Big waves coming from the Pacific Ocean and a strip of surfing enthusiasts braving these waves, Siargao Island is a picturesque of a charming sun-bask island at the northeast tip of Mindanao. Ideal for summer escapades, Siargao is known as the Surfing Capital of the Philippines where annual surfing competitions, both local and international, are preferably held in this tear-drop shaped island. Aside from the high clean waves that the place is best known for, other main attractions in Siargao include its wide array of white sand beaches, rich marine resources, seafood restaurants, mangrove rivers, unspoiled islets, and the warm hospitable locals of Siargao.
Surfing Capital of the Philippines
Facing the vast Pacific Ocean, Siargao’s shores are always a reflection of great waves, which are considered by many as an ideal place for surfing competitions, both for local and international events. Siargao Island is dubbed as the Surfing Capital of the Philippines as the locals and foreigners flock in this small island in Mindanao just to beat the waves and enjoy the sparkling bluewaters of Siargao. One of the best surfing destinations in Siargao is the Cloud 9 wherein mounted hollow tubes of waves are considered by international surfers as perfect for ultimate surfing. Among surfing competitions annually held in Siargao are the Cloud 9 National Surfing Competition, Billabong Surfing Competition, and Siargao International Surfing Competition. Local surfers and foreign surfers from the different parts of the world are fixations in the island during this kind of events.
Siargao Island is located at the eastern part of the Surigao del Norte, a province situated at the northeastern tip of Mindanao. To its east is the Pacific Ocean, while its western and southern areas are surrounded with mangrove forests. Aside from being the Surfing Capital of the Philippines, Siargao has also the largest mangrove forest in Mindanao. The total land mass of Siargao was estimated at around 437 kilometers. It has seven municipalities – Santa Monica, San Isidro, Burgos, Dapa, General Luna, Del Carmen and General Luna.
Meanwhile, Siargao Island can be reached through sea and air travels. Air Philippines and Cebu Pacific Airlines have flights from Manila to Surigao City and Cebu to Surigao City. From Surigao City, one can just simply take the fast craft vessels in going to Siargao Island. For sea travels, shipping lines such as Cokaliong, Super Ferry and Sulpicio Lines have trips from Manila-Surigao City and Cebu-Surigao City. Philtranco Bus Liners have also land trips in going to Surigao City from Manila.
Where to Stay
Due to the growing number of tourists flocking in the island, various beach resorts have also been cropped-in to meet these needs. The following are some of the many beach resorts in Siargao Island where one can relax during the entire stay:
Jadestar Beach Resort. Located near the Cloud 9, this beach resort offers various package accommodations. There are accommodation cottages that are equipped with air conditioners, while other cottages have fans. Cottages also have TV sets with cable channels. Surf board rentals and laundry services are also offered in Jadestar. Island hopping activities and island tours are also available in Jadestar; however, these are mostly not included in the package accommodation fees.
Ocean 101 Resort. Facing the idyllic view of Siargao waters, Ocean 101 is just within walking distance from Siargao’s famous surfing destinations such as the Cloud 9. Located at Catangnan, General Luna, Ocean 101 has air conditioned and non air conditioned rooms. Its second floor accommodation rooms have a common bathroom. Among the amenities in Ocean 101 are DVD player, surf boards for rent, cable TV system, surfing trainer, massage services, and videoke and pool facilities. Ocean 101 has also its in-house bar and restaurants that offer local delicacies as well as international cuisine.
White Sands Paradise Beach Resort. Located at Baybay, Burgos, White Sands Paradise Beach Resort has a view of the beach and just within walking distance to the surfing destinations of Siargao. Bathroom and TV with DVD player are available. Food and drinks are available at the resort’s bar; however, to those who wish to cook their own food, the resort’s kitchen can be used by guests. Van rentals are also available for island tours.
