The long and wide shores of Bagasbas Beach in Camarines Norte. Photo by Playground Films courtesy of the Department of Tourism.

There is more to the Philippine surfing scene than Siargao’s summer swells or Baler’s gigantic waves. The country has over 7,641 islands located in the Western Pacific, and with it many spots that could be deemed as a surfer’s paradise.

Some of the most underrated surfing spots can be seen in the Bicol Region, which is filled with beaches, big waves, and breathtaking views. 

Here are but a few choice surfing spots to visit when in Camarines Norte, Sorsogon, and Catanduanes. 

Bagasbas Beach, Camarines Norte 

Bagasbas Beach is a paradise for surfers of all ages. Photo by Playground Films courtesy of the Department of Tourism.

Barangay Bagasbas in Daet used to be a vast expanse of rice fields before it became known as the Surfing Capital of Bicol. Bagas means “rice” in Bicolano.

Bagasbas Beach, on the other hand, is a 5km stretch of gray-sand coast. Its seabed of pure sand makes it safe for beginners, and its expansive shores ensure that there is enough space for surfers to navigate the waves.

Despite being a public beach, the area is also well-maintained by Daet’s municipal office and volunteer groups. 

  • Best time to visit: September to May 
  • How to get there: 
  • By air: From Manila, board a plane bound for Naga. Travel time is approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes. Once in Naga, ride a bus (Php175) going to Daet for 2 to 3 hours. Then, take a tricycle (Php35) to Bagasbas from the town center. 
  • By land: Take a Daet-bound bus (Php835) from Parañaque. Once in Daet town center, hail a tricycle (Php35) to Bagasbas. 
  • Entrance and other fees: Free for public 
  • Surfing lesson package/s
    • Php400 per person (one hour of surfing lesson, inclusive of surfboard rental and instructor) 
    • Php4,000 per person (10 hours of advanced surfing lesson, inclusive of surfboard rental, instructor, and certificate of completion)

Lola Sayong Eco-SurFarm, Sorsogon

Lola Sayong Eco-SurFarm promotes environmental preservation and responsible tourism. Photo by Playground Films courtesy of the Department of Tourism.

When Lola Rosario “Sayong” Escandor needed people to guard her coconut trees sometime in 2009, she commissioned the help of local surfers. She allowed them to practice in her beach lot in exchange. 

Out of gratitude, these surfers treated the ocean that was entrusted to them as their home and vowed to keep it pristine. Today, this group managed to grow into a community of environmental preservation and responsible tourism advocates.

Lola Sayong Eco-SurFarm is an eco-friendly campground and accommodation site managed by the local community of Gubat, Sorsogon. 

This 5km surf camp implements strict rules for visitors: no partying, no smoking, no drinking, no bonfire, no speakers, and no unnecessary noise at 10 P.M., and no single-use plastics. 

Any profit from the camp is used to develop and support educational programs for Gubat’s out-of-school youth. Through their ‘No school no surf’ policy, the community encourages children who want to learn surfing to attend school. The kids are provided educational assistance on academic projects as well as lodging. 

The local community also protects sea turtles through their Conserve Pawikan Program, where they free pawikans trapped in the local fisherfolks’ nets to the ocean in exchange of rice or a cash allowance. 

Aside from surfing, kayaking, night snorkeling, fishing, mangrove walk, and virtual farming are just some of the activities visitors can do here. 

  • Best time to visit: October to May
  • How to get there: 
  • By air: From Manila, board a plane bound for Legazpi, Albay. Travel time is approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes. From the airport, hail a tricyle to SM City Legazpi where the transport terminal is. Then, ride a bus (Php170) to Sorsogon City. Get off at the terminal near St. Peter and Paul Cathedral and ride a jeep (Php15) to Gubat. Go to the tricycle terminal (Php15) and ask the driver to drop you off at Lola Sayong Eco SurFarm. 
  • By land: Ride a bus (Php950+) bound for Legazpi, Albay from Parañaque. Travel time is approximately 11 hours. From there, take another bus to Bulan (Php100) and get off at Abuyog Crossing. Then, ride a jeep (Php15) to Gubat and hail a tricycle (Php15) straight to Lola Sayong. 
  • Entrance and other fees: 
    • Entrance fee (Day Tour): Php75 
    • Tent pitching fee: Php250 (must bring your own tent) 
    • Cottage rates: Php650 to Php1,250 per night (maximum of five people per nipa hut)
    • Room rates: Php 1,450 to Php 3,150 per night (maximum of four people per room, inclusive of 3 meals)
  • Surfing lesson package/s
    • Free surfing lessons for visitors who occupy a room (one hour of surfing lesson, inclusive of surfboard rental and instructor) 
    • Php350 per person for regular visitors (one hour of surfing lesson, inclusive of surfboard rental and instructor)

Puraran Beach, Catanduanes 

Puraran Beach boasts majestic waves sought after by professional surfers. Photo by Playground Films courtesy of the Department of Tourism.

If Siargao has “Cloud 9,” Catanduanes has “Majestic” waves for its long-barrel surfs that break on Puraran’s reef in Baras. 

This surf spot with cream-tinted shores became popular after photographer Warren Bolster featured it in the California-based Surfer Magazine in 1980. 

Since then, enthusiasts from all over the world travel to Puraran for its waves. This made it the first tourist destination in the province. Prior to the pandemic, local and international surfing competitions were held here annually.

Beginners are also welcome to test their mettle on the calmer side of this 5km beach. Behind the picturesque coves and rock formations are smaller waves newbies can practice on. 

And since not a lot of people go to this side of the country yet, signing up for lessons does not involve a long waiting time.  

  • Best time to visit: July to October

How to get there: 

  • By air: From Manila, catch a direct flight to Virac. Estimated travel time is 45 minutes only. From the airport, ride a tricycle (Php15) to Virac seaport and take a jeepney (Php50) to Puraran Beach. 
  • By land: Take a bus (Php950 to Php1,350) bound for Virac from Cubao. Travel time is 10 to 12 hours. Hire a motor or tricycle to take you to Puraran Beach.  
  • Entrance and other fees: Free for public 
  • Surfing lesson package/s
    • Php350 per person (one hour of surfing lesson, inclusive of surfboard rental and instructor) 

Outsource the Planning

For a seamless trip, you may leave the planning to DOT’s accredited tour operators in Bicol. Click on this link for a comprehensive list of agencies.

Travel Safely! 

All tourist destinations in Region V have health and safety protocols in place to protect locals and visitors alike. Everyone is expected to comply by wearing face masks, regularly washing their hands, and practicing physical distancing.

To check out up-to-date information regarding local destinations that are open and the safety protocols and requirements needed for each location, you may visit or download the Travel Philippines app at on the Google Playstore.