siargao

Ride the waves of Siargao Island! What are the best surfing spots for beginners, intermediate, and advanced surfers? What other activities does the island offer aside from surfing? What are the best islands and beaches that you can come and visit? Plan out your Siargao itinerary with this ultimate list of the best things to do and activities on the island of Siargao.

A hidden paradise located off the coast of Surigao del Norte, Siargao Island has found its way to the hearts of travelers all over the world – surfers and non-surfers alike.

Surrounded by crystal clear turquoise waters and covered in coconut palm trees, Siargao is no doubt a dream tropical destination for both local and international travelers. Known as the "Surfing Capital of the Philippines," the island boasts some of the most influential surf breaks in the world. Its reliable surfing conditions all year round offers something for all skill levels. Home to the famous Cloud 9 and other beginner-friendly surf beaches tucked in some of the hidden spots all over the island, Siargao is on every surfer's dream destination.

Despite its popularity in the global surfing scene, Siargao has a lot more to offer. More than its famous surf breaks, the island has its unique charm that attracts and excites the wanderlust in every traveler who stumbles upon it. It might have turned to one of the most visited spots in the Philippines, but Siargao hasn't lost its laidback island vibe. The warm and friendly locals inhabiting the island are on a mission to preserve the magic of Siargao's natural beauty.

Siargao will surely not disappoint you. Any traveling soul hungry for adventures, experiences, and places to discover will find fulfillment in this unassuming and straightforward island. It has pristine white beaches and islands, breathtaking lagoons, and lush green coconut trees lined up on the roads. These are some of the reasons why you must include the island of Siargao in your bucket list.

Here are 18 activities waiting for you in no other than your dream tropical destination, Siargao.



 CONTENTS

1. Surf Cloud 9’s World Famous Waves

Cloud 9 is Siargao's most popular surfing spot. This surfing paradise is in the southeast corner of Siargao, in the town of General Luna. Cloud 9 is famous for its barreling right-hand waves and thick hollow tubes that can make every advanced surfer's heart skip a beat.

Top 18 Things to Do in Siargao

The best part is that Cloud 9 has great waves all year round. But if you want to catch the ocean in its best surfing conditions, visit from September to December. The last quarter of the year is the busiest surfing season; surfers and tourists from all over the world seek to experience the best swells. Cloud 9 is also the favorite venue to showcase the talents of local and international surfers during the annual International Surfing competition, which usually held in late September or early October.

Aside from its world-class swells, Cloud 9 attracts crowds as it is easily accessible and has a beautiful, picturesque boardwalk. Cloud 9's famous boardwalk is a great spot to snap some photos. It is one of the most photographed Siargao tourist spots. Cloud 9 is also the most highly commercialized area in Siargao. You can find a wide selection of restaurants, souvenir shops, and several cool clothing brands here.

Although Cloud 9 waves are more suitable for advanced surfers, beginners and non-surfers still love to go here to watch the pros at work. There are nearby surf spots here that are excellent for beginners to intermediate levels.



2. Get a Tan on Naked Island

Surfing isn't only the only exciting activity you can do in the Surfing Capital. Island hopping in Siargao is extremely popular. It comes as no surprise since Siargao has several pristine islets that are every beach lover's dream. One of the islets you shouldn't miss out on is Naked Island

Naked island is one of the three islands you can see from the shores of General Luna. The other two islands are Daku Island and Guyam Island, which along with Naked Island, make up the highly-recommended island hopping tour package in Siargao

Naked Island in Siargao

Naked Island, a 200-meter long strip of sand in the middle of the Pacific is completely bare, except for a few shells ushered in by the waves. There are no trees or shrubs on Naked Island to give you shade. It may be scorching hot in the noonday sun, but you’re bound to enjoy the excellent contrast between the perfect white sand and blue sky. 

Swim in the sparkling waters of Naked Island, lounge in the shallows, and can work up a beautiful tan. Just remember to layer on sunscreen so you’ll only get healthy glowing natural bronze without the sunburn. You can also bring food and drinks at Naked Island for a quick island snack, just be mindful to leave nothing but footprints.

