Coron, Palawan – The Emerald of The Philippines

Coron, Palawan – The Emerald of The Philippines

In autumn of 2012 while I was living in Cebu I took a long weekend break to Coron in the north of Palawan. Palawan is starting to get well known for El Nido; it’s limestone cliffs and emerald waters offer a more unspoilt alternative to Thailand’s Koh Phi Phi but there are far fewer tourists who make the trip to Coron Town and the neighbouring islands.

One of the best things about South East Asia is the cheap and relatively abundant low cost flights. The Philippines is slightly less well connected than it’s neighbours, but as a country of over 7,000 islands domestic carriers are booming, no more so than Cebu Pacific Air. I’m not particularly interested in fights or airlines as they act as merely a vessel to get somewhere; the more comfortable the better but it’s never the highlight of a trip – but I feel the need to mention Cebu Pacific Air based on how insanely low their fares get. They have 1 peso fares – that’s 1.4p. ONE POINT FOUR PENCE FOR A FLIGHT. Even with fees added that’s less then £10 to get to some of the most beautiful and undiscovered beaches in the region.  A return flight Cebu-Busuanga ended up costing me only around 850 Pesos, or £12.

busuanga airport
As I recall I think it was only the second day of operating the route that my flight was on, and while we were travelling on a smaller passenger plane there were still some seats empty. The airport in Busuanga is tiny, and you’ll need to grab a lft in a minivan into Coron Town

Mt Tapyas

While in Coron Town, the best attraction is climbing Mt Tapyas. As the highest local point, it provides a great view across the bay and surrounding islands.Going here late afternoon enables you to catch the sunset over the horizon, basking the landscape in a golden glow. Watch out, the 700 odd steps are a killer and may take you longer than expected – it’s the equivalent of climbing over 50 storeys in a building. At the time of my visit there was a giant cross at the top of the Mountain, however from what I’ve read this was unfortunately destroyed by Typhoon Haiyan

coron mt tapyas viewmt tapyas coron

coron fieldscoron horizoncoron cross mountaincoron sunsetcoron sunset

Island Hopping

coron island hopping
The main draw of Coron and in fact the whole of Palawan is the ability to island hop. Day tours run from the town on several different routes, while longer trips lasting several days can be booked for those into serious diving of even to visit Calauit, probably the most isolated and unexpected ‘African’ Safari park in the world.

On the normal tours you will be taken to a selection of islands, beaches and snorkelling spots (such as Siete Pecados) with lunch usually included. If your time in Coron is limited, make sure you go on a tour including Kayangan Lake, offering crystal clear water and the iconic ‘Coron Postcard View’ below.

kayangan lakecoron island hoppingcoron islandscoron island hoppingcoron tours

Other Things to Do in Coron

  • Dive among Japanese wrecks and one of the biggest reefs in the world
  • Swim under rocks to reach the hidden Twin Lagoons
  • Join a Dugong watching tour to the outer islands
  • Spot to CORON Hollywood-style sign on the nearby hill
  • Rent a Kayak or Mountain Bike to explore the area yourself
  • Splurge on a luxury resort on one of the private islands

Where to Stay

A lot of the budget accommodation and guesthouses in Coron won’t have online booking services, so either phoning up beforehand or walking through town may be the best way to get a bargain. However, if you don’t fancy the risk or are interested in some fancier digs, here’s some options:

 Until next time, Coron!

emma lindsey rose coron

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Unique Christmas Party Dresses 2014 – From Budget to Designer

With Christmas around the corner it’s full on party season. I have been trying to take advantage of Black Friday discounts to pick up a few options, but unfortunately websites and stock with some retailers has been less than great due to the overload of visitors this year! I have managed to do plenty of browsing in spite of this, and have picked out my favourite and most unique cocktail dresses on offer.

Big Spenders

Matches and Net-a-Porter are the main web stores in the UK to get a great range of designer labels, and there are some really interesting options for party outfits.

pink-party-dressThis highly detailed printed dress may be more Spring Summer, but bright colours are having more staying power into the cold months every year.

gun print dressA bold and somewhat controversial style to rock, but you know Rihanna is bound to have this in her closet.

eyelash lace dress

I can’t get enough of eyelash lace at the moment, and this is probably the most delicate application of it I have seen. Sheer and stunning, this dress is suited for a more formal christmas party.

A very modern version of a classic 1940s cut, this pattern is erratic and kooky, but super cool.

Budget Bargains

In the UK we are spoilt for choice, with new budget fashion sites joining the market every few months. Party dresses are big business, and this level of competition helps drive prices down. This year, many of the online stores like Missguided, ASOS and Pretty Little Thing have unique designers to rival the runways and help you stand out.

cheap christmas dress

This is the dress I want to have myself, so I highly recommend it!

christmas cocktail

For way under £100 the detail on this cocktail dress is astonishing

nightclub dress

If you think your christmas party may be more tequila shots and techno than Cliff Richard and mulled wine, this is a great pick for only £20!

More places to find the perfect party dress for Christmas

Big Spender:


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