Are you looking for an adventure that combines the thrill of riding the waves with the beauty of a tropical paradise? Look no further than Siargao, the Surfing Capital of the Philippines, which consistently tops the list of the best surfing spots in the Philippines.
Known for its world-renowned surf breaks, crystal-clear waters, and white sandy beaches, Siargao is a surfer’s dream destination. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced pro, you’ll find plenty of surfing spots that cater to your skill level. From the legendary Cloud 9 to the lesser-known but equally impressive Jacking Horse, Siargao has something for everyone.
So pack your board and sense of adventure, and get ready to experience the magic of Siargao’s surfing spots.
History of surfing in Siargao
Surfing in Siargao dates back to the early 1980s when a group of Australian surfers stumbled upon the island’s world-class surf breaks. Since then, Siargao has become a mecca for surfers from around the world. The island’s reputation as a surfing destination was solidified in 2011 when it hosted the Siargao National Surfing Cup. This professional surfing competition drew top surfers from around the globe. It also hosts the Siargao Cloud 9 Surfing Cup.
Today, Siargao is a must-visit destination for surfers seeking a unique and unforgettable experience. It offers surfing opportunities year-round, but the best time to visit is from September to November during the rainy season when waves can reach up to 12 feet high.
Surfing in Siargao is now more accessible through direct flights from Manila and Cebu or through Surigao City. Besides surfing, Siargao offers beautiful scenery, such as coconut forests, tidal lagoons, and isolated beaches.
Best surfing spots in Siargao
Siargao has two epic competition-level breaks and options for all levels. Still, beginners are advised to take lessons before attempting to surf on their own. Siargao has around a dozen surf spots, with Cloud 9 being the most popular surf spot on the island. However, it can get crowded during peak season.
1) Cloud 9
Siargao is home to several world-class surf breaks, but none are more famous than Cloud 9. Located on the eastern side of the island in the town of General Luna, Cloud 9 is a powerful right-hand reef break that can produce barrels of up to 12 feet. It’s a challenging wave best suited for experienced surfers. However, beginners can still enjoy the break from the safety of the shore.
Also, General Luna offers access to island breaks and outer reefs.
2) Jacking Horse
Another popular surfing spot in Siargao is Jacking Horse. The place is ideal for those just learning to surf; hence, surfing lessons are available here. It is a beginner spot with soft and decent-sized waves and is conveniently located on the beach in front of the village to Cloud 9. Jacking Horse is also a great spot to visit while watching Cloud 9
Jacking Horse is a sand-bottom beach break perfect for beginners and intermediate surfers. The long and gentle waves provide plenty of opportunities for surfers to practice their skills.
In addition to Jacking Horse, Guiuan is another excellent spot for beginners and intermediates. At the same time, Daku is suitable for beginner and intermediate-level surfers.
Guiuan is a surfing spot in Siargao that is great for all levels of surfers. This spot is around 15-20 minutes from General Luna and is ideal for beginners and advanced surfers. Guiuan is also a year-round surf spot home to two breaks called Paradise and Secret. However, Guiuan can be challenging to find.
4) Daku Reef
Daku Reef is a popular surfing spot in Siargao suitable for beginners and improvers. It can get crowded, but it offers consistent shoulder-high waves and is surfable any time of the year when the winds are light or off-shore, and there’s a decent-sized swell.
Other notable surfing spots in Siargao include Quicksilver, Stimpy’s, Rock Island, and Pacifico Beach. Of these spots, Rock Island offers a more secluded surfing experience. Nonetheless, intermediate surfers may want to try Bumee and Cemetery. Each spot has its own unique characteristics and caters to different skill levels.
Surfing conditions in Siargao
The surfing season in Siargao runs from September to April, with the best waves typically occurring between November and March. If you want to tide the best waves, planning your Siargao itinerary ahead of time is best.
During this time, the island experiences consistent swells that can produce up to 12 feet waves. In addition, the water temperature ranges from 25°C to 30°C throughout the year, making it warm enough to surf in board shorts or a swimsuit.
Surfing conditions in Siargao can vary depending on the tide and wind direction. Cloud 9, for example, is best surfed on a rising tide when the waves are most powerful. On the other hand, Jacking Horse is best surfed on a falling tide when the waves are smaller and more manageable.
Surfing lessons and rentals in Siargao
If you’re new to surfing or want to improve your skills, plenty of surf schools and rental shops in Siargao can help. Many surf schools are located in General Luna, where most surf spots are located. They offer lessons for all skill levels, from beginner to advanced, and provide all the necessary equipment, including surfboards and rash guards.
Surfboard rentals are also widely available in Siargao, with prices ranging from ₱300 to ₱500 per day. In addition, some rental shops offer weekly or monthly rates if you plan to surf for an extended period.
Tips when surfing in Siargao
- Always surf with a buddy or in a group.
- Respect the locals and the surfing etiquette.
- Wear sunscreen and a rash guard to protect your skin from the sun and the reef.
- Check the surf conditions before heading out, and be aware of any hazards, such as rocks or shallow areas.
- If you’re a beginner, take a lesson or surf in a designated beginner area.
- Be mindful of the environment and dispose of your trash properly.
Siargao is truly a surfer’s paradise. It would not be called the Surfing Capital of the Philippines for no reason. Siargao offers a variety of surfing spots suitable for different levels of surfers to take advantage of.