately 20 minutes
  5. Pambato Reef  – a nice site for snorkeling in Honda Bay, is a floating platform in the middle of the ocean serves as the gateway to a wonderful reef under the sea. You won’t miss this because the roof is shaped like a turtle!
  6. Snake Island – Travel time via boat from the wharf: Approximately 50 minutes
  7. StarfishA lot of starfish can be found in this island.
    Travel time via boat from the wharf: Approximately 40 minutes
  8. Cowrie – Named after the Cowrie,  a type of shell, this island has fine sand, a bar, beach massage area, shower and offers buffet lunch and a variety of water activities. 
    Travel time via boat from the wharf: Approximately 10 minutes
  9. Kabayo- Kabayo Sandbar– Kabayo- Kabayo Sandbar only shows itself in very low tide. The area surrounding the sandbar has nice coral reefs and there’s a floating hut where you can rest and enjoy the view of the other islands in the bay.

    Travel time via boat from the wharf: Approximately 15 minutes

  10. Adobo Island – A neighbor of Lu-li Island. It is one of the smallest island in the bay with a full area of about 20 square meters during low tide. Also, not open for island hopping- this is a private island.

    Travel time via boat from the wharf: Approximately 15 minutes

  11. Fraser Island – Fraser island has about a kilometer shallow water ideal for swimming. Also called the “mukhang bungo” island because the island looks like a “skull” from an aerial view.
    Travel time via boat from the wharf: Approximately 25 minutes  
  12. Areceffi IslandThis island is where the famous Dos PalmasIsland Resort can be found. Arreceffi  is also the second largest island in the bay with a total land area of 27 hectares.
    Travel time via boat from the wharf: Approximately 1 hour
  13. Isla Puting Buhangin
  14. Isla Barlas
  15. Isla Bugias
  16. Bush Island
  17. Domingo Soledad Sand bar
  18. Senorita Island
  19. Fondeado Island

OUR PART OF THE TOUR

boat to honda bay island tour

A picture of my team before going to different islands in Honda Bay.

  1. Luli Island – There are foods available in this part of the island. We preferred to have lunch at this island. It was a buffet lunch. They have mini-mangrooves too! Try to spot it.Luli Island PalawanWe have the opportunity to gather and take our most memorable poses.
    Luli Island Honda BayThey also have a jumping board area. Have fun splasing!Luli Island Honda Bay

    |Check out: PALAWAN : 5 DAY ITINERARY AND BUDGET GUIDE
  2. Starfish Island –  Actually a lot of instagrammable sights can be found in this island. starfish island honday 2 Starfish island honda bayWe surely did have a great time here. Also, good for snorkelling.

     

     

  3. Pandan Island – We did not stop at this magnificent island.

     

     

  4. Cowrie Island – Our last stopped for our tour. We changed our clothes here. Moreover, I think it is best to shower and change clothes here because they have a decent bathroom.
    Cowrie Island Hond bay

I lost my lifeguard after stepping out of this island. Oh well, charge to experience. PS. the boatmen did not charged me.

BUDGET SAMPLE

ActivityExpenses
  Tricycle for a day  Php 500 (SGD 12.5 ,$10, € 8.3)   (divided between the number of people)
  Snorkeling gear rental  Php 150 (SGD 3.75 ,$3, € 2.5)
  Honda Bay tour  Php 1500 (SGD 37.5 ,$30, € 25) (divided between the number of people)
  Environmental fees (as of 2017)  Php 150(SGD 3.75 ,$3, € 2.5)
  Entrance fee Pandan island  Php 150(SGD 3.75 ,$3, € 2.5)
  Entrance fee Cowrie island  Php 50( SGD 1.25 ,$1, € 0.8 )
  Entrance fee Pambato Reef  Php 75 ( SGD 1.88 ,$1.5, € 1.25 )
  Entrance fee Luli Island  Php 15( SGD 0.4 ,$0.3, € 0.25 )
  Entrance fee Starfish Island  Php 150(SGD 3.75 ,$3, € 2.5)
  Drinks and food  Php 800 ( SGD 20 ,$16, € 13.4 )
  Total (divided by 6)  Php 1874 or ( SGD 47 ,$38, € 32 ) / pax

SAMPLE ITINERARY

Day 1: Honda Bay Island Hopping

07:00 am  – Breakfast
08:00 am  – Meet Tour Guide and driver at Hotel. En route to Sta. Lourdes Wharf for Island Hopping Tour. 
09:00 am – En route to Pambato Reef
10:30 am – En route to Pandan Island
12:00 nn  – Luli Island /Lunch
02:00 pm – En route to Starfish Island
03:20 pm – En route to Cowrie Island
04:50 pm – Scheduled boat ride back to Sta. Lourdes Wharf.
05:30 pm – En route to hotel to wash up and be ready for dinner
07:00 pm – Dinner

TIPS, NOTES and REMINDERS

1. Book your trip locally

You’ll find that there are many travel agents and tour guides offering their services once you get to Puerto Princesa, so there’s no need to hurry and book everything from air tickets to lodgings and trips right on the spot.

2. It’s best to book for a private tour

If you go on an island hopping visit, you pay for the rental of the motor boat and not per head or the number of occupants of the boat, the price of which is about the same price you’ll pay for one head in a private tour [one boat can load 6-12 persons]. 

3. Don’t forget to bring extra clothes

Even if you don’t plan to swim and get wet in every island you visit, you will still get wet from the ride in the motorboat. There are available wash rooms in the islands (Luli and Cowrie).

4. Pack all your gear

Snorkelling gears are available ofr guest who wishes to snorkel and swim. Shops near the wharf offers rental for gears.

5.Bring your own snacks and food

Light snacks is a go-to.

Also,If you want to save money, buy foods and snacks because on the islands, prices are high.

TIPS!
Bring some bread for the fishes! 🙂

You can ask them for islands good for fish-feeding, secluded swimming and snorkeling.

WHAT’S NEARBY?

  1. New 7 Wonders of the World known as the Underground River
  2. Plaza Cuartel and Church
  3. Snorkeling at Pambato Island
  4. 13ft-18ft Crocs at Crocodile Farm
  5. Mitra’s Ranch
  6. Bakers Hill
  7. Island Hopping at El nido
  8. Island Hopping at Coron  

MAPS TO HELP LOCATE PLACES NEARBY

DID YOU ENJOY THIS POST? PIN IT FOR LATER!!

Come and visit Palawan! You won’t regret it!

Always remember to “Develop your One Days to Day Ones!

XOXO,shellwanders

Civil Engineer by Profession. Blogger by Passion. This young girl channeled her energy in blogging when her favorite girl group disbanded. Join and Catch her next wanders.
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