SIARGAO ISLAND, SURIGAO DEL NORTE: Island Hopping And A Short Walk To Cloud 9. After our Bucas Grande and Sohoton Cove Tour, we took the earliest boat trip from Socorro port going to Dapa port. The trip lasted for about an hour. As soon as we got out of Dapa port, we were immediately approached by two habal-habal drivers and offered to bring us to General Luna for Php200. We declined and walked further away from the port, looking for the tricycles bound for General Luna. Tricycle fares to General Luna costs Php30 per head. At this point, a lady from Cebu who is traveling solo asked if she could join us and we agreed. Just like us, she also came from Socorro port. During the boat ride from Socorro to Dapa port in Siargao, we were actually sitting across each other and I had been wondering if she were a tourist too, and that if she were, I would try to approach her and ask if she would want to join us and share expenses for the tours ( Ganun po talaga para makatipid, hehe.) I came to know later that she was also thinking of doing the same thing. ( Buti na lang nauna sya, kundi baka di ko rin sya kinausap. Shy type kasi ako e, hehe) Anyway, going back, the habal habal drivers kept on following us and when they finally offered Php50 each for the ride, we agreed. Later, they also presented us their island hopping rate.
A private boat for island hopping in Siargao usually costs Php1,500 for a group of 4-6 persons. Haggle a bit and this could go down to Php1,200. In our case, since we were talking to two different habal-habal drivers, we ended up agreeing to Php1,300. We found out later that if we knew and talked directly to someone who owns a private boat, we would only pay the boatman Php1,000 for a whole day island hopping. This could probably mean that the extra amount is given to habal-habal drivers (acting as agents) as a commission for the tour.
Since we arrived early in the morning in Siargao, we decided to go island hopping as soon as we dropped our backpacks in our room at Ocean 101 where we would spend the night. Island hopping in Siargao has three destinations: Naked Island, Daku Island and Guyam Island Island.
Naked island is composed of pure white sand and is bare of any vegetation, thus the name. I guess “naked” has become a generic name for all islands in the Philippines with the same features. The water surrounding the entire island is perfectly clear, great for swimming.
Daku Island is my favorite. It is the biggest among the three ( Daku in the local dialect means big.) It has plenty of coconut trees and the people living in the island set up some nipa picnic huts which could be rented for Php200. Daku island is quite similar with Honda Bay’s Pandan island in Puerto Princesa, but I think Daku is prettier. The island is ideal for a family or group picnics. There is also a small sari-sari store in the island where you could buy some snacks and drinks. They do not have cold drinks however, since there’s no electricity in the island.
Guyam is a beautiful little island. It only takes about 10 minutes to walk around it. It has a few picnic tables and some coconut trees for shade. Some areas in the beach have soft white sand, but the beach is quite rocky in other parts. A lady who lives in the island collects Php10 per guest as entrance fee. The water around it is shallower however when compared to that of Daku island’s and when you’re lucky, you might also find Nemo here.
CLOUD 9. Later in the afternoon, right after our island hopping, we decided to take a walk from the resort going to Cloud 9, Siargao’s most famous surf spot. It was almost the end of the surf season ( October- May) so the waves weren’t as powerful and there were only a few surfers during our visit. We stayed at the viewing deck for a while and watch a few surfers patiently waiting and trying to ride the perfect waves.
We waited until the sunset. It was also very nice to be able to finally set foot on the picturesque boardwalk. I thought it was an excellent spot to enjoy a sunset stroll.
The walk along the boardwalk as the sky’s color turned into different shades of vibrant oranges and reds, was simply the perfect to cap a beautiful day off.