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Travel Guide Budget and Itinerary for Siargao

Siargao has turned into an all-around destination since the first time I went in 2013. A lot has changed (as always with development, a mixed bag of good and bad) when I returned. However, I still enjoyed my visit.


This guide can help you with your budget and itinerary for Siargao.
Guide

I went to Siargao before direct flights were available from Manila or Clark. My route was via Butuan with bus, van and ferry connections. At the time, some attractions weren't open yet and there were few accommodations that were within my budget. Fast forward to a couple of years, I returned for my friend's wedding. We decided to include some activities and sightseeing for this trip. I could easily tell and feel the difference since the last time I was there; more establishments and more people are going to this once sleepy island. It is both a good and bad thing.

Things to Do

Magpupungko Rock Pool and Beach







Magpupungko Rock Pool and beach is a popular destination, nothing's changed much since my first visit. A few more huts and definitely more people. It was still a fun place to visit.

Naked Island




Typical white sand beach included in island hopping.



Guyam Island



Depending on what time you visit, there's going to be a lot of people here.

Dako Island



My favorite stop during island hopping in Siargao. Bigger beach, fine, powdery sand, and clear blue waters. A combination for a nice and chill day out.

Kawhagan Island




Typical but beautiful beach that we visited after Sugba Lagoon. They had a market here where you can order fresh food and have it cooked. They also serve single meals. We had lunch here and just hung out before leaving,

*You can include a stop here with Sugba Lagoon for P2000 boat rental (up to 6 persons)

Malinao White Sand Beach



Stumbled upon this place while riding a motorcycle with my friend. White sand beach with clear waters. Not many people here, pretty chill place.

Sugba Lagoon



This was an attraction that wasn't even known yet during my first trip to Siargao a few years ago. I was eager to see it during a trip with friends. The boat ride to it was scenic, too bad the weather didn't cooperate as it was overcast then rainy during our visit. The highlight of the trip was the dive into the emerald waters of the lagoon from a platform that was around 15 feet high. It was was and I jumped a couple of times.

*Boat rent to it costs P1600 (up to 6 people), a tour costs around P2000/person

Cloud 9 and Surfing




I didn't surf during my first visit, so I decided to do so for this trip. I went to the famous Cloud 9 Beach where many Filipinos and foreigners ride the beginner and advanced waves. I tried surfing in La Union before but not in this famous spot. I needed to refresh my body on how to surf, I rented a board with instructor for P500/hour.

Eat, Eat and Eat Some More

The development of Siargao resulted in a number of restaurants opening on the island. There are now o much more choices since the first time I was here. Kermit Siargao has good food, a bit pricey (around P200-P400+++), but worth the money you paid for it. There's always a line which is always a good sign. Aventino's Pizza is affordable; nothing special, but for P150-P200 thin crust, it's good value. La Carinderia is also a good and chill place to eat and drink in. There are several other spots on the island serving Western and home-cooked Filipino meals.

Other places you might want to visit
  • Sohoton Cove
  • Alegria Beach
  • Tayangban Cave
  • Pacifico Beach
  • Maasin Bridge
Getting Around

The best way to explore Siargao is renting a motorcycle and go on your own. Rentals cost approximately P400-P500+++ depending on the type and if it already has petrol. You can get a lower price for longer rentals (one week or longer). If you don't know how to ride one, you can always hire a motorcycle taxi for the day. The price is around P1000 to P2000+++ depending on the distance and number of places you want to visit. Standard fare to get around town is around P10-P20 one way. Renting a tricycle for a day costs approximately P1500.

How to Go

The first time I went, there were no direct flights to reach Siargao, now there are many from both Manila, Clark and Cebu. Book flights as early as possible to get discounted fares.

If you have a longer trip or want to include other stops besides Siargao, you can start in Davao City or Butuan. There are buses and vans that can take you to Surigao City from either city (from Davao City you might need to transfer in another town). Buses from Davao's Ecoland Terminal to Butuan costs P410 and may take several hours. Once in Butuan, you can board a bus bound for Surigao City this costs P215. The direct bus to Butuan costs P750.

Once in Surigao City, make your way to the port where ferries depart to Siargao are waiting. The fare for this is P210 one way.

Where to Stay

Siargao has come a longggg waayyyyy since the first time I was here. There are now more budget, mid-priced and luxury options compared to my previous visit. You'll find all sorts of accommodations on the island.

Mid to high-priced hotels


You can find other options (hostels, guesthouses and other resorts) while on the island.


Expenses

Depending on what you do, you'll either spend a lot or get on with a tight budget during your trip around Siargao.

This is a sample expense guide for 4 days and 3 nights on the island. This is a bare bones example, you could spend more or less depending on what you want to do.

1200 - 3 nights in a dorm type accommodation
500 - 1 hour surfing with instructor or 1 whole day surfboard rental
1500 - Motorbike rental for 3 days
1500 - Food and drinks
1200 - Island hopping (Naked, Dako and Guyam)
50 - Entrance fee for Magpupungko Rock Pools
300 - Round trip airport van transfers                                    
6250 - Total excluding flights



If you plan to include other stops, these are additional expenses you might incur:

P100 - Tayangban Cave guide fee
P1500-P2000 - Hiring a motorcycle taxi to take you around
P20 - Taktak Falls entrance fee
P50 - Tayangban cave entrance fee
P1600 - Boat rental to Sugba Lagoon only
P2000 - Boat rental for Sugba Lagoon and Kawhagan Island
P100 - Entrance fee for Sugba Lagoon
P150 - Kawhagan Island docking fee
P1200-P1500 - Boat rental for island hopping (Daco, Guyam and Naked Islands)

***Sohoton Cove Tour expenses
P3000 - General Luna to Sohoton Cove
P850 - Pump boat rental and guide fee
P100 (per person) - Sabay and Tojoman Lagoon boating
P50 - Permit for Filipinos
P100 - Permit for foreigners
P25 - Entrance fee for Pinoys
P50 - Entrance fee for foreigners
P25 - Environmental fee for Filipinos
P50 - Environmental fee for Foreigners
P40 - Safety gear
*If you plan to do Sohoton better go as a group, you'll save more money by reaching the maximum number allowed

Itinerary

A sample bare bones itinerary (fill it out depending on your interests)

Day 1
Arrival on the island by plane
Check-in at hotel
Rent motorcycle
Visit: Magpupungko Rock Pool and some beaches (Malinao, Alegria, etc)

Day 2
Surf in Cloud 9
Hang out at Cloud 9 Beach

Day 3
Island hopping (Dako, Guyam and Naked Islands)

Day 4
Check-out accommodation
Flight back to Manila or Cebu



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