Discover the Best Shisha in El Nido, Palawan Island: Top Spots & Reviews

El Nido is a tropical paradise located on the northern tip of Palawan Island in the western Philippines. Known for its awe-inspiring natural landscapes, pristine beaches, and rich marine biodiversity, El Nido has become one of the top tourist destinations in the Philippines.

The town of El Nido sits on the shores of Bacuit Bay, which is dotted with steep limestone cliffs, hidden lagoons, and over 50 white sand beaches. Some of the most famous attractions in El Nido are the Big and Small Lagoons, Secret Lagoon, Nacpan Beach, and Matinloc Island. The majestic Bacuit Archipelago just offshore contains steep karst cliffs, marine sanctuaries, and diving spots teeming with diverse marine life.

Inland from the coast, El Nido is characterised by dense tropical rainforests, waterfalls, mangroves, and rugged mountains. The forests here are some of the most biodiverse in the Philippines, home to many rare and endemic species. Activities like island hopping, snorkeling, hiking, and kayaking allow visitors to fully experience the stunning natural environment.

With its laidback island vibe and stunning tropical scenery, it's no wonder El Nido continues to rank among the top island and beach destinations in the world. Its shisha culture only adds to its allure for travellers seeking both adventure and relaxation.

Table of Content

  1. Shisha Culture in El Nido, Palawan
  2. Pukka Bar
  3. SAVA Beach Bar
  4. Amigos Bar
  5. Habibi Restaurant & Shisha Café
  6. Shisha Smoking Tips
  7. Shisha Safety
  8. Getting Around El Nido

hookah at El Nido Palawan
Discover the Best Shisha in El Nido, Palawan Island: Top Spots & Reviews

Discover the Best Shisha in El Nido, Palawan Island: Top Spots & Reviews

Shisha Culture in El Nido, Palawan

Shisha smoking has become an increasingly popular activity in El Nido over the past decade. The relaxing pastime has been embraced by both tourists and locals alike, with numerous beachfront bars and restaurants now offering shisha.

While the origins of shisha trace back centuries to the Middle East and India, it only started gaining popularity in El Nido in the late 2000s. Backpackers who had experienced shisha while traveling helped introduce it to the island. Soon after, small beach bars began acquiring shisha pipes and offering it on their menus.

Nowadays, shisha has become ingrained in the island's social culture. Friends gather in the evenings to chat and pass the pipe. The sweet fruity tobacco flavours complement the tropical beach vibe. Lounging on cushions with a shisha pipe in hand has become a signature El Nido experience.

With demand growing steadily each year, more establishments continue to add shisha options. Cafes like Habibi have even been launched dedicated primarily to the shisha experience. For both tourists and locals, a shisha break remains one of the best ways to unwind and connect after a day spent exploring paradise.

Pukka Bar

Located along the beachfront in El Nido, Pukka Bar is a popular spot for shisha enthusiasts visiting the island. With its laidback tropical ambiance and prime sunset views, it's easy to while away an evening here puffing on shisha and sipping cocktails.

The bar has an extensive shisha menu with over a dozen flavours options. Signature tastes include double apple, mint, and mixed fruit flavours. Prices range from 300 to 500 pesos depending on the size of pipe and flavours chosen. Groups often opt for the larger shisha pipes to share.

A highlight of Pukka Bar is its beachfront seating, allowing patrons to gaze out over the water while enjoying shisha. The bar has both covered and open air seating options. Mellow music plays in the background, adding to the chilled out vibe.

In addition to shisha, the bar serves up classic cocktails, beers, and bar bites like nachos and chicken wings. Happy hour specials run from 5-7pm. It's a great spot to start off the evening before heading into town for dinner.

With its prime location, laidback ambiance, and quality shisha menu, Pukka Bar is a top choice for enjoying an evening of shisha in El Nido. Visitors looking to sample the best shisha spots in town shouldn't miss it.

