Siargao, dubbed as the "Surfing Capital of the Philippines," has become a must-visit destination in recent years. Situated in Surigao del Norte, in the southern part of the country, this beautiful island has experienced rapid growth in tourism, attracting visitors from all over the world.
In this article, we will explore the reasons why Siargao should be on your travel bucket list and all you need to know before visiting Siargao.
You can also read: The Ultimate Philippines 10-Day Itineraries
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Overview of Siargao Island
A tiny island in the shape of a teardrop, Siargao is situated on Mindanao's northeastern shore in the province of Surigao del Norte, close to the Pacific Ocean.
Covering an area of about 437 square kilometres, Siargao is a relatively small island that's easy to explore. It is also considered one of the most accessible islands.
With its 48 islands and islets divided into nine municipalities, Siargao is home to one of the world's most renowned and challenging surfing waves. But that's not all - Siargao offers a wide range of activities and attractions, from surfing and stunning beaches to island hopping and road trips through unspoiled terrain.
Siargao is without a doubt a tropical adventurer's dream destination, as it is surrounded by emerald green waters, is covered in coconut palm trees, and has some of the Philippines' most exquisite beach resorts.
The best time to visit is from March through September when the island's stunning beauty is at its peak.
Siargao: A Great Place for Surfing
Siargao is a true surfer's paradise. Whether you're a seasoned pro or simply love being out on the water, this island has something for everyone who loves to catch a wave.
Siargao is famous for its world-class surf breaks, which draw surfers from around the globe. With consistent conditions year-round, year provides something to suit all skill levels, so you can enjoy your time on the water.
There are several excellent surf spots to explore in Siargao, each with its own unique character and challenges. Guiuan, Jacking Horse, Quicksilver, Daku Reef, Cemetery, Bumee, and seven others offer an array of options for surfers looking for a new challenge.
The first and most renowned one is Cloud 9, which is recognised for its tremendous intensity, resulting in its popularity among professional surfers and adrenaline seekers. The experience of catching a wave at Cloud 9 is truly unforgettable.
But Siargao is more than just great surf breaks. The surfing scene in Siargao is a vibrant and communal one, with regular competitions and events bringing surfers together from around the world.
Siargao: A Paradise for Adventure Seekers
Siargao is not just a surfer's paradise; it's a haven for adventure seekers of all kinds. It also offers a wide range of fun outdoor activities, including cave exploration, rock climbing, kayaking, paddle boarding, and island hopping.
With its rich marine life, the island is also a fantastic destination for swimming and diving enthusiasts. With a 20-meter-diameter hole and two deep tunnels, Blue Cathedral is one of the most popular dive sites off the island.
For those seeking an adrenaline rush, Siargao has plenty of options. Due to its distinctive topography, the island also offers exhilarating cliff-jumping sites for thrill-seekers and a 100-meter wakeboarding facility for those who can't get enough water activities.
For a more laid-back adventure, travellers can explore the stunning Tayangban Cave and lagoon, where they can marvel at the striking stalactites and stalagmites that decorate the cave's interior.
Siargao is a hidden gem in the Philippines that has managed to maintain its natural beauty, partially developed and unnoticed by the masses, making it even more appealing to travellers seeking an unspoiled destination and a slower pace of life.
Its serene white sand beaches and lush palm tree canopy provide a tranquil haven for those who crave a peaceful retreat.
The island's breathtaking natural reserves, such as Sugba Lagoon, Magpupungko Rock Pool, and Sohoton Cove, offer awe-inspiring sights for outdoor enthusiasts.
Siargao's topography is conducive to preserving natural resources, particularly its lush forests and rich marine reserve.
The island features some spectacular scenic sceneries, and is a treasured preserve for nature lovers, surrounded as it is with clear and deep waters teeming with an abundance of sea life and coral reefs.
Food in Siargao
After a day filled with swimming, surfing, and sunbathing, you'll undoubtedly crave a hearty meal and refreshing drink to refuel. Fortunately, Siargao boasts a diverse range of delectable cuisines to satisfy your cravings. With numerous inexpensive eateries and fresh seafood prepared right in front of you, Siargao's food scene is not to be missed.
