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Siquijor

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Siquijor is a small island in Visayas. Siquijor Island or Isla del Fuego as the Spanish named it, due to the intensity of fire flies lies some 22 km east of Southern Negros. Legend has it that Siquijor rose from the sea during a tremendous thunder storm sited as evidence is fossils and shells which can still be found in Mount Bandila-an, Siquijor's highest point. While the coastline is mostly white sand beaches, oceans full of tropical marine life the interiour is mountainous.

Get in[edit]

There are two ferry terminals on the west side of the island: Siquijor town and Larena. At the end of the pier of each you'll find waiting touts and tricycles. It is possible to rent a motorbike for 300PHP/day from either pier, perhaps less if renting for multiple days and depending on your bargaining skills.

There are several passenger boats daily from Dumaguete to Siquijor town (120PHP GL Lines, 200PHP OceanJet) and some larger Roro boats (100PHP, slower). There are also several boats a week between Tagbilaran on Bohol and Larena. [1]

From Siquijor port tricycles have "fixed" prices for tourists. For example, Siquijor port to San Juan town should be 50 pesos per trip (13km). They have printed price lists in the tricycle as these are officially approved prices, but if you ask for the price, most drivers will start at 200 or even 250 pesos/trip.

Even though it is not generally known there is an airport in Siquijor town. There is no scheduled traffic but if time is important and money unlimited, ask about possibility of renting a private aircraft to fly you there - it is possible.

Get around[edit]

  • Hire a motorbike for around 280-350 pesos per day (cheaper for long term). Available from Siquijor & Larena towns and many resorts, you may also be offered motorbike rental from a tricycle driver. Before renting, check if helmets are included (they should be!) and if price per day means 24 hours or i.e. 8AM to 6PM (some resorts require you to return motorbike before sunset). You won't have to leave your passport with the rentor, any form of ID should do the trick, even a photocopy.
  • Hire a tricycle. Tricycles are now using a tariff system with fixed prices for tourists. They are much more expensive than on other islands. For example, Siquijor town to Larena (10km) costs P25 regular fare per passenger.
  • Jump on a Jeepney. Jeepneys run between the main towns on the island, although somewhat infrequently. Ask your accommodation for up to date information.

See[edit][add listing]

  • Salagdoong Beach 6 kms northeast of Maria. Favourite with the locals and great for swimming. There are also water slides (closed as of February 2014) and places to dive into the sea (still open, a 7m & 10m jump).
  • Kagusuan Beach Noted for its picturesque seascape and rock formation, it is situated below a cliff and accessible by concrete staircase.
  • Siquijor Beach Several white sand beach resorts dot the coastal areas.
  • San Juan Beach Lots of beach resorts and great for snorkelling and scuba diving.
  • Cambugahay Falls Impressive 3 tiered waterfalls just outside Lazi. Great for swimming & you can jump from one tier of the waterfall. There is also a rope swing.
  • Lugnason Falls Nice waterfall close to San Juan.
  • Capilay Spring Park A natural spring fed swimming pool in the centre of San Juan. A favourite with the locals at weekends.
  • Cantabon Cave Takes 1.5 hrs to walk through and you need to register in the town before venturing inside. Local guide required (they hang around the cave) as the cave is locked up.
  • San Isidro Labrador Convent Reputed to be the biggest and one of the oldest convents in the Philippines, the Spaniards started construction in 1887 and was completed in 1894. Declared as a historical landmark by the Philippine Historical Commission.
  • Buterfly Sanctuary Just outside Cang-apa. Sign posted from the main road.
  • Balete Tree Supposedly enchanted old tree covered in hundreds of roots and vines.

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Scuba Diving. There is really good diving around the island, especially in southern end. Many resorts have their own dive centers plus there are some independent ones as well.
  • Discover the inland of the island. Jump on your motorbike, fill it up with petrol, get yourself a map, put on some sunscreen and discover the beatiful inland of the island. There are some nice touristy spots such as falls, national park, butterfly garden, but also just driving off the main roads is worth on its own. You will be met by nice locals, kids waving you, lovely little villages, staggering views (chocolate hills are not only in Bohol) and relaxed atmosphere not yet spoiled by development.

Buy[edit][add listing]

There are several ATMs in Larena, including a PNB bank one which should accept any foreign card (definitely works for VISA at least)

Eat[edit][add listing]

Most of the restaurants cater of locals, if you want "western" food go to a resort (most have restaurant open for walk-in guests).. In smaller town such as San Juan, you either cook yourself, eat street food or eat at a resort.

