Follow the Sun with a Honda Bay Tour!

AJ and I spent the whole of Sunday last week at Honda Bay, still at Puerto Princesa in Palawan, where the Honda Bay Tour took us to 2 islands and 1 reef, enjoy a picnic-type lunch of delectable seafood, do kayaking, bike in the waters with an aqua pedal bike, and bask in the afternoon sun while feeding fishes at the beach.

We were picked up by our tour guide, Ms. Annie, at exactly 7:00 a.m. from RAQ Pensionne – our home in Palawan – and then rode  a very comfortable van which took us to the port in less than 15 minutes.  As it was only AJ and me in this trip, my travel agent booked us with other tourists to form a group tour, and this arrangement has both its advantages and disadvantages.   The advantage is that, aside from saving a lot (because you pay the group tour rate), you get to meet new people.  You learn to be sociable!  And in this trip at Honda Bay, we were lucky to be in the company of adventurous working people who happened to be in the same age group as AJ and me.  (I’ll leave the disadvantages in my future Palawan stories).

From the port, we took to a banca going to our first destination:  the Pambato Reef.

The banca ride is always AJ’s favorite.  Here he is enjoying an unobtrusive view of the ocean from his spot.

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At Pambato Reef, we immediately hit the waters for some snorkeling.   It was a ‘guided’ snorkeling, by the way.  There’s a diver assigned to us who guided us around the reef .  You don’t need to be swimmer or diver to enjoy this experience.  You’ll be wearing a life vest, aqua shoes and goggles during the entire activity.  In fact, you only have to look down the waters and you’ll be greeted already by schools of fishes and coral reefs of riveting colors and shapes.

I really regret not having an underwater camera or iPhone with us during the trip as we thought we can make use of our Android phones to take underwater videos.  But it turned out the standard underwater pouches suit iPhones only.  The structure of the pouches will make it difficult for us to reach the the On/Off button located at the side of our phones, unlike in the iPhone which is just in front.

Anyway, we stayed no more than an hour at Pambato Reef and took off with the banca again en route to Starfish Island.  This is where I made bawi with my camera and took pictures everywhere!

Our bangkero (boat man) also joined us in the island, and he made me especially curious when he set up this empty clam in the sand:

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He turned out to be a professional “stylist” and “photographer”!  He instructed us to do some poses with the empty claim (and an empty beer bottle too) and before long, the whole gang in the group was having a pictorial with him!

Me with the “giant” clam:

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Genie AJ in a bottle:

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Our boat man / photographer / stylist in action:

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Starfish Island is rather small but is surrounded by thriving mangroves.  It’s a very calm and peaceful island so instead of hitting the waters, I just enjoyed these views from our hut:

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Then it was time to leave again and hop on to the last leg of our Honda Bay Tour: the  Pandan Island.

Pandan Island, according to Ms. Annie, is one of the islands around Honda Bay that was newly opened to tourists.  We were so lucky to be there as everything is still rather pristine, even though the area has been developed for tourism and recreation.

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We arrived at Pandan Island an hour before lunch and were immediately approached by the locals selling their fresh catch of the day: sea urchins, lobsters, crabs and prawns, among others.   Our group bought some fresh crabs and squids which were then cooked by the locals.

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While waiting for our lunch to be ready, we all explored the island and then got into water activities like kayaking and aqua pedal bike.  We rented these out at very affordable rates.

By the time we were done, Ms. Annie has readied our lunch (our tour package includes a picnic-style lunch) and oh boy, it was not just a lunch – it was a feast!

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The lunch package includes rice, fish, chicken, pork, veggies and fruits!  And drinks too!

Here are the fresh seafood, cooked by the locals, that our group added to the buffet:  steamed crabs, grilled squid and adobo-style squid.

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Fresh bananas for dessert.

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Fresh coconut (buko) quenched our thirst.

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The rest of the afternoon was spent enjoying the sun and the rather cool saltwater while feeding the friendly fishes.   Here you will see fish even at the shallowest part of the beach shore and seeing them come to us (or rather the bread) was a really cute sight!

We left the island at around 3:30 p.m. and was back at Puerto Princesa before 5:00 p.m.

What a sweet, sun-kissed Sunday with lots of happy memories created!

To those interested, our Honda Bay Tour cost us only P2,600.00 (that’s P1,300 per head).  Very cheap considering that it’s a whole-day trip with arranged transportation to and from your hotel (and the van was a Grandia pa, naks!).   You can email me for the contact details of my travel agent =)

More pictures (and stories) of our Palawan vacation coming up!

 

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Comments

  1. bang says

    hi,

    may i have the details of your contact for your honda bay tour? punta kasi kami there sa jul for my daughter’s birthday. gusto ko sana ung mejo slow paced na tour. ksi minsan madalian hindi mo na mashado maenjoy yung place. i like the route that you had, pambato, starfish and then pandan. yung iba kc cowrie. i would like to have pambato, snake, and then pandan pero i cant seem to find a tour package na ganyan ang itinerary. maybe your contact will have.

    appreciate if you can help me with this. your tour looks so much fun and sana ganun din kami when we go there.

    salamat,
    bang

  2. cristina says

    Hi,

    What a wonderful trip!

    Could you send me the contact details of your travel agent for the honda bay tour?

    THANKS

  3. Cynel says

    Hi. It was a nice review regarding your trip in Puerto Princesa. And I’ve heard some good reviews too regarding RAQ. Anyway, can I have the details of your travel agent there? Thanks a bunch and God bless! 🙂

  4. Mon says

    Hi Leah! Thanks for sharing your interesting Honda Bay tour. My wife and i are going there next week for our anniversary. We arrive at Puerto Princesa around 9:30 am and I’m wondering if we can still make the Honda bay tour the same day even if we start late. Would appreciate much if you can share with us your travel agent’s contact details. Thank you very much!

  5. popoy says

    Hello! Nice review, will be in palawan this coming saturday have not made any tour arrangements, i would appreciate it very much if you could share your travel agent’s contact details. Thanks

  6. Dianne says

    Hi Leah, nice review! We will be in Palawan this September and I’m looking for a travel agent for our Honday Bay tour. Would greatly appreciate if you could send me your travel agent’s contact details. Thanks in advance! 🙂

  7. floy says

    Hi,

    Thanks for sharing your experience!

    Can i have the contact details of your travel agent for the honda bay tour?

    Thank you!

    Floy

  8. Chris Yee says

    Hi Leah, im so interested in your tour,
    may i know the contact detail of your travel agent? Thank You very much! 🙂

  9. Ohlee Ramos says

    Hi Leah,

    Nice review. 🙂 Thanks for sharing your experience!

    Can i have the contact details of your travel agent for the honda bay tour?

    Thanks & Rgds,
    Ohlee

    • says

      Hi Ohlee, you may contact my travel agent, Ms. Nits Serdena, at 0917-5416489. She actually arranged all our tours in Palawan so you can ask her to arrange yours, too! =)

    • says

      You may contact my travel agent, Ms. Nits Serdena, at 0917-5416489. Nits arranged all our tour itineraries when AJ and I went to Palawan last May. =)

  10. naved says

    Hi Leah, I reach Palawan 8.30 am will it be possible if i take the honda bay tour or should i take the trip the 2nd day, and take the under water river cruise the 1st day ..3rd day i leave, please advise and narrate your experience..

    much thanks..

    • says

      Hi Naved! Yes you can do the Honda Bay Tour right away! The travel from the airport to the pier is not really far, and you can finish the tour after lunch or early afternoon, and then have the rest of the day free.

      You can not take the Underground River cruise on your 1st day because permits have to be secured in advance. Also, it’s a 2-hour drive from the airport going to Sabang (that’s where you will take the boat going to the Underground River) so it’s best to do this on your second day.

      If you want, you can contact our travel agent, Nits Serdena, at her mobile number 0917-5416489. She can arrange your itinerary and do all the tour bookings so that when you get to Palawan, you can really relax and enjoy your stay there =)

  11. Nitz Serdena says

    Hi ma’am leah, i’m so glad that you really enjoyed and appreciated the itineraries I made for you. Thank you for endorsing me to your friends and to the fans of your blogs:) Regards!- Nitz Serdeña

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