Now known as one of the top surfing destinations in the Philippines, Siargao Island is found west of Surigao del Norte (800 km from Manila). It’s a paradise destinations for vacationers from all walks of life. Siargao is close to the Pacific Ocean and is the Philippines’ tourist alternative for Tahiti and Oahu. The history of Siargao is relatively short from a tourism perspective, but the region is steeped in history.
Surfing is the main attraction in Siargao. It all started way back in 1980 when two foreigners, Tony Arruza and Steve Jones, came to the island during their search for the “perfect wave.” They apparently found it within the municipality of General Luna, and called it “Jacking Horse.” Their perfect wave is actually what most people today know as Cloud 9. Until now, Siargao was known for its waves that couldn’t be compared elsewhere.
At that time, Siargao hadn’t become a popular tourist destination yet. For a while it was still under the radar, only known to a few surfers who looked for it. Among them was a surfer named Max Walker, who was known to have established a lot of surfing camps around Southeast Asia before he died. This paved the way to more and more people hearing about Siargao.
Finally, it was in the year 1992 that Siargao hit the maps. A famous surfing photographer named John Callahan took pictures which featured famous surfers John Slater, Taylor Knox, and Kevin Davidson riding the huge waves in Cloud 9. The story was published in a magazine that circulated all over the world.
This turning point made Cloud 9 so famous that surfers from all over the world rushed to the destination. Ever since then, the town of General Luna earned its place among the top surfing destinations in the world. In addition to Cloud 9, there are also many other breaks north of the town, including Tuason Point, Ventura, Tuesday Rock, and Pilar Point. As if these weren’t enough, more surf sites were found or established, and were fondly named. This made Siargao open to a wide range of visitors and surfers who wanted to take on the waves at varying intensities depending on the surfer’s level of experience and personal preference.