Siargao Philippines: Paradise for Surfers and Non-Surfers Alike

SIARGAO PHILIPPINES

Siragao is one of the best islands to visit in the Philippines. It’s a laid-back paradise with quaint restaurants, friendly locals, and amazing beaches to visit. The most popular activity to do here is surfing; thus, earning the moniker ‘Surfing Capital of The Philippines’ – where waves are present all year-round. If you’re not a surfer, like us, do not be discouraged – the island has a lot of things in store for you as well. There are direct flights to the island now so there’s no excuse not to visit.

HOW TO GET THERE
  1. Book a flight to Siargao. Direct flights from Manila are available through Cebu Pacific, Skyjet or Philippine Airlines. Manila-Cebu-Siargao flights are also available via Cebu Pacific.
  2. From Siargao Airport, hire a van going to your resort/hostel. There are vans waiting at the arrival area. It’s better if you book an airport transfer or reserve van seats through your resort.
  3. If your staying at General Luna or Cloud 9, travel time is 45 minutes.
Look out the window – you don’t know what you’re missing out on!
WHERE TO STAY

The town of General Luna is where most people stay. Most resorts and hostels are concentrated here even though it’s 45 minutes away from the airport. It’s also the jump-off if you’re island hopping to Daku, Guyam, and Naked Island. Most vans drop-off passengers at various resorts in General Luna. There are a lot of options, from affordable hostels to premium resorts. Resorts gets fully-booked during peak season so make sure to reserve beforehand. Here’s a list of hotels in Siargao.

Quiet sunset at Siargao Island
THINGS TO DO

Apart from surfing, there are numerous activities that you can do and sights that you can visit on the island. You may visit Magpupungko Rock Pool – a tidal pool facing the Pacific Ocean. It is one of the most frequented natural attraction here. Just rent a bike or hire a habal-habal to bring you to Magpupungko. From General Luna, the rock pool is just 30-40 minutes away.

Walking to Mapupungko – bring waterproof bags to be safe.
During low-tide, a natural rock pool facing the Pacific emerges

 

You may also visit the islands scattered around the main island of Siargao. The three most visited and is usually clustered in a tour are Naked Island, Daku Island & Guyam Island. Tours are good for a day for only P1,500 for 4-6 people. It would really depend on you on how long you’ll stay in each island. Most boatmen would usually start with Naked Island as its the farthest from the town.

Naked Island, is basically a sandbar in the middle of the sea. It is similar to Naked Island of Surigao and White Island of Camiguin. The crystal clear blue waters surrounding this sandbar is perfect for swimming. Do not forget to put a load of sunblock before alighting your boat as it can get pretty hot.

The beautiful Naked Island sandbar

Daku Island is the next stop. This is where most people stop-over to have lunch. It’s a much bigger island. There are huts that you could rent here along the beach. You can also ask the locals to cook food for you depending on their catch of the day. The beach is also perfect for swimming.

Clear blue waters all the way

Last on the tour is Guyam Island – a small islet just across General Luna town, covered with coconut trees. You can spend the night here if you’re up for it. Make sure you have camping gears since there are no residents staying in this small islet. One side of it is perfect for swimming. The opposite side facing the Pacific are mostly rock formations and reefs – it’s still a beautiful sight though. We would definitely spend a night here when we come back.

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Island in the sun – Guyam Island is just a 10-minute boat ride from General Luna

Also drop-by the famous Cloud 9 – a viewing deck out by the ocean. Buy a beer in a nearby cafe or restaurant and stay here for hours and just bask in the sounds of the waves crashing.

The famous Cloud 9 boardwalk
View from the first level – endless waves crashing from the Pacific Ocean. There are also pro-surfers trying to ride these big waves
OTHER THINGS TO DO

Eat! and eat a lot! There are a lot of quaint and interesting restaurants in General Luna. A must-try would be Kermit Surf Resort and Restaurant. Their DIY brick-oven pizza is THE. BEST. If you’re in for some tacos, there are two taquerias in General Luna: Miguel’s and Yeah Yeah Tacos – both are very affordable and serve delicious soft tacos. Also try the local iced candy/ice cream in Yeah Yeah Tacos for only P50. If you’re a vegan, try Shaka. They serve Siargao’s Insta-famous smoothie bowls. Harana is also worth trying for its Filipino food with a twist.

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Shaka bowls are delicious, healthy, and Instagram-worthy

We also advise you to be part of maintaining the island’s natural beauty by joining beach clean-ups by SEA Movement or The Sun Crew. You may check out their social media accounts to learn more.

TIPS
  • Bring cash. There’s only one ATM on the island near the Church in General Luna.
  • Book an airport transfer through your resort to lessen the hassle.
  • If you know how to ride a motorcycle, the best and most cost efficient way to go around the island is by renting one.
  • Check the weather on your planned date of visit since flights get easily delayed/cancelled if there’s a strong typhoon. Note that all planes flying to Siargao are propeller planes.
  • Lean months are from August – December (wet Season – stronger waves) while peak months are January – April (summer). Best time to go is any time during the off-peak season because the resorts, bars, restaurants, and beaches can get crowded during summer.
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Favorite mode of transportation in Siargao
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