Have you ever been curious as to what to do in Siquijor?
It’s a pretty well known island in the Philippines that’s famous (unfortunately) not for its natural beauty but for its reputation for being an island of dark magic.
However, the only magic I found in Siquijor was the one that always kept me wanting to go back. Finally, after years of just wishing for it, I finally found myself in this beautiful island again.
Here are the things you can do in one day in Siquijor, the Philippines’ island of fire.
Enjoy Siquijor’s white sand beaches.
When I first went to Siquijor in 2009, I was struck at how clean its beaches were. Even the port area, usually the dirtiest in any city, has clear blue-green waters that’s virtually unseen anywhere else in the country.
My guide and motorcycle driver brought me to several beaches, including an undeveloped one in Candanay Sur, Coco Grove (a high-end resort), Salagdoong Beach (where the more adventurous can jump off the cliff), and Enrique Villanueva Beach.
The century-old churches in Siquijor are worth a trip. For the second time, I went to Maria, which has the only statue (Sta. Rita) in the Philippines which looked a bit creepy. It could be due to her black dress, sad face, and yeah, the small skull she’s holding together with a crucifix.
Admire the centuries-old balete tree.
The balete (banyan tree) in Philippine mythology has always been surrounded by mystery. It’s said to be the home of spirits, and in cities, legends tell of it being haunted by a white lady.
In Siquijor, a huge, 400-year-old balete tree is one of the attractions. It’s easily accessible from the road, and if you go early enough, you can beat the horde of tourists going there.
The enchanted tree is the oldest and biggest in Siquijor. There’s a stream of water flowing underneath it, which the locals made into a small pool of clear, fresh water. You can sit on the edge of the pool and dip your feet in it; if you’re lucky, schools of curious fish would provide free fish spa.
Visit the oldest house in the island.
Want to know what a hundred-year-old house looks like? Cang-isok in Siquijor is the oldest in Siquijor. It does look a bit rickety, and it would seem like a strong wind can blow it away.
This sturdy old house in the town of Enrique Villanueva has stood the best of time, though, and will most likely continue to do so in the years to come.
Cool off at Cambugahay Falls.
When you feel like staying a couple of hours in a place where the water is fresh and cool, have a dip at the Cambugahay Falls in Lazi.
It is multi-tiered, and it looks wide and deep enough for anyone to enjoy. It can get very crowded during the weekend though, so weekday visits are often the best.
There is so much more you can see and do in Siquijor. The best way to go around is to hire a motorbike if you’re alone, and a multi-cab if you’re with friends. My contact there is Joam (+63927.693.2095), one of the nicest guides you can ever have. For a whole day’s tour, his charge is P800.
My only regret is that I don’t know how to drive a motorbike. If I knew how, I would have rented one and went around Siquijor by myself. Still, I know it wasn’t the last time I would visit the place. The island of fire has certainly charmed me, and I’m more than willing to surrender to its beauty!
Have you been to Siquijor? What do you like best about it?