Zamboanga Peninsula

Zamboanga Peninsula is an exotic melting pot of ethnic lore, culture and spectacular attractions. Zamboanga Peninsula is an administrative region in the Philippines, designated as Region IX. The region consists of three provinces, namely: Zamboanga del Norte, Zamboanga del Sur, and Zamboanga Sibugay, its component cities of Dipolog, Dapitan, Pagadian, and two independent cities of Isabela and the highly urbanized City of Zamboanga.

Dipolog City (Zamboanga del Norte) is known for its wild orchids and its sardine industry which stems from the rich fishing area off its shores. It is known as the “Gateway to Western Mindanao” through the Western Nautical Highway and has also been called the “Bottled Sardines Capital of the Philippines.”

Dapitan (Zamboanga del Norte) is also known as the “Shrine City in the Philippines” because the place where Jose Rizal, the National Hero, was exiled. It is also known for the old St. James Parish and the beach resort of Dakak. (c)Photo: Ric Canizares CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Pagadian City (Zamboanga del Sur) was the center of barter trading among the Malays, Chinese and the local Tausugs, Samals, Subanons and Badjaos in the 13th century. Pagadian City is also known as the “Little Hong Kong of the South” because of its topographical feature that is reminiscent of Hong Kong. It also has an affluent Chinese community that officially celebrates the Chinese Lunar New Year. The city of Pagadian is designated as the regional center of Zamboanga Peninsula. (c)Photo: jackoss0001 – Pagadian Project

Isabela (Basilan) was the southernmost outpost of the Spanish in the Philippines until the fall of Jolo in 1878. Having hosted Catholic residents since 1637, and a Spanish Fort (destroyed in World War II) since 1848, it was likewise the primary naval base of the Spanish in Mindanao until 1899. Named after Queen Isabella II, the city is the southernmost predominantly Christian enclave of the Philippines, and serves as an entry point for trade and commerce of Basilan island. Isabela City is a component city and capital of the province of Basilan. Isabela City continues be under the jurisdiction of Basilan for the administration of provincially-devolved services and functions. But for the administration of regional services, the city is part of the Zamboanga Peninsula Region despite the rest of Basilan being under the authority of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao. (c)Photo: Boarding Gate 101 – Guide to Malamawi Island (a must read article)

The City of Zamboanga is the only highly-urbanized city in the region. The city is the lone member of BIMP-EAGA in the Zamboanga Peninsula. The City holds the title as the second richest city in Mindanao next to Davao City. Zamboanga City holds more than half of the economy of the region. Zamboanga city also has the largest airport and seaport and the only city in the region with most investors. (c)Photo: Wowzamboangacity – MGM, CC BY 3.0

Daily flights to most parts of Zamboanga Peninsula is available.

Lake Sebu

(c)Photo: Lake Sebu by Paolo Tiong on 500px

Lake Sebu, Southern Mindanao’s most precious jewel.

Imagine yourself on top of the mountain while enjoying the scenic views of fresh bodies of water such as the pristine beauty of the lakes, cascade, waterfalls and rivers. Exhilarate yourself with the revitalizing road trip experience along the plains and the mountains. Indulge yourself with the sweet caress of fresh air and hear the warm greetings of the birds.

Lake Sebu brings you close to nature. An unspoilt haven for adventure, nature experience can be fully enjoyed when you engage in variety of exciting escapades. Trek the mountain terrains to reach a sanctuary forest in Lake Sebu known as “3 Kings” and dare yourself to zip with South East Asia’s Highest Zipline.

Exciting activities, fascinating and history with vibrant culture, you’ll find the best Festivals and Events year round.

Lake Sebu is the biggest of the three lakes in the area, the two smaller ones being Lake Seloton and Lake Lahit. Lake Sebu is regarded as a vital watershed that supplies water to Sultan Kudarat and South Cotabato. Legend has it that Lake Sebu originated from a spring guarded by a mystical frog. They say that a mortal angered the guardian frog and because of this, water continuously poured out of the spring until a lake was formed. Today, tourists can explore the beauty of Lake Sebu and the surrounding area by hiring a motor boat or a traditional T’Boli canoe.

Lake Sebu is known for its majestic Seven Falls, but only the first two falls have been developed for tourists. Adrenaline-seekers can take a zip line from Hikong Alu Falls, the first of the seven falls, all the way to the foot of the second falls. This zip line is hailed as the longest and the highest in the country. Hikong Alu Falls can be reached by habal-habal or motorbike.

Lake Sebu is a natural lake located in the municipality of Lake Sebu, South Cotabato and within the Alah Valley region. The Philippine government has recognized it as one of the country’s most important watersheds. Lake Sebu is one of the many bodies of water supplying important irrigation to the provinces of Sultan Kudarat and South Cotabato. The villages around the lake have been turned into an independent municipality called Lake Sebu after being a former village of Surallah.

The Department of Tourism and the local government unit of Lake Sebu has promoted the lake as one of the prime eco-tourism destinations in the municipality. The Mindanao Development Authority is closely coordinating with the DOT in the development and enhancement of Lake Sebu, as it is also identified as one of the priority sites under the BIMP-EAGA Tourism cluster.

Tinuy-an Falls

(c)Photo: Tinuy-an Falls by Jasper Resari on 500px

Tinuy-an Falls is a waterfall in Bislig City, Surigao del Sur in the southern island of Mindanao, Philippines. It is the main tourist attraction in Bislig, a city known as the Booming City by the Bay. Tinuy-an Falls is a must visit destination for every outdoor enthusiasts who love to see the beauty of nature at its magnificence. There is no need for trekking at the end of the road in going there lies this magnificent beauty of the Tinuy-an Falls.

Ninety-five feet wide with an 180 feet plunge from its three cascading falls – this is the image that earned Tinuy-an Falls the moniker Little Niagara. This is also the very reason why, when visiting Mindanao for a backpack adventure, you must never forget to include in your itinerary a pit stop adventure in these wondrous falls located in Bislig City, Surigao del Sur. It is a white water curtain that flows in three levels about 55 meters high. Every morning, the area shows a rainbow between 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Its critically acclaimed majestic and unique natural formation was once appeared in the International Travel Magazine. It is also known as the widest waterfalls in the Philippines.

The water cascading down the three waterfalls look like a curtain of white froth that makes the trip all worth it. Bathing in its cool waters is definitely an experience that you will never find elsewhere. Aside from this, the whole waterfall area is also a sanctuary of many wild species that makes it a very ideal place for nature tripping. If your are lucky and the water is not so deep, you get to explore every crevice of the Tinuy an Falls and get to enjoy all the wonders that nature has to offer.

There are no direct flights to Bislig from Manila. If you’re coming from Luzon or the Visayas, book a flight to Butuan City, Agusan del Norte. Land travel from Butuan to Bislig takes three to four hours. If you’re coming from Davao, it’ll take four to five hours.

From Bislig, take the Poblacion > San Isidro-Burbuanan > Tinuy-an Route. Tinuy-an Falls is exactly located in Burboanan, Bislig City. It’s so popular you’ll have an easy time locating the place.