Zentraveler explores Camiguin Island, Philippines

Camiguin Island

Camiguin Island

Camiguin Island is known as the island “Born of Fire”. It has seven volcanoes and several volcanic domes.
Volcanic eruptions have created this spectacular island which is full of natural wonders and historical riches.

Camiguin’s uniqueness lies in its varied terrain, pristine natural environment and rustic setting. Camiguin is one of the Philippines’s most beautiful islands…a virtual paradise where tourists can experience a sample of untouched beauty in its entirety. The perfect place for eco-adventures and discovery.

Camiguin Island in a part of Mindanao Province, however it is only two and half hours by fast-craft from Bohol Island. We chose to go on the night ferry from Cebu which takes approximately 13 hours. We left from Cebu Pier 8 and chose the aircon section with sleeping berths. The cost was 1000 pesos per person. On our return trip we left from Benomi Port by fast craft two and one half hours and arrived at Jagna seaport in Bohol. We then took a travel van 100 pesos one hour and arrived at the main port in Tagbilaran City. From there we took fast-craft to Cebu, another two hours arriving at Pier 1. This trip was nearly the same cost with the advantages being only four and a half hours on the water vs 13 hours on the night ferry. However as a trade off… if you go by night ferry you arrive directly on the island. They also have direct flights from Manila and sometimes Cebu…beter to check with the airlines.

My first impression of the island was it reminded me of a paradise south seas island, with its lush vegetation many volvanoes, waterfalls, mountain springs and interesting history. Camiguin is blessed with many tourist destinations which can easily be seen within one week vacation. There is a good road circumventing the entire island which is about 68 kilometers and can be toured with a rented motorcycle, tricycle, or tour guide. It has one main capital named Mambajao where most of the resorts are located close by. In Mambajao you can find a market, atm machines, and a rooftop hotel with a good restaurant.

Motorized Triycle

Motorized Triycle

The remainder of the island is rather remote and rustic with a few small towns dotted along the coastal road. There are two ferry ports one located near the capital and a brand new major port located at Benomi Port. We elected to stay a three different resorts to get a feel for the island and in different locations.

Our first resort is only a few kilometers from Benomoi Port and is located at Tanguines lagoon. We stayed at the Fishpen Resort in a small cottage right on the lagoon amongst the many fishpens which you can either catch your own fish, select one from the fishpen, or order fresh from the menu.

Fishpen Resort

Fishpen Resort

Our next resort was the Egnimata Tree House located near Mambajao, which is an artists haven. We stayed in the shell room or honeymoon room on the second floor and was amazed at all of the artistic touches… including an impressive elephant tusk outdoor sculpture created by a native artist.
Enigmata Tree House

Enigmata Tree House

Our last resort was on the side of the island near the Sunken Cemetery and Bura Soda Springs and is named D and A Cottages Resort. It has a large reception area and restaurant with quaint cottages built over the cliff looking directly onto the ocean. It also has a nice swimming pool where you can view the mountain volcanoes and relax…watching the changing lights in the pool at night. The staff is friendly and professional and make you feel welcome and a part of their family… making us want a return visit in the future.

D and A Cottages Resort

D and A Cottages Resort

We chose to rent relas (motorized tricycles) for 100 pesos per hour and went to the Ardent Hot springs, near Mambajao which is wonderful to just hang out in the hot springs stream coming from the mountain volcano. They have a restaurant and cottages for rent and offer massages at reasonable prices. From there we viewed White Island just across from Paras Resort. The following day we photographed the Sunken Cemetery, climbed three kilometers straight up a mountain trail named: Walkway to the Old Volcano and witnessed the Stations of the Cross.

Ardent Hot Springs

Ardent Hot Springs

After a night swim at D and A Resort we planned our next day which included a day trip to Burla Soda Springs located only about 4 kilometers from D and A Resort. The springs originate in the volcanic mountains and have a great swim area. The water tastes like club-soda and makes you super relaxed plus your hair is soft and shiny.
Bura Soda Springs

Bura Soda Springs

The following day we went to the Sto Nino Cold Springs located four kms from Catarman which is a large spring and swimming area at the base of a mountain volcano. We returned to Fishpen Resort and walked to the Mangrove Park and Eco Park and had an excellent lunch at Lagoon Bistro. With fish jumping and splashing on a moonlight night we drifted off to sleep. The following morning we took the fastcraft to Bohol from Benomi Port.
Camiguen Island 154

So there you have it! Camiguen Island is a great tourist destination with something for everyone. A great zipline at Fishpen Resort, rent a motorcycle and tour the island, visit one of many dive resorts, swim, soak, and relax in many of its natural springs, learn some history and take photographs till the cows come home. Whats not to like? They are beginning to gear up for major tourism….so get off the couch grasshopper so you can see with your big bug-eyes before its to late. We are talking natural and unspoiled…just saying.

Camiguin Island

Camiguin Island

QUOTE: “Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer.” —author unknown

Camiguen Island 205

THINGS YOU MAY NOT KNOW:The island of Camiguin lies in the Bohol Sea in the south of the Philippines. It is a small pear-shaped, volcanic island between the islands of Bohol, to the north, and Mindanao, to the south. Camiguin and Mindanao are only separated by a narrow strait. Population approximately 67,000 people.

THINGS YOU MAY WANT TO SAVE: Your Back…travel light.

ZENTRAVELER SAYS: Its all in zee travel! Really?

From here to Infinity is a relatively short ride! The next leg takes eons and eons as you fly through the Barycentric Dynamical Time Zone! …and on and on and on.

Follow the Zentraveler Blog often for Travel, Health and Zen-like stories and such. Where else can you get a three in one blog for the price of free?



Filed under Camiguin Island, D and A Cottages Resort, Enigmata Tree House, travel trip, Uncategorized

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