The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River is located in the Saint Paul Mountain Range on Palawan’s western shore, some 80 kilometers north of Puerto Princesa. It’s a 2-hour drive from Puerto Princesa’s city center to Sabang, where you’ll board a boat to the underground river. It has a river that runs underground all the way to the sea. The underground river is famous for its beautiful karst environment, which is made up of natural rock formations generated by the dissolution of limestones. Tourists can only witness a 4.3-kilometer part of the 8.2-kilometer-long underground river, which boasts stunning cave formations, gorgeous limestone cliffs, and clear waters.

Introduction: Discovering the Beauty of Puerto Princesa Underground River

Puerto Princesa Underground River, a natural wonder nestled in Palawan, is a testament to the marvels of nature. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is not just a river; it’s a journey into a world of breathtaking limestone formations, a biodiverse ecosystem, and a labyrinthine cave system.

1. Understanding the Magnificence of Puerto Princesa Underground River

As you embark on your underground river adventure, you’ll encounter:

  • Stalactites and Stalagmites: Marvel at the intricate formations hanging from the cave ceiling (stalactites) and rising from the cave floor (stalagmites). Over centuries, these natural sculptures have taken shape, creating an otherworldly ambiance.
  • Limestone Formations: The underground river is home to remarkable limestone formations, some of which resemble objects, animals, or religious icons. Keep an eye out for formations like “The Cathedral” and “The Fairy Caves” as your boat glides through the darkness.
  • Biodiverse Ecosystem: The underground river is not just a geological wonder; it’s also a haven for various wildlife species. Look out for swiftlets, fruit bats, and unique cave-dwelling creatures that call this place home.
  • Cave System: Puerto Princesa Underground River is part of a vast cave system, with the explored part stretching over 24 kilometers. However, only a portion of it is accessible to tourists due to preservation efforts.

2. Planning Your Visit to Puerto Princesa Underground River

To make the most of your visit, it’s essential to plan ahead:

  • Tour Options: Choose from several tour options, including group tours and private tours. Group tours are more budget-friendly, while private tours offer a more personalized experience.
  • Permits and Fees: Ensure you have the necessary permits, including an environmental fee, to enter the park. These fees help fund the conservation and protection of the underground river.
  • Booking Procedures: Reserve your slot in advance, especially during peak seasons. Booking through accredited tour agencies is recommended for a hassle-free experience.

3. Exploring the Highlights of the Underground River Tour

The Underground River tour is a mesmerizing journey:

  • River Cruise Experience: Hop on a paddleboat and glide along the subterranean river, guided by an experienced boatman. The darkness is broken only by the beam of your flashlight, revealing the mystical beauty of the cave.
  • Rock Formations: Keep your camera ready to capture the enchanting rock formations. “The Cathedral” and “The Fairy Caves” are the stars of the show, but there are plenty of surprises waiting to be discovered.
  • Wildlife Sightings: Observe the unique wildlife that inhabits the cave. The echoes of bats and the rustling of swiftlets are part of the natural symphony here. Lucky visitors might spot other cave dwellers, adding to the excitement of the tour.

4. Tips for a Memorable and Safe Experience at Puerto Princesa Underground River

For a seamless and safe adventure:

  • Safety Precautions: Follow the safety guidelines provided by your tour guide. These guidelines are in place to ensure your well-being and the preservation of the cave.
  • What to Bring: Pack essentials like comfortable clothing, a waterproof bag for your belongings, insect repellent, and a reliable flashlight. Cameras with low-light capabilities are perfect for capturing the cave’s beauty.
  • Best Time to Visit: Plan your visit during the dry season (November to May) for ideal weather conditions. Avoid the rainy season, as heavy rains can impact tour availability.

5. Other Attractions and Activities near Puerto Princesa Underground River

Extend your Palawan adventure by exploring nearby attractions:

  • Sabang Beach: Relax and unwind at Sabang Beach, a tranquil coastal area near the underground river. Enjoy the sun, sea, and local cuisine at beachfront eateries.
  • Mangrove Paddle Boat Tour: Discover the rich mangrove ecosystem of Sabang on a paddleboat tour. It’s a serene way to connect with nature and learn about the vital role mangroves play in the environment.
  • Ugong Rock Adventures: Test your adventurous spirit by climbing Ugong Rock, an impressive limestone formation. Experience ziplining and rappelling for an adrenaline rush with a view.

Puerto Princesa Underground River is a treasure trove of natural wonders, offering a glimpse into Earth’s geological and ecological history. This subterranean journey promises to be a highlight of your visit to Palawan, leaving you with memories of a unique and enchanting experience.

Explore Further:

Prepare to be awe-inspired by the beauty of Puerto Princesa Underground River and the wonders that await beneath the surface. It’s a journey that will leave you with a profound appreciation for the natural world and a sense of wonder that lingers long after your visit.

Puerto Princesa Underground River - A Natural Wonder in Palawan, Philippines
Discover the Subterranean Marvel of Puerto Princesa Underground River

6. Frequently Asked Questions About Puerto Princesa

Where is the Puerto Princesa Underground River Located?

Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippines

When is the best time to visit Puerto Princesa?

It is preferable to visit during the high season when the seas are calmer. The high season in the Philippines is from November to May.

What are the best hotels in Puerto Princesa? has a great selection of hotels near the Puerto Princesa Underground River. is a market leader in the hotel booking sector, with over two decades of experience. Customers can anticipate inexpensive costs as well as a variety of booking options.

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