Knowing the adventurous person that you are, it would be a shame not to try an exotic dish from the place you went. Palawan can really push the meaning of “exotic food.” Presenting, the tamilok, what is anyway? It’s also called shipworm, but it actually belongs to the shell family. Imagine a really long and worm-like oyster and that’s basically what it looks like. These aren’t bite sized if you don’t cut them, they do grow to over 12 inches long.
It’s not exclusively found in Palawan, anywhere there’s mangrove then there’s tamilok since they do live inside the dead ones. Tamilok is served raw alongside a dip made up of vinegar, onions, garlic, etc. If you really are up for the challenge, then you can head over to Bakhawan Eco Park and have a tamilok or two. But if you prefer places closer to the city like restaurants and bars, then dine in at either Kinabuch or Tiki Bar. Another option is to buy them in public markets, they’re sold in bags and you have to clean them yourself.
We guarantee that it will be slimy, it will make you feel like a fear factor contestant or it can be quite attuned to your taste. If you’re wondering how to eat it, then it’s quite simple actually. Grab a piece of that plump tamilok, dip it in the sauce and swallow, don’t chew. Many actually prefer it to the taste of oysters and the locals love it, especially with a beer in hand.