If you are looking for a paradisiacal holiday destination off the beaten track then the Camotes Islands in the Philippines are a great option. Known as the “lost horizon of the south” the Camotes comprises 3 major islands. They are characterised by their tropical climate, white sand and secluded location.
The Camotes Islands are accessible from a number of different jump-off points, including Cebu, Layte and Bohol. We had flown into Cebu and taken a boat over. We did a bit of an island hopping tour of the Camotes Islands. Some of the locations we visited were sparsely populated with hardly any utilities and amenities so we only stayed for an hour or two to look around. We stayed over in some of the more developed locations that we came across.
One of the main stops on our tour of the Camotes was Pacijan Island, one of the more developed islands. There are only a handful of resorts on the Camotes Islands and most of them are located around Pacijan Island’s Santiago Bay area. We stayed at the Mangodlong Beach Resort, which was still partially under construction when we stayed there a few years back. We also visited the island’s main town, San Francisco.
It’s quite an amazing thing to be in a place where there’s next to no infrastructure. You feel cut off from the world but in a good way. There’s so much beauty to keep you occupied. If you love to snorkel and dive, there are plenty of fantastic unspoilt places to do so around the island. Every night we would enjoy dinner on the resort’s private beachfront and watch the sunset over the ocean, which was definitely one of the most memorable parts of the trip.
Although the Camotes Islands have seen an increase in tourism, it’s still very much a hidden gem of a destination. If you are dreaming about your next trip and are thinking of visiting the Philippines, make sure you consider including the Camotes Islands on your itinerary. We spent around two weeks in total exploring and it was one of the most memorable travel experiences that I’ve had.
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