The Sabang Underground River is one of the coolest things to see during a trip to Palawan.
The river winds 8 kilometers back into this cave near Sabang. Generally there is not much current but after heavy rains it requires two boatmen to paddle upstream.
The tourist boats only go back in there 1.5 kilometers to a long straight stretch and then they turn back towards the entrance.
There is a 12 volt car battery hooked up to a lantern on the bow and the tourist sitting there gets the honor of being the official illumination director.
My pictures don’t do the cave justice. To do it right you would need several light men in there and have some good equipment and the knowledge to use it correctly. We still had a great time.
I have done some more primitive caving in Samar when you had to use climbing ropes and slide through the mud but this is the easy to see the inside of a cave.
Caving this way takes zero effort for the passengers because the guy in the back is doing all the work.
There are many tourists every day at this underground river but it is so well organized that you never have to wait long for a boat.
You can use the lag time to take pictures or just enjoy the scenery.
My guess is that over half of the visitors are on a day trip from Puerto Princesa. The road to Sabang Beach from Puerto is almost completely redone so it is a smooth ride that only takes 2 hours from the city.
The tourist center is at the pier in Sabang.
You register there and take one of the fifty pump boats to the landing near the cave entrance which is just around the point north of Sabang.
Some people walk over to the cave entrance but you still must pay the park fee which includes the boat ride into the cave.
It is a good walk that takes you through a bit of forest where you can occasionally see monkeys.
When you get to the check in area at the mouth of the cave, the staff there will fit you with a life jacket and a helmet.
There are zero waves in there and the little boats are quite stable but if there ever was a problem the lights would go out and it might be a bit spooky swimming in the dark.
So everyone gets a life jacket except for the boatmen who would rather not be bothered.
At first I thought this tour might be a tad bit cheesy, but my girl really wanted to see it and I am glad that we did. The underground river tour is very well worth your time.
Don’t forget to keep your helmet on because when the bats fly overhead they some times drop souvenirs.
Sabang Underground River in Palawan