Palaui Island Travel Guide: Explore the Mystical Island of the North


I  guess no other place in the Philippines radiates so much mystique than Palaui Island, a small yet fascinating island off the coast of the town of Santa Ana in the province of Cagayan. The island has reopened to tourists. Let this Palaui Travel Guide brings you one step closer to fulfilling your dream to visit the island. Provided in this travel guide are latest information on how to get there, accommodation, activities, sample itinerary, budget and more.

Discover Palaui Island

Palaui Island lies on the northeastern tip of mainland Luzon under the jurisdiction the town of Sta. Ana, a special economic zone bustling with modern industrial establishments and blessed with beautiful coastline. Despite the developments, Sta. Ana is still rural and laid back, projecting contrasting features that add to its mystique.

Palaui Island
Cape Engaño Lighthouse

But what makes Sta. Ana more beautiful is Palaui, the island off its shore that offers so much – white sandy beaches and panoramic coves, a century old lighthouse, hidden waterfalls and lovely people, all in a scenic ragged terrain surrounded with huge waves and echoing wind.

With a land area of more than 3,000 hectares, Palaui Island is made up of volcanic debris. It is home to a fishing community without electricity and commercial accommodation. Its main attraction aside from its beaches is the Farol de Cabo Engaño, an 18th century lighthouse built by the Spaniards that guides ships entering and leaving Sta. Ana specially those using Port Irene and San Vicente, as well as those traversing the Babuyan Channel and Philippine Sea.

Palaui Island
Engaño Cove

Palaui Island is a place built by wind, sculpted by waves and nurtured by time. Discover the distinct charm of its scenic ragged terrain; chorus with the howling music of its gigantic waves; explore and experience the mystique of Palaui Island.

Cape Engaño’s rolling hills and roaring waves.

How to Get to Palaui Island

Tuguegarao – Santa Ana

Make your way to Tuguegarao, the capital city of Cagayan Province. From there, ride a bus (~P240 as of December 2016) or van (P250 as of February 2017) going to Santa Ana, travel time is around three hours.

Santa Ana to Palaui Island

In Santa Ana, proceed to PASAMOBA office in San Vicente port for registration and to charter a boat to the island. San Vicente port is a short trike ride from Sta. Ana town proper (P15 per passenger).

Standard Boat (As of 2023)

Single Destination

Destination Standard Rates Remarks
Cape Engaño, Palaui Island P2,000 Maximum of 5 hours. Additional P150 for every succeeding hours. Maximum 8 passengers.
Anguib Beach P1,800 Additional P500 for overnight. Maximum 8 passengers.
Punta Verde P1,500 Maximum of 4 hours. Additional P150 for every succeeding hours. Maximum 8 passengers.
Crocodile Island P800 Maximum of 2 hours. Additional P150 for every succeeding hours. Maximum 8 passengers.


Destination Standard Rates Remarks
Cape Engaño, Anguib Beach, Crocodile Island, Punta Verde (Special Trip 1) P4,500 Whole-day tour. Additional P500 for overnight. Maximum 8 passengers.
Cape Engaño, Crocodile Island, Anguib Beach (Special Trip 2) P4,000 Whole-day tour. Additional P500 for overnight. Maximum 8 passengers.
Cape Engaño, Anguib Beach P3,500 Whole-day tour. Additional P500 for overnight. Maximum 8 passengers.
Cape Engaño, Crocodile Island, Punta Verde P3,500 Whole-day tour. Maximum 8 passengers.
Punta Verde, Crocodile Island, Anguib Beach P3,500 Whole-day tour. Additional P500 for overnight. Maximum 8 passengers.
Cape Engaño, Crocodile Island P2,500 Maximum of 5 hours. Maximum 8 passengers.
Anguib  Beach, Punta Verde P2,500 Maximum of 5 hours. Maximum 8 passengers.
Anguib  Beach, Crocodile Island P2,300 Maximum of 5 hours. Additional P500 for overnight. Maximum 8 passengers.
Crocodile Island, Punta Verde P1,800 Maximum of 5 hours. Additional P500 for overnight. Maximum 8 passengers.


Palaui Island
Dos Hermanos Islands

Manila to Tuguegarao

By Plane

Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific fly to Tuguegarao from Manila, travel time is approximately an hour.

By Bus

From Manila, Victory Liner and Florida Liner have daily trips to Tuguegarao everyday almost every hour. It is around 485 kilometers north of Metro Manila; travel time is about 11 to 12 hours and fare starts from P886 for regular airconditioned bus andP994 for deluxe bus (as of March 2022).

