Mindanao is the second-largest island in the Philippines and it's still commonly known as the Southern Philippines. There are many beautiful tourist spots in Mindanao which will surely amaze every traveler who loves to explore and have fun.
Exploring Mindanao can be very exciting especially if you’re the adventurous type of person. There are many fun things to do – you can visit various waterfalls, climb mountains, and taste different local dishes.
Let's have a look at the most beautiful tourist spots in Mindanao.
Featured photo by I Travel Philippines (©Flickr).
1) Enchanted River
Enchanted river or also known as Hinatuan river is located in Surigao del Sur. This magnificent river can be found on the island of Mindanao and is famous for its emerald-colored water. The enchanted river is being visited by all sorts of tourists because of the soothing and calming vibe it has.
If you’re a big fan of diving, then this is the perfect place for you. The enchanted river is deep within the forest and is also along mountainsides which is why it’s the perfect place to take a dip and relax at the same time. If you’re planning on exploring Mindanao, make sure to visit this place.
Best accommodation near Enchanted River:
You can sleep conveniently in nearby Enchanted River Rock Island Resort or choose a cheaper but further option in Lopez Residences Inn with outstanding reviews.
2) Camiguin Island
Camiguin island is the best destination for people who love to go to the beach. This island is famous for its fine white sand and beautiful view which will surely be enjoyed by every traveler who wants to feel the salty air in their skin. You can also visit the different diving sites in the area and check the giant clams that leave underneath this astonishing island.
Other than sunbathing and swimming, you can also visit the sunken cemetery which is located in Camiguin. You will need to ride a boat for you to get there. Once you get there, you will see a giant cross that was built to commemorate the tragedy that happened in this place years ago. This place is visited by different visitors from all over the world.
Best accommodation on Camiguin Island:
We recommend either cheap Anito Mambajao Homestay or more luxurious Mountain View Cottages.
3) Lake Sebu, South Cotabato
This place is often called the Summer Capital of Southern Philippines because of the cool climate. I highly recommend bringing a jacket if you are planning on visiting this place because the temperature at night gets cooler. Lake Sebu is surrounded by stunning views which is why it’s the perfect spot for photography lovers.
This is majestic place has been home to local tribes such as Ubo and T’boli. You can experience the culture and way of living they have by exploring this wonderful place. There are a lot of things you can do while you're in Lake Sebu. You can ride a zipline, do some trekking, sightseeing or taste various local dishes. If you are looking for real adrenaline, try paragliding above Lake Sebu.
Best accommodation near Lake Sebu:
You can choose nearby Sunrise Garden Lake Resort or cheaper and slightly further MD Square Pension House.
4) The Grand Mosque of Cotabato
The Grand Mosque of Cotabato is located in the city of Cotabato. This sacred place is visited by different travelers because of its outstanding structure. This beautiful place is personally funded by a Brunei sultan named Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Masjid. Both Muslim and non-muslim travelers visit this place to admire its beauty.
If you’re a religious traveler, then you should consider visiting this place. You can get here by riding a taxi from Cotabato city or you can also rent a car so that you’ll be able to roam around the city of Cotabato before going to this place. You will need to wear proper attire when visiting this mosque because they are strict with the dress code.
Best accommodation in Cotabato:
We recommend spending night in Jeamco Royal Hotel, which is right in the city center.
5) Siargao Island
Siargao island is known to be the best place in the Philippines to do some surfing. It’s one of the most popular tourist spots in Mindanao and the whole country. I myself can’t get over to the beauty of this island. There are a lot of fun things you can do when you’re in this place. This is one of the places in the Mindanao that every traveler should visit.
You can rent a motorcycle for a very reasonable price and roam around the island of Siargao. You will surely enjoy your stay here because the island is not crowded compared to other islands in the Philippines. You can try different types of local dishes and shop for souvenirs at the same time.
This is my favorite place in Mindanao because you will be able to feel the island life here. You can also visit the wonderful Sugba lagoon, Sohoton cave, and Bucas Grande.
You need to take ferry from Eva Macapagal Passenger Terminal in San Juan.
If you don't want to make everything easier, you can take Siargao Island Hopping Tour.
Best Accommodation on Siargao Island:
You can either choose White Coco Hut Villa, which is close to the ferry pier or Buko White House in the city center.
6) Mount Apo
Mount Apo is the place for people who love to go on adventurous trips. You should be in perfect shape if you’re planning on climbing this mountain. This dormant volcano is known to be the tallest peak in the Philippines. This is the perfect destination for nature lovers and for people who love hiking.
