Last October, I was one of the lucky individuals to be flown across to the Philippines to explore the beautiful country with One Life Adventures and Tourism Philippines. The way the 10 days unfolded was pure magic as I experienced a country like no other. I find myself saying this a lot in Asia – but the locals were the some of the friendliest I’ve encountered, the sites more beautiful and tropical than my eyes are used to and the water so clear my eyes felt illusioned.
Head to the bottom of this post to find out how to book on to this tour and receive 10% off your booking…
What I got up to on One Life Adventures Tour
Day 1 – Arrive in Manilla
I had a relatively late flight which meant that my night wasn’t really full of much else other than sleeping in an extremely comfy bed. The flight to The Philippines was super easy with a short lay-over in Qatar.
Day 2 – Travel to Palawan
We arose relatively early (much to the distaste of my jetlag) and headed right for the airport. Our early morning flight had us arriving to Puerto Princessa in good time to enjoy a full day around our new pool. Canvas Boutique hotel was genuinely one of the funkiest little hotels I’ve stayed in around Asia. The restaurant’s food was TOP (as was their shot menu) and we all started to get to know each other and our surroundings.
That evening we headed into Puerto Princessa for some street food and dancing. Being a vegetarian was NOT a problem, there was so much delicious street food catered to me and that got my taste buds fully tingling.
After a fun evening sitting on the dirt streets of Puerto Princessa, we boarded our tuk tuk and headed to a bar to listen to live music, play some beer pong and killer pool and drink some flaming shots. A small crew of us danced and danced and started to fall in love with Filipino culture.
Day 3 – Underground River + Travel to Port Barton
We hopped aboard our (very comfortable) bus and headed for the Underground River. This UNESCO world heritage site actually blew my mind. Whilst floating through the river on tiny canoe-like boats, you are all warned to be as silent as possible so as not to disturb the bats who have made this incredible cave system their home.
Winding through the miles and miles of underground river whilst listening to an informative audio system might SOUND boring to some, but I assure you, the stories you’re told along the way and the rock formations and cave progression you are told about is so fascinating. I came out of that underground river feeling as if I’d just meditated for the past hour!
We then headed down the winding Palawan roads towards Port Barton to catch the adorable beach town in time for Sunset.
Day 4 – Island Hopping and Sleep on a Private Island
I was beginning to learn that the next 10 days were going to be filled with early rises and I wasn’t even unhappy about it. Mornings are NOT my thing – but sunrises most definitely are. Myself and our videographer (who I have to give a cheeky shout-out to – Big Up Jaxon) headed out in the morning haze to snap the vibrant colours and watch the sun peek from behind the palms.
After a hearty breakfast at our beautiful rustic beach front hotel, we headed out sailing into the day on our cute but practical Filipino boat. Island hopping has begun!! I bloody love a boat trip and when you factor in the tropical blue water, the pure white silica and the company of our special group – it was a day to remember.
We stopped off at ‘Paradise Island’ – a perfect lunch spot with swings, snorkelling and beers before boarding the boat to head to our final destination of the day, our very own private island.
I bloody love camping so this element of the tour was right up my street. Sleeping under the stars in our rustic tents, drinking around the camp fire, searching for bio-luminescent plankton on the shore and playing drinking games with new pals. This was honestly my idea of perfection. Both the sunset and the sunrise we were awoken by the next morning were euphoric…
Day 5 – Island Hopping
That epic sunrise takes us into Day 5 – another day on board our boat exploring both the overground and underwater world of The Philippines. We all know I love snorkelling and exploring what lies beneath sea level… well, the tropical underwater myriad of coral and fish in The Philippines does not disappoint.
We feasted on fresh, grilled fish and sampled local beer and rum whilst lazing around in the sun, basking in the vitamin D. Does life get any better?
Day 6 – Head to El Nido
What’s travelling without a few long bus journeys, hey? Headphones in, Spotify on and blissfully looking out the window into my beautiful surrounds to wittle away the hours until we arrived at El Nido. I think it was right about here where I had to pinch myself that I was on this trip with all of these incredible influencers.
When we drove into El Nido I couldn’t believe my eyes, this beautiful bay with the most incredible sunset, limestone rock formations and seemingly amazing culture.
We headed off into the El Nido night scene, ate beautiful Greek food and chilled the night away to beautiful music.
Day 7 – El Nido Party Boat
Whether you’re in the mood to party, snorkel, swim or boogie… the El Nido Party boat has it all. I honestly had the BEST day exploring the islands whilst listening to some tropical songs. The boat was a really good size so you could really spread out and the unlimited free booze on board helped us to all get positively sozzled throughout the day.
Day 8 – Cultural Day
This day is the day that I vividly remember… the day I learnt so much about the beautiful Filipino culture. From traditional Filipino dancing to cooking their rich cuisine; climbing coconut trees to hiking through the jungle and fishing for our lunch in the picturesque surroundings. We finished this day off by doing an EPIC zip line from one island to the next whilst watching HUGE eagles flying above our heads and looking out onto the most incredible landscape. Sheer, undeniable paradise.
Day 9 – Back to Manila
Whilst this wasn’t a part of the usual tour (this day is normally filled by heading into El Nido town and enjoying a Filipino massage).. we were all due to fly out the next day so we headed to the airport to spend the final night in Manila. We were treated to a night in the Shangri La (again, not on the usual tour) and it was INCREDIBLE! We ate on the rooftop overlooking the massive swimming pool, we were treated to cocktails and an incredible spread of food and we had our own suites which were just beautiful. Such a treat to end the most incredible holiday.
Day 10 – Fly Home
Today I reflected on the most incredible trip I’ve ever been on courtesy of Tourism Philippines and One Life Adventures.
One Life Adventures have been kind enough to give YOU 10% off this whole tour with the code ‘AQUAANDINK’.
Tell them which tour you’re interested in, that you came from my blog or Instagram and mention my discount code ‘AQUAANDINK’
Wait for them to email you back to pay your deposit.
Prices of the Tours
(These are correct from time of publishing article but please note tour rates and currency rates will/may change)
Philippines: $1450 AUD = £837
With Aqua & Ink 10% off = £753
Sri Lanka: $1995 AUD = £1152
With Aqua & Ink 10% off = £1036
Included in the tour
Not Included in the tour
Flights from home country to Philippines