White Island is the pride and joy of Camiguin, an adventure seeker’s haven between Bohol and mainland Mindanao in Southern Philippines. This ever changing sand bar is one of the only patches of white sand on the entire island, since most of the beaches are black and rocky thanks to its volcanic past (and present). Growing up on Camiguin, White Island was always one of Zowie’s favourite places to visit, obviously for the sun and sand, but also for the view looking back at Camiguin.
HOW TO GET TO WHITE ISLAND
The best way to get to anywhere in Camiguin is by motorbike. The average price for scooter rentals on the island is around $8 USD for 24 hours. You can get a scooter from a rental near the airport, as well as in the main town of Mambajao and near the port in Benoni. Your accommodation provider might have scooters for rent as well.
The port to White Island is in the town of Yumbing, around 15 minutes out of the main town of Mambajao. A lot of visitors will stay in the popular resort towns of Yumbing and Agoho, so if you’re staying nearby you’re in luck. The port is right next to Paras Beach Resort, and a lot of resorts in the area have tours that will take you to White Island. From the port in Yumbing, it’s only 10 minutes by pump boat to White Island, and your boat captain can either wait for you if you don’t plan on staying too long, or you can set a time for him to return.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
A trip to white island will set you back around $9 for a boat of 4 people plus a $1 environmental fee per person. Before setting sail, you can rent or buy snorkelling gear at the souvenir kiosks by the port. Once out on White Island, you can rent beach umbrellas for $3, which we recommend if you want to avoid the killer sun on the island.
Zowie has been going to White Island for years, and it never grows old. Whenever a friend comes to Camiguin, she insists on taking them to White Island because a trip to Camiguin just wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the sandbar. The sandbar itself is breathtakingly beautiful, but the view of the towering mountains just makes it all the more incredible. It’s one of only two places you can look back at the mountains, without flying a drone!
THE BEST TIME TO VISIT WHITE ISLAND
Since there’s absolutely no shade on the island, unless you rent an umbrella, it can get extremely hot. For this reason, we encourage you to go as late or as early as possible – sunrise or sunset. You don’t have to worry much about the tides. Unlike a lot of sandbars, there’s still plenty of White Island to enjoy during high tide.
Despite the midday heat, White Island attracts a lot of local tourism, and since Filipinos are used to sweltering heat they don’t mind sleeping in and visiting the island around lunch time. You’ll be photoshopping boat loads of tourists out unless you time your visit correctly. If you get to the port and it looks crowded, you can always visit some waterfalls or springs until later in the afternoon when the crowds have thinned.
Not sure what else to do on the island? Check out our ultimate Camiguin Island travel guide for all the inspo you need.