3. Take the Leap at Sugba Lagoon

Sugba Lagoon is a gem tucked away in the quiet town of Del Carmen in Siargao. You will find this spectacular destination in the middle of a mystical mangrove forest surrounded by mountains. Sugba Lagoon offers visitors a stunning 4,000-hectare turquoise swimming spot isolated from the hustle and bustle of General Luna. You can stake out your piece of land (or water) and chill out in perfect isolation. 

It's a short day trip from General Luna and is typically combined with the journey to Magpupungko Pools afterward. The place offers a variety of activities such as dive-board jumping, kayaking, board paddling, and of course, swimming. 

The most iconic "landmark" of Sugba lagoon is the wooden diving board rigged from coco lumber. It may look rickety, but this diving board is strong enough to support tourist after tourist. Don't miss the chance to jump off here, and make sure to take a picture like everyone else! A visit to this enchanting lagoon indeed wouldn't be complete without jumping from its famed diving board.

If you're not into dive-board jumping, you can laze around Sugba Lagoon, rent one of the wooden rafts, or test your balance stand-up paddleboard out in the water. If you're hungry from all the active water activities in Sugba Lagoon, there's a cafe in the vicinity.

4. Explore the Enchanting Sohoton Cove National Park

Sohoton Cove National Park's unbelievable beauty will leave you speechless. Located in Bucas Grande Island and only a one-hour boat trip from Dapa port in Siargao, this place is truly a hidden paradise.

Sohoton Cove National Park in Siargao

Sohoton Cove National Park has secluded gems that will fascinate and surprise you. Its Blue Lagoon is often compared to some of the lagoons in El Nido, Palawan. Surrounded by massive and majestic green limestone formations and blazing blue waters, you can't help but marvel at Sohoton Cove's raw beauty. 

Another remarkable natural attraction in Sohoton Cove is the lagoon filled with thousands of stingless jellyfish. Tourists were initially allowed to swim with the gelatinous creatures of the lagoon as the jellyfish were harmless. However, that is no longer permitted today, and visitors are not allowed to swim in that lagoon. Instead, guides will bring you to the lagoon on a small dinghy where you can watch the jellyfish merrily swimming around your boat.

Caves like Hagukan Cave and Magkuku-ob Cave will also offer you exciting experiences. Hagukan Cave is a luminescent cave with blue waters. Magkuku-ob Cave, on the other hand, has a reasonably high cliff at around 5 meters where you and your friends can go on a spontaneous group adventure.

5. Swim in the Magpupungko Rock Pools

Best enjoyed during the low tide, Magpupungko Rock Pools is another attraction you shouldn't leave out of your Siargao day tour. This tide-dependent pool has been one of the go-to non-surfing spots in Siargao

Magpupungko Rock Pools are exposed during low tide and submerged at high tide. So, timing is everything. 

Visit at the right time, and you will surely see crystal blue waters and that cliff jumping experience you've been dreaming. These unique tidal pools are also perfect picture-taking spots, courtesy to its one of a kind pool and rock formations.

You can dive off the nearby cliffs, or explore the caves surrounding the crystal pools. Be careful, however, as climbing the jagged rocks can result in scratches and bruises. These pools are located in Pilar and are the area's primary tourist draw. The ride to Magpupungko takes only around 45 minutes from General Luna, but you can rent a van to take you there if you travel as a group. 

6. Taste the Best Barbecue at Mama’s Grill

If you’re craving for some fresh seafood and mouth-watering barbecue, look no further than the crowd favorite, Mama's Grill. This locally-owned and family-operated joint serve one of the best barbecue in Siargao.

siargao resorts food

Mama's Grill offers a wide selection of grilled seafood, pork belly, pork chops, chicken legs, local sausages, and vegetables dripping in sweet and spicy sauce. Enjoy your barbecue with a generous serving of rice and an ice-cold beer to have that full Siargao Island experience.

Mama's Best is truly the best place to go if you want authentic and affordable Filipino barbecue grill experience. This humble eatery has a very casual street vibe, so don't expect a posh set-up. While Mama's Grill may not be a fancy restaurant, the food certainly will not disappoint you.

Because of Mama's Grill's popularity, the place is usually always full. You can call ahead for a reservation, especially if you're with a big group. Or you can simply walk-in. Just be prepared to wait for at least 30 minutes since the restaurant tends to be jam-packed during peak hours.

7. Discover the Charm of Guyam Island

Joining an island hopping tour in Siargao should be on top of your list. As mentioned earlier, there are several idyllic islets off the coast of Siargao that you should experience. Aside from Naked Island, there's Guyam Island.

