Palawan - A tropical island paradise (28 May)
Interesting Facts about Palawan
UNDERWATER EXPLORER JACQUES COUSTEAU called Palawan’s chain of 1,780 islands the most beautiful place he’d ever explored. This tropical realm of limestone cliffs, gin-clear waters, sugary-sand beaches, and coral atolls strings its way about 400 miles (644 km) south to Borneo in the western Philippines. Its wildlife ranges from giant clams and the legless Malatgan River caecilian (a snakelike amphibian), to blue-naped parrots and the Chihuahua-size Philippine mouse deer.
On the northern tip of Palawan, El Nido’s Bacuit Bay has more than 800 species of fish. It’s also home to the rare dugong (commonly called a sea cow), a slow-moving creature that’s more closely related to the elephant than to many of its fellow sea mammals. Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park, on the archipelago’s main island (also called Palawan), is a major nesting spot for two species of endangered sea turtles.
The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River, also on the main island of Palawan, is Asia’s longest underground river, and the world’s second longest. It flows for five miles (8 km) through a limestone cave, emptying into a crystal clear lagoon in the South China Sea. Paddleboats take visitors partway inside the cavern to admire the enormous chambers and whimsical rock formations.