Other Palawan Reserves

Ursula Island, where thousands of birds have traditionally come to roost every evening, though introduced rats have reduced their numbers (boats can be hired for the one-hour crossing at Rio Tuba); El Nido, a marine reserve with coral reefs, manta rays, dugongs (manatee-like), mangroves, rain forest; Caluit Island Sanctuary, home to introduced African giraffes, zebras, and gazelles, living in harmony with Philippine mouse deer, bear-cats, and crocodiles.

Public transport around 25-by-260-mile (40 × 418-km) Palawan is limited to “tricycles” (motorcycles with sidecars that serve as taxis) and “jeepney” vans or trucks which serve roughly as busses and also hire out with driver-guides. Coastal boats go around the island’s perimeter. Hotels are in the capital city, Puerto Princesa, and several resorts on the island’s north end. Regular flights come by Philippine Airlines from Manila, and small planes can be chartered on the island. Scuba and snorkel equipment can be rented. Dry season is January–April.

Other notable “mainland” Philippine reserves include: Mount Iglit (Ilig)-Mount Baco Sanctuary on Mindoro, interesting birds, also last refuge for tamaraw, Philippine dwarf buffaloes; MountKanlaon National Park centered around Kanlaon volcano, with abundant wildlife, waterfalls,crater lakes, visits arranged from Bacolod; Quezon National Park, 112 miles (180 km) southeastof Manila, accessible, beautiful, good wildlife; Kitanglad National Park in north-central Bukidnon,mountainous home to a host of rare birds including red harriers, Brahminy kites, Philippine sparrowhawks, and serpent eagles.