El Nido at dusk
With the snow and ice gone, this last bit of winter is just such a drag. There is still more than a month to go before the official start of spring but I can hardly wait to move on into the new season. Even my little girl is already longing for the time when she can go outside and pluck some flowers because at the moment, there is hardly anything of color anymore.
The weather is not helping either to cheer me up. Today it is wet, windy, cold and grey. Thus, I am going down memory lane to a wonderful holiday we had way back in 2006 in the Philippines. This particular place is called El Nido (or the nest) in Palawan and is so-called because of the limestone cliffs that are so typical in this area which are home to a special type of swift, the cave swift that are renowned for building the saliva nests used for the Chinese bird’s nest soup.
This place is special to me and the Mr. because this is where our love story started with a coincidental meeting on its shores over 15 years ago. We call this place our own little paradise for being here is like no other from the wonderful things to see — beautiful uninhabited islands, pristine beaches, scenic limestone cliffs to amazing things to do — island hopping, snorkeling, scuba diving or simply relaxing on the beach listening to the gentle to and fro sway of the waves on the shores and the chirping of the birds and crickets in the trees (or at times being pelted with fruit stones by monkeys who do not like intruders). Add to that the pleasantly warm weather, the friendly people and the relaxed if not lazy pace of life which is a comforting interlude from the busy lives we lead back here in the west.
We enjoyed our almost one week stay in this paradise…island-hopping every day and having our simple meals by the beach. Though I have this fear of the deep water, I was caught up in the magic of snorkeling, oftentimes forgetting the time while observing the amazing world beneath the waters…schools of colorful fishes, beautiful corals, sea turtles, clams, and many more.
My husband when he first came to the Philippines has really made it his goal to see El Nido because Jacques Cousteau has remarked that it was the most beautiful place he ever explored. He described El Nido as having one of the most beautiful seascapes in the world.
I miss El Nido and I look forward to returning one day…that time with the three of us. I am sure that our little girl will in a heartbeat get fascinated by these islands and its limitless charm.
US on one of the many uninhabited islands
Early morning on the shores of El Nido town
El Nido at dusk
Island scene -- pristine beach, wild plants and flowers
Typical feature of the islands - white beach, coconut trees and limestone cliffs
White sandy beach, coconut trees and limestone cliffs
a local fruit (not sure if edible)
Approaching an uninhabited island
Limestone cliff island
A local flower
Wild orchids growing abundantly on the limestones
Fruit-laden coconut tree
A local plant
a lovely shell
Coconut trees along the beach
The limestone cliff up close
This monkey was maybe not happy with intruders to his world - he kept on pelting us with fruit stones ;-)
Lazy pace of life in the islands
An uninhabited island