Palawan's Underground River is the 2nd longest navigable underground river in the world, and one of the very few that travellers can experience for themselves by taking the Underground River Tour
Located 2 hours drive from Puerto Princesa City Center, the Underground River is just one part of The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park (PPSRNP); one of the most important biodiverse conservation areas in the Philippines.
The Park features a spectacular limestone landscape which contains the 8.2 km long Underground River. A distinguishing feature of this river is that it flows directly into the sea, which makes it subject to tidal influence. The Park is also a significant habitat for biodiverse conservation programmes, as it contains a full mountain-to-sea ecosystem and protected forests, which are among the most significant in Asia.
The Underground River measures a total of 8.2 kilometers of winding stretches, which pass through the cave and feature significant formations of stalactites and stalagmites.
When taking the Underground River Tour you will wait at the Underground River Authority Office to be assigned your 'slot'. You will then take a 25 minute motorized boat ride along the Sabang Coast. At the landing site you will walk 'The monkey trail' towards the Boat Shed. You are likely to see Macaques and, if you're lucky, monitor lizards (locally known as “bayawak”) and the elusive Tabon Bird.
At the Boat Shed you may wait for up to 30 minutes before donning a life jacket and stepping in to a canoe. Upon entrance to the river, the cave is filled with a darkness, which engulfs the area with a mystical ambience. The single light source to the dark cavern only comes from the torch at the front of the canoe. Each turn of the river will reveal magnificent, and beautiful, stalactite and stalagmites, which have formed into various shapes over thousands of year. Some resemble mythological creatures, film stars, a nativity scene as well as birds and fruits.
The cave is also home to Swifts and Bats and you will hear their calls as they soar above you .. you may want to wear a hat whilst in the caves as sometimes it's not just water dripping down on you!
This nature’s wonder is one of Palawan’s pride as it a UNESCO world heritage site and it was awarded the status New 7th Wonders of the Natural World in 2012
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