Picture a tiny tropical island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean as a grove of luscious palm trees circled by beautiful white sand and a lovely array of rock formations. That's Guyam Island. This palm-covered oasis is so small that you can walk to the other side of the island in about 50 steps.

Don't be fooled by its size though, Guyam Island may be small, but you'll soon find yourself charmed by its azure waters, powdery sand, and reefs. There are also hammocks and swings if you want to want to rest, read a book, or take a quick nap as you hear the sound of waves crashing on the rocks by the shore. 

Because of the abundance of coconuts on this island, it's an excellent spot to sip on buko juice (coconut juice]. Your guide or a local would gladly climb up a tree and break open a coconut for you for a small fee. It won't be a complete experience unless you enjoy a refreshing buko drink by the shores of Guyam Island.

8. Enjoy a Tropical Feast at Daku Island

Most prominent among the three famous islands in Siargao, Daku Island, is also the most breathtaking one. Imagine turquoise blue seawater that gives you front seat view to plenty of fish and colorful coral reefs. This long strip of beach has cottages and coconut trees, a perfect stop to have lunch after a morning of hopping from island to island.

Feel free to bring your food, or better yet, buy fresh seafood in the main island of Siargao and have locals cook them for you at Daku Island. Nothing beats a tropical seafood feast while looking out over the sparkling cerulean waters of Daku Island. Watch the stunning waves touch the shore in all its glory.

Don't be afraid to get lost under the coconut palms as you roam around the island. You can also mingle and share stories with the friendly locals as they are very accommodating in suggesting other activities worth trying while in Siargao. Go snorkeling or relish the stunningly clear water for a swim. 

Soak up the sun and get that perfect tan. Whether you're into underwater activities like diving and snorkeling or relax by the beach, Daku Island is the place to be.

9. Try Shaka Café’s Smoothie Bowls

Shaka Cafe in Siargao is the go-to place for instagrammable healthy food choices such as fruit bowls and cold-pressed juices. Shaka Cafe is most famous for its signature smoothie bowls that are as vibrant as Siargao Island itself. Their smoothie bowls are a great way to cool off after a hot day on the beaches of Siargao.

Island of Siargao Food

Shaka is also a very vegan-friendly joint. Aside from the fruit smoothie bowls, they offer a wide selection of filling fruit shakes and other vegan snacks.

Be sure to sample their best-sellers, which are the Bom Dia, Cloud 9 Kook, and Green. Truly, Shaka is the perfect place to get your smoothie bowls to fix throughout the day. They also serve sumptuous all-day breakfast and specialty coffee. Located near the beach, this surfer-themed cafe has a fantastic view of Cloud 9.

10. Chase the Waves in Pacifico Beach

Pacifico Beach is about an hour's motorbike drive from General Luna. It offers technical surf breaks for advanced surfers and is perfect for people who want to veer away from the crowded Cloud 9.

Long winding roads lined up with verdant palm tree forests will lead you to Pacifico Beach. Riding on a motorcycle through palm trees and coming up on this gorgeous surfing beach will make you feel like you're in a road-trip movie. It can be a long ride but savor the moment. Driving through these quiet palm-lined streets is one of the signature Siargao experiences that you'll surely miss once you get back to the city.

Either way, the long drive will be worth it. Pacifico Beach is the sweetest escape you can have far away from the crowded tourist spots of General Luna. Tucked away in the north-eastern coastline of Siargao, it is approximately a 1-hour drive away from the center. Aside from surfing, you can swim in warm blue water of Pacifico Beach or witness the stunning Siargao sunset by its shores..

11. Explore Corregidor Island

If you thought you'd done everything in Siargao, then you're in for another pleasant surprise. Siargao also has excellent hiking spots to offer. If you're a hiking enthusiast, you might want to check out Corregidor Island, also known as Casolian Island.

Corregidor Island is right next to Siargao Island- a 45-minute boat ride from General Luna. It's a great detour if you're up for a leisurely hike through grassy trails, rolling hills, and lush coconut groves to the white sand beaches and pebble beaches of Corregidor. You can also hike to the top of Corregidor Island to marvel at the panoramic view of the Pacific Ocean and nearby islands. 

