Painting the Sky at Corong Corong and Marimegmeg Beach

We didn’t think much about sunsets while preparing for our recent visit to El Nido. Anyway, there was already much to see here during the daylight hours. We were planning on just spending restful evenings at our resort after each day spent touring the islands at the Bacuit archipelago and other spots in El Nido. However, many memorable travel experiences are often unplanned ones. On this occasion we were surprised to see how stunning the sunsets in El Nido are and ended up spending each evening gazing at the fiery colors of the twilight sky.

Corong Corong Beach

early morning low tide at Corong Corong Beach
Early morning low tide at Corong Corong Beach. In the background is a huge limestone formation near the town proper of El Nido.

Wanting a quiet location close to El Nido town, we chose a small hotel at Corong Corong Beach in Sitio Lugadia. It’s not a fancy beach but it’s a relatively tranquil neighborhood compared to the town proper of El Nido, yet still close to town. The beach stretches for more than 3 kilometers starting at a point just below the town market and ends at the junction with Marimegmeg Beach farther down south.

El Nido Sunset

twilight colors at Corong Corong Beach
Twilight colors at Corong Corong Beach with Matinloc Island’s silhouette in the background

The beautiful thing about Corong Corong is its unobstructed sunset views. During our 4 nights of stay here there were no dull sunsets at all. The sky was awash in sundry hues of red, orange, pink and yellow. The calm waters of Bacuit Bay with the silhouettes of MatinlocHelicopter Island and other islets in the horizon combined to produce some truly stunning sunset displays.

sunset at Bacuit Bay viewed from Corong Corong Beach
Bacuit Bay sunset viewed from our hotel at Corong Corong Beach
sunset at Bacuit Bay, El Nido
End of another day in paradise

Marimegmeg Beach

The sunset views at nearby Marimegmeg Beach would have been as equally stunning – according to other travel blogs featuring El Nido. We did get to visit this beach on our first day, but left well before the sunset hour. (In retrospect we should not have gone to Marimegmeg too early.) Lying just south of Corong Corong Beach, Marimegmeg is a lovely creamy white sand beach fringed by coconut palms.

Las Cabanas Resort at Marimegmeg Beach with Pinagbuyutan Island in the background
Marimegmeg Beach with Las Cabanas Resort on the right and the tall mass of Pinagbuyutan Island in the background

This beach is getting a fair share of development attention recently; there are now several resorts lined up along the beach including the famous Las Cabanas Resort. The beach however remains clean.  At its southern end, Marimegmeg offers a stunning view of the imposing mass of Pinagbuyutan Island and other nearby islets in Bacuit Bay. A land bridge visible during low tide connects the beach at this point to the rocky outcrop of Depeldet Island, making the latter easily accessible on foot.

Las Cabanas Resort and the land bridge to Depeldet Island
View of Las Cabanas Resort on Marimegmeg Beach from the land bridge to Depeldet Island

Sadly, development seems to be having a not-so-positive impact on Marimegmeg Beach. We noticed that, based on older photos of this beach, several coconut palms seemed to have been cut down and some lots next to the beach have been fenced off. A considerable portion of the beach front has already been bought off according to some locals and more are for sale it seems. They have also installed a zip line from the mainland to Depeldet Island, ruining what would have been an interesting sunset view of the place.

sunset view of Bacuit Bay from Corong Corong Beach
Another sunset view of Bacuit Bay from Corong Corong Beach

For now however, Marimegmeg Beach is still a welcome sight, particularly the southern end of the beach where the Las Cabanas Resort is located. Hopefully development of the area would be pursued more responsively for future generations to continue to enjoy.

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