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Things to do in Siquijor, Philippines

In this travel guide for Siquijor, we will tell you all the fun things to do and places to visit on this magical island in the Philippines' Central Visayas.



CONTENTS




 


About Siquijor


The province of Siquijor is located in the central Visayas region, more or less slap bang in the middle of the 7000 islands of the Philippines.


The islands of Negros Oriental, Cebu, and Bohol can all be reached in a couple of hours by ferry.

The entire island can be circumnavigated by moped in about 3-4 hours, which is ideal for exploring! The roads are well-paved and dotted with small villages, white sandy beaches, abundant trees, flowers, and verdant hills. Most beaches will greet you with turquoise seas, swaying palm trees, and magnificent sunsets. Underwater is just as grand, if not more, than above. Siquijor sits pretty in the Sulu Sea, a part of the famous coral triangle, with access to world-class scuba diving and snorkelling. You'll find vibrant hard and soft corals, sea turtles, and thousands of species of tropical fish, all reached just by wading into the sea from the shore.


For more information on the history of Siquijor, how to get there, and where to stay, check out my article here.



A palm tree and sunset on Tubod beach
Tubod Beach, Siquijor

 


Things to Do in Siquijor


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For almost every single activity on this list of things to do in Siquijor, I use these grippy water shoes and I love them!



1. PADDLEBOARD AT PALITON BEACH


It is unanimously agreed that Paliton is the nicest beach in Siquijor. Located about a 5-minute drive west of San Juan, this cute little cove is the perfect spot for one of my favourite things to do in Siquijor: paddle boarding.


You can rent SUPs for 300PHP per hour from a small shack on the beach, and explore the coast to the backdrop of reggae music or 90's RnB from the smattering of beach huts selling cocktails and snacks.



 


2. SNORKELLING AT TUBOD MARINE PARK


The gorgeous Tubod Marine Park is located right off of Tubod Beach - about a 5-minute drive east of San Juan. You can rent fins for 50PHP and snorkels for 100PHP, and you will also need to pay an extra 100PHP as a Marine Reserve fee.


Make sure you go at high tide, which is 11 am, otherwise, the water will be too shallow and you could damage the reef or get stabbed by sea urchins. There are plenty of reefs to explore, we saw turtles, heaps of tropical fish and an egg sac from a giant diamondback squid - snorkelling here was one of my favourite things to do in Siquijor!



 


3. FREE DIVING WITH APO DIVERS


Another one of my favourite things to do in Siquijor is to free dive! With beautiful reefs at Tubod Marine Park or Paliton Wall, once you've learnt the basics from Will at Apo Divers it's just a case of getting in and practicing!


For this, you will need a buddy, as like scuba diving it always has to be done in pairs. One person stays on the surface, whilst the other free dives. The AIDA one-day taster course is 6800PHP, with the option to add on a second day to complete the whole qualification.


You'll start with some yoga and breathing exercises on land, and then move into the crystal clear water to have a go at duck diving and rescues!



I Dream of Mangoes free diving in Siquijor
Free Diving in Siquijor

 


4. SCUBA DIVE AT APO ISLAND WITH SIQUIJOR DIVERS


Apo Island is a volcanic island with 12 amazing dive sites, and it takes about an hour to reach there from Siquijor by boat. We found Siquijor Divers to be super professional and they had amazing reviews. One dive with equipment is 1600PHP.


If you don't fancy diving you can always head to Apo Island on a boat trip which can be organised through Coco Grove Beach Resort on Tubod beach, where you can have a go at snorkelling or just enjoy the view.



 


5. CHASING WATERFALLS


Chasing waterfalls is one of the most popular things to do in Siquijor. The most famous waterfall is Campaguhay, about a 30-minute drive from San Juan, towards Lazi. I would strongly suggest arriving there early to beat the crowds. It 'officially' opens at 7 am, and you'll need to pay a 30PHP parking fee and a 30PHP waterfall management fee.


There's a lady who sells snacks and will watch your bags for a donation. There are three layers to the waterfall, which creates different pools of Tiffany's coloured water to swim and splash about in. You can use the multiple rope swings if you're feeling daring, or hire a raft and pay a guy to take photos of you.


If you fancy a hike you can make the 45-minute trek from San Juan to Lugason Falls, where you'll find a 5-metre cascade and a bright blue spring pool. Again, get there early to have the water to yourself.



Lugason Falls
Lugason Falls, Siquijor

 


6. CLIFF JUMPING AND FLOATIE BOBBING AT SALAGDOON


Salagdoon Beach is in the far northeast of Siquijor Island in Maria, a 1-hour drive from San Juan. The drive itself is really beautiful, along winding forested roads.


Once you reach the beach entrance you'll need to sign in, and it's normally 50PHP to enter. This gives you access to the cliff-jumping platform, which is stunning, and reopened in October 2023 after a revamp.



The cliff jumping spot in Salandoong
The cliff jumping spot in Salandoong

 


7. THE BUTTERFLY SANCTUARY


The beautiful butterfly sanctuary is definitely one of the best things to do in Siquijor. It is located in the mountains in the Lazi district, about a 40-minute drive from San Juan.


The guy who runs it used to work for the Department of Conservation where he ran a programme releasing native butterflies back into the wild. This was funded by Bristol Zoo (weirdly) and when the zoo closed the programme ceased to exist. So, he decided to go out on his own and set up his own sanctuary, breeding 12 native species and releasing 40% of them back to the wild on Siquijor.


He is funded by tourists paying the 100PHP entrance fee, and it's a lovely place to spend half an hour and support the project.



 


8. TREKKING


There are 8 official treks on the island, and some of them require guides and can only be attempted in the dry season from November to May. Ranging from a 30-minute easy trail through Tulawog cave, to a 5-hour moderate trail to Canghonong cave. You can find which hike suits you best with more details on AllTrails.


 


9. LIVE MUSIC (AFTER SUNSET!)


There's a buzzing nightlife scene on Siquijor, but not so much that it ruins the natural charm of the island. Most events happen on the weekends, with live music at Baha Bar and Monkey Business being for those with more of a chilled-out vibe.


There are very few restaurants and bars on the beachfront, so I would stop to watch the sunset first before heading out to a venue for dinner and drinks.


Some excellent sunset spots are Paliton Beach, Republika Bar, and Coco Grove.



People enjoying the sunset on Paliton Beach
Paliton Beach, Siquijor

 


10. EAT - CHILL - EXPLORE


There are lots of dining options on Siquijor, if you're feeling brave to eat mystery meat then stop at one of the many food stands on the streets grilling various animal parts. For international food, Marco Polo has amazing pizza, and Luca Loko makes really tasty smoothie bowls.


The island is best explored by moped and you can rent one for 350PHP. Even though the roads are well paved, I would suggest requesting a helmet, as mopeds can easily skid in sand and you don't want to lose your face if that happens!


Lastly, always make time for sunset! Whether it's with a beer in hand or whilst bobbing on a paddle board, it's a ritual that can't be missed and a big part of life for Filipinos who live by the beach.



 


Thank you for reading this short post on things to do in Siquijor! If you enjoyed the read please consider subscribing to my blog where i post articles once every 2 weeks about my current travels around the world.


If you're looking for more inspiration for your trip around Asia check out my articles on Koh Lanta and the Trang Islands and everything you need to know about visiting Lombok in Indonesia!


Any questions hit the comments.

Happy Travels

xx



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Disclosure:
I Dream of Mangoes is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. That being said, I only link to products I use and love.

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