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Isla del fuego, Siquijor.

Isla del fuego as the Spanish called it is known for two things, the beauty (including the eerie glow of the island due to the fireflies- from where it gets its name) and its deep seeded roots in witchcraft.

The legend on the island is that Siquijor rose from the sea during a great storm in the Visayas. I’m a sucker for stories of witchcraft, black magic and the likes so this was a “must visit” on our trip through the visayas in the Philippines. The stories are very polarizing for most people. Either you want to go and see what the hype is about, or you are completely against the island. We meet multiple local people both before and after going to Siquijor who could not believe we visited the “witchcraft island”. Apparently many people are frightened away by all the stories. The island has many witch doctors, which we unfortunately did not get to see, but they are mainly focused on healing and rarely use there powers for spells and curses. Though the are supposed to make one hell of a love potion, but that may just be a myth like so many others floating around.

In reality, the island was really laid back and friendly. There’s a slow pace of life and people tend to laze by the road with other friends watching to see who is gonna pass by. The island is basically one main road that goes around the entire island. It takes about 2 hours to drive around the entire thing.

Siquijor is located southeast of Cebu and south west of Bohol (post to come) and it is definitely one of the more beautful islands we’ve been too. We stayed at Kiwi Dive resort. Its on the northern tip, super secluded, and had a nice beach right out front.

We rented motorbikes the entire time we were there, because getting around the island without one is pretty hard. Its also just nice to be on your own schedule without having a tricycle driver waiting on you. I can honestly say this is one of friendliest islands we’ve been to. To top it off it had beautiful churches and building with spanish arcitecture.

 I think becuase of the lack of tourism there currently, people are just excited to see a westerner, so you get big smiles and waves for nearly every person you pass. On motorbike we assumed the roles of Sean driving, and me on the back in charge of waving to everyone.

local gas station

local gas station

 

There are tons of cool caves and waterfalls to see on the island, along with white sand beaches, its basically a tropical paradise. One of the waterfalls we went to see was the Cambergey falls. Before heading out there one of the guesthouse staff told us to be careful of “roaming kid gangs at the falls”…. roaming kid gangs? um… okay. We got to the falls midday on a monday and there was not a person in sight. We contimplated both just putting our stuff on the side of the falls so we could go for a swim, but after the roaming kid gangs warning we decided it was best to just take turns taking a dip.

As we were getting ready to leave I caught a glimpse of someone in a yellow shirt in the distance, then it scurried away. Then Sean saw another person quickly crouch behind a rock. At this point we were ready to get the hell out of there, because kid gang or not, thats creepy.

One of the kids (and by kids i mean teenagers) followed us out of the staircase watching us the whole way. When we got back home we researched a little and apparently they won’t cause physical harm or confront you but it you leave any belongs on the side when you go for a swim you can kiss your stuff goodbye before you can say “roaming kid gang”.

Another cool thing to see is the Salagdoong Beach resort. Its a goverment owned beach resort and a favorite of the locals. Unfortunately the place is only happening on the weekends, the weekdays it basically shuts down with one one person running the entire resort. There are some cool waterslides of rocks and places to cliff jump. However watch you self because during low tide the jumps are quite sketchy. Sean hit his but going down one the slides and they were a FAR lower drop then the cliffs!

The only downside to the island, and you really can’t blame them for this. There is only 1 ATM on the island. So if you are on the island for, oh say, Siquijor day, and the bank is shut down for the weekend, you can and WILL get stuck on the island for 3 more days then you were planning. We joked the island was like Hotel California. Once you visit you can never leave… muuuuhahhahahha (creepy laugh)


 

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  1. susan says:

    I have missed the blogs. The pictures were beautiful. Sounds like it is a wonderful memory. Love the last line..murrrrahhhh

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