New El Nido Lagoons Policy - Isla Story

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Tuesday, December 4, 2018

New El Nido Lagoons Policy

As one of the world’s top tourist destinations in the country, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) announced that they're implementing stricter policies to help minimize the negative impact of tourism pressure in El Nido, Palawan after recognizing the gravity of problems that have cropped up in it.

After the dry runs, series of meetings, and consultations, the implementation of the carrying capacity for Big and Small lagoon is finally effective starting December 01, 2018. Both lagoons will become premium tours and can no longer be visited on the same day.

So as a responsible tourist, here are some of the guidelines that you MUST KNOW and MUST ADHERE towards a sustainable tourism for El Nido:

Small Lagoon

1. The entry to the small lagoon is limited only to 40 persons on 20 kayaks for every 30 minutes while entry to the big lagoon is limited only to 80 tourists on a total of 40 kayaks for every one hour and 30 minutes.

Big Lagoon

2. Due to the limited availabilities, advance booking will be essential and tourists must secure first a permit from DENR’s Protected Area Management Office (PAMO). From there, they will be given small flags that indicate their batch or travel time.

3.  An environmental user fee of Php 200.00 will be collected from each tourist for either Big Lagoon or Small Lagoon. Make sure to also bring a valid identification card as you’ll need it for registration.

4.  Other guidelines include the following:
All guests entering the above lagoons must wear life jackets
No cooking/ grilling, washing of utensils, or throwing food scraps/ leftover foods in the water
No smoking or alcoholic liquors
No stepping on Corals
No loud sound or music inside the lagoons
No cliff diving or other activities except those allowed by PAMB
All El Nido tours are still plastic-free and plastic bottles are prohibited so guests must bring their own tumbler.

7:00 – 8:30 AM
8:30 – 10:00 AM
10:00 – 11:30 AM
11:30 – 1:00 PM
1:00 – 2:30 PM
2:30 – 4:00 pm
7:00 – 8:00 AM
8:00 – 9:00 AM
9:00 – 10:00 AM
10:00 – 11:00 AM
11:00 AM – 12:00 NN
12:00 NN – 1:00PM
1:00  – 2:00 PM
2:00 – 3:00 PM
3:00 – 4:00 PM

Each lagoon is manned by DENR park rangers and coast guard personnel who ensure that the policies are strictly followed. Though it might cause some inconvenience at first, this new policy is expected to lower the risk of environmental deterioration and also part of the rehabilitation process of El Nido.


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