Camiguin. An island province in the north of Mindanao that is “born of fire,” or created because of volcanic activities some eons of years ago.
Here’s our short Camiguin travel guide for those planning to explore this island:
1. Describe Camiguin.
Enzo: Camiguin is such a wonderful place. To me, it’s magical, it’s enchanting. Camiguin offers peaceful surroundings.
James: Camiguin is paradise. A small province that can offer almost everything to the keen traveler. A perfect solo getaway, a honeymoon destination, a barkada trip or a family vacation. It has lush mountains, cold, hot and soda springs, white-sand beaches, world-class dive sites, sumptuous food and of course warm locals.
2. What do you like most about Camiguin?
Enzo: The most I like about Camiguin is the province itself. It’s like a haven of peaceful people.
James: I like that its too small a province that you can travel it for a day if you are in a hurry or enjoy it if you free for 2 weeks and still don’t run out of something to do.
3. Is there anything the local government can do (or stop doing) in order to make the place more tourist friendly.
Enzo: I think Camiguin is underrated. Camiguin is a beautiful place that everyone should be discovering. It doesn’t have to be commercialized but a little push to promote Camiguin will be good enough so people will know the beauty of the island.
James: Please don’t allow Jollibee or McDo or Starbucks to be there, please, pretty please. Limit the visitors and encourage localism in the area.
4. Don’t go home without seeing/visiting/experiencing ________________.
Enzo: Sunken Cemetery, White Island and the Old Church Ruins.
James: Snorkeling at Sunken Cemetery- its a marine sanctuary and Nemos are easy to find. Snorkeling at Mantigue Island- we spotted a resident hawksbill sea turtle. Beach-bumming at White Island- its picturesque sandbar of all!
5. Don’t go home without trying/eating _______________.
Enzo: Pastel, the delicacy bun filled with sweet fillings.
James: Plus one of the pastel. Also, you can try the street foods near the Mambajao Public Market- what I love about street foods are its cheapo, fresh and yummy. Their are also kiping topped with latik before you enter Katibawasan Falls.
6. Traveler’s Tips.
Enzo: Expect a solemn place and almost quiet island. Make friends with the locals.
The cheapest tour would be do-it-yourself. Ride the habal-habal or the local tricycle or the multi-cab when going around.
You can arrange going to Mantigue island and White Island on the day of your tour itself. If you have only a day for this, go to Mantigue first and then to White Island.
If you have an extra day, climb Mt. Hibok-Hibok.
Bring Pastel for pasalubong.
7. Recommendation Hotel, Inn?
Enzo: I recommend Bahay Bakasyunan sa Camiguin for its scenic view of theocean front. BBC also have great villa-like guest rooms and wonderful amenities.
James: If you want to splurge, go to Bahay Bakasyunan sa Camiguin (www.bahaybakasyunan.com), If you are on a budget (and artsy too), try Enigmata Tree House (www.camiguinecolodge.org).
How to get to Camiguin?
By ferry: Via Balingoan or CDO or Bohol, please check Getting to Camiguin here.
By plane: The easiest way is to book a flight from Cebu via Cebu Pacific Air.
Cebu Pacific flies every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, for as low as P588, to Camiguin from Cebu. For bookings and inquiries, go to www.cebupacificair.com or call (02)7020-888. The latest seat sales and promos can be found on Cebu Pacific Air’s official Twitter (@CebuPacificAir) and Facebook pages (/cebupacificair).
For more information and stories about Camiguin, please do check my past articles:
- Swimming with Turtle at Mantigue Island
- Camiguin Quickie
- Cheap Accommodations in Camiguin Island
- In Transit: CDO to Camiguin
- Camiguin’s Sunken Cemetery: From Top to Bottom
- The Cheapest Camiguin Island Tour (+Hitchhiking)
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