Saturday, April 26, 2014

The Trattoria Altrov'e

Beach and pizza may not be a perfect match. However, strolling along the dimmed lighted streets of El Nido, I reconsidered. It was our last night and I had the urge for good food. I mean, I was at the best place might as well experience the best dining. Plus it was my birthday week, don't we all deserve the best? So how did I know it was good?

It's rare to see pizza cooked in a traditional way, brick oven. That caught my eye. Not the conventional type of cooking so I thought I should give a try. You know how the smoke adds flavor to your pizza, it gets crusty while the inside gets chewy.  It was just the curiosity in me or purely a hunch that it was good.  Plus I saw a lot of foreigners dining so I thought it must be really good.

I saw their ad on my way to El Nido. Ok that was something to look up to but it was the least of my priority. Again, I found it odd, pizza and beach.  So we got in and it's another bare foot diner.  Yes you have to leave your slippers outside.  Only in Palawan, I thought.

As I can recall the owner was British and this is his assistant.  This is what you'll see while strolling.  You can smell it from the streets.  The tables are set up on the second floor.  I attempted to make a pizza at home.  It was a fail.  I couldn't make the dough right.

We took the squat type or it was the only one available.  The place was full packed that's how good they are. Since I'm no Italian food expert.  I'm only expert in eating. So we ordered the best seller.  Looking at the menu, they sound familiar, so I guess it's just safe.

Pepperoni: in peeled crushed tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and dash of oregano @ 390 pesos

Quattro Stagioni: the famous four season: Mushroom, Artichokes, Ham and Olives @445 pesos 

All' Arrabbiata: Classic Lazio sauce of tomato, bacon, garlic, peperocino, paprika and parmesan cheese @230 pesos

Gamberi e olio d'oliva: Sauteed shirmps tossed in a blen of sun-died tomatoes, herbs, extra virgin olive oil, and a pinch of crushed red pepperwith fresh shaving parmesan cheese @310 pesos


They were quick and indeed it tasted good.  At least my taste buds like them. This is what they said in their menu.

naaah, I wish their staff were more friendly.  I understand it was a busy night but a smile could make a difference. It wasn't as warm as they said in their menu but the pizza were.  :)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Island Hopping in El Nido Day 2

It was day 2 and the weather was as nice as the first day.  The sun greeted us at its loveliest. Embraced us with its warmest touch. A  perfect pre-birthday celebration treat for myself, I thought, why did I not visit this place soonest? I heard that combination tour is no longer allowed.  However, we got the combination tours and at half the price.  Each tour costs at least 1400 pesos. We only paid 1000 each day.  Day 1 was combination of tour C and D while day 2 was combination of A and B. It came with free lunch. We had crabs, squid, fish and some eggplant salad.

* Seven Commando * Small and Big Lagoon Miniloc Island * Secret Lagoon * Snake island * 
* Cudugnon Cave * Cathedral Cave * Pinagbuyutan Island *

Seven Commando  

Small Lagoon

Big Lagoon

Secret Lagoon

Snake Island

Cudugnon Cave

Cathedral Cave

Pinagbuyutan Island

It was so much fun I didn't mind that I burned my skin. How I wish I could stay longer. How I wish I have learned how to dive.  How I wish I have an underwater camera. Nevertheless, I would not be able to give justice to the beauty of this paradise.  The memory will linger as it has been that best that I've been to.

marked photos by Vernes

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Island Hopping in El Nido Day 1

The thought of 6-hour-drive from Puerto Princesa to El Nido sounds dreadful.  We took the last trip at 7pm and I am glad the van wasn't full packed.  I was happy to be seated on the first row, at least I have the bigger leg room.  It cost us 550 pesos.

Time passed by swiftly. I slept through the entire road trip. I could not survived the uphill, downhill, zigzag, rocky road. Halfway we had late dinner at Fort Wally Food stop. The same company we booked our van tickets.

The rest of my friends who came earlier were deep asleep when we arrived at 1AM.  We stayed at Janna's Inn.  For 500 pesos a night for a group of 5. I think it was a good bargain.

I woke up with this beautiful morning.  The sun was up enough to warm the atmosphere.  It was a very good day for a swim.  With a cup of coffee in my hand, this view painted a smile in my face.  Why did I not come here sooner.  This is paradise.

We were ready to a plunge after breakfast which came free from the Inn we stayed.  Shades, rash guards, sunblock and of course camera.  click click click. First Day was combination of Tour C and D.

* Helicopter Island * Matinloc Shrine * Talisay Beach * Hidden Beach * 
Secret Beach *Cadlao Lagoon * Pasandigan Beach * Bukal Beach *

The Helicopter Island

The Matinloc Shrine

The Talisay Beach

The  Hidden Beach

Secret Beach

The Cadlao Lagoon

The Pasandigan Beach

Too bad I didn't have a photo when we went to the Secret beach.  My camera isn't water proof and you have to swim to a small passage to get in.  Maybe next time. I'm definitely going back. (updated, I have one grabbed from a friend, Verne, yay!)  I forgot to take a photo in Bukal beach I was too busy snorkeling. (Hidden beach photo's by Verne (marked photos) and Matinloc by Khonie)

We headed back to the town with good memories and it was just day 1.

For dinner, I had the mandatory-tourist-must-try, The Bird's Nest Soup with real bird's nest.  I paid 200 pesos a bowl.  I could taste clear thread like bird's <saliva?> to make a nest.  But it tasted like any other chicken soup.

After dinner we went for a drink by the shore just to chill. One of the best days.