One of the best things about Siargao's food is its ability to connect travellers with the local culture. By sampling traditional dishes, you can immerse yourself in the island's rich culinary heritage and appreciate its unique flavours and spices.
Where to Eat in Siargao
Check out Mama's Grill for barbecued chicken breasts, sausages, and pork; Café Loka for all-day breakfasts, sandwiches, and salads; and Kermit Siargao for authentic brick-oven Italian pizza and pasta.
If you fancy something romantic, head over to Isla Cabana and have Tuna Tataki with your loved one, or just lounge around their infinity pool with a cocktail in one hand.
Restaurants serving both Filipino and international cuisine are plentiful in Siargao. Food lovers need to look no further for their culinary delights.
Nightlife in Siargao
The island has a plethora of attractions to offer, one of which is its nightlife. For many locals, Siargao's nightlife typically comprises of bars where they can socialise with other locals, have a drink, and simply enjoy themselves.
After trying out every activity and visiting every place, culminate your day by unwinding at a pub or a bar for the highlight of your evening.
It is not surprising that Siargao boasts one of the trendiest nightlife scenes in the Philippines. RumBar is one of the most popular places for partying, drinking, and dancing to live music on Monday nights.
Lumad Hostel, situated on its terrace overlooking the main street of General Luna, offers sing-alongs and live guitar music, while Baile Restobar is widely regarded as the top karaoke joint in the vicinity. During your visit, enjoy a refreshing beer or a decadent cocktail.
Accommodation in Siargao
Siargao provides a diverse range of accommodation options to suit any budget and preference, from affordable homestays to luxurious beach resorts and upscale hotels.
Additionally, visitors have the flexibility to choose where they wish to stay, with options available in four main areas: Socorro, General Luna, Pacifico, and Malinao.
Some of the best Hotels in Siargao
Most Luxurious Hotel: Mango Tree Siargao is a lovely modern style 5-star resort, offering luxury villas for families or a group of friends.
Most Exclusive beachfront B&B: L'Osteria Luxe Beachfront B&B with only three rooms and a beautiful garden is a great place for thoes looking for a relaxing holiday.
Most Unique Place to Stay in Siargao: Punta Punta Surf Retreat with an outdoor swimming pool, garden, a terrace is one of the best hotels in Siargao.
Best Beachfront Hotel: Siargao Island Villas feature an outdoor swimming pool, free private parking, a restaurant and water sports facilities. It is a 4-star beach resort, just a few steps away from General Luna Beach.
Best Budget-friendly accommodation in Siargao: Hiraya Surf Hostel is a spacious unique-styled dorm with an outdoor swimming pool. Hiraya can be a great place for solo travellers who want to meet other like-minded people.
How to Get to Siargao
When you arrive by air from abroad in the Philippines, most likely you will land in Manila or Cebu. From both ports, there are flights to the island of Siargao.
It's crucial to note the distinction between Surigao and Siargao when making travel arrangements. Surigao, a city on the mainland, is not to be confused with Siargao, the picturesque tropical island that lies approximately 2 to 3 hours away by ferry from Surigao. If you find yourself in Surigao City you can get the fast ferry to Siargao Island.
People of Siargao
Siargao Island has become a popular tourist destination for many reasons, including its warm and welcoming local community. This island is a shining example of the Philippines' reputation for hospitality.
The island's residents are dedicated to providing guests with the best possible experience, often going above and beyond their duty to ensure visitors feel at home. The culture of Siargao is rich and vibrant, and it is worth taking some time to learn about.
It is so common to be greeted by locals while strolling around the island's streets. Visiting Siargao isn't just an opportunity to relax and have fun; it's also a chance to immerse yourself in a different culture and learn about the people who call it home.
Siargao is rich in history, and its natural beauty is awe-inspiring, with high tide waves, warm waters, and pristine white sand that make it one of the best surfing spots in Asia.
Siargao's capital island boasts natural wonders that are unique to the region, making it a must-visit destination for anyone seeking a tropical getaway.