If you are listing your best tourist spots in the Philippines the island of Siquijor may not make it to your “best list” especially if you equate “best” with “most popular”.
Lots of Filipinos are hesitant, with some truly afraid, to venture to this Visayan Island whose reputation is closely link to stories of enchantments, kababalaghan and encounters with not like ours. I too was hesitant when a friend whose roots was from the mystic island invited me to go to Siquijor many moons ago. But last year I finally made it to Isla del Fuego and am very happy to have done so. If I have the funds, I will go there again in a heartbeat. =)
I recommend you and friends to check out and visit Siquijor as soon as possible too. It’s a wonderful world out there, something so different especially if you are a city warrior. And the change of surrounding and the slow pace life may be just what you need to de-stressed. In Siquijor, there are lots of places to discover and enjoy including hidden natural wonders that will astound even those who are experienced travellers in the Philippines.
Siquijor Countryside Tour DIY via Tricycle
For me and my travel buddies, the last famous spots we visited before we headed back to Dumaguete were the Tulapos Marine Sanctuary and Guiwanon Spring Park. We checked-out from Salagdoong Beach Resort in Maria and hop on again on our tricycle to continue our countryside tour.
Of all tourist attractions in Siquijor, the spring park is my sister’s favorite whereas my vote goes to the Enchanted Balete Tree and its cold pool and fish residents. =)
TULAPOS MARINE SANCTUARY
Located along the stretch of shoreline in the town of Enrique Villanueva, yes the town is named after someone =), is the Tulapos Marine Sanctuary. Mangroves dot the shoreline of EV; some like the picture below stands alone, while others are concentrated in one place.
Bakawan or mangroves forest are breeding places for fish, protecting this sanctuary then holds utmost importance for the people of Siquijor since fishing is a major livelihood in this island province. If you love the underwater world, a visit to Tulapos is rewarding with its different species of fish and healthy corals. Good job Siquijoron!
We were on a DIY Siquijor tour so we did not hire a travel agency, what we did instead is hire a tricycle to get us around the tourist spots the moment we arrived in Siquijor. You can also hire your own trike at the port area.
After visiting the Tulapos Marine Sanctuary, we were on our way to our last tourist spot, the famous spring park and resort in Siquijor City – Guiwanon.
GUIWANON SPRING PARK
It was a weekday yet roads were almost empty except for a few tricycles and even fewer cars and trucks plying through the city streets of Larena and Siquijor,Siquijor. Heavy traffic is non-existent but even so, our road trip was a bit slow. This is understandable we were riding a trike, not a van.
If you are vacationing, try not to hurry things up, it’s not a rat race and you don’t have a deadline to meet unless you are trying to catch the last ferry trip of the day heheh. Savor your vacation and be in the moment at every step in your journey, to do otherwise is to lose the essence why you took a break from your busy life in the first place.
I just have to jot that down to remind myself hehe.
High noon and humid, we finally arrived in the Guiwanon Spring Park. Me and sister raced to the welcome hut to hide from Mr Sun the moment we got off our tricycle. Pitiful lol. Entrance fee on this Siquijor tourist spot is P25 per person, after paying you can now explore the area and walk on its wooden bridges.
Note: Most tourist spots in Siquijor does not have entrance fee.
Guiwanon is where cold spring water meets the briny water of the sea. The water in the mangrove area is shallow so in case you fall off the bridge, you’d be okay. But the mangroves will not be, so please don’t fall! This Siquijor attraction is also a sanctuary of various marine species and different kinds of mangroves. We have seen little fish like these ones and curious pine-like mangroves jutting from the ground.
The lil mangroves looks like little tiny Christmas trees=)
The Guiwanon Spring Park also serves as a place where you can get cheap accommodation in Siquijor. They have several nipa huts that you can stay overnight in, it’s a no frills accommodation so don’t expect much but it is cheap with starting rate at P300.
I am wondering though if mosquitoes will be a problem amidst all the mangroves. Or do mangroves drive mosquitoes away? We need an expert to comment on this concern hehe.
Cheap Nipa Huts Accommodation in Siquijor
So yes, it’s my sister’s fave spot in Siquijor as the wooden bridges are great backdrop for pictures hehe. What do you think?
Wooden bridges of planks and bamboo railings in Guiwanon Spring Park
I am not sure what this big nipa hut is at the end of this bridge. It might be a restaurant or a dining hall for big events. In any case if you are looking for picturesque area for your photoshoot this place would be a perfect candidate.
The shallow water of the spring meets the calm waves of the sea
If you have been to Siquijor, do share your favorite tourist spot in the comment section below. Who knows your experience and feelings about the tourist attraction will be the impetus that will send someone else to go and discover the beauty of the mystic island. We can never have enough tourism ambassadors for our country. 😉
Cheers to Sunday! Cheers to sharing stories!