Camarines Sur, Philippines · 13 hotels available
A secret paradise filled with rich marine life, pristine beaches, exotic islets, diving spots, underground rivers, rock formations, lagoons, and freshwater pools, Caramoan is the perfect getaway destination for nature lovers.
Caramoan is a first-class municipality in Camarines Sur, located in the southernmost tip of Luzon. An old town that dates its history back in the 16th century, it has recently gained popularity when the hit reality show Survivor chose it as their filming location. The stunning scenery, the picturesque view of the mountains and seas, the endless adventures that await any tourist, all these and more makes it truly more fun in Caramoan.
Fly to Naga via Philippine Airlines or Cebu Pacific. From there, take a taxi or van to Central Bus Terminal and look for buses bound for Caramoan (Raymond Bus/MRR Bus, or Florencia Bus. Fare ranges from Php200-Php230. Trip starts at 1 AM for Raymond Bus/MRR Bus and 3:45 AM for Florencia Bus. Last trip leaves at 4:30 PM. Travel time is between 4 to 4.5 hours.
You can also fly from Manila to Virac, Catanduanes. From the airport, ride a tricycle to Codon Port or take the van going to Pandan and alight at Codon Port. At the Codon Port, ride a boat going to Caramoan.
Fly to Naga and take a taxi or van to the East Bound Terminal (van terminal at the back of SM City Naga). Take an aircon van of Filcab to Sabang Port. From Sabang Port, take the boat that goes to Caramoan Guijalo Port.
If coming from Catanduanes, you can take the boat going to Caramoan at the Codon Port.
Ride a bus bound for Naga and alight at Naga City Central Bus Terminal. Take the bus going to Caramoan. Or you can catch a van to Sabang Port and ride a boat to Caramoan. You can also bring your own vehicle but note that travel time from Manila to Naga is around 8-9 hours so better be ready for a long drive.
Tricycles are readily available within the town proper. But to explore the islands, you need to rent a boat from the Bikal Port at Brgy. Paniman.
Caramoan Peninsula comprises of islands that are very unique from each other. Every island offers a different beauty that’s worth discovering. Matukad Island, boasts of its fine white sand and prominent limestone cliffs. Lahos Island has sugar-like powdery sand. Situated between two beaches and two identical giant rocks, Lahos disappears during high tide and can only be seen during low tide. Pitogo Island is suitable for kids because the water is shallow and the place is really peaceful.
Try different activities like stand-up paddle, cliff jumping, bouldering, kayaking, and slacklining. Aside from the usual island hopping which is already a must, you can also do spelunking in Culapnit Cave, snorkel and visit the Underwater Garden in Tayak lagoon found in Malarad Island. Trek to Mt. Caglago and climb up the 500 steps to the summit where the gigantic statue of Our Lady of Holy Rosary Mother of Peace and the 360-degree majestic view of the Caramoan Islands await.
Caramoan Bed and Dine serves native dishes and is so far, the only good enough restaurant in town. You can try other eateries but don’t expect much. Most resorts and inns have their own cafés and restaurants.
Caramoan is a laid-back town and almost everything closes at 8pm. There’s not much establishments where you can spend the night dancing, drinking, and partying. What you can do instead is camp by the beach and go stargazing. Bring your own drinks and snacks and enjoy the good company of friends while sharing stories and laughter underneath the stars.
Gota Village Resort is where most of the Survivors staff stayed while filming the show. It is an exclusive beachfront resort that can be reached within 30 minutes from Guijalo Port. West Peninsula Villas claims to be the most refreshing haven in Caramoan. They also have a lake bar and a videoke room so you won’t miss out on the usual city nightlife. For those on a budget, light travelers, and backpackers, more affordable accommodations are found near the town center including La Casa Roa Hostel which used to be a private residence.
Locals say the Survivor franchise has rented some of the islands for 25 years beginning 2008. Check their filming schedules to make sure it doesn’t coincide with your planned vacation.
Expect huge waves and rough seas during months of Habagat (June to August). The best time to go is during the dry season, between February to May. But whenever you go, make sure to waterproof your belongings.
Camp all you want but make sure you don’t leave your trash. Caramoan is the best-kept paradise in Bicol and while the locals do their best to maintain the natural wonders of the island, travelers also bear the responsibility of keeping it unexploited.