On the northwest coast of Palawan, roughly halfway between Puerto Princesa and El Nido, PORT BARTON is far less developed than either of its busier rivals. The streets are all dirt tracks, there are no day-trippers and the rhythms of Filipino life go on largely undisturbed by the small groups of travellers lounging in the handful of budget beach hotels. These face crescent-shaped Pagdanan Bay, with magical sunset views – Port Barton beach itself is a gorgeous strip of sugary sand and fine for a quick swim, but the water is often cloudy (especially after rain). Minutes away are fourteen pristine white sand islands, a number of top-notch dive and snorkelling sites and even a couple of waterfalls. Note that electricity is usually available between 6pm and midnight only in Port Barton and there are no banks.

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