Apparently, I still have a few more posts in line for my Siargao Series 🙂
Dubbed as the Surfing Capital of the Philippines, Siargao must seem intimidating for the nonsurfers to visit. Quite surprisingly though, there are many interesting things to do other than ride the waves. Here are four activities I did during my visits to the island:
If you haven’t already figured out from my previous post, Siargao has some sophisticated food choices, considering that it is an island. They aren’t cheap too. I am reminded of Bali’s vibrant food scene whenever I think of the growing number of cafés and restaurants on General Luna, the island’s famous strip along the equally famous surfing spots.
For a mere 1,500 pesos, a group of four to six people can already rent a boat for the entire day to visit the three main islands surrounding Siargao. Naked, Daku, and Guyam Islands, each appropriately named, have their own unique qualities, making all of them a must see.
For one, Naked Island, is simply that – a raw piece of land free of substantial vegetation. Daku, the Visayan term for “big,” is (as you’ve already guessed) the largest of all three and, in my opinion, has the palest white sands. While Guyam, meaning small (according to our guide) is the only island that has rocky shores similar to that of Siargao’s.
The Magpupungko Tidal Flats and Pools are truly a wonder to behold. On the other side of General Luna, is another beach with trenches that become natural pools during the low tide. Just a little farther towards the tip of the flats, there is even a greater sight. As monstrous waves slam into the rocks, the waters make it look like you’ve reached the edge of the world.
Siargao is nowhere near as rowdy as Boracay Island, where the Philippine’s biggest beach parties happen. But neither is it dead at night. Not only does General Luna have events during the weekends, they have one every evening of the week! And because the area is relatively small, almost all the locals (and expats) know where these happenings will be. So if you ever feel like merrymaking, just ask around.
Here are all the best restaurants and cafés that I tried in Siargao (in no particular order):
1. Shaka Siargao
A quaint cafe for those looking for a healthier alternative. Smoothies, juices, coffee, tea, and powerbowls are what make up their menu. Shaka caught my eye last year, while Douglas and I were walking from Cloud 9, Siargao’s surfing spot, to our resort. We ordered a smoothie instead of a powerbowl. Although, I can’t say that was a mistake since the drink was impressively creamy, and had more fruit than ice – something that you can’t come across Cebu very often. I was still a bit disappointed that I wasn’t able to try their powerbowls that first try, so this time I meant to get it.
AND. IT. WAS. HEAVENLY.
2. Lux Siargao Boutique Resort
Okay, so this is a resort that has its own restaurant (as are the other ones down this list) and I actually failed to come here on my second visit. However, I was lucky enough to have had a poke bowl there with Douglas 🙂
I tried their kinilaw, which is chopped up raw fish drenched in vinegar, on my first try last year, and I was surprised to have liked it. I don’t usually like kinilaw. But Kermit Resort had their twist on it, and the sour taste of vinegar was in good balance. It didn’t hurt my throat. This made me ask what else could be good on Kermit’s menu. So I made it a personal mission to go back. This time, I got their Honey Mustard Chicken Wrap. I believe it’s meant to be a snack under their menu, but it’s big enough to be very fulfilling.
4. Bravo Beach Resort
I already told you what I thought about their resort on my previous post. It may not be my top one, but it’s absolutely worth the try. I had the pork coconut curry, which is almost like humba, a Filipino favorite, with that curry aftertaste and a good amount of shredded coconut on the side.
5. Wind Del Mar
I had my best meal on the island from Viento. A resort that’s conveniently located next to Bravo. I had their chicken adobo, which they served with mashed potatoes instead of rice. If you’re Filipino, you know how much we love our rice. But I wasn’t disappointed at all. The chicken adobo and the mashed potato worked well together in sweet perfection.
6. Miguel’s Taqueria y Cerveceria
I think this is the only Mexican place on the entire island, but I could be wrong. Please do correct me if you know other places. Also, it isn’t a restaurant per se. It’s more like a stall with a couple of wooden chairs and plastic tables on the side.
I’m not sure what legit Mexican burritos taste like, but I know when it taste good. I also ordered their fish taco, which I liked because the fish wasn’t too soft underneath the scrap/batter. It was all evenly cooked.
7. Buddha’s Surf Resort
I also failed to come here during my last visit, but it wouldn’t be fair to this place if I didn’t at least mention it. It’s where Douglas and I had our Valentine’s dinner. awwe. But the chicken curry we had was good, mind you. A little watery than I would have liked, but nonetheless flavorsome.