If you are coming from Tabuk, jeepneys are available in Kalabaw Intersection (in front of St. William Cathedral), fare is P70 (as of 2016). From Ilocos and Abra, GMW Liner and Florida Liner have trips to Tuguegarao.

You can book your bus or flight from Manila to Tuguegarao and vice versa below.


Manila to Sta. Ana, Cagayan (Direct)

Florida Liner is the only bus company that goes direct to Sta. Ana, Cagayan. Daily trips to Sta. Ana leave Sampaloc at 12PM and 3PM.

Where to Stay in Palaui Island

There is no high-end resorts in Palaui Island. Tourists who opt to stay overnight in the island can look for home stays or pitch a tent in Punta Verde. A local government resolution restricts camping in any other areas in Palaui Island except in Punta Verde.

Homestays in Punta Verde, Palaui Island

Dream Island E Tabucol Homestay
Punta Verde, Palaui Island
P500/person (Kids under 10 years are free)
Contact No: Kuya Edwin Tabucol at +639161165850/+639657845332

Palaui Island
A meadow along the trail to the lighthouse.

Where to Stay in Santa Ana (Cagayan)

There are numerous hotels, inns and lodges in Santa Ana. here are some:

Top-Rated Budget Accommodations in Santa Ana, Cagayan

Jotay Resort

Jotay Resort
Palawig, Santa Ana
Starts at 1,000 PHP (2-person sharing)


Edens Lodging House

Edens Lodging House
Centro, Santa Ana
Starts at P1,000 PHP (2-person sharing)


Top-Rated Middle Rate Accommodations in Santa Ana, Cagayan

RAI Atrium Suites

RAI Atrium Suites
Diora Zinungan, Santa Ana
Starts at 2,500 PHP (2-person sharing)


Party Beach Resort

Party Beach Resort
Rapuli, Santa Ana
Starts at P2,500 PHP (2-person sharing)


List of accommodations in Santa Ana, Cagayan:

  • Balai Cagayano
  • Cagayan Holiday Resort
  • Ceza Guest House
    Centro, Sta. Ana, Cagayan
    Contact: (63)-78-585-1021
  • Country-Inn By The Sea
  • Costa Carina Beach Front
  • Costales Lodging House
  • Jotay Resort
    Centro, Sta. Ana, Cagayan
    Contact: +63906-4781270
  • Tres Rosas Beach Resort
    Diora-Zinungan, Sta. Ana, Cagayan
  • Orquidia Beach Resort
    Diora-Zinungan, Sta. Ana, Cagayan
  • St. Anthony’s Resort
    Rapuli, Sta. Ana, Cagayan
  • El Cortez Beach Resort
    Diora- Zinungan, Sta. Ana, Cagayan
  • Eden’s Lodging House
    Centro, Sta. Ana, Cagayan
  • Lordwins Beach Resort
    Sta. Cruz, Sta. Ana, Cagayan
  • M&E Lodging House
    San Vicente, Sta. Ana, Cagayan
  • Mel & Jay Lodge
    San Vicente, Sta. Ana, Cagayan
  • Jerolinda Beach Resort
    San Vicente, Sta. Ana, Cagayan
  • Phil. Game Fishing Foundation
    San Vicente, Sta. Ana, Cagayan


Palaui Island
Engaño Point and Lighthouse as seen from Pananacpan

Activities in Palaui Island and Nearby

  • Trek to Cape Engaño Lighthouse in Cape Engaño Point
  • Check out Siwangag Cove
  • Swimming and beach hopping
  • Find its hidden waterfalls
  • Snorkeling/Scuba Diving (bring your own equipment)
  • Fishing (bring your own equipment)
  • Bird Watching
  • Hiking
  • Camping/Picnic
  • Beach Volleyball/Frisbee
  • Skimboarding (bring your own board)
  • Watch the sunrise and sunset
  • Visit Anguib Beach, Nangaramoan Beach, Pozo Robo Beach, Jerolinda Beach and Buacag Falls in mainland Sta. Ana
  • See the Gotan mangrove forest and waterfalls
  • Visit the nearby Crocodile, Mapurao and Manidad Islands
  • Experience Viray Festival held yearly from May 26 to 30
Palaui Island
Pananacpan Beach

Palaui Island Weekend Itinerary

Day 1: Enroute to Tuguegarao

2100H Assembly in Florida Bus Sampaloc
2130H Bus from Manila to Tuguegarao

Day 2: Welcome to Palaui

1000H Arrive in Tuguegarao / Brunch / Proceed to Van Terminal
1100H Van: Tuguegarao to Santa Ana
1300H Arrive in Santa Ana / Shop for food, snacks, drinks / Proceed to San Vicente Port
1330H Arrive in San Vicente Port / Register
1400H Boat to Crocodile Island
1410H Arrival in Crocodile Island
1500H Boat to Punta Verde
1510H Arrive in Punta Verde / Setup camp/ Free time
1800H Prepare dinner
1900H Dinner
2030H Socials
1400H Boat to Crocodile Island

