Having been cooped up in quarantine for much of the past year, chances are that you’re longing for a idyllic summer vacation: one that’s complete with quintessential white-sand beaches, azure waves gently lapping the palm tree-lined shores, sumptuous tropical fare to dine on and a gorgeous resort to call home for the duration of your stay.
And while the height of summer may be a few months away, it’s never too early to start looking forward to your trip and getting down to planning your escapade. In fact, a recent study conducted by the United States-based Institute for Applied Positive Research and commissioned by a group of travel companies revealed that 97% of those surveyed feel happier when they have a forthcoming trip planned.
When it comes to choosing a destination, you can’t go wrong with the sunny climes and award-winning beaches of El Nido. The latter clinched ninth spot on Condé Nast Traveler’s 25 Best Island Beaches in the World: 2020 Reader’s Choice Awards, and was singled out for its plethora of white-sand beaches, arresting limestone formations, gorgeous sunsets and pristine waters. Pair all of that beauty with a stellar resort that will act as the perfect base for your island adventures, and you’re sure to have a holiday to remember.
Read on to find out why you should start planning your trip to El Nido pronto.
1. Gorgeous and secluded accommodations
El Nido is where you’ll find Maremegmeg Beach Club: a dreamy boutique resort that can be your own little slice of paradise. Conveniently located just a 15-minute drive away from town, the resort is nestled along Maremegmeg Beach and is bookended by the jungle to one side and the sea to the other. The entire resort is done up in a tropical aesthetic, with plenty of natural wooden furnishings, leafy plants throughout the entire site and open-plan spaces that bring the outside in.
Each of the spacious rooms looks out directly on to the ocean, so you can wake to the sound of lapping waves and catch the spectacular sunset from the comfort of your very own balcony. The Instagram-worthy, cosy spaces are done up in a minimalist-chic aesthetic, with welcoming accents such as wooden and rattan furniture, as well as pastel furnishings and warm-hued bedding. Take your pick from king-, queen- and twin-sized beds to suit your needs. Besides boasting private balconies, each room also has an additional sitting area.
And while Maremegmeg Beach Club is a great starting point to explore the rest of El Nido, there’s also plenty to do at the resort itself. You can take a dip in the expansive infinity pool, which sits in the centre of the resort and offers panoramic ocean views. Alternatively, head to the resort’s very own beachfront area and spend an entire afternoon kicking back on a sun lounger while soaking up the rays.
2. World-famous beaches
El Nido’s calling card is its clutch of gorgeous and unspoiled beaches, and rightfully so. With roughly 50 white-sand beaches spread out over its various islands, you’ll never run out of sandy stretches to sprawl out at as you soak up the sun, sip on your drink and gaze out at the crystalline ocean beyond. Some of the best beaches on the island are the remote Seven Commandos Beach, which is only accessible by water due to the mountainous terrain surrounding it; Duli Beach, which is particularly popular among surfers; Snake Island, which derives its moniker from its narrow snake-shaped sandbar that is only visible at low tide; and Maremegmeg Beach, which is said to be the best spot in all of El Nido to watch the sunset.
3. Outdoor activities for everyone
With plenty of fun island activities that suit a range of ages, El Nido has something to cater to every sort of traveling party: whether you’re here as a couple, with a group of friends or with your entire family in tow. Besides checking out the beaches, you can also visit its gorgeous lagoons: the Big Lagoon, which is accessible via kayak or boat, is where you can see towering, jagged rock formations; while the Small Lagoon is a tinier site that is great for snorkelling adventures. You can also go on a hike through the jungle to Nagkalit-Kalit Falls; embark on an island-hopping boat cruise; or go on a caving expedition at the Cathedral Caves.
4. Sumptuous international cuisine
When it comes to eating and drinking, you’re sure to be well satiated in El Nido. Besides an array of Filipino favorites, you’ll also find plenty of restaurants on the island that cater to more global palates. In fact, why not start with Maremegmeg Beach Club’s very own restaurant and bar? The restaurant serves an array of tasty dishes, including juicy Wagyu burgers, hearty and healthy rice bowls, refreshing ceviche and cassava cake with a dollop of ice cream; while the bar shakes up potent cocktails and tropical refreshers, accompanied by moreish bar bites. Further afield, you can check out Shaka El Nido for innovative and delicious vegetarian fare; Cafe Athena for Greek and Mediterranean cuisine; and Glow Juice Box for tasty smoothies and juices.
This article is published in partnership with Maremegmeg Beach Club.