The last time I was on a tour boat was years ago so on one particular sunny day, when my resident tour guide was on day off, I decided to go with my tour guide in training instead. We only had 4 guests from Brazil and Austria and it was a rather relaxed and fun day! We did a stop at Cadlao Lagoon, which is actually part of Tour D, in place of Hidden Beach because the tide was too low to go there, before heading for the area covered by Tour C.

Our second stop was Culasa Beach in Tapiutan Island for lunch. While the tour guides prepared grilled pork, chicken, fish, squid, and eggplants because we had a vegetarian on the tour, our guests went snorkeling and swimming, and took some nice photos on and around the beach. Culasa Beach is also one of the stops of Tao Philippines.

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

This was our boat for the day – Anne and Ruud’s Boat Cruise, a boat good for 16pax, though we only had 4 guests and 4 staff onboard.

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

I am very proud of our Outventure tours. I invested a lot to make our tours better than the tours other booking offices organize. We use proper tables and chairs, with table covers and place mats. We also don’t use plastic plates, forks and spoons. We use proper ones that I had from my old restobar in Naga City that I closed in early 2012 and had shipped via bus from Camarines Sur to Manila, and shipped via cargo boat from Manila straight to El Nido. Our bottled water is in reusable plastic containers because I, being an environmentalist, dislike the use of disposable plastic bottles. The beach and our seas are littered with plastic bottles already as it is. We try to write the names of the guests on the bottles so that when they put their water bottles in the ice chest to keep it cool, there is no confusion as to whose water bottle it is.

We make it a point to make our tours as comfortable and as environment-friendly as possible. El Nido is beautiful but with intense tourist activities, related development, and lack of foresight and implementation of the local government, I am afraid that pretty soon, El Nido will lose its charm, and I would eventually fall out of love with it. I like El Nido so I try to do my part and try my best to contribute to sustainable tourism.

Our next stop after lunch was Secret Beach. If it was my first time in Culasa Beach, my last time in Secret Beach was back in 2010. And as always, the entrance to the beach was crowded with boats. I counted 13 tour boats outside on this day alone, including ours. I didn’t go inside Secret Beach anymore, but to go inside, one has to swim through a hole, sometimes underwater, depending on the tide. Going to Secret Beach is not allowed when the winds are strong.

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

After Secret Beach, we headed to Matinloc Shrine in Matinloc Island. My first and last time in the shrine was back in 2006 and I saw that not much have changed in all those years. The photos I took in 2006 were lost in that CD that literally burned inside my old IBM laptop so here are the only photos I have of the shrine.

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

This is Tapiutan Strait, as viewed from the boat when going from Matinloc Shrine to Secret Beach.

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

But in Matinloc Shrine, guests can come up these steps…

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

…all the way to the top, which isn’t really too high up…

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

…to get a view of this:

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

And I guess, that’s what makes Tour C the best among Tours A-D, at least to me.

The last stop of Tour C boats is usually Helicopter Island, where there is good snorkeling, a nice beach to relax on, before heading back to town.

Here are some old photos I took of Helicopter Island, back in 2010. Years ago, I tried to keep my travel blogs separate from my other blogs so I had a dedicated travel website. I found maintaining two separate sites too tedious so I let that one go and decided to keep this one. I did not, however, migrate the blog posts from that site to this one. Onetravelstory.com was only up for one year.

Helicopter Island, El Nido, Palawan

The blindingly white-sand beach of Helicopter Island, El Nido, Palawan

Helicopter Island, El Nido, Palawan

The beach of Dilumacad Island, El Nido, Palawan

It was Lia’s first time in El Nido in 2010. Back then, Island Transvoyager Inc. (ITI) still had the 19-seater Dornier planes and did not allow pregnant women as well as kids younger than 24 months to be onboard. I had to wait until my daughter was exactly one year old before we traveled back to El Nido.

Lia and her Mama on the beach of Helicopter Island, El Nido, Palawan

And here are the photos taken in April 2014.

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

We send Lagu towels on the tour boat for our guests to use. If they like it and become fans of the world’s first beach-friendly beach towel, they can be bought at the Outventure shop for Php1,000.

Tour C, El Nido, Palawan

No, they are not for free. Many have tried to take them home, and quite a number of times, we’ve had to chase after guests for the towels to be returned. We can’t blame them as these Lagu towels are very nice; but of course, we cannot give them out. They are expensive but they are well worth it!

If you would like to join us in any Outventure Tour, we offer the usual tours – Tour A, B, C, and also D on the banca as well as on the speed boat. We also offer private tours, inland tours, and other specialized tours such as eco-tours, bird watching tours, inland tours, sunset cruises, camping trips, stand up paddle board tours, and pretty much any kind of tour one might be interested in. We customize and we find the right boat and equipment, and we provide the best and most knowledgeable tour guides.

Outventure can be found in Serena St., on the same street and same side as El Nido Boutique and Artcafe, near The Alternative Inn and Restaurant, Seadog Diving, Pura Vida, and Shipwreck Pension.

Outventure has a website at www.outventureph.com though it is incomplete, unfinished, and on its beta state. You may reach Outventure via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and via email at outventureph@gmail.com and through phone +63 947 899 9109.

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