You will also see different species of plants and animals living on this mountain. The journey to the peak might be tiring and stressing but once you reach the top, all your sacrifices will surely pay off because of the beautiful views you’ll see from the top. You will see different cities from above such as the city of Kidapawan, Digos, and Davao.
You need a permit for climbing Mount Apo. Read more information about the trek and permits here.
Best Accommodation near Mount Apo:
The nearest accommodation is in Davao City. We recommend affordable Mikos Residences Bonifacio or a more luxurious Marco Polo.
7) Tinago Falls
Tinago Falls is located in the city of Iligan. This city is called the City of Majestic Waterfalls because of its 24 waterfalls. If you’re a big fan of waterfalls, then this is the perfect place for you. You will need to do a lot of walking if you’re planning on visiting the different falls in the city of Iligan that’s why it’s advisable to take a long rest before embarking on this kind of trip.
If you’re not ready to take on this kind of adventure, you can try visiting other waterfalls such as Maria Christina Falls which is also located in Iligan city. This place is safe for tourists who traveled with their families and friends. You will not have a problem going to this place because it is very accessible.
You will never regret spending money if you’re in this place because of the breathtaking views. You should never forget to visit this place if you’re going to explore different places in Mindanao.
Best Accommodation near Tinago Falls:
We recommend Go Hotels Iligan with good reviews or cheaper Maria Christina Hotel.
8) Zamboanga City
Zamboanga city is popular because of its Spanish themed buildings. Spaniards are known to have resided in this city years ago that’s why Zamboanga City is called the Latin city of Asia. This city has a rich culture which is why tourists from around the world visit this place all the time.
If you want to taste the local delicacies in Zamboanga City, you can visit restaurants such as Alavar Seafood Restaurant, Greenfields Mano-Mano Resto, La Vista del Mar, Don Vicente Restaurante Latino, and many more. If you have a strong stomach, you can also try the street food around the city.
You can also visit the island of Sta Cruz and enjoy the wonderful scenery. Most people who love photography often visit this place because of the pink sand. You can also do fun activities while you’re in here such as scuba diving and boat riding. Don’t forget to put this on your bucket list if you’re planning on touring Mindanao.
Best Accommodation near Zamboanga City:
You can choose between Hotel Primera with good reviews or choose a more budget-friendly option in Jardin de la Vina Hotel.
9) Dahilayan Forest Park
Dahilayan Forest and Adventure Park, located in Bukidnon province, is one of the most popular tourist spots in Mindanao. It's known for various activities for tourists of all age groups and families.
Dual Zipline is one of the longest ziplines in Asia. There are also many natural scenic views you shouldn't miss while exploring this park.
Best Accommodation near Dahilayan Forest Park:
We recommend Your home in Manolo Fortich, which is one of the closest accommodations you can find.
Map of Best Tourist Spots in Mindanao
We have prepared for you a detailed map of all the best tourist spots in Mindanao.
You can export the map and upload it to Maps.me or Locus mobile apps.
- Check here all of our travel maps.
Best Tourist Spots in Mindanao Takeaway
Traveling around Mindanao is a fun thing to do. You will learn about different cultures while embarking on this kind of adventure. There are certain places in Mindanao that still need improvement but are still worth seeing.
Watch also this beautiful video about the Philippines:
More Philippines inspiration:
Are you planning a trip around other islands in the Philippines? These articles might come handy:
Author's Bio – Joshua
This Guest Post was written by Joshua, who is a writer and a blogger from Tourist Secrets. He loves to travel all over Asia because of the variety of cultures and a wide choice of attractions fascinate him. Whenever he can, he goes to the basketball gym with his friends to break some sweat.
More tips for your travels:
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1) Where to book accommodation?
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Tourist spots in Mindanao FAQ:
Is there a downloadable map of the best tourist spots in Mindanao?
Yes, here you can find a detailed map with all the most beautiful tourist spots in Mindanao. You can download this map to your mobile phone.
Where to find cheap accommodation in the Philippines?
Where to find cheap flights to the Philippines?
The best search engine for searching for cheap flights around Asia is Momondo. You can also try Skyscanner.
What are the most beautiful places to visit in Mindanao?
The most beautiful places to visit in Mindanao are Enchanted River, Camiguin Island, Lake Sebu, South Cotabato, The Grand Mosque of Cotabato, Siargao Island, Mount Apo, Tinago Falls, Zamboanga City, Dahilayan Forest Park.
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