SAVA Beach Bar

SAVA Beach Bar is located right on the beach in El Nido, making it a prime spot to enjoy shisha while taking in the beautiful ocean views. With a laidback, chill atmosphere, this bar is a great place to relax on a beach lounger or bean bag with a fruit-flavoured shisha.

The menu at SAVA features a variety of shisha tobacco flavours like double apple, grape mint, blueberry mint, guava, and more. A shisha for 1-2 people costs around 300-400 pesos. They also serve food like pizzas, pasta, sandwiches and Filipino dishes. Happy hour is from 4-7pm with buy 1 get 1 cocktails.

In addition to the shisha and food, SAVA frequently hosts events like live music nights, DJ sets, fire shows, and parties, especially during high season. The bar gets quite lively at night. Prices are reasonable and the service is friendly.

Overall, SAVA Beach Bar is one of the best beachfront shisha spots in El Nido. With tasty shisha, good drinks, a chilled vibe and oceanfront seating, it's a great place to spend a day or evening. The events and parties also make it a popular nightlife destination.

SAVA Beach Bar el nido
SAVA Beach Bar at El Nido, Palawan

Amigos Bar

Amigos Bar is one of the most lively spots in El Nido to enjoy shisha and Latin music. Located near the beachfront, its laidback atmosphere makes it a popular hangout for both tourists and locals.

The bar's specialty is its wide selection of Latin music, played throughout the night. Salsa, bachata, merengue - you name it. Get ready to move your hips when the rhythm hits. Besides the music, Amigos whips up festive cocktails and mojitos that complement the Caribbean vibe.

Of course, the main attraction is the shisha menu with over a dozen flavours to pick from. Lounge on the cushions and try mango, watermelon mint, or blueberry mint. Feeling adventurous? Go for mixes like "Pirates of the Caribbean" with tropical fruit flavours. Their shisha menu strikes a balance between classic flavours and creative combinations.

The friendly staff at Amigos can recommend flavours combinations if you're unsure where to start. Pro tip: order a round of mojitos or margaritas to enjoy with your shisha for the quintessential Latin bar experience. With its chill atmosphere, flavours shisha, and lively music, Amigos Bar hits the spot for a fun night out in El Nido.

Habibi Restaurant & Shisha Cafe

Habibi Restaurant & Shisha Cafe is a favourite spot for shisha and Middle Eastern cuisine in El Nido. Located on the main beach strip, Habibi offers an extensive menu of Lebanese and Moroccan dishes, from hummus and falafel to kebabs and tagines.

The shisha menu features over 20 flavours of tobacco like double apple, mint, grape, and mango. Shisha prices range from 300 to 500 pesos depending on size. Coals and hoses are provided complimentary. Habibi's shisha lounge has a relaxed vibe with colourful cushions, lanterns, and Arabesque décor.

When it comes to food, highlights include the chicken shawarma, mixed grill platters with lamb kofta and shrimp kebabs, and the Moroccan harira soup. Mezze starters like baba ghanoush, tabbouleh, and stuffed grape leaves are fresh and full of herb flavours. Habibi also offers a range of fruit juices, lassi yogurt drinks, and Turkish coffee to complement your meal.

With its beachfront location, Habibi is a great spot to unwind over shisha and savour the flavours of the Middle East while taking in the tropical views. The friendly service and cosy atmosphere make it a top choice for shisha in El Nido.

Shisha Smoking Tips

Shisha smoking has a long tradition with an etiquette all its own. Here are some tips for getting the most out of your shisha experience in El Nido:

Shisha Etiquette

  1. Ask before joining someone else's shisha. Sharing shisha is common, but always ask first.
  2. Don't tap or blow into the pipe. This can disrupt air flow.
  3. Only touch the mouthpiece when it's your turn. Avoid touching other parts of the pipe.
  4. Smoke in a circular fashion if sharing. Don't hog the pipe.
  5. Let the coals completely ash over before relighting. Tapping off ashes will make the shisha taste burnt.

