The Top Things to Do on the Island of Camiguin
With seven volcanoes floating over its 90 square miles, the Philippine island of Camiguin is considered by locals as "born of fire."
But these boiling volcanoes produced a surprising advantage for visitors: millennia of volcanic eruptions fertilized the island's soil, creating lush forests for nature lovers to hiking. Complex chemical reactions influence Camiguin's water table, producing hot, cold, and fizzy springs for swimmers to enjoy.
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Find out what to expect when tackling the flight or ferry ride to Camiguin!
The wonderful distance from Manila has made Camiguin a truly enjoyable island getaway, a hidden haven cherished by the few who know it.
1. Climbing a dormant volcano
Spanning 5,500 acres, the Timpoong-Hibok-Hibok Natural Monument is an ASEAN1 heritage park encompassing Mount Timpoong, Camiguin's highest mountain at 5,300 feet, and Mount Hibok-Hibok, a dormant stratovolcano with an altitude of 4,300 feet.
Immerse yourself in the wild jungle of Hibok-Hibok by embarking on the nature reserve's Itum hiking trail, which takes three to four hours to complete. It begins at Sitio Itum and ends at the top of the volcano, from where you can admire the panoramic view of the island and the sea. To schedule a climb, visit the Camiguin Tourism Facebook page.
2. Swimming in Katibawasan Falls
Of the three main waterfalls in Camiguin, Katibawasan Falls is the most impressive to behold. He drops 250 feet into a relatively shallow pool, but behind him, the sleeping Mount Hibok-Hibok casts a long shadow! In the rainy season, giant ferns, orchids and tall trees turn the waterfalls into a green wonder, while in the sweltering summer months, the cool waters are a great escape from the heat. Katibawasan Falls is also the trailhead for a hiking trail that goes up Mount Timpoong.
Rent a mototaxi (habal-habal) or rent your own scooter to get there; There is an entrance fee of 50 pesos (about $ 1).
3. Relax on the beach or on the sandbar
Sun and sand can be found in excess around Camiguin, but the best beach experiences can be found off the island.
Isla Branca is a sandbar on the northwest coast of Camiguin, where you can swim in crystal clear waters and enjoy the sparkling white sand. Avoid coming here during midday (no shade to speak of) and high tide (when the island disappears under the waves).
The island of Mantigue has only 4 hectares, but its wild nature is palpable. Snorkel or dive in its waters and come face to face with sea turtles and a wide variety of fish. You can also hike the island's mini-forest trail to protect yourself from the sun. When you're hungry, take a break at a local restaurant and eat fresh seafood and rice.
Kabila Beach in Barangay Cantaan offers a surprise for divers: giant clams lurking among the live coral in the shallow waters!
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