With over 7,000 islands and 36,000 kilometers of coastline, it’s no surprise that surfing is one of the top water activities in the Philippines. Cloud 9 in Siargao is frequently recognized as one of the top surfing places in the world, but it’s not the only site in the country where you can get stoked.
If you are planning a surfing trip in the Philippines, check out the below surf places from Baler and San Juan in Luzon and other parts of the country, as well as the ideal times to visit. Whether you are an experienced surfer or a beginner looking to learn the sport, the Philippines provides the best surfing spots for you.
6. LANUZA, SURIGAO DEL SUR
Lanuza Bay’s underwater environment contains one of the most densely packed biodiversity marine systems in the country. Several unusual aquatic species can be found here. Above water, the bay of Lanuza provides another treat in the form of enormous swells that please surfers to no end. Lanuza offers a lengthy right-hander that is best suited for traditional longboard surfers. The barreling reef breaks are very popular with advanced surfers.
Surfers from Siargao, a 5 to 6 hour journey, frequently come here to enjoy a more secluded surfing environment. It’s worth noting that most commercial areas close around 6 p.m., so it can become a little quiet here. Visit in November for the Lanuza Surfing Festival for even more fun. The best time to surf this area is from November to March, when Lanuza’s surfing season is at its peak.
5. DAET, CAMARINES NORTE
The Pacific Ocean is a swell (factory-like) area. Bagasbas Beach near Daet, Camarines Norte, is another wonderful beach for surfing the waves. Surfing in Bagasbas is ideal for novices because of its sandy beach and regular strong waves, making it comparable to Baler due to its lengthy shoreline. Bagasbas is a beautiful paradise for skilled surfers, where the waves just keep coming and surfer junkies keep getting thrilled.
The ideal season to surf in Bagasbas is from July to January, when the Pacific Ocean winds blow in the best waves. Check the weather prediction to ensure a better surfing experience.
4. BARAS, CATANDUANES
Catanduanes, also known as the Happy Island, has a breathtaking landscape that includes rolling hills, secluded beaches, natural pools, hidden lagoons, waterfalls, and spectacular rock formations. Catanduanes is much less crowded than Siargao and can easily be circled on a motorcycle, and there are many places to chill and relax. For surfers, however, the beach of Puraran in Baras is the only place they want to be because of the consistent supply of barreling waves from the Pacific Ocean, dubbed, The Majestic.
national and local surfers compete every year in the Puraran Surfing Cup, which is held in October as part of the Catandungan Festival. This location is ideal for beginning to intermediate surfers. Surfing at its best: is from July to October, the right-hand barrel reef breaks are ideal for professional, advanced surfers. There are surf spots for beginners as well, as long as a surf instructor is present. Beginners should go during the summer season, which runs from February to June.
3. SAN JUAN, LA UNION
San Juan has grown rapidly in recent years as a result of the popularity of surfing in the area. Former Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo was even featured in the news after completing a long ride over San Juan’s waves. The long coast of San Juan is lined with resorts ranging from backpackers to luxury. A thriving community of local surfers has produced some of the best in the country, many of whom have competed in international competitions.
There are surf camps all over San Juan, if you want to learn how to surf, including well-known surfer Luke Landrigan’s Billabong Camp. You will get to see some of San Juan’s must-see surf spots, such as The Point and The Bowl for expert surfers, and The Beach Break for beginners. Darigayos is best from May to September, Bacnotan is best from October to April, and Car-rille is best from November to March. The best time to surf in San Juan is when San Juan’s swells are at their peak from July to October and November to March, with competition-level waves arriving from December to January.
2. BALER, AURORA
The 1979 film Apocalypse, about the Vietnam War, was shot in the little village of Baler in Aurora, about a 6-hour drive from Manila. Colonel Kilgore had his soldiers surf at what is now known as Charlie’s Point while residents watched from a distance in the film. When the crew finished filming, the surfboards they left behind were used by local youngsters who learned to surf on them. Thus, the sport of surfing in the Philippines was born.
Today, surfing is a popular weekend sport for both locals and visitors from other countries hunting for the greatest waves. They travel to Baler to surf, learn to surf, or simply surf again, not only at Charlie’s Point, the most popular surf place in Baler, but also at Cemento and other locations. Chic cafes, hostels, and artisan eateries now line Baler’s lengthy shoreline, providing a communal atmosphere where artists, travelers, and residents may interact over their shared passion for surfing. The best time to surf in Baler is all year, but the months of October to March provide tremendous northern winds. This place is best for intermediate to advanced surfers.
Cloud 9 in Siargao is the number one destination for experienced and beginner surfers alike, because of its excellent barreling right-hand reef break. You will meet foreigners in Siargao resorts who have visited the island and never left. What is there not to like? There are many Siargao tourist attractions to visit, including natural pools, secret lagoons, lush countryside, and other interesting locations to chill out and dine with friends. The main charm, of course, is the surf locations, which range from tough reef breaks ideal for professionals, to mild waves ideal for beginners.
Keep an eye out for celebs known to surf in Siargao, like Red-Hot Chili Peppers lead singer Anthony Kiedis, when you are on the lineup at General Luna, where Cloud 9 is located. The best time to surf at Siargao starts from September and lasts until May, with perfect barrels being a regular occurrence in the lineup from November to February.