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Information about Enchanted River

Enchanted River, Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur, Philippines
Distance From City Center
1.1 km

Enchanted River

The mystical sapphire river in the Philippines, Enchanted River, is located in Barangay Talisay, Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur. Enchanted River is one of the top tourist attractions to visit when going to Surigao because of its enchanting beauty. Lush greeneries, orchids, and vines surround the river and it features large and cultured fish like “Indangan” and “Pantaan”. Its blue clear waters are salt water that flows into the Pacific Ocean and the Philippine Sea.

Locals believe that the Enchanted River was created by fairies who added sapphire and jade to its waters, making its color unusual. There are also stories about mermaids and spirits who enchanted the river. 

When you visit this enchanting river, you can watch the caretakers feed the fish, which many believe also means appeasing the spirits. You'll hear a bell that signals that tourists should stop swimming and be required to go up to watch. A Hymn of Hinatuan will be played for the fish-feeding presentation. 

In 2017, the local government prohibited tourists from swimming in the Enchanted River to preserve its beauty. Today, tourists are only allowed to swim in a designated area near the river.

Aside from swimming and fish feeding presentations, you can also ride a boat and have a tour of the Sibadan Fish Cage, where you can have your lunch. 

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How to get there

If you're coming from outside Surigao, book a flight bound for Butuan City Domestic Airport. From there, ride a van going to Hinatuan. Inform the driver to drop you off near the Enchanted River, or you can find the signboard to know where you will drop off. Ride a motorcycle to go to the river. You'll pass through a road and forested area before you reach the river. 

A van in Davao is also available, and you will also drop off at the signboard going to the Enchanted River. You can also opt to book a Surigao del Sur tours with Enchanted River included in the itinerary, so you don't have to worry about transportation. By booking a tour, you can also visit other Surigao tourist attractions. 

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Tickets and entry

There is an entrance fee and environmental fee that you need to pay when you visit Enchanted River for the maintenance of this beautiful attraction in Surigao. If you have a vehicle, a parking fee is also required to pay. Before going to this attraction, ask for the amount of the entrance fee, as rates may change depending on the season. Cottages are also available with fees.

The river is only open until 5 AM, and tourists are required to wear life vests when swimming in the designated area.  

Best time to visit

You can visit Surigao's Enchanted River any time of the year, but it is recommended to go during the dry season, from November to June, to enjoy its clear waters. Moreover, it's easier to travel to the river because the weather is fine and the roads are dry. Although it's best to visit the river during weekdays, there are still many tourists in the area. 


Frequently asked questions

Why can't you swim in the Enchanted River?

Tourists are not allowed to swim in the main pool of the Enchanted River as per its local government to preserve and maintain its beauty. There is an area near the lagoon where you are allowed to swim.

How deep is the Enchanted River Surigao?

Enchanted River in Surigao is 80 feet deep.

Has anyone reached the bottom of the Enchanted River?

No one has ever reached the bottom of the Enchanted River, which is why it's called enchanted. Aside from the different species of fish, no one knows what's in it. Many scuba divers have tried to reach its bottom but failed.

Are there any restaurants near the Enchanted River?

Yes. You can enjoy a seafood feast just a mile away from the Enchanted River. Before the entrance to the Enchanted River, you will find eateries where you can have your meal.

Are there accommodations in the Enchanted River?

There are no accommodations within the Enchanted River, but you can book Surigao hotels for your overnight stay that are nearby.

Attractions Nearby

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