  • Joyjoy's Restaurant, at the beginning of the Pier of Siquijor town.
  • Sakura Restuarant, in the center of town. They have a variety of dishes. P 40 and up. Great chicken curry and soups.
  • Sammy's Pizza, right in the center.
  • Villa Marmarine, three kilometers north of Siquijor going towards Larena. Good food, maybe the best on the island.
  • Breakpoint, in center of town in Larena.
  • Al Capone's Pizzeria, Marjunnix Building (Corner Logarta and Legaspi Streets), 3442260. 10AM-midnight. Great pizza using 100% imported meats and chesses. Awesome sandwiches on french baguettes.  edit
  • Kawayan Holiday Resort - Luxury Boutique Style Resort, Cangmunag - Siquijor, +63 916 212 3130, [2]. From 12 noon to 10 pm.  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • Buy Red horse and/or Tanduay from a shop and drink it on the beach with locals
  • Swiss Stars restaurant, (just east of Siquijor town on the highway). Little restaurant with Filipino and European dishes. Some say the staff are friendly and the venue is something of a meeting place for locals, some say otherwise. Set yourself up with a meal and red horse and make some news local friends. meals from P60.  edit
  • Caesar's/Czars in San Juan have a live band on a stage every Friday night.

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Most people stay in some resort next to the beach around the island like San Juan. One quiet and bit remote option is the northwest tip of the island. If you don't mind staying away from the beach try Swiss Star in Siquijor town. It's a good value for money.

  • Kiwi Dive Resort, Sandugan Beach, Siquijor Island, 0354240534 (), [3]. checkin: 12; checkout: 12. Located in the quiet northern tip of the island. Cottages with kitchen and rooms available. Daily scuba diving and massage available. Friendly Staff. Free Wifi. From 490 Pesos.  edit
  • Cliff Side Resort Sandugan Beach, Siquijor Island. 1,000 PHP (Feb 2013) fan, cold water. This is a new resort right on the beach, just down from Kiwi Dive
  • Hard Rock Cottages, Bitaug, Enrique Villanueva, Siquijor (8 km north of Larena), +63 999 9335231 (Smart), +63 926 4773348 (TM) (), [4]. checkin: 12; checkout: 12. Located on the northernmost spot of the island. View to Bohol, Cebu and Negros. Good international restaurant. Free Wifi. 1200 Pesos high season / 1000 Pesos low season.  edit
  • Czars Place Just outside San Juan. The other side of the road from the beach. Double rooms with bathroom for 500 pesos per night.
  • JJ Backpackers Situated on San Juan beach. Dormitory available and one double room. Restaurant with good food available too. Prices from 300PHP (Basic 2-man tent on the beach), dorm 350PHP. Wsy overprice & living off their Lonely Planet mention.
  • Lorna's End of The World Beach apartments, San Juan (less than one km from San Juan towards Siquijor), +639273816377, [5]. Just outside San Juan town (towards Siqujior). Big rooms with beach view, Lorna (the owner) is very friendly and helpful. 400 without kitchen, 500 with kitchen.  edit
  • Casa de la Playa ( http://www.siquijorcasa.com/beach_resort_siquijor.htm ) is a great little resort with different cottages form P 1100 and up. Nice restaurant. Nice white beach; great for swimming. Casa de la Playa is a great place to rest and read a book, no T.V. Cell: 09173232656
  • Dastraum Same owner as Joyjoy's restaurant. Rooms for P 300 and up. Talk to Joyjoy at her restaurant.
  • Villa Marmarine Near Siquijor Town on the way to Larena. It has a decked restaurant and a clean kitchen with very good food. There are grand and unique cottages of various size and cost. All have sea views. The landscaped beach is well maintained and cleaned every morning. There are lots of hammocks and a pleasant garden with soft grass. Free WI-FI. http://www.marmarine.jp/en/index.html

  • Kawayan Holiday Resort - Luxury Boutique Style Resort, Cangmunag - Siquijor, +63 916 212 3130, [6]. checkin: 2 pm; checkout: 12 noon.

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    From P 6100.- up.  edit
  • Gold Sky Seaview, Maite, San Juan, Siquijor Island, 09169236243. gladwinbucol@yahoo.com Very close to Czars (opposite side of the road, exactly opposide to the school). 3 Cottages, clean, big rooms with kitchen, a/c or fan. Very friendly owner, free coconuts if you ask. 750.  edit
  • Casa Miranda, (on the beach just outside San Juan, between JJ's & Lorna's). Cheap, clean fan rooms with ensuite bathrooms & flushing toilets. Free water, free wifi in common area & hammocks. Onsite restaurant with good food. Friendly & helpful staff. Motorbike rental for PHP250, auto or semiauto. 250-400PHP.  edit

Contact[edit]

Get out[edit]

There are ferries to Dumaguete from the main port in Siquijor and Larena. OceanJet operates daily routes to Dumaguete, Tagbilaran and Cebu (not direct, all via Dumaguete & change of ships needed in Tagbilaran). There is a direct ferry from Larena to Bohol a few times weekly, leaving at 7pm, arriving around 10:30 in Tagbilaran. There is also a night ferry 3 times a week to Cebu.

Definitely check ferry departures before you make plans - some information posted on the internet weas not correct in December 2013. i.e. the OceanJet ferry at 6AM does not go all the way to Cebu anymore (& is more expensive than what is said on OceanJet website). Also there is no longer any ferry to Cebu island near Oslob. OceanJet's telephone number posted on their website will not be answered (based on February 2014 experience).



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