F When in Camiguin, explore the island’s inner gems - jeepneyjinggoy

When in Camiguin, explore the island’s inner gems

Temperature is rising and the beach beckons. Camiguin Island comes to mind. The Island Born of Fire is embraced with 66 kilometers of gleaming white-sand shoreline, add to that the famed Mantigue and White Islands, which are similar in nature. Take a dip and get that tan. Tempted enough? 

Jump off point to White Island

But there is so much more to the pearl-shaped island than its sandy white beaches. The island province, one of the smallest in the Philippines, is packed with more gems every eager traveler would love to discover and experience. Beyond the blue and white of the island's fringes, the verdant interior is as great as a diving spot for historic spots. 

Chase the waterfalls. Camiguin Island has three waterfalls- Tuasan Falls, Binangawan Falls and the highest at 76 meters and said to be the most popular, the Katibawasan Falls. The sites are very accessible via short trek and the trail opens up to a panoramic site of falling waters framed by lush, verdant foliage. Take a dip in the cool waters of the pool. 

Tuasan Falls

Trek the peaks. There are several peaks in the island and Mt. Hibok-Hibok, an active volcano with three craters (Kanangkaan, Itum and Ilihan), is a popular hiking destination. Secure a DENR permit and spare about three to five hours of your time and you’ll make it to the summit. Mt. Hibok-Hibok along with Mt. Timpoong form the two major landmarks within the Timpoong and Hibok-Hibok Natural Monument, inscribed as an ASEAN Heritage Park in 2015. 

Mount Tres Marias

The hot & cold of the island. There are six hot springs in the island: Ardent, Tangob, Bugong, Tagdo, Naasag and Kiyab, and a couple of cold springs, Sto. Niño and Sa-ay. Whatever suits and soothes you, go take that dip. Hot or cold, the springs promote good health. 

Ardent Hot Springs

Sto. Niño Cold Springs

Exploring more of the island’s periphery. While the other sites require a bit of time to enjoy, there are sites across Camiguin Island that can be enjoyed with a quick view. Drive around the island and enjoy a quick tour of these sites, some of which will transport you to the past. 

The Gui-ob Church Ruins, the moss covered walls of the church, convent and bell tower are what remain today after the 1871 eruption of Mt. Vulcan. During the same event, the town and its cemetery sunk beneath the sea, and the towering cross was erected in the site in remembrance. 

Gui-ob Church Ruins

Sunken Cemetery

Guinsiliban Moro Watch Tower is believed to be once part of a larger structure or a “kota” (fort). It was built to detect invading Moros and called it Kuta “Silipanan” or “Siliban” (fort for peeking). 

Guinsiliban Moro Watch Tower

Make your visit worthwhile and volunteer to plant at the Katunggan Mangrove Park. Mangrove trees pose as a protective shield against extreme weather events, prevent erosion and are important to the ecosystem, too. 

Katunggan Mangrove Park

Camiguin's geographic location in the Bohol Sea makes it the gateway of Visayas to Mindanao and vice-versa. Hop on a plane from Manila or Cebu or take the ferry ride from Balingoan Port two hours from Cagayan de Oro and satisfy your craving for rest, recreation and adventure. 

When’s the best time to visit? When temperature soars and the need to dip in cool sea water arises, or If you love festivals and lanzones, visit in October. 

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