Day 3: Morning in Palaui + Travel Bacl

0530H Call Time / Sunrise / Breakfast
0700H Trek to Cape Engaño and Lighthouse
0900H Arrive in Cape Engaño / Proceed to Lighthouse / Free time
1030H Trek back to Punta Verde
1230H Back in Punta Verde / Break Camp / Boat to San Vicente
1330H Arrive in San Vicente Port / Proceed to Santa Ana / Lunch
1430H Van: Santa Ana to Tuguegarao
1700H Arrival in Tuguegarao / Proceed to Bus Terminal
1730H Dinner
1800H Bus: Tuguegarao to Manila

Day 4: Back in Manila

0600H Arrive in Manila

Budget Estimate: ~P4,000/person


  • The best way to reach the town of Sta. Ana from Manila by land is via the night bus of Florida Liner direct to Sta. Ana
  • If you are trekking Cape Engaño Lighthouse by land, please GET A LOCAL GUIDE! Guide fee is only P300, for one to four person; P600, for five to six person; and P900, for eight to 12 person. The trek takes at least two (2) hours. There are two trails going to the lighthouse: the easier Lagunzad’s Trail and the more challenging Leonardo’s Trail.
  • All guests should register in Ecozone Visitor Center, the local government arm that manages tourism in Sta. Ana. Registration fee is P50 per person, advance reservation is not necessary but encouraged. Contact Ms. Roselyn Foronda at 0917-7809302.
  • I, highly recommend Kuya Edwin Tabucol, a local of Palaui Island. Contact no: +639269064657. He has a boat that can be rented to take you to the lighthouse and to Palaui from San Vicente. He can also guide you to the lighthouse. (All tours are now handled by the Ecozone Visitor Center, if they happen to assign Kuya Edwin to you as guide, say hello to him for me! :D)
  • If you plan to head north to Babuyan Islands, there is a ferry the leaves every morning of Tuesdays and Fridays from San Vicente Port to Camiguin. Camiguin is around three (3) hours from San Vicente Port, fare is P320 as of December 2010. (Schedule is subject to change.)
  • Ferry from San Vicente Port going to Batanes is seasonal and operates only during summer/calm seas and weather (usually April and May)
  • The last trip of van going to Sta. Ana from Tuguegarao is 530PM
  • The last trip of van going to Tuguegarao from Sta. Ana is 1PM
  • The 27th and 28th seasons of reality show Survivor US Edition already finished shooting in the island
The other side of Palaui

*First Publication: 03-Mar-2011 | Updates: 14-Jun-2011; 01-Jun-2013; 06-Feb-2014; 09-Aug-2017; 14-Aug-2018; 20-Feb-2020; 07-Apr-2022


  1. Jing

    Hi! I’ll be in Sta. Ana on August 19 – 20, 2016. Anyone interested to share a boat with me and a friend, please contact me — [email protected]. Thanksss!! 🙂

  2. BryanLamar.PH

    I will be in:
    Tuguegarao- July 5-6, 2016
    Aparri-Palaui- July 6-9, 2016

    Anyone who happens to be in these places on the above dates? You may contact me through 0998-574-6540.

  3. […] Source: thelostkidsph, The Pinay Solo Backpacker, Lakwatsero […]

  4. Hi Good Day,

    Me and my friend planning to go on palaui island June 24-26. Anyone want to join?kindly txt me 09178900994. Thanks

  5. Elmer Domingo

    Me and my housemate will be at Palaui by May 14-15 anyone would like to join to chip in for the Bangka’s Fair Php 3,800 for the 4 tourist spots the more the merrier! since 8 pax is the max for the Bangka contact me if possible 0998-956-2788 or 0915-365-8342.

  6. Zeph

    Hi! My friend and I will go to Palaui this April 27-April 30. 2 lng kmi. We plan to stay 2 nights in the island. If you want to join feel free to contact us. 09718876853

  7. elizabeth del rosario


    we are going to palaui island by april 16 .we are only 2 who wish to join us
    so we can save the boat fee.
    thank you,
    ate beth

  8. jam


    Me my GF will go to Palaui from May 6 – 7, 2016. Since this is just a short trip, hope you can help me make my stay there worthwhile by suggesting places I should skip or visit.

