Siargao, Philippines: Surfer's Dream Paradise
So happy I discovered the beautiful tropical island of Siargao in the Philippines. I heard about this island on a diving trip in Coron, Philippines from a couple who mentioned it was their favorite island in the Philippines. Siargao has a unique mix of excellent surfing, laid back vibes, deserted beaches, blue water, and unlimited supply of fresh coconuts. This was all I needed to know to book a four day trip to Siargao to see it for myself! Siargao is located 800 kilometers southeast of Philippines' capital Manila. It belongs to the province of Surigao del Norte, situated at the northeastern tip of Mindanao.
I think four days is just enough for spending your time on this little quaint island. We first flew from HK to Manila to stay in an overnight hotel near the airport. Then, early in the morning we went to the airport to catch the first flight to Siargao, Island. There are only a handful of flights that flies to Siargao each day and the flight is only 2 hours long. Cebu pacific is a trusty airline to book your flight.
My normal route to finding hotels is through booking.com or Agoda. Since it was a very last minute decision to go away during CNY, not many hotels were left for that long weekend. However, I manage to find the ultimate insta-worthy glamping resort. It is called Soul-Tribe Beach Resort and it just opened their doors in December 2017. I highly recommend staying at this resort if you don't mind an outdoor shower. Everything else felt very comfortable and relaxing. I especially loved the 7am yoga session every morning and waking up to the sound of the beach. The hotel is located a few minutes away from the town, but we rented a scooter from the resort which solved any transportation issues. Most travelers end up staying in General Luna because the lively beach town has a decent variety of resorts and restaurants, and is still not overrun by mass tourism.
The food in Siargao island was surprisingly delicious. We especially loved the Acai bowls at Shaka Siargao. They have an extensive selection of smoothie bowls and skillfully made fruit art fitting for an Instagram post. For dinner options, I really enjoyed the vibes and food at Bravo and La Carinderia. The seafood is absolutely the best, a culinary feast!
My boyfriend and I booked one day of scuba diving, however the dive master had a tooth ache that day and decided to not dive. It was unfortunate because apparently he was the only dive master on the whole island apparently.
In Lieu, we decided to take a trip north to Magpupungko, which was a sand beach with natural rock formations & tidal pools, noted for sunrise-watching. Surrounded by bizarre rock formations lies a natural pool that looks like an infinity pool. There is an entrance fee of PHP50 (US$1) per person. We drove our scooter about 45minutes up to the site. We got some nice sunburns along the way because we didn't wear enough sunblock. We originally wanted to check out the Tayangban Cave Pool but it was closed for cleaning.
The best activity to do is surfing in Siargao. There are many different surf spots around Siargao. We booked surf lessons at our hotel who arranged everything for us. I have only surfed once before and it was in San Sebastien, Spain. If you are a beginner like me, I highly recommend you wear a one piece bathing suit. It was definitely a novice mistake on my part. We surfed in a secluded area off an island called Daku Reef. It was a whole body workout for sure. Cloud 9 is the most popular break on Siargao Island. It is where they held some international surf competitions.
One morning, we decided to visit the resort next door because we heard there were fresh coconuts. I didn't realize that the man climbed up the tree to pick the coconuts off himself and serve it to us. It was really fun to watch and the coconut was DELICIOUS!
Overall, I think Siargao is a great beach destination for friends, couples or even alone! I think its a great place to visit year round. I went around end of February and it only rained once during our four day trip. I would definitely want to go back again and highly recommend visiting next time you're in the Philippines. The slow pace of life, affordable accommodation, fantastic surfing, lack of tourists, and laid-back attitudes makes it one of my favorite beach destinations.