Puerto Princesa, Coron, and El Nido are magnificent from sunrise to sunset. But what’s there left to do by nighttime? Here’s a Palawan nightlife guide to make your paradise nights just as exciting.Bragging with back to back “Best Island in the World” titles, Palawan offers various wonders for beach lovers and part-time mermaids. Indeed, much paradise-esque qualities are found in all three tourist spots in Palawan — Puerto Princesa, Coron, and El Nido. While island tours are the primary attractions in Palawan, how do you experience its beauty by nightfall?
The seclusion is part of the island’s charm, which is why compared to other nightlife, and other popular spots in the Philippines, Palawan is understandably lagging behind when it comes to nightlife. Still, it’s not like there’s virtually zero clubs and bars here. You just gotta ask around and follow the neon lights.
Here are some leads for you partyphiles in Puerto Princesa, Coron, and El Nido:
Puerto Princesa Nightlife
In my detailed guide about Puerto Princesa, I have mentioned that the capital city is more of a family destination. You can find here the Underground River and other child-friendly attractions and hotels. Sometimes the most night lights you can find is when you go to Iwahig Firefly Watching. Still, there are a handful of bars, restaurants, and nightclubs to see, such as in Aziza Paradise Hotel where I stayed.
Most of the nightlife in Puerto Princesa are concentrated in the town proper, primarily in Rizal Boulevard. There are street-side grills where you can try local delicacies over beer. You can also enjoy it over sea breeze and a nice stroll along the coastline. Like most cities, there are a handful of other bars couple of streets away, where you can find the shady side of nightlife such as strip joints.
If you’re looking to chill over bottles of beers or cocktails, try Kataboom. They grill seafood and serve cold beers with music from a live band playing. Other popular options are Kinabuchs Grill & Bar or Tiki Restobar which offer not just live music but pool tables, sports TVs, and karaoke (a Filipino classic).
For nightclubs, Chez Rose is probably the best choice in Puerto Princesa City. It’s usually packed and runs until 4AM! There are multiple dance floors with locals and tourists mingling and having fun dancing. Other good options — with less wild vibes — are Gold Moon Disco and Tokyo Kitchen.
Coron may be every diver’s paradise, but it’s not the destination for wild parties ’til morn. There are a few bars and coffee shops around the main beach in Busuanga, but nothing that stays up late. The best thing about Coron, however, is cheap alcohol. The few bars you’ll find are all decent enough to have a good time.
No Name Bar, Hangover Bar or Helldivers are all great options for a night out. There’s also a nightclub quite some distance from the center but, frankly, it’s not worth the drive. Better to try The Funny Lion, a boutique hotel in Coron which has their own cocktail bars and mini-pools on their rooftop. You’ll enjoy a great sunset view over classy drinks and conversation.
Again, if you are strictly looking for party spots and developed nightlife, I’ll give it to you straight — you won’t find it in Coron. Still, for everything else related to paradise, it’s one of the most beautiful and iconic places in the Philippines.
El Nido NightlifeFilipino nightlife seems to have a recurring theme — being as close as possible to the sea. In El Nido’s case, nightlife can be found near the boat terminal. Here you can find restaurants and souvenir shops next to bars playing live music and quaint coffee houses inside the locals’ yards. I have personally tried El Nido Boutique & Art Cafe which is good for unwinding over pizza and drinks on a balcony after an entire day of island hopping.
Reggae bars are the locals’ most popular choice. There are two of these near the town center, Pukka and Rasta bars, where shows usually begin around 8AM. Of the two, Rasta Bar is usually less crowded and mix the soundtrack up a bit. Once the live show is over they’ll play many different types of music.
If reggae isn’t your jam, look for other bars spread around the beach where you get a nice view of the peaceful sea and stars. Most of these are low-key but decent. Not to mention, the drinks are cheap! You can also try rooftop bars in El Nido which are chill places for cocktails and mellow music. The vibe is great to meet both locals and foreigners.
For nightclubs, the top choice is New Zone Disco (formerly Hardrocks). If you are a hardcore party-goer then you’ll be disappointed. The place is quite small and does last calls at just after midnight. Still, the music is loud and the place is packed — not a bad way to wrap up a long day of island hopping in El Nido!
Palawan nightlife in other islands
One of the most helpful tip to experience Palawan nightlife is to stay close to the popular beaches or near the town’s center. Choosing fancier hotels which have bars and poolside cocktails will also increase your chances, and you don’t always have to check in! In fact, staying low-cost hostels may bring you closer to the nightlife — as most veteran backpackers and locals make a beeline for clubs and bars by sunset.
However, if you’re staying at the less popular and more remote islands, you might have to stay at hotel bars or pay a small fortune for a private island resort or all inclusive resorts. This is where you can grab a tall cocktail or a cold beer, sit by the pool or the beachfront, and enjoy a spectacular sunset view. If you’re also traveling from Puerto Princesa to El Nido by land, try stopping at Port Barton. I heard there are lots of good bars, nightclubs, and event hotels there.
Some private resorts in Matinloc, Miniloc, and smaller islands on Honda Bay all offer shuttle services to the city, but you’ll spend more than an hour on the back and forth trip. Sometimes, it’s best to just accept defeat and spend the night quietly than to drag yourself by boat to El Nido town or Puerto Princesa City. It’s not like mind-blowing Palawan nightlife is awaiting you anyway! No doubt, Palawan nightlife will be richer in the years to come.
More nightlife in the Philippines
More from Palawan
- Palawan Travel Guide
- El Nido Tour A or C
- El Nido Land Tour
- Puerto Princesa City Tour
- Honda Bay Island Hopping Tour
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