On our third day in El Nido, after breakfast at The Resort Bayview Hotel El Nido, members of B.E.A.T. (Business Executives Alliance in Tourism) again boarded their van for another round of resort-sponsored familiarization tours of the town. Our first destination was to be Bulalacao Waterfalls, one of the most beautiful falls in the town. It is actually a series of waterfalls aptly named Big Falls and Small Falls.
The 70-ft. high Big Falls is a 2-part trek that first requires you take a 45-min. tricycle ride to Brgy. Pasadeña and, upon arrival, make a grueling 1.5 to 2-hour hike (not to be undertaken without a guide and must not be attempted during the August to October rainy season) down a heavily-vegetated trail that courses through rice paddies and a thicket of towering ipil, balete and kamagong trees.
We were to visit the easier and more accessible Small Falls (also called Naganlec Falls). Upon arrival at the start of the trail, we first paid the PhP25/pax entrance fee (payment for the family that keeps the trail clean). The trail to the falls was well shaded by trees and marked. The hike through the forest took all of 20 mins. and we had to make 5 boulder-strewn river crossings, its cool waters a refreshing break for us as it was quite humid that day.
As we got closer to the falls, we again had to pay a PhP50/pax entrance fee, this time for the family that keeps the area around the falls clean. This place was a really nice and there were two huts with picnic tables. The Small Falls, with 4 accessible levels, was calm and inviting. The first and lowest has a large pool that people can jump into from the cliff above as it has a 3 m. depth. A number of foreigners tried it.
However, most of us tried out the easy-to-reach second level which has a beautiful low cascade and a shallow, swimmable pool that everyone enjoyed. It was a nice, cool and refreshing break from the heat of the morning sun. It may not be a large fall but it has a great little swimming area.
Bulalacao Falls: Sitio Naganlec, Brgy. Pasadena, El Nido, Palawan.