Siargao Island is one of the popular tourist destinations in the province of Surigao de Norte, Philippines. Its coastline is set apart by a progression of reefs, small points and white, sandy shorelines. The neighboring islands and islets have comparative landforms. Siargao has a total land area of 437 square kilometers and it is divided into 9 municipalities – Burgos, Dapa, Del Carmen, General Luna, San Benito, Pilar, San Isidro, Santa Monica and Socorro.
Siargao Island is also known to have the largest mangrove forest reserves in whole Mindanao. Its pacific-facing reefs are located on the edge of the country’s trench. It is one of the best places to do surfing because of the big waves and perfect climate. During August to November, Siargao caters the best surfing condition, which is caused by the southwest monsoon.
The best way on how to get to Siargao is with Cebu Pacific Airlines. They have direct flights from Manila via Cebu City, three times a week (Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays). Another way to get to Siargao is to ride a ferry boat from Surigao City. The earliest vessel that departs from Surigao port is the MV Britphil, they are scheduled to depart around 6:00AM. The next ferry departs around 11:00am so make sure to plan your arrival in Surigao City for you to catch your preferred schedule. The ride to Siargao would normally take around two to three hours. One way ticket costs around 210 to 350 pesos.
In any case that you plan to travel with a bigger group or you arrive in Surigao port late, then you can catch the special charter boats. Just approach the locals and ask for their rates, it can range from 8,000 to 12,000 pesos or around 500 to 800 pesos per passenger
One best thing that you can try and visit in Siargoa is the Cloud 9 which is known for its surfing waves. This is where some of the local and international surfing competitions are held. There are several surfing spots in Siargao but Cloud 9 really stuck in the heads of the tourists because it is so easy to access. You can just ride a motorcycle or habal-habal from the town center to Cloud 9.
Here, there are locals who can teach you how to surf and let them use their surfboard for an hour or two. One thing to note is to wear water shoes because it might be painful when your feet hit the big stones and coral reefs.
Of course, Siargao Island is not all about surfing and big waves but also perfect for island hopping. Just off the shores of Siargao are the amazing and relaxing islands – the Daku Island, Naked Island and Guyam Island. You can make arrangements to your inn or resort because most of them offer day tours in these islands.
Where to stay? Well, most tourists end up staying in General Luna because of the decent variety of resorts and restaurants. This lively beach town is not that crowded so you can still chill, relax and enjoy the views without too many people roaming around.