YES, WE ‘SIARGAO’ BACK: The island is reopening to tourists on Dec. 1

ⓒ Alejandro Luengo via Unsplash

After gradually reopening top tourist spots like Boracay, Bohol, Baguio, or Ilocos for leisure travel, the Department of Tourism (DOT) and local government of Siargao are propping up the island for more visitors and hubaderas and surfers just in time for the holiday season. The island has reopened to local tourists of Surigao region this Monday and will resume flights from GCQ areas to Sayak Airport this Dec. 1. 

“This is encouraging news for everyone who loves the sea, especially the surfers. As Siargao reopens to travelers, subject to minimum health and safety standards, the people of the island will regain their livelihood and share their paradise to our kababayans once more with the same level of hospitality they have always been known for,” says Tourism Sec. Bernadette Romulo-Puyat in an official statement

The surfing capital's reopening also comes with the hope of living up to its glory as two-time Condé Nast Traveller’s eighth “Best Holiday Destination" this 2021 and the Philippines' most promising booming destination post-pandemic as forecasted by the DOT.

What once was an idyllic remote island with locals languid to keep the fire of the island burning, now a highly recognized surfing hotspot after collective environmental efforts saved its waters and diminishing groves of coconut trees. 

ⓒ Rolands Varsbergs via Unsplash

The teardrop-shaped island is a treasure trove of surf breaks that make for the best barreling waves, especially at Cloud 9 Area, attracting world renowned surfers like Kelly Slater and Anthony Kiedis. Patrons also recommend island-hopping on the nearby islets like Daku, Guyam, and Naked Island. Resorts and hotels around the area practice sustainable tourism, too by banning single-use plastics and relying on renewable energy.

ⓒ Jake Irish via Unsplash

Tourists arriving from Surigao City/Sayak Airport are required to submit an e-Health Pass, negative RT-PCR test result taken 48 hours from departure, a five-day confirmed booking in an accommodation facility accredited by the DOT, round-trip tickets, and complete itinerary details. If the RT-PCR is taken more than 48 hours of departure from the point of origin, a negative antigen swab will be required on the day of arrival.

Take note of the curfew that will be enforced from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m.