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Initially drawn to Siargao (shar-gow) by good year-round waves and a tranquillity and beauty lost in other Philippine islands, a small group of passionate Aussie, American, European and now Filipino surfers are still living the good life. Even with a marked surge in development over the last several years, more hotels and flights and better roads, the island's laid-back resorts are still the norm. Besides surfers looking for the next challenge on their international wanderjahr, low-key do-it-yourself types do well here and prolong their stay by weeks. There are rock pools, mangrove swamps, twisty rivers, offshore islands with strange rock formations and wildlife, waterfalls and forests, with hammock sitting the usual coda to any day.

The port is in the main township of Dapa. On arrival you’ll probably make for one of the resorts located along the road between General Luna (known locally as GL) and ‘Cloud Nine’.

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