Discovering Siquijor: A Comprehensive Travel Guide
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Siquijor Island is a hidden gem in the Philippines that promises an experience unlike any other. Boasting stunning beaches, breathtaking waterfalls, captivating caves, and world-class diving spots, this picturesque island province located in the Central Visayas region is a must-visit destination for adventurers and nature lovers alike.
But Siquijor is more than just a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Its history is steeped in mystic traditions and legends, adding an extra layer of enchantment to its already mystical allure. The island is home to friendly and hospitable locals known as Siquijodnons, who are practitioners of “white magic,” a traditional healing practice believed to ward off evil spirits and bring good luck. And as if that weren’t enough, the Spanish referred to Siquijor as the “Island of Fire” because of the eerie luminescence generated by swarms of fireflies found on the island.
So whether you’re seeking a cultural experience or an outdoor adventure, Siquijor Island has something to offer for everyone. With its unspoiled natural beauty and mystical charm, this idyllic island paradise is the perfect destination for those seeking a unique and unforgettable travel experience.
When to go to Siquijor:
Siquijor Island boasts a tropical climate, making it an ideal destination to visit year-round. However, to experience the island at its best, plan your trip between March to May during the summer season. It’s the perfect time to bask in the warm sunshine and enjoy the crystal-clear waters of the island’s stunning beaches.
On the other hand, it’s best to avoid the months from June to October as it is the rainy season.
If you’re looking for a unique cultural experience, consider visiting Siquijor during the Holy Week. It’s a time when traditional healers and witch doctors from all over the Philippines gather in the town of San Antonio for the Lenten Festival of Herbal Preparation. This festival is a celebration of the island’s mystic traditions and is a fascinating display of local beliefs and practices.
Getting to Siquijor:
If you choose to fly, you can take a flight to Dumaguete City, which is the closest airport to Siquijor Island. From Dumaguete, you can take a ferry to Siquijor Island, which takes approximately one hour.
Alternatively, you can take a ferry directly to Siquijor Island from the ports in Cebu or Bohol. The ferry ride from Cebu takes around 4 hours, while the ferry ride from Bohol takes around 2 hours.
Getting around the island
Once you arrive on the island, you can easily get around by renting a motorcycle or a tricycle, which are the most common modes of transportation on the island.
What to See in Siquijor:
Discover the wonders of Siquijor Island with these must-see destinations:
Siquijor is a small island province in the Philippines known for its pristine beaches and crystal-clear waters. Its beaches offer a peaceful and secluded haven for travelers seeking a serene getaway with a touch of adventure.
Siquijor Island is renowned for its traditional healers. Tourists can visit these healers, who use a combination of herbal remedies, massage, and spiritual rituals to cure various ailments. The healers’ practices are deeply rooted in the island’s folklore and culture.
The San Isidro Labrador Parish Church, also known as Lazi Church, is a significant Roman Catholic landmark in Siquijor Island, Philippines. It was declared a National Cultural Treasure and is a nominee for the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List. The church and its convent showcase unique Baroque architecture.
Old Enchanted Balete Tree
A mysterious and enchanted tree known for its eerie appearance, created by hundreds of roots and vines hanging down from its branches.
The only enchanted falls in the island, featuring several levels of waterfalls and refreshing cool waters. Secluded and relatively unexplored, it’s a perfect spot for trekkers and nature enthusiasts.
Tulapos Marine Sanctuary
Home to a diverse range of marine life, including colorful fish and corals, making it an ideal spot for snorkeling and diving. It’s the biggest of the several marine sanctuaries found in Siquijor.
Cantabon Cave is a must-visit natural attraction in Siquijor, Philippines. The cave is famous for its breathtaking stalactite and stalagmite formations, underground river, and a refreshing swimming hole that offers a unique experience to adventurous travelers.
Where to stay:
There are several areas on Siquijor Island where you can find great accommodations, depending on your preference. Some popular areas for accommodations include San Juan, which has a range of resorts and hotels near the beach, and the town of Larena, which has several guesthouses and budget-friendly options. Other areas to consider are Lazi and Tambisan.
White Villas Resort in Siquijor is a charming and cozy hotel-resort located on Solangon Beach. The resort is suitable for couples, singles, families, and groups and offers comfortable accommodation with modern amenities.
The resort features a restaurant by the sea that serves delicious food all day, a small swimming pool, and a sunset beach bar where guests can enjoy spectacular views of the beach. Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the property, and guests can also rent motorbikes and avail themselves of free kayaks to explore the island’s nearby attractions.
Kawayan Holiday Resort is a charming eco-resort located on the serene island of Siquijor in the Philippines. Surrounded by lush greenery, the resort offers a peaceful and relaxing atmosphere for guests seeking a tranquil getaway.
The resort features bamboo bungalows that are beautifully designed and equipped with modern amenities such as air conditioning, private bathrooms, and free Wi-Fi. Each bungalow has its own private veranda where guests can enjoy the stunning views of the tropical gardens.
Kawayan Holiday Resort offers an array of activities for guests, including island hopping tours, diving, snorkeling, and mountain biking. Guests can also enjoy a relaxing massage at the resort’s spa or take a dip in the outdoor swimming pool.
The resort’s restaurant serves delicious local and international cuisine made from fresh, locally sourced ingredients. The resort also features a bar where guests can enjoy refreshing cocktails and drinks.