Corregidor Island's seascape is just as picturesque as its landscape. The island is surrounded by glistening blue waters and colorful coral reefs, making it an ideal spot for snorkeling. You can go on a day trip with friends to Corregidor and bond over activities such as picnic by the beach, snorkeling, and paddleboarding.

12. Go Canyoneering in Tayangban Cave Pool

Tucked in the forest of Pilar in the center of Siargao island is the Tayangban Cave Pools. The cave pools, also known as the Kantoloi Twin Cenotes, go as deep as over 100 meters. It is undoubtedly a destination for the adventurous. It is one of the most extreme of the Siargao tourist spots, and it is also not as well known among tourists. 

As of this writing, there are no helmets or life jackets provided when canyoneering in Tayangban. You need to know how to swim and should be comfortable taking risks. You start by entering a dark cave and wading through chest-deep water. Bats are flying around, which may or may not be responsible for the weird echoes you hear!

You can spot stalactites formations as you explore the inner cave. After 15 minutes, the cave opens up to the sunlight. From there, you will walk through a small canyon that will lead you to a fantastic emerald green rock pool under the shade of growing vines and forest trees. There's a cliff-jumping spot at the other end — a seven-meter cliff that leads you to 18-feet deep water. If you need more excitement after caving, cliff-jumping will provide it.

13. Swim in Alegria Beach

If you're craving for a quiet beach in Siargao that you can have all to yourself, then head to Alegria Beach. Away from the busy crowd of General Luna, the Northern part of Siargao is where you'll find the secluded and almost untouched Alegria Beach. 

Alegria Beach in Siargao

Very few tourists venture here, but those who do are rewarded generously by this serene patch of tropical paradise. A huge part of why only a few travelers visit Alegria Beach is that it is approximately an hour's drive from General Luna. The long trip won't be in vain though, rest assured that it will be worth it. Alegria Beach's tranquil vibe, fine white sand, salty sea breeze, and crystal clear water is sure to refresh any weary traveler. 

You can make a lot of memories in Alegria Beach. Take advantage of the seclusion to commune with nature, feel the powdery white sand on your feet, and take tons of photographs without worrying about photobombers. Let the seawater wash do its magic and wash away any worries. Just be mindful that there are nearby reefs, so look for parts where the water is deep enough for you to swim in without stepping on sharp rocks.

14. Chill in the Cool Waters of Taktak Falls

Being the only waterfall in Siargao and considering its proximity to both Pacifico Beach and Alegria Beach, including Taktak Falls in your itinerary, should be worth it. Although Taktak may not be as grand as other waterfalls the likes of Cebu's Kawasan Falls, Taktak is still a pretty sight. It is also the perfect place to escape the blazing sun as it is in a forested area. Thanks to the generous shade provided by the trees and the chilly waters of the falls itself, cold air will welcome you as you approach the waterfalls.

Taktak Falls is 15-meters high; its water softy cascades down a rocky cliff into a small blue-green basin. If you're the adventurous type, you can try cliff-jumping with the local kids. Just be sure to ask them where the safe spots are to make the jump. You can also dip in the cold waters of the pool, swim around, and snap some photos as souvenirs. If you want to sit back, relax, and enjoy the peaceful ambiance, you certainly can. There are cottages around the waterfalls where you can lounge in and listen to the flowing water. 

15. Learn How to Surf in Secret Beach

Guiwan Beach is one of Siargao's best-kept secrets. Which is perhaps why it is also called the Secret Beach. Only a 15-minute drive from General Luna, this hidden gem can maintain its seclusion because there is no concrete road that leads up to it. Instead, there is only a dirt path through a coconut forest. The trail starts beside the main highway of Guiwan; follow the way it will guide you to the palm-fringed shores and white sands of Secret Beach.

Aside from its seclusion and beautiful scenery, another charm of Secret Beach is its beginner-friendly surfing waves. Secret Beach has knee and shoulder high swells that are the perfect place for beginners to start. The fact that this strip of beach is typically deserted, only makes it an even more ideal place to learn how to surf. More interestingly, Secret Beach can be surfed all year round thanks to its location; it faces South and is a bit protected from the wind.

Even if you don't plan to surf, Secret Beach is still an excellent getaway. Listen to the sound of the waves as you soak up the sun. Indeed, the less touristy Secret Beach can promise you a relaxing day at the beach. 

