We started the day with a delightful breakfast in Overcomer Lodge rooftop. I was very excited on the island hopping we’re about to join that day. We prepared ourselves right away and waited for our free pick-up to Northern Hope Tours.
As soon as we arrived in Northern Hope Tours, we immediately registered for the Tour A. For our tour package, it was supposed to include Big Lagoon, Small Lagoon, Simizu Island, Secret Lagoon and 7 Commandos Beach. But because for some unexpected reason, we were not able to dock at the Simizu Island, instead we took our lunch at the Payong-payong beach which is also a very beautiful white sand beach.
This lagoon within the Miniloc Island is surrounded by clear turquoise-green water and amazingly picturesque limestone walls. It has small entrance so the boat cannot get inside. There are only two ways to explore this beautiful wonder, and that is either to swim going inside or through kayaking. Our tour guide said that the Small Lagoon is the best place, among others in El Nido, to kayak. And since we want to experience the best, we chose the latter. And indeed, it was a very fulfilling experience, not to mention it was just the beginning!
Our second stop was Payong-payong beach instead of Simizu Island. It was named Payong-payong (umbrella) because of its umbrella-formed limestone formations. We had picture-taking and snorkeling in this beautiful white sand beach. We also had our lunch here and it was equally awesome. The tour guides prepared a really yummy and creatively-presented lunch.
Few minutes after lunch, we went to our next stop, the Secret Lagoon. Why its named so? I won’t tell cause it’s secret..hahaha. Seriously, it was named Secret Lagoon because there is only a small hole to get inside the lagoon. You have to crawl to get inside but during high tide, there is no choice but to really swim to cross the hole. It is just a small lagoon inside and not really so amazing, but the highlight there is the thrilling experience in going inside. There is also a crocodile-like rock formation inside.
Next adventure…the Big Lagoon! Big Lagoon is also part of the beautiful and rich Miniloc Island. Unlike Small Lagoon, the boat can pass and maneuver inside Big Lagoon. You can’t help but feel amazed and grateful on the wonders of nature as you pass through the emerald green waters surrounded with majestic limestone in this lagoon.
Seven Commando Beach
The last spot before going back to El Nido proper was the Seven Commandos Beach. It was named after the seven soldiers who got stranded and lived for a while in the island. The beach has white sand and clear waters. The tour guides gave us enough time to enjoy our stay here. There were cottages and locals selling fresh buko (coconut) and even halo-halo, so we really a great time.
It was indeed a great adventure! One can never get enough of this enchanting experience. Each lagoons and beaches were like individual paradise inside a paradise. I am really thankful I was able to visit to such a wonderful creation. And if I will have the chance to come back over and over to this magnificent place, I will never have a second thought.