Palawan makes Lonely Planet’s top 10 list of places to visit in Asia-Pacific in 2019. Long known as the Philippines’ last frontier, Palawan has ridden a slew of media accolades to the cusp of international superstardom. Fortunately, it’s not there yet. These are the heady days when new air routes and upgraded roads make it easier than ever to explore the dramatic seascapes and wildlife-laden jungles of the slender 400km-long main island before it inevitably becomes more developed. The crown jewel is El Nido, where skyscraping karst formations rise out of blue water in Bacuit Bay. New rules restrict visitor numbers at signature sights like Big Lagoon on Miniloc Island, while a ban on single-use plastic bottles on tour boats is helping to tackle marine pollution.