16. Dive in the Blue Cathedral               

Siargao’s seascape has to be the island’s best feature. Above the water, Siargao enchants tourists with its palm-fringed white sand beaches and islets. Underwater, Siargao offers just as much beauty underneath the waves. For diving enthusiasts planning to visit Siargao, be sure to include the island diving spots in your itinerary.

Although it is not yet as famous as other diving destinations like Palawan and Cebu, there are still places in Siargao where you can dive. Among the most recommended dive spots are the Seeco Reef Coral formation near Naked Island (good for certified open water divers at 11 meters) and the Daku Coral Beach Staghorn Reef at 9 meters. 

The top diving spot in Siargao, however, is the blue Cathedral. The Blue Cathedral can be found on the wall of Cloud 9's rock entry. It is an underwater wonder with a 20-meter wide hole that features caverns at the north and east side. Take note though that this is advanced divers only. If you’re one, be prepared to find yourself in awe by the vivid formations and the beauty of all the tropical fish swarming the Blue Cathedral.

What’s even better is that you don’t have to go far to get there! It is located within the vicinity of Cloud 9, close enough for you to still watch the master surfers carving up the waves. Just rent a boat from Cloud 9, and you will be able to get to this underwater cathedral.

17. Swing in Maasin’s Bent Coconut Tree Rope

Aside from surfing, one of the most photographed and iconic Siargao experience is the curved coconut rope swing in Maasin River. If you follow a lot of travel Instagram accounts, you've probably seen a photo or two of this infamous swing all over your feed. When you're in Siargao, you certainly shouldn't miss this quintessential island experience.

It's along the Maasin Enchanted River in Brgy. Maasin in Pilar, Siargao, the bent coconut tree is around 30 minutes away from General Luna. Once you reach the red Maasin Bridge, you know you're near. You will be able to see the iconic tree from the bridge. You can follow the dirt path on the right side of the bridge, and it will lead you to the bent coconut tree. 

Try to visit the place early in the morning so you can have the place to yourself. Once you're there, don't let the opportunity to feel like Tarzan pass. Climb up on the tree, grab the rope, take the epic swing, let go and plunge into the calm waters of Massin river. The exhilarating experience will be one for the books!

Aside from the swing, you can also rent a small boat from the locals, so you can paddle around Maasin River and appreciate the raw beauty of the area.

18. Drive Along to Siargao’s Palm-lined Road

Siargao Island is covered in coconut palm trees. Coconut is practically a ubiquitous sight in this island. Aside from refreshing buko juice, much welcome shade, and natural air filter, Siargao's coconut palm trees make for a beautiful backdrop for your tropical vacation photos. Those photos won't just look great on your social media feed; it will also be one of your treasured memories.

Have you ever gone to a place and felt like you're in a scene of a movie? On the way to attractions like Pacifico Beach, Magpupungko Rock Pool, and Tayangbang Cave Pool, you'll drive by a picturesque road lined with elegant and tall coconut trees. Don't hesitate to pull over and admire the sight. Even better, take out your camera and take photographs of the palm tree-lined street against a pastel blue sky.

Another great palm attraction in Siargao is the viewpoint. Thirty minutes away from General Luna is the magnificent views overlooking the unbelievably beautiful scene of an endless sea of palm trees. You can pass by this spot on your way to the Northern part of Siargao, where Alegria Beach is. It is ideal to go here during sunrise to get a jaw-dropping view of the sunrise-kissed mountains.

Fall in Love With the Island Life in Siargao

With warm sunlight, gentle waves beneath your feet, and spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean, Siargao has an inexplicable charm that will surely win your heart. No doubt, it's a paradise blessed with beauty from Mother Nature wherever you go.

If you're planning to visit the island soon, remember that Siargao is more than just a place. It's more than just a tourist destination. People who live here – locals and foreigners alike are living their life stories in this paradise. Let's savor, enjoy and cherish all that Siargao has to offer but let's not forget that this is their home. Let's contribute to preserving its natural beauty through our little ways.

Whether you're craving for the thrill, tick off some of your things to do in your bucket list, or want to let loose and relax, Siargao is the place to be.

Are you planning that island getaway to Siargao Island soon? Explore Siargao tours and activities now to experience this paradise like no other!