By Joyce Ann L. Rocamora
Palawan was cited as the world’s best island in the Travel+Leisure (T+L) 2020 World’s Best Awards.
With a score of 94.83, Palawan bested 24 others in the world’s islands category, which included the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador, Maui in Hawaii, Bali in Indonesia, and Great Barrier Reef Islands in Australia, among others.
Citing one reader, T+L said Palawan “offers the most beautiful beaches, resorts, and scenery anywhere”.
“Though it’s difficult to reach from many parts of the world, once travelers get there they can dive in World War II wrecks, explore old-growth rain forests, and paddle one of the world’s longest subterranean rivers at Puerto Princesa,” wrote T+L writer Sara Clemence, as she praised the island’s “dramatic” view at sea level.
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, who recently visited the island for its future reopening to tourists, welcomed the citation.
“It’s wonderful to see that our rehabilitation and sustainable development efforts last year, especially in El Nido and Coron, were well-received by tourists everywhere,” she said.
The World’s Best Awards 2020 results, published on July 8, reflects an annual survey conducted by the New York-based magazine prior to the widespread border closures and lockdowns due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
In the island category, readers rated each destination based on natural attractions and beaches, activities and sights, restaurants and food, people and friendliness, and value.
Boracay also made it to No. 14 in T+L’s World Best Island list and was hailed fifth in Asia this year.
According to the Department of Tourism, this is the third citation reaped by the Philippines since community quarantines were enforced in various parts of the world.
Forbes magazine earlier ranked the Philippines among the seven countries “that have the potential to become a major tourist destination in a post-Covid world”. Last month, Condé Nast Traveler (CNT) cited the Hidden Beach in El Nido, Palawan, as one of the 30 Best Beaches in the World. PHILIPPINE NEWS AGENCY