Here’s something to add to your travel list as soon as this flight ban is lifted – the island of Palawan in the Philippines was recently claimed the number 1 spot in the list of Best Islands in Travel + Leisure magazine’s World’s Best Awards for 2020. Travel + Leisure is a travel magazine based in New York with a readership of 4.8 million subscribers. Aside from Travel + Leisure, Palawan has also received citations from its competitors Conde Naste Traveller (2016 and 2017) and The National Geographic as well as the fashion magazine, Vogue.
image c/o The Filipino Times
Palawan is touted to be one of the most biodiverse – both terrestrial and marine – islands in the Philippines. Its islands stretch between Mindoro in the northeast and Borneo in the southwest. It lies between the South China See and the Sulu Sea. Among the many endemic species are the Palawan peacock-pheasant, Philippine mousedeer, Philippine pangolin, Palawan bearded pig, and the Palawan birdwing. It’s the home for over 600 species of butterflies, more than 200 kinds of birds and 1,500 types of plants. Its white sand beaches are nests to endangered sea turtles and the grassy waters are home to a large number of dugongs, gentle mermaids of the ocean.
So, for those planning to visit the award-winning island, here are some important points and recommended sites:
- It’s the UNESCO World Heritage Sites for
- The PUERTO PRINCESA SUBTERRANEAN RIVER NATIONAL PARK which features a large limestone karst landscape with an underground river which emerges directly into the sea and its lower portion is subject to tidal influences.
- THE TUBBATAHA REEF MARINE PARK a diver’s paradise because of its unique atoll reef with a very high density of marine species. The north islet serving as a nesting site for birds and marine turtles. Its pristine coral reef has a spectacular perpendicular wall with extensive lagoons and coral islands.
- The CALAUIT GAME PRESERVE & WILDLIFE SANCTUARY is the Philippines’ way of preserving African animals and endangered endemic animals of Palawan caring for 1,807 animals from a 1976 resolution to help preserve the animals in Kenya.
- The CORON REEFS OF CORON BAY was listed on the Forbes Traveller Magazine’s top 10 best scuba sites in the world because of the aquatic views from 12 sunken World War II Japanese war ships.
- Another majestic dive site is the EL NIDO MARINE RESERVE PARK which houses several lagoons and limestone cave formations aside from its magnificent marine life and coral formations.
So why is Palawan the World's Best Island for 2020? Pristine white beaches, breathtaking dive spots (especially the wreck dives), fantastic sceneries surrounded by torquise waters in a land full of smiles and welcoming arms - just some of the few things that you have to discover yourself. AND you can flood instagram with all your awesome photos!
This is something positive to focus on, dear readers. And because nature is probably the one that most benefits from this pandemic, one can just imagine how Palawan's wildlife and marine life would be fabulously amazing!
See you all on the other side of the rainbow.