Known as the Diving Mecca of Mindanao, Dakak Beach Resort is one of the most preferred destinations in the Philippines because of its white sand beaches and rich marine resources. Aside from local tourists who prefer more the peaceful ambience in this place than the party nightlife of other beach resorts, foreign tourists from different corners of the world have also considered Dakak Beach Resort as a good haven for retreat and complete relaxation. The different water sports in Dakak also make it as a world-class site for water sports enthusiasts whose adventurous spirits are satisfied by sports such as scuba diving, kayaking, parasailing and the likes.
Dakak Beach Resort is located at Zamboanga del Norte at the island of Mindanao in the Philippines. It is exactly located at Barangay Taguilon, Dapitan, Zamboanga del Norte. On its west is the rich marine water of Sulu Sea, while on its east is the mountain ranges of Zamboanga del Norte. Although Philippines is frequented by typhoons every year, the strategic location of Dakak, which is in between large islands, make it less prone to these typhoons. Aside from the amenities and activities one can find in Dakak Beach Resort, other shops and restaurants can also be found within the place of Dapitan wherein tourists can further appreciate the local setting of the place.
Going to Dakak Beach Resort
Dakak Beach Resort can be reached either through sea vessel or airplane. The main entry point to Dakak is through nearby Dipolog City. Air Philippines has five times a week flight to Dipolog City from Manila. Flight from Manila to Dipolog City usually takes one hour. Asian Spirit has also a daily flight to Dipolog City from Cebu through the Mactan-Cebu International Airport. Flight to Dipolog City from Cebu usually takes around forty-five minutes. Shipping vessels have also trips from Manila to Dipolog City, and fast sea vessels such as Super Cat have trips from Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental to Dipolog City.
Amenities, Accommodations and Activities in Dakak
This 15-hectare wooded land resort has room facilities that include air condition, cable TV, in-house movies and hot/cold shower bath. For those who want to come in groups, Dakak has also facilities that suit for conferences and team buildings. Guests can enjoy the tranquil environment as they relax in the resort’s natural spring water of its pool. Swimming pools are also available for kids. Outdoor Jacuzzi adds-up to the complete relaxation one can get in the resort as well as its sauna and fitness center. For outdoor activities, Dakak is equipped with a mini golf course, tennis court, billiard center, horseback riding facilities, and basketball court. Its in-house restaurant offers seafood cuisine and Filipino food. For a nightlife party, its Fusion Disco is packed with entertainment where guests can unwind during the night.
Dakak is one of the best diving spots in the world. From its fine white sand beach-line to the deep waters, the place is endowed with natural wonders. The Liuay Rock diving spot in the area is the most frequented area among divers of Dakak. Liuay Rock is a soft slope where a variety of marine resources can be found. Various corals also inhabit the area. According to many, the Liuay Rock spot is ideal for amateur divers. Another famous diving spot is the Cesar’s Reef wherein rich coral formations engulf the area. Ideal for experienced divers, the Cesar’s Reef is home of many different kinds of fish such as barracuda, snappers, and surgeon fishes.
Aside from scuba diving, guests can also enjoy other water sports such as water skiing, snorkeling, kayaking and parasailing.
Going Around Dapitan
Dakak is located in the historically rich place of Dapitan. To those who want to explore the areas outside of the resort, Dapitan has many spots worth visiting. For one, the Rizal Shrine in Dapitan is a must-visit place. The place reflects well on the life and works of Jose Rizal, Philippines’ National Hero, during his 4-year exile in Dapitan. In the museum, one can see the things used by Rizal in his writings as well as the equipment he used when he practiced his being a doctor in the place. The Rizal Shrine is located at Talisay, Dapitan City. The St. James Church in Dapitan is another historical spot that the city boasts of. According to many, St. James was the most frequented church by Jose Rizal during the latter’s stay in Dapitan. The pew where Rizal always seated is being highlighted differently nowadays to put emphasis on that historical spot. To those who want to shop and dine, the Gloria de Dapitan is a commercial complex that houses various restaurants, shops, bowling center, resto pubs, video arcades, and other recreational spots. A 5-star deluxe cockpit is also found inside this commercial complex. Outside Gloria de Dapitan is the Outdoor Mobile Amusement Rides where carnival rides can be found.