The Secret Lagoon at El Nido

October 14, 2011

The Secret Lagoon at El Nido

Why see the Secret Lagoon

The Secret Lagoon is hidden within an island with a pristine white beach and crystal clear water. You go there to enjoy the view from the beach, the beach itself and to explore the Secret Lagoon. This is where we had our lunch, provided by the boatmen. It is a perfect place to enjoy your lunch while in the midst of all the beauty of this island. The pictures will speak for itself.

What to expect when you arrive at the Secret Lagoon

The view from our boat as we approach the island

A boat docked on the island.
The lunch table for the tourists is set up underneath the coconut trees.

This is the view from the beach where our boat docked

From where the boats are docked, you walk through these huge rocks
to go to another beach area.

This is the other beach area.
No boats are docked in this area because the water is shallow

We stayed in the beach area where no boats are docked

The sea water is as crystal clear as drinking water.

Our kids playing around in the second beach area.

Our delicious lunch was cooked on the island by the boatmen.
The fish was my favorite because it was so fresh.

We went back to where our boat was docked and ate lunch under the coconut tree.
This is our view as we ate our lunch.

After lunch, we went back to the second beach area
and made our way to the secret lagoon.

After traversing the rocky part of the beach, we reached this hole which is the entrance to the Secret Lagoon.

The kids are about to go through the hole which is the entrance of the Secret Lagoon.

The view of the hole from the Secret Lagoon

Inside the Secret Lagoon

The Small Lagoon at El Nido

October 11, 2011

The Small Lagoon at El Nido

Why see the Small Lagoon

You experience floating in water surrounded by the majestic cliffs of the Small Lagoon. Some people ride the kayak and explore the perimeter of the Small Lagoon. Other tourists climb the cliffs and jump into the water as an adventure challenge. 

What to expect when you arrive at the Small Lagoon

Heading towards the Small Lagoon

This is what we saw when we arrived at the Small Lagoon. 
Several bancas were docked outside the entrance of the Small Lagoon. 
We're supposed to get off our banca and swim towards the entrance of the Small Lagoon.

Our kids immediately donned their snorkeling gear and life jackets, got off the boat and swam towards the entrance of the Small Lagoon.

This is the hole that represents the entrance to the Small Lagoon

This is the depth of the Small Lagoon

 Inside the Small Lagoon
Some tourists brought in kayaks inside the Lagoon. They have to carefully navigate it through the small hole.

Other tourists climb the cliffs inside the lagoon (see the tourist in the photo above climbing the cliffs), and jump into the water after reaching the summit. 

Outside the Small Lagoon where the bancas were docked.

Where to Eat Bangkok Street Food

October 5, 2011

Where to Eat Bangkok Street Food

There are a lot of places you can eat authentic Thai street food in Bangkok. But unlike in Singapore where hawker or street food centers are carefully regulated, Thai street food stalls are not. With this in mind, the only measure we had of gauging which street food to patronize is to observe where a lot of the locals eat. We decided that if the locals patronize it regularly then it must be safe. On my end, I can recommend these  stalls because for the 5 days we were in Bangkok, we ate at these stalls and never experienced stomach problems. 

Where to find safe Bangkok street food
Since we were staying at Tarntawan Place, we tried the street food at Surawong Road where Tarntawan is located.

There are 2 places near Tarntawan Place, Surawong Road where we ate Thai street food:
1. The first one where we ate most meals is beside the Pink Panther club (shown below with the pink logo), underneath the green sign. It is at the corner of Surawong and Patpong Road.

Meals cost 30 baht. This includes 2 viands and a cup of rice.
For the same price, you can choose just 1 viand but they will double the amount.
We usually order food to be taken away. They pack it in styrofoam containers.

As you can see, there's a great variety to choose from so we ate most of our meals here.
2. The other place where we ate is a noodle stall beside Kasikorn bank. Kasikorn bank is located along Surawong Road across Patpong Road. 

The noodle stall where we bought our food

This dish costs 50 baht.

You can add your own condiments:
vinegar with pepper, sugar, hot sauce or dried chili pepper

Why do I recommend trying Bangkok street food?

1. It is authentic
The spices and herbs, and the menu are what the local Thai residents eat so it's authentic.
2. It is cheap. 
We discovered that Thai food in food courts like the one at Siam Paragon are double the price of Thai street food.