Top 12 Tourist Destinations in Dinagat Island
Dinagat Island goes unmentioned in most mainstream travel guides because the province is all bundled together with the stigma that the word Mindanao carries.
But if you do a little research, not all parts/region in Mindanao that in Chaos. This Makes Mindanao more preserve and even more appealing to travelers who want to get off the main tourist destinations and take in a whole new experience – adventure, ancient cultures, and nature.
Dinagat Islands is a young island-province at the northern tip of Mindanao. Many describe Dinagat Islands as a hidden gem of the Caraga Region XIII. The Islands are enriched with great bio-diversity, abundant natural wonders and rich resources. Dinagat Islands has a multitude of fascinating white sandy beaches with arrays of colossal rock formations. These sites and attractions are as diverse as the topography of the islands and islets.
How To Get To Dinagat
You can reach Surigao by taking a commercial flight from Cebu or Manila. Alternatively, you can also take an overnight boat trip from Cebu.
From Surigao City to San Jose (Capital Town Of Dinagat)
The Province of Dinagat Islands can be reached by ferry boat coming from Surigao City the capital of Surigao del Norte. It is the closest jump-off point to the province with a travel time for about one and a half hours defending on the sea conditions.
Boats and Ferries bound for San Jose (Capital town of Dinagat) leaves as early as 5:30 am from the port in the boulevard of Surigao City, next trip is around 9:00 am and the last trip departs in the early afternoon at around 2:00 pm. Fare is 100 pesos from Surigao City to San Jose.
Here is where you’ll find Bahay Turista, the islands’ tourism office, run by its charming and friendly Mayor, Danilo “Danny” Bulabos. The house offers basic accommodation (500 Pesos per room) as well as information on the island’s various points of interest and how to get there. Bearing in mind Dinagat’s status as a relatively new destination to travellers, the tourist office is an invaluable starting-off point.
Note: Be sure to take the boat bound for San Jose not “Dinagat” as their is another municipality named Dinagat south of San Jose
Situated on Siargao Island, this hotel is close to the Sohoton National Park. Boasting 10 water cottages, all are tastefully furnished and equipped with standard amenities for guests’ utmost comfort including a Jacuzzi with balconies of wooden flooring featuring see-through glass. [..]
THINGS TO DO AND SEE
1. Bitaog Beach
The powdery white sand of Bitaog Beach offers more than just its beautiful shore line. The blue colored water is perfect for snorkeling and other water activities. Aside from the white sand beach, there are also a lot of large rock formations and limestone peaks to see.
2. Cabacungan Cove
Another beautiful destination found on the northern part of Lalaking Bukid, same island where Bitaog Beach is located, is a mesmerizing cove called Cabacungan Cove It is a long stretch of white sand beach fringed with coconut trees and towering limestone cliffs and boulders. The seawater on the beach is normally calm and crystal clear abundant in corals and marine lifeforms that makes it a perfect destination for swimming and snorkeling. Moreover, birds can be found nesting on the high limestone cliffs while some are hovering at the sky.
3. Duyos Beach
Duyos Beach is one of the known tourist spots in Dinagat Islands perfect for camping and barkada outings. The beachfront features a vast expanse of white sand decorated by coconut trees lined up with several cottages. The most prominent attraction of the beach is its enticing sandbar surrounded by turquoise waters perfect for swimming. Moreover, the beach offers a beautiful view of the nearby islands and islets.
4. Lake Bababu
Bababu Lake – the largest of four marine lakes in Basilisa town – is also a unique body of water. Although composed mostly of seawater, it has a 20-foot top layer of rainwater. These two layers of water do not mix because the lake is protected from the wind by towering chalk-white limestone walls draped in riotous foliage. The name of the lake area was derived from the Cebuano words baba sa buwaya or crocodile’s mouth, referring to the shape of Babas Cove, the inlet that funnels to a small white-sand beach where the lake trail begins.
5. Pangabangan Beach And Tidal Pool
Pangabangan Island is one of the paradise islands in Dinagat covered with lush greens. It has a beautiful white sand beach fringed with coconut trees, huge limestone rocks scattered on the shore and clear waters suitable for swimming. The most astounding feature of this island is the wide tidal pool or blue lagoon that every good swimmer would be excited to swim and snorkel around. The tidal pool is being enclosed by island’s towering rock cliffs covered with trees.
6. Islander Castle
Islander’s Castle, also known as White Castle, is an iconic landmark in the provincial capital of Dinagat Islands. It is a very noticeable Disney-like castle sitting on top of a hill overlooking the entire town of San Jose which also offers fascinating views of the hills, islands and the sea. This castle serves as a residence of a very known and prominent people in Dinagat, Ecleo Family.
7. Isla Aga
8. Quano Cave
Quano Cave, is filled with different limestone formations located in Libjo, Dinagat Island. The cave is connected to the Punta Villa beach a massive and mysterious.
9. Bababu Beach
This is the starting point of the Bababu Lake hiking trail.
10. Sundayo Beach
On the eastern side of Hagakhak Island, one of the major islands in Dinagat Province, is where the lovely beach called Sundayo Beach is found. It is composed of white sand beach, coconut trees, noticeable rock formations dotting the coasts and mind-blowing crystal clear waters. This is where most visitors have their lunch on an island hopping tour while enjoying the tropical ambiance of the place.
11. Oasis Islet
Coming either from San Jose or Basilisa, anchoring the boat at Oasis Islet allows a visitor to gaze into the spectacle of the surrounding limestone islands jutting out from every corner of the sea. It will take less than a minute to circle around this tiny piece of land, but the priceless views of nature visible from here are definitely worth the stop..
12. Hinabyan Beach
Powdery white sand beach. Its a combination of fresh and salt water. There is no shade or cottages on the beach, be sure to bring some shade or bring a tent. No crowd, no buildings it’s just a beach. It’s like a hidden paradise.