Until the "discovery" of whale sharks off the coast here in 1998, Donsol, about 28 miles (45km) southwest of Legazpi, was an obscure, sleepy fishing village in one of Sorsogon’s more remote areas. In 1998 a local diver shot a video of the whale sharks and a newspaper carried a story about Donsol’s gentle butanding. Since then Donsol has become one of the Philippines’ most popular tourist locations, though the permanence of its shark population is now in question.

Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Donsol.