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Guide to Mayon Volcano in Albay Bicol: World's Most Perfect Volcanic Cone

Guide to Mayon Volcano in Albay Bicol: World's Most Perfect Volcanic Cone

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Wonderful view of Mayon Volcano

Of all the volcanoes in the Philippines, Mayon Volcano or Mount Mayon is the most iconic because of its perfect cone shape. With the majestic view it offers, doing Mayon Volcano tours have become the main activity of travelers visiting the region. 

Mayon Volcano stands 2462-meter-high and is located in Albay, Bicol at the southeast end of Luzon island. It also deemed to be the most active volcano in the Philippines with its record of approximately 50 eruptions in the past decades.

Mayon Volcano towers above the region, primarily in Legazpi City, and provides a breathtaking backdrop wherever you are in the province. 

Legend has it that its name came from ‘magayon’, a Bicolano word that means beautiful which is more than appropriate to describe how stunning this natural scenery is from every angle.

If you've always wanted to see the spectacular Mayon Volcano, here’s a complete guide for a fun-filled adventure exploring one of the top tourist spots in the Philippines.

Best Time to Go

View of Mayon Volcano from a flower field

Legazpi City, the main destination for those visiting Mayon Volcano, is best visited during the dry months between March through May. Considerable amount of rainfall is expected from July to September.

If you want to make the most out of your trip, visit tourist spots with a view of Mayon Volcano early in the morning to avoid the big crowds excited to marvel at the majestic volcano.

Budget wise, it will be less costly to visit during the off-peak season which happens from November to December when not as many tourists travel to Legazpi.

How to Get There

An airplane landing in the airport in Legazpi

The main jump-off point when going to Legazpi, Albay, or Bicol region is Metro Manila in Luzon. In Visayas, you can also get to Legazpi from Cebu and Leyte. Here are some of your options on how to get there: 

By Flights

Booking a flight is the fastest way to get to Albay from Manila. Travel time from Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Manila to Legazpi Airport takes about 45 minutes via airlines like Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific.

If you are coming from Cebu, there are available direct flights as well going to Legazpi. 

By Bus 

If you have the luxury of time and would rather experience the trip via land, you can take a bus from Manila to Legazpi. The journey lasts for 9 hours. Make sure to book in advance via the go-to bus lines like Cagsawa, DLTB, and Penafrancia.

By Ferry

For visitors traveling from Leyte or Cebu, you can take the 12-15 hour trip through WG&A and Trans Asia shipping lines – both departing from Masbate Port to Legazpi, Albay.

Best Mayon Volcano Tours and Activities

Seeing the magnificence of the Mayon Volcano from the roads of Legazpi, Albay is definitely the real deal. But there are certain tourist spots in Legazpi City where you can get the best view and experience of Mayon Volcano. Here are some tourist spots and exciting activities worth visiting and trying out:

Cagsawa Ruins

Cagsawa Ruins which can be seen with a background of Mayon Volcano

Cagsawa Ruins tours offer the most iconic view of Mayon Volcano that's why it's one of the most-visited attractions in Legazpi. The church ruins are remnants of the interestingly heartbreaking stories of what was once an admired structure during the Spanish era. 

It was built by the Franciscans in the 17th century, destroyed by the Dutch pirates, and was further damaged during the volcano’s eruption in 1814. In 2015, the site was declared a National Cultural Treasure by the National Museum.

Mayon 4x4 ATV Ride 

A girl enjoying the ATV Ride in Mayon

There’s no better way to get closer to this magnificent creation than to put on your explorer hat (or helmet in this case) and drive your way up Mayon Volcano's base.

On a 4x4 ATV, you will drive through rice fields, forests, and even volcanic rocks along a trail that will lead you to the mountain’s Lava Wall.

There are several trails you can choose from – all equally full of sights to behold as you enjoy the adrenaline-pumping ride to see Mayon Volcano up close and personal.

Mayon Volcano Hike/Trek

A girl hiking Mayon Volcano during sunsetPhoto by the Philippine Department of Tourism

Make your trip extra adventurous by trekking up Mayon Volcano. Hire a trusted guide and take the Farmer’s Trail where you will be welcomed by nature at its finest. The entire trail is believed to be formed after the volcano’s eruptions over the years.

Due to the volcano’s activity, climbing to the summit has been prohibited but tourists are now allowed until Camp 2 and beyond to “Rabbit’s Ear”. The hike normally takes about 2-3 hours as you traverse through wide grasslands, farms, rivers, and gullies.

It is advisable for beginners to hike until Camp 1 while more experienced visitors may be able to endure reaching Camp 2. Nevertheless, both offer an adventure worth remembering.

Travel Tips

A girl looking at the wonderful view of Mayon Volcano

Before planning your trip to Mayon Volcano, it's best to read up on the following important information for a hassle-free vacation: 

Safety

Mayon Volcano is active and can be a destructive force of nature. Before planning a trip here, check the warnings or advisories from the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS).

Strict safety precautions should be observed especially when going on a hike/trek up this marvelous landmark.

It is very important to hire a guide when exploring the trails and hiking since they are knowledgeable when it comes to weather conditions and things to do in case an unexpected volcanic activity takes place.

What to Wear

If you're doing the 4x4 ATV ride or want to go on a hiking trip, be sure to bring all necessary gear and hiking essentials such as water, food, and emergency kits, etc. Other Nearby Attractions 

Make the most of your trip to Mayon Volcano by checking out other tourist spots in Legazpi and neighboring cities or towns. 

Lignon Hill Nature Park

Explore Lignon Hill Nature Park to have a better view of Mayon Volcano and give zip-lining a try. 

Daraga Church

Daraga Church in Albay

Visit Daraga Church and learn about the history of this cultural treasure which served as the refuge of locals during the devastating 1814 Mayon volcano eruption.

Camalig, Albay

Hoyop-Hoyopan Cave in Albay

Try spelunking in Hoyop-Hopyapan Cave and Calabidongan Cave in Camalig.

Kawa Kawa Hill

Spend a beautiful afternoon as you climb and watch the sunset at the pilgrimage site Kawa Kawa Hill.

Misibis Bay Resort

Aerial view of the Misibis Bay ResortPhoto by Misibis Bay Resort

Have a sun-soaked beach day in the inviting white beach of the luxurious Misibis Bay Resort.

Sumlang Lake

View of Mayon Volcano from Sumlang Lake

Enjoy the serene ambiance in a bamboo raft as you savor Mayon Volcano’s enthralling beauty from Sumlang Lake.

Island Hopping

Venture on an island hoping tours and get a taste of the underwater life at Guinanayan Island and San Miguel Island.

Legazpi Boulevard

Sunset view in Legazpi Boulevard

Go sightseeing and witness the lively and vibrant lifestyle around the region as you stroll around Legazpi Boulevard.

Quitinday Green Hills

Top View of Quitinday Hills

Trek and discover the wonderful summits of Bicol’s very own Chocolate Hills.

Bicol's Festivals

Immerse in the region’s cultural heritage and witness the Ibalong Festival during October and Magayon Festival during April.

Albay Park and Wildlife

A hornbill inside Albay Park and Wildlife

Treat the family on a fun day at Albay Park and Wildlife – a place where both young and old alike can have a great time. Various animals such as the Philippine Hawk Eagle, crocodiles, exotic pigeons, and many others can be also be seen here.

Taste Bicol's Chili Ice Cream

Chili ice cream in 1st Colonial GrillPhoto by 1st Colonial Grills

Don’t miss trying out Bicol’s famous fiery Sili Ice Cream at 1st Colonial Grill – definitely a must-try.