Estrella Falls In Palawan Philippines
Cebu has its secret and it’s Bantayan Island, the big secret in Palawan is Estrella Falls. And right now, Estrella Falls is my second favorite place on earth! For me. Estrella Falls is second only to Bantayan Island. Jessie and I arrived in Palawan on Sunday. On Wednesday, we headed to Estrella Falls.
The half way point is Aborian and we stopped there. The driver bought something there and I stretched my legs and took a few pictures of the town.
Along the way we saw many people holding out corn still in the husk in bags. The driver bought some from one of the roadside vendors and it was steamy hot.
We also passed and photograph prisoners of Palawan Province working in the rice fields. The driver indicated that the goal was to make them not want to come back. He went on to say “but many still do come back.”
He mentioned that he had made this trip two days before that with another client. Jessie and I had hired him the day before to take us to the Underground River which is about two hours north of Puerto Princesa.
I had asked the driver on Monday which was better. Estrella Falls or The Underground River and he couldn’t say one was better than the other. I would have a hard time too. Having been to the Underground River and Estrella Falls, if I had to choose one of them on my next trip, I would pick Estrella Falls. However, if you’ve been to neither, I too cannot choose for you. You should do both.
Estrella Falls should be on your list of things to do in Palawan. The problem is, there are many things to do in Palawan. Our trip was not inexpensive, so I don’t know when we will get back. I may look for a budget solution and take the kids next time but there are other places to visit and other things I need and want to buy. Still, I have unfinished business in Palawan so I think I’ll be back.
I wanted to go to Starfish Island too but on Monday, I was just not up to any more travel so Monday was a day of swimming at Microtel’s beach and pool. Along with lots of rest.
At Estrella Falls
Once out of the van, we were greeted by the roar of rushing water of the falls. We checked in with the park officials, paid our fees of around P150 per person I think. I don’t recall the exact amount and then a short walk to the falls themselves.
As soon as you enter the stone walkway carved into the mountain, you’re engulfed under the cooling canopy of the jungle. It becomes dark and soothing with the sound of the water as it falls down from the mountain.
Jessie was a little cold, it was cooler but I was still hot after the short walk. We found a table and began to take pictures and talk. After about 30 minutes of coaxing, I managed to talk Jessie into her bathing suit which increased my picture taking a lot.
There were two other groups of Filipino there and one group tossed some bread out to the monkeys. That caused a mad dash as who ever got there first got the bread. However, there was an alpha male that often ran the others off when it appeared that food would be offered. There was also monkey sex just above my head.
After a bit, the big male was less hungry and other monkeys moved in to get their share. There were babies, some very young hanging very close to mom.
Once I got a little to close to some babies on a table and the slightly bigger monkey charged me. I think all three here juveniles. I was trying to get a closer picture but the slightly older monkey was going to have none of it.
By having two pet monkeys, Jessie and I have noted they are not found of the “big eye” of the camera looking directly at them. They will turn their head making it hard to get a picture. George, our first monkey though would catch his reflection in the mirror which would allow me to get some great shots. These wild monkeys probably saw the big eye as a threat so it became very protective of the little ones. Jessie and I noticed the monkeys close but in the trees tended too look away too as we tried to take their pictures.
The alpha male is in the second monkey picture to the right. He was in a tree just above my head. I tried to hand feed him but I was greeted with a threat display showing me his teeth with a half opened mouth. Juliet, our monkey does the same thing to strangers so I knew exactly what it meant.
I tried to give it some pork but it would have none of it. That suprrised me as Juliet and George would eat anything. They both love the fatty portion of our leftovers.
We also encountered monkeys in the jungle near the Underground River but we never saw them. We heard them screeching at each other and one was close enough that we heard it crashing through the Mangrove Forest but we never saw it.
After lunch, Jessie and I headed into the cool waters of Estrella Falls. The water was closer to cold than cool so we inched in a little at a time while Jessie protested along the way. Finally though she went under the water, I never did. Being a country boy for part of my childhood, we sometimes gave up on the fishing, stripped and jumped in the pond, which was always cold at first. Soon, your body gets use to that. I will say though, with my hands under water, they did become quite cold.
I found it totally refreshing. After thirty minutes to ad hour it started to rain a bit and since the water was a bit cold, we headed back to the rocky banks of the river of which Estrella Falls is part. I didn’t want to as it meant being cold enough that Jessie would have to change clothes and I rather enjoy her in her bathing suit.
After we got back to our table, there was a short but substantial shower with thunder in the background. The thunder rumbling through the jungle with the sound of the water fall was like icing on the cake. I found it to be unbelievably beautiful.
Getting her in one is not all that easy, she loves clothes from Playboy so I ordered it from there and shipped it to the Philippines. Yes, I know drastic action but for a worthy cause and a nice reward for me. The reward? Well, Jessie in a bathing suit and pretty darn sexy one at that.
Estrella Falls many opportunity to take pictures even if was alone but with Jessie in her swim suit, well the camera nearly jumped off the table and begged to be put to use. I of course, was happy to oblige.
Estrella Falls is a beautiful and serene place, it is almost a paradise. One could film a movie there if they were looking to depict that kind of place. The falls itself isn’t a large area though. There is lot of dense jungle around it. One couple disappeared below the falls for an hour or two. If one wanted, you could find a secluded spot to yourself.
After lunch, Jessie and I were all that was still in the park and we managed to find seclusion right near the falls themselves. It was peaceful and very pleasant and romantic too. Estrella Falls would be a great place to take a date that wasn’t just interested in the malls and city life.
Estrella Falls is definitely not city life. It is quite remote. You’ll even notice it with the toilets as the ones I saw here and at the Underground river didn’t have tanks to flush. Instead you use the tabo (bucket) to fill the bowl and that will cause it to flush if you do it rapidly enough. That is the Filipino way for many.
From my research it appears that not many people are searching the web for Estrella Falls which leaves me to believe that it isn’t very well known. There is no website related to Estrella Falls in the Philippines that I could find. I would put one up but no one is looking for it.
I could write much more about Estrella Falls but this article is already too long so I will bring it to a close.
If you love the outdoors, then Palawan will give you a lifetime of memories. Estrella falls should please most and add precious memories of peace and tranquility too. If you’re lucky, you’ll hear some thunder in the jungle while you are at Estrella Falls.
You can see all the related pictures for our visit to Estrella Falls here.
For those of us living in the Philippines with the means of getting to Palawan, Estrella Falls is a must see.
Filed under: Travel In The Philippines
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