By now, we all know the beauty that is El Nido in Palawan or the white-sand beaches of Boracay. But there’s so much more to the Philippines than these popular tourist destinations. While we won’t be able to cover all of the country’s 7,100 islands, we have handpicked a few that we think should be your next stop when in the Philippines.
From North to South, we bring you 5 underrated beaches in the Pearl of the Orient that is definitely worth the visit.
Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte
Hailing from way up North is this quaint town in the Ilocos Norte region. Located at the northernmost tip of this province, the town of Pagudpud is loved by many local tourists because of its pristine beaches and laid back ambience. Since this town is relatively far from the Philippine capital of Manila, you won’t find as many people here, making this a great spot for those who want to enjoy some peace and quiet away from the city.
If you’re looking for more action than just lounging by the beach, the waves in Pagudpud are also ideal for surfing. The surf season in Ilocos Norte typically runs from July to September. Besides the amazing waves, you can also visit the Bangui Wind Farm, Kabigan Falls, and the Patapat Viaduct, also known as the fourth-longest bridge in the entire country.
This tranquil and laid back coastal town is mainly known for its waves that are ideal for surfing. With several surf schools and shops laid out along Sabang Beach, surfing can be enjoyed by experienced surfers or absolute beginners who are looking to learn the sport. While the waves are pretty consistent all-year-round, you can enjoy the best waves brought in by the north swell from October until April. This town is perfect for large groups, families, and even couples. If you’re a solo traveller, you definitely will not be leaving without a friend. The friendly locals in Baler will make you feel absolutely welcome and right at home.
While most tourists would come to Baler for the stoke from surfing, you can commune with nature at the Ditumabo Falls, and enjoy a scenic boat ride to Dicasalarin Cove and hike up to the Baler Lighthouse from there.
Caramoan, Camarines Sur
This secluded island nestled in the province of Camarines Sur is perfect for thrill seekers and nature lovers alike. The Caramoan Islands are the ultimate playground for tourists, where you can enjoy activities such as cliff diving, hiking, and even spelunking. But what most people come to the Caramoan Islands for is the island hopping.
There are ten stunning islands in all of Caramoan and not one is like the other. For instance, Matukad Beach boasts a 125-metre coastline of powdery white sand beaches with jagged limestone cliffs, while Lahos Island is part of the Caramoan National Park, making it a protected area that is open for visitors.
Fun fact: some of these islands have actually been featured on several episodes in the hit reality TV show, Survivor Philippines back in Season 8!
Despite being the third smallest province in all of the Philippines, Siquijor Island has heaps to offer. Situated in the Central Visayas region, this hidden gem is most popular for its white-sand beaches, underwater sanctuaries, and the enchanting ambience that the island holds.
The experiences on the Island are almost endless. Paliton Beach is great for snorkelling as well as picture taking for the gram beneath rows and rows of towering palm trees. For those who are looking to unwind, you can enjoy a fish spa at a spring underneath the Century Old Balete Tree. And for those who are craving the cool, refreshing waters from a waterfall, Lagaan and Cambugahay Falls are the place to be.
Siargao, Surigao del Norte
While Siargao Island is beginning to gain more traction amongst international tourists, this paradise still remains rather untouched. Many locals and overseas travellers flock to this teardrop-shaped island to escape the bustling city and enjoy the waves of the South. Surfing is the most popular water sport on the Island and is an activity not to be missed. To see professional surfers take on big, dramatic waves, head over to Cloud 9, which is the most famous surf spot in Siargao.
While its best known as the surfing capital of the Philippines, there’s more to Siargao than its world-class waves. Be amazed by the plethora of natural reserves from Sugba Lagoon, the Philippines’ second-largest mangrove forest; Magpupungko Tidal Rock Pools, that are perfect for rock diving; Hagukan Cave with enclosed pathways and crystal clear waters, and the list goes on!