Corto del Mar Hotel Review in Coron Palawan, Busuanga Plane, First Day in Coron, Recommended Tricycle Driver Slash Guide & Best Baby Back Ribs Meal in Coron at Santino's Grill!

I've only been to Coron in Palawan once and that was before I became a travel blogger. Just that one visit and I was already in love with the place. I've longed to come back and drag my friends to that place so that they can see what I mean. This vacation finally came together!!! Hahahaha. You can follow the Coron itinerary that I made based on the sequence of my Coron posts. I promise to show you all the fun spots we went to and dig up some old photos from that first trip for one of the posts. Just please don't judge my super short hair when I post about that hehe. The main difference was we stayed in Coron Town for this latest trip while we stayed in an Island Resort like Coral Bay and had full board meals a long time ago.


We took a PAL (Philippine Airlines but Airphil-operated, Terminal 3) flight to Busuanga (Code: USU) on a 1:50 p.m. flight. Not too early (for the hotel check-in time) and not too late (for us to have our very first Coron dinner).


Inside this DHC-8-300 propeller plane, there were just a few horizontal rows (2-2 if I remember correctly).


This is a view of Palawan from above. I always fall in love when I look out the window and down like my trip to El Nido =) Coron is one of my favorite places in the Philippines and I was finally going to document it for blogging! Hahaha.


The closest airport to Coron is Busuanga and the flight time was ~55 minutes. We arrived at the Francisco B. Reyes Airport.


This airport is small and the luggage handling is done mano-mano.


There are so many sights to visit so our 4D3N (Thursday to Sunday) trip was definitely not enough. We only had 2.5 days to tour around. I would recommend at least 3 days of whole day activities so that might be a 5D4N or a 6D5N trip depending on the flight availability.


Our hotel stay at Corto del Mar already included a free shuttle service/airport transfer from Busuanga to this Coron Town hotel. The trip took around 45 minutes. I would advise you to sit in front of the van or you might have a headache bouncing up and down. The road was not 100% even. 


Looking at the hotel design (outside the rooms) for the first time, I was impressed. It looked like the pictures from the internet. I booked through Agoda and just paid the extra bed in cash (no credit cards accepted yet) when I got there (extra bed at P650 per night per person with breakfast was not bad). The reservations officer I corresponded with over email was also very accommodating.


This was our original Superior Room with 2 single beds. We were "upgraded" to one with a higher rate. Same bed space and floor area. I'll tell you the difference below.


There's a desk and cable TV.


There's a cabinet with hangers (no safe and ref) and a luggage table.


Here's the bathroom.


The sink space was okay and there are basic amenities (no cotton buds) like towels and soap.


It's also not cramped. Plenty of space to hang your stuff.


There's a big shower but I personally had problems with the hot and cold water. It was either scalding hot or too cold, never in the middle.


No difference in the room except the upgrade was upstairs and the one downstairs had this view


We were on a higher floor so we can see the water and formations behind the roof of the houses. 


There's a balcony but I didn't use it otherwise my clothes might fall below. I'd hang my clothes outside the front door if I were you. WiFi was also scarce. Check out my full Corto del Mar review and tips at TripAdvisor.


There are tricycles outside for P10 a person. One Coron tricycle can accommodate 6 Filipino-sized people according to Kuya haha (2 in front, 4 at the back). I would personally recommend you to look for Kuya Dennis. His number is +639398195844 and tell him that you heard about him from me. He will come to your rescue and take you to wherever you need to go in Coron. We hoarded his services for the entire trip haha. We tried just waiting for a tricy once and it took forever! Just one call and Kuya Dennis would have been there. I'd like to help him in my own little way for taking care of us. If you have reservations, please feel free to get another or try out others for your rides. I base this recommendation on my own experience. I will gladly look for him on my next Coron trip. If you do try him out, kindly leave me a comment below to tell me how it went (positive or negative) so that others reading this will be informed too =)


We went to Santino's Grill for dinner after a brief stop at Coron Galeri for our Island Hopping Tour the next day (check out this trip the next day here in my next posts). Funny how we came to Coron and I looked for the "best baby back ribs in town". Haha. 


The place was open-aired (no aircon) and we got there by 7 p.m.


The place was full in the next 10 minutes.


We ordered a Full Slab of Baby Back Ribs (P475, bitin for 5 of us sharing and if you plan to order just this haha). 


It came out around an hour later haha. But it was super worth the wait! It's one of the best meals we had in Coron after a few (fail but) top-rated recommended restaus we tried. We actually came back another day and we were already willing to wait without my chums complaining. Too bad it was already sold out and that added to the frustration hahaha.


We tried the Sizzling Squid P175 (but went back for the ribs and that cream sauce haha).



We also ordered Lobster P675 (don't, just spend it on the ribs really hahaha). 


The poor lobster had little meat to share, not fresh as it was frozen and was removed from its habitat.


We went back to Corto del Mar. It was part of the chill itinerary to just lounge by the pool (which was open until 11 p.m.).


The pool was super inviting and the water was not that cold (no heater).


For breakfast, I would recommend this out of all the Filipino breakfast options - tapa, sunny side up, garlic rice, grape juice.


My View:


I liked some parts of this hotel but my major concern was not being able to sleep because of the cricket sounds and the early morning rooster non-stop routine in the background, not to mention motorcycle and chatter near our room window. A friend told me that it might have been because I'm essentially a city girl hahaha. I think it must be because I'm a light sleeper and I was looking forward to an R&R with their promised (but non-existent) WIFI. Location-wise, this hotel is not bad. It's at the Coron Town and it's most likely one of the best western-style accommodations you can have in Coron. Amenities-wise, I think there is much to be improved and it might still be understandable because this hotel was opened only late last year. If they don't improve, then maybe it would be wise to try another hotel or those island resorts to get value for money. Food-wise, I hope they can improve lots on the breakfast. They claim to have the best pizza in town though although we did not try it. This hotel may be good for heavy sleepers, if you want a more modern hotel and those that have early flights back. It's a walk/tricy away from the Coron tour shops, the wet market, the pier and some restaurants. The outside of the hotel is not well-lit though so I would always ask Kuya Dennis to take us back. They have a dive resort/hotel called Corto Divers also though if you want a more local feel. 

Hotel Details:
Comiseria St., Brgy 1, 
Coron, Palawan

Check out my Coron Posts: