Surfers from different parts of the globe are traveling to Siargao for its great waves year-round. Rent a surfboard, head to the famous boardwalk, and you can start paddling your way to catch your first wave. Once you’ve had enough swell, you can head back to Cloud 9 or General Luna where many accommodations and restaurants abound. Aussies, Europeans, and Americans choose to spend their vacations here to experience tropical life while being surrounded by warm waves. For travelers who are not so fond of chasing waves or just starting to enjoy it, you also have a lot of activity options to make your stay on Siargao memorable. But before we delve deeper into it, here’s a complete guide on how to go to Siargao from Manila, and the activities you can do on this beautiful island.
Here’s a little sneak peek on what you can expect when you visit Siargao:
How to Go to Siargao from Manila
Situated 800 kilometers in the southeast of Manila is a tropical island where surfers and travelers flock. Siargao is a part of Surigao del Norte and is one of the Philippines’ best islands when it comes to adventures and beach getaways. It is famous for being one of the best surfing spots in the Philippines. When you get here, be sure to visit a surfing spot called “Cloud 9” where you can catch some good waves.
Due to good tourism and great travel destinations, the island of Siargao is increasingly becoming popular to both local and foreign tourists. Whether you are a surfer or a non-surfer, you sure would be interested to visit this island. Life in Siargao for tourists revolves around the town of General Luna. It is set on the east coast and is just a few minutes away from the surfing spots which are facing the Pacific Ocean.
Getting to Sayak or Siargao Airport
Sayak or Siargao airport is the only airport serving the tourists and locals going out and coming in of the general area of Siargao Island. It is located in Barangay Sayak in the province of Surigao del Norte. There are direct flights to the island from Manila via Cebu. Prices for flights may vary but expect to pay approximately PHP 2000 one way. Flight time going to Siargao is approximately 45 minutes.
How to Get to Siargao from Manila?
The second and budget-friendly option is to travel from Surigao City. Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines (PAL Express) have daily flights to Surigao City both from Manila and Cebu, making it a cheaper alternative. When you reach Surigao, hail a cab to take you to the port. From there, you can take trigger boats or RoRo Ferry to Siargao’s Dapa Port (PHP 250 or $5). The earliest trip from Surigao to Dapa leaves at 5:00AM. It is best to take the earliest trip since the boats and ferries can be crowded and hot, especially in summer.
Where to Stay in Siargao?
From the peaceful and laid-back atmosphere, wide variety of activity options, to the friendly locals, you’ll find no reason not to extend your stay in Siargao. Good thing this place is already starting to have an influx of accommodation options so go ahead and spoil yourself a bit more. We’ve got the list of accommodations for any budget:
Price Range – PHP500-1700 or $10-36 per night
Contact Details – Tourism Road, General Luna | firstname.lastname@example.org | (+63) 929 4945 650 | (+63) 928 8738 531
Kokai Resort is known for its well-kept rooms, good location, and cozy atmosphere. But what makes this resort even more appealing to travelers are its friendly owners and staff. There’s never a dull moment once you step out of your cottage and socialize, be it with other guests or resort staff. They will always give you a reason to stay or come back for more through their warm, friendly smiles and stories.
Price Range – PHP450-2750 or $9-58
Contact Details – Purok 5 8419 General Luna | email@example.com | +639176550548 | +639988592080
If you’re looking for a reason why you should stay at Kermit when you visit Siargao, the FREE breakfast will definitely seal the deal! Who would want to worry about where to get a cup of coffee or how to prepare breakfast if you’re too excited to go surfing or beach bumming, right? Aside from offering morning treats, this resort offers everything that you need to make your stay in the island complete. Just ask one of their friendly staff if you want to know more about their tour packages, surfboard and motorbike rental, restobar, and library… and oh, in case you missed it, they also serve FREE breakfast.
Price per night – PHP300 or $6
Contact Detail/s – firstname.lastname@example.org Budget travelers and social butterflies will certainly relish every minute of their stay at Paglaom Hostel. This place is a perfect choice if you want to truly experience the tropical island vibe and hangout with different backpackers without spending a fortune. What’s more is that they accept payment via PayPal, making it more convenient for travelers from all over the world to ensure that they have a place to stay when they reach Siargao.
When is the Best Time to Fly to Siargao?
Siargao suddenly became so popular because of its great water sports, including surfing. If you are going to visit to attend the surfing competition or during peak water sports season, it’s best to know the schedule of the events so you know what time of the year to go. You also have to check the weather conditions, especially if you’re going during offseason. Generally speaking, the peak season in Siargao starts in March and ends in October. The off-peak season starts from November until February. Depending on your preference, you can choose to join other tourists to enjoy the sun and the surf during peak season or enjoy a little quiet and laid back time during off season.
If you are in it to hone your skills in surfing, the best months to visit Siargao is from August to November. During this time, the swell in the water and wind conditions are great for surfing. You will not have a hard time finding your perfect wave to catch. As for the events, going in September will let you catch the Annual Siargao International Surfing Competition. At this time of the year, Siargao can be busy.
Things to do in Siargao
For travelers who are not so fond of chasing waves or just starting to enjoy it, you also have a lot of options to make your stay on Siargao memorable.
Surfing Lesson – PHP 500 or $10 for 1 hour
Surf Board Rental – Short boards PHP350-500 or $8-10 a day
Long boards PHP 400-700 or $15-21 a day
Of course, your visit to the surfing mecca of Mindanao would not be complete without trying to brave the waves. The good news is that there’s actually a spot on Siargao that is perfect for beginners. It is on the Quicksilver side and is located just next to Cloud 9. The waves here are smaller but still break on shallow reef, making it ideal for practicing. Another popular spot for surfing classes is G1. From General Luna, you’ll have to take 15-minute motorcycle ride to reach this place.
If you are not challenged by the waves of Quicksilver and G1, there are more surfing spots that you can explore. Some of the most popular include Cloud 9, Stimpy’s, Daku Reef, Rock Island, and Cemetery. Another activity to look forward to is to watch or join the Siargao cup – a surfing competition sponsored by the Surigao del Norte provincial government. This annual event is held either in late September or early October.
Magpupungko Beach and Tidal Pools
About an hour and 30-minute motorcycle ride from General Luna awaits more interesting tourist spots known as the Magpupungko Beach and Tidal Pools. It is located in Pilar and offers 2 great attractions, the long stretch of white sandy beach and the beautiful tidal pools.
While the beach already looks like a great reward after a 30-minute ride, the tidal pools are not to be overlooked. During low tide, the wide underwater boulders create a natural sea of water pools. Be sure to wear sunscreen because you won’t be able to resist swimming in the tidal pools or just basking in the sun while watching the roaring waves of the Pacific Ocean. You might also want to bring a dry bag where you can store your stuff since there are no cottages near the tidal pools.
For island hopping, you will be visiting three captivating islands namely Naked Island, Daku Island, and Guyam Island. There are a lot of resorts offering day tours to these islands so you won’t have a hard time looking for a boat you can rent for a whole day.
The first stop is Naked Island – no naked men or women, just a beautiful stretch of bare sandbar surrounded by crystal clear water.
Next is Dako Island, the biggest and most beautiful of all three. This is also the best spot to chill, enjoy your lunch, or take a break from the scorching heat of the sun. Coconut trees grace the long stretch of powdery white sand. There is even a small community living on the island so this is also the best time to mingle with the locals.
Last on the itinerary is Guyam Island, a small private island ideal for snorkeling or beach bumming.
Getting around Siargao
Tourists on Siargao rent a motorbike to get around the island. The roads on Siargao are safe and driving around can be very relaxing.
For only about $7 or $8 per day, you can rent a motorbike. You can fill it up with petrol and you’re all set to start your adventure.
Siargao has a lot of beautiful places and great activities to offer both locals and tourists. so make sure that you will visit those places. Plan ahead and use this guide to make your trip to this island unforgettable. Now that you already know how to go to Siargao from Manila, which activities to try, and what places to visit, it’s time to tick this beautiful island off your bucket list.