Siquijor is a small island located in the Central Visayas Region of the Philippines. For Filipinos, it is known as a scary, haunted and mysterious place famous for witchcrafts, ghosts, faith healers, “mambabarang”, and the like. Despite such reputation, Siquijor boasts of some interesting places to see, including beautiful and unexplored white sand beaches. It is also relatively safe, as long as you’re a quiet and law-abiding tourist.
Having arrived by ferry at around 8pm, we discovered that most people walk along the roads and streets at night even until 10pm – and even more so, without any streetlights. We, ourselves, walked in the highway to find a decent place for dinner past 9pm when we arrived. It was admittedly scary at first, but upon learning that we were not the only ones out in the streets at that time, we immediately felt quite relieved.
In this post, let me take you to five interesting spots to see in this small, mysterious island.
- Salagdoong Beach
Salagdoong Beach located in the town of Maria. It’s a beautiful white sand beach with clear blue-green waters. We had our lunch there while staring at the view and right after, had a quick dip. I mean, who are we to resist swimming in this pretty waters, right?
2. Lazi Church and Convent
Located in the town of Lazi, it’s quite a big old church and convent, dating back to the 1800s. Some parts of the convent is still being used as a school and a multi-purpose hall. If you’re a history buff and like old houses, this place should be a must.
3. Cambugahay Falls
A very pristine, clear, and refreshing place for a swim. The waters are quite cold too, so it’s a welcome treat during hot and humid summers.
4. Old Enchanted Balete Tree
Dating back to 400 years ago, this was known as the oldest balete tree in the island. Over the years, a body of water also formed underneath it which is now the dwelling place of some fish.
However, it’s not meant for swimming. Instead, if you fancy some fish spa, you can try it here. Some of the fish are so big though, and they bite quite fierce. But it’s an experience worth trying. I highly recommend it!
This is also where you can find the famous love potions, amulets, or charms made only in Siquijor by their local faith healers or perhaps, “witches”? If you have a tour guide, you can ask them about the stories behind it. You can also ask the sellers on how to use them. Aside from love potions, there are also charms that are made to make you rich or successful. In Filipino, we call amulets as “anting-anting”, while love potions are called “gayuma”. Whether you believe them or not, these make a good souvenir; or perhaps, something quirky to give your friends back home. For me, it was a fun experience knowing how each of them works.
Have you been to Siquijor? When you visit Dumaguete, it’s only a one-hour ferry away.