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Camiguin Travel Guide - Philippines

When you travel to the Philippines, one of the best islands you will ever visit is the Camiguin. This pear-shaped small island, off the coast of Misamis Oriental in north Mindanao, has earned the reputation of growing the sweetest lanzones (a delicious fleshy tropical fruit) in the country. Since it is a growing tourist destination, it is littered with more than thirty resorts and about a hundred restaurants. The Department of Tourism has named the island as one of the top 25 tourist spots. Camiguin is also considered as the No. 7 diving spot in the world. You may access this island by plane or boat from Cebu or from Misamis.

Camiguin is a small island

Camiguin is small. You can cover its circumferential road in just one our and a half. For such a tiny island, it boasts of seven volcanoes, some of which are considered active. In fact, this island was formed due to volcanic eruptions and land mass upheavals. The most famous of the active volcanoes is Mount Hibok-Hibok, which erupted in 1951 claiming about 500 lives. If you are not faint of heart, you may climb this volcano. And after a tiring trek, you can comfort your bones and muscles in one of the island’s numerous hot springs. You may even swim at the Ardent Hot Springs, located inland from Mambajao, the capital of the island.

The people in Camiguin, Camiguingnons, are hardworking and their main source of livelihood are fishing and farming. Farming includes coconut palms, abaca, rice, mangoes, and, of course, the lanzones. They have an ancient language, Kinamiguin, but many speak Cebuano and almost everyone can speak English.

Camiguin Historical Landmarks

After viewing many of the island’s historical landmarks, waterfalls, plantations, and forests, and after smiling and shaking hands with the friendliest and most hospitable people in the world, you may proceed to the barrio of Bonbon and watch a sunset which is cloaked with an aura of forgotten dreams and unidentified restlessness. You may contemplate the events of your past life and plan the next one while perched near a large white cross. This cross marks a sunken cemetery.

It was during the same sunset, in 1871, when the volcano, Old Vulcan Daan, erupted and swept a whole cemetery off into the sea. You may snorkel and dive and find the sunken graves. The Camiguingnons hold an annual fluvial procession above the sunken cemetery. They sought to honor their ancestors, who, they believe, protected them from the fiery clutches of active volcanoes that surround them. The fluvial procession is also a thanksgiving ceremony for the fertile lands, the benevolent weather, and the bountiful harvest on Camiguin.

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