3 Philippine islands on Condé Nast Traveler’s list of Asia’s best

October 15, 2018 at 11:03

3 Philippine islands on Condé Nast Traveler’s list of Asia’s best

Aside from surfing thrills, Siargao also has secluded beaches likes this one on Daku Island.


The country’s most popular surfing destination, Siargao Island, has finally received its much-deserved international praise as it topped the Readers’ Choice Awards for Best Islands in Asia list 2018, of influential travel publication Condé Nast Traveler (CNT).

Located off Surigao del Norte in Mindanao, and 800 kilometers south of Manila, the magazine’s editors wrote of Siargao: “We’d like to say that surfers are the vanguard of travelers, scoping out some of the more remote parts of the world for surf breaks before the rest of us get there. [The island] has been popular for a few years…but our readers, an adventurous sort, have caught on. There’s enough white sand to go around.”

CNT writer Verena von Pfetten noted, “The teardop-shaped Philippine island is home to more than 15 separate surf breaks, including the legendary Cloud 9, which counts Kelly Slater and Anthony Kedis among its fans,” and recommended visitors check into a villa at Nay Palad Hideaway (formerly Dedon Island Resort).

The still-shuttered Boracay Island off Malay, Aklan, was ranked second Best Island in Asia, with its main white beach as its top attraction. “This itty-bitty island…is as close to a tropical idyll as you’ll find in Southeast Asia, with gentle coastlines and made-for-Instagram sunsets. Fold in a thriving nightlife scene, and you have one of the top tourist spots in the Philippines.”

The Duterte administration has closed the island since April 26, 2018, to pave the way for its much-needed rest and government rehabilitation work. It is slated to reopen on October 26, with a much quieter nightlife expected, with new government regulations in place, including a ban on beach parties, public smoking and drinking of alcohol on the beach.

In third place is Palawan,  a regular on CNT’s World’s Best Islands list, “home to the otherworldly Puerto Princesa Subterranean River, a Unesco World Heritage Site worth the trip alone.”

Other Best Islands in Asia include Langkawi, Malaysia, and Bali, Indonesia. CNT said over 429,000 readers voted for the best islands in the world.

In a news statement, Tourism Secretary Bernadette Fatima Romulo Puyat said: “It is an honor for our destinations to be voted once again in the Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards. This serves as an invitation to the tourists in time for the winter vacation.”

Of Boracay, she added, “We would like to take this opportunity to tell our tourists to manage their expectations on Boracay’s soft opening. We also encourage them to be mindful and responsible tourists of the island.” While the island’s waters, specifically off Bulabog Beach, have already dropped to environmentally safe standards, the main road is still currently being widened, while a diversion road intended for truck and van deliveries is still being constructed. (See, “Government ready for Boracay Island’s reopening. But are we?” in the BusinessMirror, October 7, 2018.)

Romulo Puyat has said October 26 is only the island’s first-phase reopening, with its second and third phases to be on April 26, and December 26, 2019.

President Duterte has also ordered carrying capacity studies to be made for other key destinations including Siargao and El Nido, but stopped short of ordering their closures. (See, “Spoilers in paradise,” in the BusinessMirror, September 22, 2018.)

Meanwhile, CNT readers also voted for El Nido Resorts’ Pangalusian Island as ninth among Top Resorts in Asia for 2018. “The most luxurious of El Nido Resorts’ four Palawan archipelago properties with 42 villas laid out along a white-sand cove facing the emerald Bacuit Bay on the South China Sea…. Your luxurious hideaway is a launchpad to the island biosphere gloriously featured in The Bourne Legacy. With scuba courses and access to more than 20 dive sites, as well as boat tours of mangroves and secret lagoons, you could spend all your time exploring, but the resort makes it equally tempting to stay put. There is a reef for snorkeling, 25 kayaks for guests’ use, and a seemingly endless choice of lounging options.” Pangalusian landed second in the Editors’ Picks for their Gold List 2018 published last December.

Amanpulo in Pamalican Island, Palawan, known as the playground of the Philippines’s elite and a favorite getaway by Hollywood celebrities, was ranked 25th among top resorts in Asia. The magazine said, “The trick here is to do nothing but stylishly: villas come with their own private chef and butler, and while you may not actually brush shoulders with the likes of Bill Gates, Tom Cruise or Beyoncé, you’ll know that you are as much as a star as these regulars.”

Source: https://businessmirror.com.ph/3-philippine-islands-on-conde-nast-travelers-list-of-asias-best/

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