As one of Palawan's most touristy spots, there is tonnes of amazing accommodation in El Nido. Hopefully this guide will help you choose where to stay ...
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El Nido has long been one of the most popular places to visit in the Philippines, and somewhere we were very keen to visit as a part of our 4 week itinerary!
Well, it’s safe to say El Nido more than delivered, and we had an unforgettable time exploring both the town and the islands offshore.
What we also loved is that there was such a range of amazing accommodation in El Nido.
Compared to most other places in The Philippines, El Nido is a lot more built up, so there is plenty to choose form for people of all budgets.
At the same, this can make choosing where to stay in El Nido pretty challenging!
So, hopefully my guide on what I believe to be the best places to stay in El Nido will come in helpful.
So, let’s get started ...
Booking.com or Agoda when booking accommodation in El Nido?
Since we’ve used Booking.com for all our travels all around the world, we can confidently say by now that they offer the best services. If you’ve not heard of them before, no worries, everything is pretty straight forward on their website.
We’ve used Booking.com in The Philippines and realized what a huge range of hotels and hostels they have in El Nido. The same goes for Southeast Asia as a whole. Just take your time browsing through the various options and you’ll always end up finding something that suits your needs.
A great advantage of Booking.com is their unbeatable prices. They actually offer a refund of any extra amount in case you find a cheaper price for the same accommodation elsewhere.
There’s a mobile app for Booking.com. This makes it easier to book from anywhere, even while traveling; and it syncs up perfectly with Google Maps.
The more you use Booking.com, the better for you since you’ll begin accessing some great deals. For example, after just 3 bookings, you are promoted from a regular customer to a Genius member.
At this level you can get up to 10% off discounts on accommodations. You have access to perks like early check-ins and late check-outs.
Alternatively, I would also advise checking out Agoda. Though we don't book with them as frequently, they do sometimes come in cheaper when you take into account Agoda Cash.
This is cashback you get on certain properties, meaning that a booking comes in slightly cheaper as this cash accumulates in your account.
I also love how modern and easy-to-use their site is. The best approach we have found is to compare prices of your favourite property on both Booking.com and Agoda, and then decide which is cheapest from that.
To help, I've included links to both sites for all properties below.
This is by far one of the best luxury hotels in El Nido, ideal for couples planning for a romantic getaway. It’s located next to a tropical forest and facing a beautiful beachfront. If you are a sucker for white sand beaches, then here you’ve got more than 600 m.
And when you’re tired of the sand but still want to enjoy a good swim, there’s a luxurious outdoor pool for your enjoyment. The villas at this resort are some of the best accommodations in El Nido. The Filipino architecture is breathtaking. Each villa is spacious and has a private patio or balcony.
Right here you’ve got all the amenities for a comfortable stay including a satellite TV, a mini-bar, and iPod dock. To make the most of your time at the “Island of the Sun” you can book a peaceful sunset cruise or simply enjoy dinner at the beach when staying at the El Nido Resort Pangulasian Island.
Are you a nature lover? If yes, then perhaps the best place to stay in El Nido is Nacpan Beach Glamping. This resort offers one of the most unique rooms in El Nido – massive, state of the art glamping tents right at the beachfront. You can choose between having a room with a sea view or a mountain view.
The rooms are air-conditioned and have access to free WiFi. There’s also a fridge provided for guests. At Nacpan Beach Glamping, you can mingle with nature by taking walks in the gardens with the beautiful tree canopies along the paths. Or you could bask at the beach. Guests can also make use of the outdoor fireplace to create that magical camping atmosphere in the evenings.
Indulge your taste buds with the delicious meals served at the restaurant, or have a romantic dinner on the beach. There’s also a bar onsite so you can enjoy a drink after your meals.
Finally, don’t forget to visit the health and wellness facilities before you leave. Treat yourself to a nice massage.
If you’re looking for 5 star hotels in El Nido, look no further. Cauayan Island Resort & Spa is one of your best choices. This resort is ideal for couples, friends, or families who want an exotic accommodation for their holidays. The luxurious villas are positioned at the edge of the leafy island each having a private balcony with a beautiful view of the beach.
For those visiting with children, Cauayan Island Resort is well prepared to cater for your little ones. From play equipment for kids, to children’s books and music, and kid’s meals, this resort has got you covered. The food assortment here is unmatched. You get a selection of local delicacies and international cuisines to choose from.
Not forgetting the finger food, snacks, and cocktails served by the pool. Cauayan Restaurant is truly of world-class standard. To top it all, guests have access to a stunning infinity pool and a spa for their relaxation. You’ll get the best pampering here. Enjoy!
Lagen Island Resort is a popular 5 star hotel located in El Nido, Palawan. It’s positioned right in front of a picturesque bay with a cliff on one side and a beautiful forest as the backdrop. The island is home to many birds and animals.
Guests can enjoy hiking through the forest trail and touring the caves and mangrove. This is indeed one of the best places to stay in El Nido. The resort consists of modern cottages built on the water. Each cottage offers a beautiful view of the surrounding natural features. You also get your own mini-bar, private bathroom, and private balcony.
