I grew up picturing Siquijor as a mysterious other-worldly place where witchcraft, dark healers, and mountain-dwelling magicians all co-exist. An island where you can get your hands to the most potent locally brewed love potions and traditional healing oils.
Since we have two (2) more days to spare from our Dumaguete trip, Bianca and I decided to explore and find out for ourselves if the place precedes its much talked about character. Come away with us we show you, Siquijor Island.
How to Get To Siquijor
To get to the island, head over to the port at the end of Rizal boulevard at Dumaguete and buy a ticket to the ferry that will cost you from 150 PHP to 500 PHP (3 to 10 USD) depending on the ocean liner you will pick. We suggest getting on Montenegro shipping lines or GL Shipping lines. It might take a bit longer than Oceanjet but have tried both, we found the first two to be a more comfortable ride.
As you arrive on the island you will go through the vast port. You smell the cleanliness of the ocean, the sun basking over you but you won’t mind the heat because it’s gorgeous rays compliments the azure water. From the port, you can immediately see the wide stretch of fine white sand that glistens as you get closer. The exhaustion from the travel went away as the island’s beauty immediately welcomed me with its open arms and my heart jolted with excitement. I had fallen in love with instantaneously.
Getting Around the Island
The best way to go around and also the cheapest way is to rent a bike. A day’s rental (24 hours) will cost you around 300php-350php/ 3-4USD
Part of the joy of Siquijor is driving a motorbike through it. The roads are mostly smooth and nice to drive on and there’s hardly any traffic. You can rent them in San Juan, Lazi, or directly from the port.
We recommend to stay at these places below:
- Coco Grove – Rates start at 5,200 PHP or 105 USD.
- Glamping Siquijor – Rates start at 2,500 PHP or 50 USD
- Airbnb – You can also choose to stay at an Airbnb, rates start at 800 PHP or 18 USD.
What to Do
Cambugahay is a three-tiered waterfall with three large lagoons. The teal color, the refreshing water temperature on a hot day, and the way the falls gently cascade over caves and light brown rocks make it clear why this is the most popular spot on the island.
There are rope swings and platforms to chill on as well as bamboo rafts on each level of the falls. There’s also plenty of room for swimming.
The Century-Old Balete Tree
Closer to 400 years old and is so much more than meets the eye. The local shared that it was a spot for a lot of sacred rituals back in the day, however, this spot feels very “touristy” after they’ve turned the spring into a fish spa and a souvenir spot for love potions.
Salagdoong Beach and Cliff Jump
Salagdoong Beach is a must-see spot, it has two cliff jumps, one that’s 20 feet (6 meters) and one that’s 35 feet (11 meters) high, depending on the tide of course.
Like many beaches in the Visayas, the quality of water and sand is close to perfection
Buy from the locals
San Juan is where you’ll find most of the guesthouses, resorts, dive shops, restaurants, and bars. It’s where almost everyone stays when they visit Siquijor for two big reasons: It’s west-facing so you get a fantastic sunset, and it has white sand beaches.
As I try to debunk my own personal bias or perhaps perception, I realized that Siquijor’s most popular healing practice involves marveling how beautiful the island is. You have plenty of options for accommodations from high-end to homestay options.
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