Fans of the reality television show Survivor will easily recognize the Caramoan Islands. With its secluded and pristine islands, it’s no surprise that the producers of the show chose this cluster of islands as their show’s setting.
The Caramoan Islands are located just off the tip of Camarines Sur in the Bicol Region. Noted for its white sand beaches, caves, coves, and rich aquatic wildlife, Caramoan is composed of about ten major islands, each with its own attractions.
Gota Beach is arguably Caramoan’s most famous attraction, thanks to its white sand, emerald green waters, and limestone cliffs. It’s also the main jumping point for island hopping tours around the area.
Most island tours will go from the white sands of Gota to the pink sands of Matukad Island. This particular island is surrounded by jagged limestone cliffs that you can actually climb, if you’re brave enough.
For those hoping to get in some swimming time, have your guide take you to either Bugtong Beach or Sabitang Laya Island. Both beaches feature shallow pools of crystal clear blue waters where you can take a quick dip.
Ever wanted to let out your inner Lara Croft or Indiana Jones? Explore the caves that you can find scattered around the islands. Check out the Manipis Cave especially — it’s rumored to be the hiding place of Yamashita’s gold (war loot stolen in Southeast Asia by Japanese forces during World War II)!
You can also choose to camp out at any one of the islands here, if you want to get your own Survivor experience.
Caramoan isn’t just beaches and caves, there’s some culture here too. The Shrine of Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary does not only have the largest Marian statue in the country, it also provides you with a magnificent view of the town down below.
There’s also the Parish of St. Michael the Archangel. Built in 1619 by Franciscan friars, this church is made out entirely of red bricks, providing an interesting contrast against the background of green that surrounds Caramoan.
Whether you’re an aspiring spelunker or an experienced beach bum, Caramoan Islands has something for you.
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