Welcome to the Philippines! Depending on what time your flight lands in Puerto Princesa, you may or may not be able to get to El Nido that same day. We landed after 6 p.m. and spent the night in Puerto Princesa, we stayed at a hotel near the airport. We were fine spending the night because arriving in El Nido after midnight didn’t sound fun to us.
Related Article: El Nido Palawan Guide
Depending on where you are staying in El Nido it might be possible, but if you are staying in the over the water hut it might be more difficult. If you are staying at a hotel in El Nido town just advise them of late check-in. Don’t want to start off your trip to El Nido with no room, there are so many amazing things to do in El Nido.
All buses to El Nido and shuttle vans leave from the San Jose terminal located at. The terminal is about 7km from the airport. Tuk-tuk to San Jose Terminal should cost around 50-150P depending on where you are coming from.
If you are traveling from Coron the easiest way is the El Nido Ferry, it takes only 4 hours and is $35. Read our complete Coron to El Nido ferry guide here. Tickets book out days in advance make sure to book online here ahead of time. If you prefer to fly there are now also flights to El Nido from Coron.
Related Article: Best Tourist Spots in the Philippines
*When looking for the best price and the biggest selection of hotels in El Nido check prices on Booking.com, we’ve found they are the best option and have a great cancelation policy.*
Recommended Hotel in El Nido – Cuna Hotel
Option 1: Cheapest Way To El Nido – Public Bus
We took this option because it was slightly cheaper and way more comfortable than a shuttle van. Shuttle vans always cram the vans to the limit with passengers and then drive like madmen. We would rather get there an hour or so later and not worry, plus there was plenty of room on the bus we ended up with two seats each.
We took the RORO bus from Puerto Princesa to El Nido and Cherry bus from El Nido to Puerto Princesa. No specific reason, that is just how it best fits into our schedule. Both ways we took the AC buses, as the price for non-AC buses didn’t make sense. The bus did make a few food/bathroom stops, along with MANY stops to pick passengers along the way.
Cherry Bus Schedule From Puerto Princesa To El Nido Bus
- Scheduled Departure Times:
- 9 am
- 11 am
- 1 pm
- 5 pm
- 9 pm
- Travel Time: 6-7 hours
- Fare: 515 P
Book Online Now Here
- Cherry advertises free wifi on their buses which is a great perk, but like any free wifi don’t expect it to be blazing fast. Wifi in the Philippines isn’t the fastest let alone on a moving bus.
Roro Bus Schedule From Puerto Princesa To El Nido AC Bus
Scheduled Departure Times: 6 am, 10 am, 2 pm, 6 pm, 10 pm *check in person for an updated schedule
Travel Time: 6-7 hours
Related Article: El Nido to Coron Ferry
Option 2: Shuttle Van to El Nido
- Fare: 500 P ($13)
- Time: 5-6 Hours (according to drivers)
- Book Online Now Here
Scheduled Shuttle Van to El Nido:
- 7 am
- 8 am
- 9:30 am
- 11 am
- 1 pm
- 2:30 pm
- 4:30 pm
- 5:30 pm
Shuttle vans have the option to pick you up from your hotel or the airport for an extra 100P.
The biggest advantage I could see of these shuttle vans is they had a few more options for departing times and were slightly faster. But I have grown to despise shuttle vans and their maniac drivers.
Reverse directions on getting back to Puerto Princesa can be found here. You may want to spend the night in a hotel near the airport again before our next day flight, double-check the bus schedule & your flight but allow extra time.
Related Article: El Nido To Puerto Princesa