Health Considerations of Smoking Shisha

  1. Be mindful of smoke intake if you don't typically smoke cigarettes. Take short, gentle draws.
  2. Stay hydrated. Bring water to sip on between puffs.
  3. Wash hands after smoking, as third-hand smoke residues can remain on skin and clothes.
  4. Avoid smoking multiple shisha bowls in one sitting. Pace yourself and take breaks.

Shisha Safety

Shisha smoking can be an enjoyable experience, but it's important to keep safety in mind to avoid any issues. Here are some tips:

Avoid Shisha Sickness

Shisha sickness can occur when smoking shisha for a prolonged period of time. The early symptoms are similar to nicotine overdose and include nausea, vomiting, headaches, dizziness or lightheadedness. Limit your shisha sessions to 1-2 hours and take breaks in between puffs to allow your body to process the nicotine and avoid sickness. Stay hydrated by drinking water throughout your shisha session.

Don't Share Mouthpieces

Sharing shisha mouthpieces can spread illnesses like colds, flu and herpes. Avoid this by bringing your own disposable mouthpieces or requesting a new disposable tip for each person. Never share a mouthpiece even with a significant other.

Know Your Limits

Overindulging in shisha smoking can make you feel ill. Pay attention to your personal limits and stop smoking when you've had enough. Take breaks during long shisha sessions. Too much tobacco intake at once can cause problems.

Sit in a Well-Ventilated Area

Make sure the shisha cafe has good ventilation, otherwise the room can get filled with smoke very quickly. Sit near a window or ask to be moved if the room is getting smokey. Inhaling a lot of secondhand shisha smoke can cause issues for even non-smokers.

Don't Smoke Daily

While occasional shisha smoking may not cause major health issues, daily use can be very harmful. Avoid smoking shisha on a daily basis as the nicotine and tobacco intake can be addictive and dangerous in large quantities. Moderation is key.

Getting Around El Nido

Getting around El Nido to visit the various shisha spots is easy with the town's small size and multiple transportation options.
  1. Walking is possible for shorter distances between bars and restaurants downtown. The streets are fairly walkable, though be mindful during rainy season that some roads can flood. Bring good walking shoes and watch your step on uneven sidewalks.
  2. Tricycles are the main form of public transportation in El Nido. Also known as "tuk-tuks", tricycles are motorbikes with attached sidecars and can comfortably fit 2-4 passengers. Fares are negotiated but expect to pay 50-100 pesos per ride. Tricycles queue at designated stands around town and run regular routes.
  3. Boats are essential for reaching offshore bars and restaurants. Small bangkas can be chartered from El Nido's beaches, typically charging 500-1,000 pesos per hour depending on distance. Larger ferries go to further islands like [[Cadlao]] and run daily schedules. Buy boat tickets at El Nido Port. Travel time by boat varies greatly depending on destination.

Getting around El Nido by walking, tricycle, or boat makes visiting all the best shisha spots convenient and accessible during your stay.

El Nido is a tropical paradise known for its pristine beaches, dramatic limestone cliffs, and crystal clear waters. It's the perfect place to relax with a shisha pipe and enjoy the island life. Of all the spots to enjoy shisha in El Nido, Pukka Bar, SAVA Beach Bar, Amigos Bar, and Habibi Restaurant stand out as the best.

Pukka Bar is located right on the beach, offering unbeatable views and a laidback vibe. Their fruity shisha flavours pair perfectly with the sound of waves lapping at the shore. SAVA Beach Bar is known for its beach bonfires at night where you can sit in a bean bag chair and puff on shisha, surrounded by the island's natural beauty. Their shisha menu has over 20 flavours to choose from.

Amigos Bar in downtown El Nido provides a lively nightlife scene with shisha service until late. They have comfortable lounges for relaxing with friends while you try shisha flavours like double apple, mint, and grape. For an upscale shisha experience, Habibi Restaurant & Shisha Café offers gourmet meals alongside premium shisha in an elegant dining setting.

No matter which spot you choose, El Nido's shisha bars allow you to soak in the tropical island atmosphere while enjoying the rich smoke and flavours of shisha. It's the quintessential way to unwind during your Philippine island getaway.

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