There’s an outdoor pool on-site, a spa and even a library for the avid readers. Other activities offered at Lagen Island Resort include kayaking, snorkeling, and windsurfing. There’s no dull moment at this resort.
Among the different El Nido boutique hotels, Spin Designer Hostel is one of the best. This property has a great outdoor space ideal for a variety of activities. There’s a common terrace and barbecue facility where you can arrange to have a nice barbecue during your stay.
Surrounding the property is a beautiful forest. Guests can plan for walking tours at an additional cost. The rooms here have both air conditioning and a fan. Some also include their own private bathrooms. Free toiletries, towels, and bedding are provided for all guests. This hostel offers comfy accommodation in El Nido at a great price.
A variety of scheduled activities are also available. For example, movie nights (where free popcorn is provided), margarita nights, and beer pong. This way you get to mingle with other guests and make new friends. You can also access free WiFi throughout the property.
Here’s an El Nido accommodation ideal for ‘fur-parents’. Cabanas de Nacpan Camping Resort allows pets on the property at no extra charges. This serene resort is located within a farm and offers luxury tent accommodation so you can be as close to nature as you like.
The glamping experience here is accompanied by exciting outdoor activities like walking tours, diving, hiking, and many more at an additional charge. You also get to enjoy free automatic motorbike rides. There’s a terrace, outdoor furniture, and an outdoor fireplace where you can hang out with other guests.
Barbecues at this resort are another great opportunity to mingle. Apart from that, you can visit the on-site restaurant for delicious Asian meals. The tents here are of varied sizes and so couples as well as families can camp comfortably. Bed linen and laundry services are provided. Finally, with Nacpan Beach so close by, guests can go for canoeing, diving, and fishing among other activities.
The Island Experience is definitely one of the most unique El Nido beachfront hotels. You can stay in a nipa hut. This is a thatched shelter indigenous to the Philippines’ culture. These huts have been positioned directly facing the beach giving you the best view of the clear waters of the ocean.
As the name suggests, The Island Experience is the best hotel in El Nido for a magical experience of the Island’s beach. With the right timing you can spot turtles, rays, and plankton among other unique creatures on this property.
Spend some time exploring the island, go snorkeling, or just enjoy the peaceful private beach as you take in the wonderful, fresh tropical air. And since pets are allowed here, you can play with your furry friends on the sandy beach. There’s a restaurant available where you can have a vegetarian breakfast. A bar and garden are also present on site.
Are you looking for cheap hostels in El Nido? Frendz Hostel should be top on your list. With both private and shared rooms, visitors can find a bed that fits their budget. All the rooms are air-conditioned and have private bathrooms, so you get a convenient accommodation even with a small budget.
Frendz Hostel is located in the middle of El Nido town and near several interesting destinations like Matinloc Shrine, Papaya Beach, and Caalan Beach. So a walk around the neighborhood will give you a great touch of El Nido. You can easily meet new people at this property as you play pool, hang out at the swimming pool and dine at the restaurant. This is one of the best hostels in El Nido that offers just the right balance between partying and relaxation.
Efrena Agro Tourism Beach is a cheap accommodation in El Nido with bungalows, cottages, and tents available depending on the number of guests. You can book a unit with a balcony or patio with either a mountain view or sea view. This is one of the El Nido budget hotels that has a private beach with a restaurant and bar on site.
You’ll have a lovely time meeting other guests on the shared spaces like the lounge and garden.
Efrena Agro Tourism Beach provides a continental breakfast every morning. For other meals of the day, you have a selection between different cuisines like Italian, Asian, or the local specials.
Enjoy the outdoors while at this property. You can go fishing, take walks, enjoy bike tours or go swimming. At an additional cost, you can also arrange for evening entertainment, karaoke or happy hour. There are so many things you could do at this resort even with a limited budget.
If you’ve been wondering where to stay in El Nido, Palawan, at a bargain price, we have the best suggestion right here. The Cavern Pod Hotel & Specialty Café offers unique accommodation.
At this hotel you get to sleep in a cozy pod while having access to the other hotel features like a restaurant, terrace and free WiFi. The Cavern Pod Hotel is only about 700 m from Corong Corong Beach. Guests can go hiking (on-site) or cycling (off-site) as they tour El Nido. The restaurant here offers continental or American breakfast.
Other meals of the day are either American or International cuisine. One of the best things about this budget friendly accommodation is that they can cater for the whole family. There are activities for kids and adults to suit the families visiting.
We could really go on and on about El Nido, what a wonderful travel destination. Now that you know where to go, what to do, and how to get to El Nido, let us know which places you visit when down there. And if you discover any other hidden gems, let us know as well. We hope this post has been of help!
I'm an Economics graduate with a passion for travel. In 2016 I decided to ditch the office environment, work from my laptop and travel to every country in the world. You'll find me working out of a cafe in Bali, perhaps on a riverboat in Brazil or maybe even an airport lounge in New Delhi.