Why Camiguin Island is Dubbed The Hidden Gem Of Mindanao?

White Beach Camiguin Island Mindanao

Camiguin Island in Mindanao

Mindanao is in the southern part of the Philippine archipelago. Although it is sad that the area has always been fraught with civil unrest, there is so much of the island group to explore. Camiguin, a small volcanic island about 90 kilometers to the North of Cagayan de Oro City, is deemed as the region’s hidden gem.

White Island in Camiguin photo by Stephen Currington
White Island in Camiguin photo by Stephen Currington

It is the smallest province in the area of Northern Mindanao and houses five towns. Its capital city is Mambajao, but due to the island’s volcanic nature, it has one of the smallest populations in the country. Yes, Camiguin is an island born of fire. Seven volcanoes are responsible for shaping Camiguin’s landscape; one of them is Mount Hibok-Hibok which is still an active volcano.

What the Island Has to Offer

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Volcanic soil and other minerals are responsible for Camiguin’s abundant agriculture. Coffee and vegetables are among the best exports as well as the best abaca fiber in the land. In recent years, expats have settled down in Camiguin and opened small inns and other commercial establishments. For the most part, though, the island remains pristine and non- commercialized and offers breathtaking vistas no matter what time of the day.

Also Read: Top Things to Do and See in Camiguin

Sunset in Camiguin Island
Sunset in Camiguin Island

Divers are in for a treat at the sunken cemetery; while trekking and hiking enthusiasts are more than welcome to climb the stations of the cross carved out of the Old Volcano. It is one of Camiguin’s most visited spots, along with Katibawasan falls which offers cascading ice-cold water.

Camiguin Must-Try’s

White Beach Camiguin Island Mindanao
White Beach Camiguin Island Mindanao

1. Visit White Island

This is really just a sandbar, but the sand is so magnificently white you have to see it. Tourists will need to take a motorized boat from the main island. Arrive early to avoid crowds during the summer. This spot offers that perfect moment of peace and tranquility.

Ardent Hot Springs in Camiguin
Ardent Hot Springs in Camiguin

2. Hot and Cold Springs

Hire a multi-cab for the day and ask the driver to take you to Ardent hot springs and then to Sto. Niño Cold springs. The contrast between the hot and cold water is supposedly good for circulation.

3. Trek up the Old Volcano

As mentioned earlier, the Old Volcano is one of the most popular sights to see in Camiguin. Pilgrims come here during holy week to meditate on the stations of the cross and take photos of the life-sized images there.

Lanzones from Camiguin
Lanzones from Camiguin By pinay06 – Own work, CC BY 2.5

4. Lanzones

Camiguin is home to the sweetest and most succulent lanzones fruits. The peak season starts in September and tourists come in droves to buy these round fruits. They only last for a few months, though, but there are measures being done to help trees bear fruit all year.

Yema Pastel Bun from Camiguin
Yema Pastel Bun from Camiguin

5. Pastel

These yema filled buns come in an assortment of flavors, but the most popular are durian, ube, and jackfruit. You can freeze these desserts to extend their shelf life. Microwave them for a few seconds to re-heat.