Philippines – Sunlight Gym and Bodyworks, Puerto Princesa

Location:  Sunlight Gym and Bodyworks, 3rd Floor, Unitop Building, Malvar Road, Puerto Princesa, 5300 Palawan
Google maps: Click here
Opening hours: 6am to 9pm
Price: 75 pesos (Approx £1.25)

Like the look of this gym? If you want to stay nearby then you can check out the links to hotels within walking distance at the end of this article.

Review:  Puerto Pricesa is the capital city of the Filipino island of Palawan, an island which is also home to the towns of popular backpackers destinations of El Nido and Coron.

Having checked into our hotel and had a look around at the sites including a local cathedral and the Spanish fort, it was time to find a gym in Puerto Princesa. Having picked my hotel specifically to be within walking distance to the gym I had found, I made my way through the winding side street of local houses to the Unitop Building.

This building is actually a slightly run down local shopping mall, and despite many of the shops being empty, it actually conceals one of the best gyms that I found in the Philippines. Sunlight Gym and Bodyworks is a medium to large sized gym, with a very decent selection of free weights, machines and new school training equipment, such as battle ropes or kettle bells. The gym also has a bank of cardio equipment, set up along a glass wall looking out over the view of the local port. Its actually a pretty beautiful place to run, if you are into that sort of thing.

This gym has:

  • dumbbells up to 50kg
  • adjustable benches
  • olympic barbell
  • smith machine
  • squat rack
  • flat barbell bench
  • incline barbell bench
  • easy bars
  • hammer curl bar
  • chest press machine
  • chest fly machine
  • smith machine
  • cables
  • lat pulldown machine
  • seated low row
  • pull up bar
  • leg press machine
  • leg extension machine
  • kettle bells
  • Bosu balls
  • Battle ropes
  • Swiss balls

The gym has air conditioning, so it is nice and cool inside and the equipment is all pretty new and functioning. As well as their gym equipment, the gym also offers zumba classes for 70 pesos per session (approx £1.20). Personal training is also available and costs 2400 for 12 sessions, which works out to be about  £40. Individual sessions can be negotiated with the trainers there.

From the reception counter at the front of the gym, you can also buy water and other isotonic drinks as well as a variety of supplements. This actually turned out to be a bit of a life saver and strangely, it worked out cheaper than buying tubs of supplements from the stores that I found. Each dose comes in a plastic baggie, so you can plan ahead and stock up it you need to. You can buy the following supplements from here:

  • Whey Protein: 80 pesos 
  • Mass: 50 pesos
  • Serious Mass: 70 pesos

Who is this gym for? – I would describe this gym has having a professional and safe training environment. The gym was clean and the equipment in good working order. By Filipino standards, this really is a  great gym.   Most of the staff here were women and there tourists and locals of both sexes training here and as such I would also say that this gym is suitable for single female travellers.

The area that the gym is located in is fairly commercial and busy, with street lights and plenty of traffic, but all travellers should take care if they are walking around on their own.

Tips: Sunlight Gym and Bodyworks is located on the third floor of the mall, (second floor for English readers). The upper floors of this mall are a little empty, with a lot of empty shop units. You may well get the feeling you have wondered off of the beaten path, but don’t worry, the gym is up there. Its at the back on the left hand side. Have a great workout!

Nearby Hotels:

$ – Puerto Bay View Backpacker: From £5

$$ – Dads Bayview Pension: From £19

$$$ – Puerto Pensions: From £28