Eating and Drinking on the islands of El Nido

Islands of El Nido

Can you go drinking on the salads of El Nido? The short answer is that yes you can, but the drinking scene has really changed post-covid.

What to do in El Nido?

El Nido has good restaurants, as well as a thumping nightlife, but the main reason for you to come here is for island hopping.

Traditionally island hopping involved filling your boat with beer and then stopping on deserted islands for a fresh lunch that was cooked on the boat. And there were islands where one could enjoy a cocktail – all of this is now different..

What do you eat when you do island hopping in 2023?

The BBQ lunch has now been replaced by essentially packed lunch, which means little to no freshly cooked fish – something that was previously a highlight of eating on the boats of El Nido. The new food arrangement is not all that bad, but it is also not that good and many guests have complained.

Why have they done this? A mixture of over-zealous Coronavirus policy and the fact that many tourists got food poisoning from a bad well last year……..

Drinking on the islands of El Nido

This is partly the same and has partly changed, with the need for a cool, cups and ice now being even more essential. For this it is buyers choice, but for me I always go with a bottle of Tanduay Rhum – The “best” rum in the world.

We found another island that reversed to have a bar where one can now camp AND offers cocktails. My excitement was ended when I found out it was $12 a cocktail! Even at buy one get one this was too much.

And this seems to be a thing in El Nido now – charge twice as much for coattails and [pretend it is buy get one free. It is not you are paying for two.

Previously though one could buy a great cocktail soon Commando Beach, mainly mango based. Sadly whilst the bar is still there it offers just beer, coffee and ramen noodles, all the while being a very busy tourist trap.

It is hoped that the scene might improve by next year, but we shall have to wait and see.