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“A really great time in Palawan”
Review of Tao Expeditions

Tao Expeditions
Ranked #2 of 50 Tours in El Nido
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Kutchan
Level Contributor
27 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“A really great time in Palawan”
Reviewed July 2, 2013

What a great 5 days!!

5 Germans, 4 Swedes, 3 Americans, 2 Brits, 2 Aussies and a crew full of locals.

Setting sail, not literally, from El Nido and heading towards Coron, we all had high expectations and we weren't disappointed. Someone, who i must say made the right call, asked Romy, our guide, if we could organise a suckling pig for dinner at the first island stop. After a few calls, the local teacher sold us his last pig for 100USD and all 22 of us sat down to enjoy an amazing meal.

We caught some fish along the way and had the freshest sashimi but the food in general was as good as or better than anything I ate in restaurants anywhere in the Philippines.

The accommodation on the islands along the way isn't for everyone. Sometimes it is tightly confined with most people under one roof, others your own little cabin or if you wanted, you could sleep in hammocks under the stars.

From my perspective, the closer we got to Coron, the better the snorkeling and there were a few extra sunken Japanese wrecks that we were able to explore.

This was also our 1 year wedding anniversary so one the actual night we somehow arranged a Karaoke machine to belt out some tunes with the group until the wee hours. A very memorable night to say the least.

I would happily do this all again next year and would definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a fun time and a bit of adventure.

Visited April 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank J-in-Japan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Hebrew first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
alkhobar
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Nostalgic Travel to Times in the Past”
Reviewed June 19, 2013

We did this trip on Jan 2012 from Coron to Elnido. Coron to Elnido can be done with an 8-hr non-stop travel but we manage this trip in 5 full days and 4 nights.

We have seen islands where there are no roads, electricity and water system. It was a typical Philippines towns of 30 years ago. We saw uninhabited islands (except for caretaker) where you may eat all the coconuts you can pick from the trees itself, raw beaches, and undisturbed fish life.

Being a local it amazes me how sturdy my countrymen are. They weather storms, has to travel when boats are available and communicate between 500 meter of water by shouting.

The evenings are silent but mosquitos could be pestering. Life is simple in communities that are not easily accessible to frequent travellers.

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank edwinic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ireland
Level Contributor
94 reviews
52 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
“Fantastic experience”
Reviewed June 11, 2013

I did the 5 day open trip from Coron to El Nido. This trip allows you to see islands, beaches and villages you would not normally see. You get to snorkell in really good spots along the way. The food is fantastic and never repeats itself. The over-night stays are basic but clean. On the last night we stayed in the most fantastic island, it was pure paradise and we were also treated to a massage that evening which has to be one of the best I have ever had. Your experience will also depend on the people who are on the boat with you, if the group are predominantly young then it could have a feel of a 'party boat' or as in my case we were just 10 people who enjoyed a drink but wanted to experience the people, landscape etc and take it all in more than party which suited me just fine. The team on the boat are fantastic and can't do enough for you. It is an extremely relaxing experience and one I would recommend to anybody.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
4 Thank coopsIreland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brussels, Belgium
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
“Disappointing”
Reviewed June 9, 2013

We read so much nice things about the TAO Expeditions that we joined one this june 2013. It's true that sceneries are wonderful, crew members really friendly and food very good and fresh. But the trip atmosphere was really disappointing for us. If you like organized trip where you don't have to think or to choose, if you like doing snorkeling with Gangnam style song always in background, if you like spending your evening time in drinking games, so maybe you'll like it. But if you want to meet local population of the islands, discover their way of living, their history, if you want to learn about nature and culture of the Philippines, if you want to fall asleep with the see sounds, I'm not sure you'll like TAO Expeditions. I don't say that those expeditions are bad. I'm only say that the one we joined was more a kind of springbreak trip that an authentic and unplanned adventure. If you're looking after it, it would be problably better and cheaper to organize your own trip with contacting fishermen in El Nido or Coron city.

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
37 Thank Indigo97
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fayetteville, Arkansas
Level Contributor
52 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“Absolutely epic”
Reviewed June 8, 2013

It’s almost hard to put into words how absolutely remarkable the Tao Expedition was. I cannot think of a time in my entire life that both my partner and I were at such peace. The islands you pass through are like nothing you have ever seen. The snorkeling is to die for. The atmosphere created with the fellow travelers and the crew rests in rich diversity, an equal desire for adventure, relaxation and fun.

It’s worth specifically noting how outstanding the crew was. The Tao crew really brought the phrase “dedicated to ensuring we have a good time” to new meaning. Not only was their operation of the ship flawless and done like clockwork, they catered to our group virtually nonstop, cooking amazing Pilipino cuisine from scratch. Everything the crew did was done with a genuine smile; not a “hi, how can I help you?” customer service-like smile. They smiled and you knew each of them was having the time of their lives while making sure we were too and that is something I can’t say I’ve found traveling anywhere else.

It’s worth clarifying that the expedition is just that, an expedition. It is not a cruise. It is not for people looking for constant comfort. It’s probably best described as camping on exotic islands. There’s little to no electricity. There’s almost no running water (you shower with a barrel and a bucket). The humidity is such that if you get wet, you’ll probably stay that way for a long while. That being said, the mind-blowing adventure makes the lack of first-world amenities surprisingly forgettable.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
5 Thank James D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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