    Thank you

  9. Lui Rocamora

    Hi Phoebe, thank you for the response, however, we intend to go to Palaui sometime May, probably first weekend.

    1. Ferdie

      we intend to go also by May can we join so we can share the boat?

  10. Phoebe begas


    We’re goig to palaui on march 24 thursday.. 2 lng po kmi.. we’re looking for person/s who wants to join us…. pls contact me at 09176767014…thanks

  11. Lui Rocamora

    I mean sometime in May this year (typo error)

    1. lorelei

      hi lui! kelan ang plan nyo this may, 2016? pede pong mgjoin sa group nyo just in case ung day eh sasakto sa plan.. thank you!

    2. elmer domingo

      We will be on that place May 14-15 since we have other plan to visit Callao cave lets share the Bangka’s fair if this is the same date you will be going

  12. Lui Rocamora

    Hi, is there any schedule some in May this year?

  13. Elizabeth del rosario

    Hello joy kung decided kayo mag join sa callao cave bale april 15 nasa san vicente na kami mag stay na lang muna kami dun home stay wait na lang namin kayo april 16 early sana maka rating na kayo para makanpag start tayo maaga mag camping kami sa punta verde then early am ng april 17 balik na ng san vicente port then sta ana to tugeugarao start naman ng callo cave tour after lunch

  14. Abbey Sarmiento

    Hi! We’re going to Palaui on Feb 26. Cape Engano, Anguib, Punta Verde and Crocodile island. We’re only three and the boat can accommodate 8. Pls let me know if you’re interested to join us! 🙂

    1. joy

      hi,bsta sat ang tour pwd kmi ng bf q.fri nayt p kmi pwd bumyahe frm mla eh.tx me 09155587300.tnx

      1. Elizabeth del rosario

        Hello joy , we are going this april 16 thats Saturday 3 lang kami if you want , you can join us to save sa boat fee.

        Ate beth

        1. joy

          yup go kmi apr16.,c abbey sarmiento bk gusto n dn sumabay pra sakto 8 n tyo.overnayt b tyo s homestay?kc malabo ung blikan s isang arw eh.2pm ang last trp ng van sta.ana to better kht sundy morning n aaliz s palaui.agree b kyo dun?tnx

    2. joy

      hi abbey bk gusto nyo iresked ng apr16 pgpunta nyo s palaui?5 n kmi s grp at mkkatpid tyo pg makumpleto ntn ung 8pax s boat.join tyo s grp ni teh beth.tnx

      1. Elizabeth del rosario

        Hello joy yes april 16 nasa palaui na kami mag stay lang kami sa tuguegarao ng april 15 side trip kami sa callao cave then early am ng april 16 sa palui island na kami mag overnight kami sa island april 17 back to san vicente

        1. joy

          ksma nyo b c abbey?hehe.c kc pl ung isang ngttnong ng mkksma.,cgeh ok kme s apr16.,s everlastng bus kmi sskay drecho sta.ana n un.12 to 4pm my byahe cla sta.ana.mga b4 6am apr16 nsa sta.ana termnl n kmi.

        2. joy

          6am p ata ang trip ng van going sta.ana. bk gusto nyong mg-abang n s everlstng termnl s tuguegarao ng mdaling arw pra dun n kyo sumkay pa-sta.ana?tx tx tyo pra maupd8 q kyo if mga wat tme drtng ang bus s tuguegarao.kc qng 3pm ang aliz ng bus s mla,mga mor or les 3am nsa tuguegarao n ang bus.mgbababa lng xa ng mga pasenger or pdla bound to tuguegarao den go n xa sta.ana.pra lng ms maaga tyo mkpgstart?hehe

        3. joy

          wow my callao side3p pla kyo?prang gusto q tuloy sumama kc ung ksma q hnd p nkkpunta dun.ayw nyo xa gawin ng sundy apr17 rayt aftr ntn mg-sta.ana?
          pra mksama kmi.qng ok lng nmn.tnx.hehe

          1. Elizabeth del rosario

            Hello joy pede rin naman kasi ang flight namin pabalik manila is april 18 pa naman so pede pa kami mag overnyt sa tuguegarao kailangan nga lang by 1 pm to 2 pm nasa tuguegarao na tayo if ever uwi na kayo ng manila ng april 17 meron ba na bus sched gabi pabalik manila if hindi na kayo mag stay sa tuguegarao ng 17 april. Alis tayo ng san vicente or sta ana ng 8 or 9 am makaka rating tayo ng tuguegarao ng mga lunch time then start 1pm sa callao cave 😊 Let me know kung decided kayo para di ako mag book ng april 15 accommodation bale book ko na lang april 17 😊 09175171414 # ko ate beth

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