Banol Beach, Coron Island


After the hiking, climbing and boating for 3-4 hours, I needed a serious dose of beach. A few minutes further along the coast of Coron Island, we spotted a small unoccupied cove at Banol Beach. Still belonging to the Tagbanua people, we had to pay a small fee to park our banca here and take a dip in the crystal clear sea, sink our totally flat feet into banol2the powder sugar like sand and look up at the incredibly blue sky. This was a small beach by any standard, but a pristine and beautiful spot. The perfect place for a photo shoot a la James Bond…if only I had the looks… I could stay here for days and not move on (assuming it had a decent bathroom)… I didn’t really come to Coron to vege on a beach but it was a nice diversion from our real purpose for being there. After an hour of having the beach to ourselves, which was a real luxury, a huge banca with about 18 french tourists arrived, and well, let’s just say it cramped our style just a bit. They stayed at one end of the tiny beach but it was clearly time to move on…


At PHP200 for the “right” to visit (frankly, legally I have a problem with this as beaches are in general public domain, though I understand the Tagbanuans have water rights too), but never mind, as long as the Tagbanuans keep the place clean and in order, banol4the money is irrelevant and an absolute bargain. Actually, compared to say two frappucinos at a Starbucks, the same amount buys a few hours on a spectacular setting for say six people, complete with small thatched roof hut with table for a picnic and two sunbathing chaise longues in bamboo that were so oddly proportioned that if I lay on one flat, my butt would barely be supported… There was this beautiful old kalachuchi tree whose branches stretched out over the water and if only for the stunning photos the setting yielded, this was a great place to spend a few hours… It’s approximately 30-40 minutes by banca from Coron town proper if you head straight to Banol beach. Remember, it is small, but beautiful. I wonder if you could make it pakyaw (what is the English word for that?) or “corner it all” to oneself for a morning or afternoon if you paid extra?!


19 Responses

  1. my kind of holiday MM but at the moment am savouring the services offered here in A Resorts

    pakyaw i have forgotten that word hahaha whats the tagalog term for that?

  2. Candygirl, accommodations coming up in future post and unfortunately, I don’t dive… sha, I would love a week in Courcheval…

  3. beautiful…but I still wonder ever since I stepped in Calamian group of islands, how come there are islands or islets actually for sale when the Tagbanuas are the ones who have full rights and actually protect it from all sorts of pollutions & “troubles”?
    Pakyaw, if it is about goods that will be to buy in wholesale right? To corner it all, maybe to hire/rent exclusively?
    Marketman, try try try some aqua sports especially scuba diving, rewarding experience every time. Batangas shore is a very rich reserve, great opportunity.

  4. MarketMan! I was in Coron last year and I literally fell in love with the place! I’ve never seen such a beautiful place! The water was pristine and the sand – much much better than Boracay. I love it there! It’s so beautiful. Close to Paradise!!

    We visited Club Paradise and it was breathtaking!! I couldnt’ stop smiling. Sobrang ganda!

    I bet there are other spots in Coron that are breathtaking too!!: ) Too bad I’m not into Scuba – Coron has the best wreck diving spots.. :)

  5. Although mostly used for a vessel or transportation, Charter would be the next closest thing to “pakyaw” IMO.

  6. Hi Marketman! Your pictures of Palawan are beautiful. I want to go there next time I go home to the Philippines. Did you have a travel agent to arrange your trip or did you just fly to Coron and made arrangements from there?

  7. Isabelle, I flew to Palawan with a native of the Coron and surrounding islands so I didn’t use an agent…more on my accommodations and local transportation in the days ahead… Thanks everyone on those thoughts for pakyaw…now I realize it has several meanings depending on context…

  8. Hi Marketman,

    Last Christmas I was at the same beach you pictured here, and it definitely was a breathtaking sight. About the fee, I think that it’s ostensibly for the Tagbanuas but it’s probably going to the pockets of the islands’ owners (i.e., NOT the Tagbanuas). We didn’t pay the full fee when we were on that island because the “owners” were there, and they asked the Tagbanua caretakers to give us a 50% discount. Generous, but pretty amusing in retrospect. Either way, that trip was definitely worth it. We stayed at the cheapo rooms in Kokosnuss, dined at the yummy French bistro downtown, and visited all the major sites by boat, all for $100/person for three days. Anyone who’s interested in visiting that area should really go.

  9. Hello MarketMan,
    I am planning to go to Coron island in Christmas, can you please let me know the info of accommodation and boat that you stayed and used as I can’t find them on this website.

    Many thanks!

  10. Rita, check the archives and look up April 2007, and KEEP scrolling down, even more through previous posts. The period from end March to about April17 covers dozens of posts from the trip to Coron, including the Inn we stayed at and the guy who was our boatman… enjoy your trip!

  11. Marketman, the last time i visited coron, was in 1998. I stayed for 3 days in banol island. Im happy to see it now in your website. I miss coron so much, thank you for letting me me my one piece of paradise..

  12. Frankly, I have a problem with you remark about the “fee” for the right to use the beach. These are Tagbanua ancestral lands that the government and other bad people have taken away from.

  13. We were in Coron in Dec. 2008. I find it ridiculous to pay P100 each island. I guess it it double (P200) if you are a foreigner. It is a scam! We stayed at Busuanga island paradise. I had 6 bed mites! And insects and tuko inside our room all the time. Not mention that this place is pricey! So whatever you do, do not stay at this resort!

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