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Underground River Tour and Ugong Rock Formation

Underground River Tour and Ugong Rock Formation

The moment I read that the Puerto Princesa Underground River were one of the nominees for the new seven wonders of nature, I did not hesitate in participating in the online voting. Soon my efforts (and I am sure many other Filipinos’) were not wasted as it became officially part of the list last November 11, 2011.

I still have post El Nido-trip depression when Marx and I reached Sabang port in Puerto Princesa after two hours of travel time with one stop-over. We waited for our banca, boat no.53, for our transfer to the Puerto Princesa River National Park. There were only six of us in our group plus Noris our tour guide. I observed that they were very strict, we had to have our permits before boarding.  

I failed to bring my SLR camera since it was broken. I am sorry for the few and ugly photos taken inside. 
Nevertheless, it was a rich learning experience for me. If not for our boatman/tour guide, the 1.5 km journey inside would have been very quiet, monotonous and boring. The wait time was a bit long but I must say that it was very organized. Travelers just need to  wait for their permit before boarding on their assigned boats. Once on the park itself, we waited again so we roamed around interacted with the local wildlife. Monitor lizards and monkeys roam freely. We were actually warned regarding those monkeys being naughty thieves!  They were attracted to plastic bags so we made sure we did not bring anything that will catch their attention.
Entrance to the cave
Wearing of helmet and life vest is a must

The river is about 8.2 kilometers in length and could take hours to navigate. It has brackish waters 
(combination of fresh and salt water). Only the first 1.5 km is accessible for tourists. A special permit is needed for those seeking to explore the length of the river. Most who go beyond are biologists, explorers, archaeologists and the like. 

While waiting for our turn, I ‘discovered’ this empty beach not far where tourists are congregating

We paid P 1500 each (
deposited in advance) for the underground tour which was arranged by our host. This rate includes all transfers, permits/entrance fees and buffet lunch. After the almost hour-tour, we walked along the beach towards Taraw Vista Lodge and Restaurant where buffet lunch was served. Even the name of the restaurant played a joke on me! Reminding me of Taraw Cliff, making me miss EL Nido again.  

Karst Mountain Elephant Cave
It is said that an episode of the Amazing Race
Philippine Edition was shot here

After lunch, our tour guide animatedly invited us to visit Ugong Rock Formation. Before arriving there, we dropped by a bit at the Karst Mountain Elephant Cave to take some photos.

Our tour guide said this platform is called Plaza Miranda since it
resembles the stage of the famous, historical plaza of Manila

Cave exploration is at P 200 while zip-line is at P 200 for sitting position
and P250 for the Superman ride 

This rock formation used to be underwater. Water markings are evident in the cave walls. Sparkling stalactites can be seen inside though not as grand as you can imagine.  We did a little bit of rope-climbing and rappelling. For travelers’ convenience, management has already installed ladders. Going up inside is the only way to reach the zip-line platform. I say be ready for deep breathes!

14 thoughts on “Underground River Tour and Ugong Rock Formation”

    • Oo kakamiss nga talaga eh! Well parang wala naman syang amoy, or baka yun na nga ung amoy niya, yung walang amoy? 🙂 hehehe

    • Oo Carla 1500 php for the tour (underground river/permits/shuttle transfers, buffet lunch). Standard rate ng package tour I think. 😉

    • Hi blissfulguro and pondering paodaolei! I read both of your blogs and it is really helpul. My family and I are pplanning to go to palawan on Jun 28-July 2. Gusto namin DIY din to lessen the budget. May I ask kung kelangan na ba kumuha ng permit as early as now or ok lang pagdating na namin dun?

    • Hello Mia thanks for visiting my site. 🙂 If fixed na and date of flights niyo, you can look na for a hotel to reserve your rooms then they can be the one to make the reservations for you, permits and all.

      For the PPUR tour, they would require you to deposit the 1500 PHP first before they can make reservations for you.


    • Best to reserve earlier because dates do fill-up fast! You can coordinate with the hotel where you are staying.

    • Oh yes sure it is! I was able to video a friend's superman zipline ride I uploaded it in youtube! I will send it to you so you can see how FUN it is! 🙂

  • hi thanks for your post, may i know if the ugong rock thing is included in the itinerary for the 1500? may i have any contact no. to book that PPUR tour? ty

    • Hello Dyubi! The P1500 is solely for the PPUR tour. You may ask the hotel where you booked your stay if they can also include this in your itinerary.

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