Ultimate Guide To Visiting Sugba Lagoon In Siargao

Written by Bianca Versoza

A visit to the world-famous Siargao wouldn’t be complete without going to the mesmerizing Sugba Lagoon. Here’s everything you need to know about this captivating and mysterious body of water that every tourist should never miss.

Why go to Sugba Lagoon in Siargao?

Sugba Lagoon, often referred to as Sugba “Blue” Lagoon, is a collection of stunning turquoise lagoons surrounded by lush green hills. It’s nestled in barangay Caub, a small island to the west of Siargao in the southern Philippines. Sugba Lagoon is also visited by a lot of surfers during peak season, though it’s not as crowded as the beaches surrounding Siargao—which is something I personally love about it. 

When is the best time to visit Sugba Lagoon?

Sugba Lagoon welcomes visitors anytime, but the ideal time to visit is from November to April when there’s less rainfall. However, the downside to this is that this is the peak tourist season, so it might get a bit crowded. If you plan to visit during these months, I highly recommend visiting at the beginning or the end of the interval to beat the crowds.

Then again, if you choose to visit Sugba Lagoon during the Philippines’ wet season, which falls between June and October, you just might be able to enjoy some parts of the place to yourself. Just be sure to check weather forecasts before your trip, as your vacation might be ruined by heavy rainfall.

Things to Bring Before You Go to Sugba Lagoon 

Before going to Sugba Lagoon, make sure to prepare a few things for your safety and convenience:

Dry bag

Be sure to have a dry bag with you when you go to Sugba Lagoon, especially if you are traveling alone. This handy accessory allows you to carry all of your belongings without the risk of getting them wet. 

Underwater camera

An underwater camera is essential for your trip to Sugba Lagoon. With it, you can snap photos and even record underwater videos. Best of all, you can take the camera with you as you make a splash from the diving platforms in the area.

Waterproof smartphone pouch

A waterproof smartphone pouch is the next best thing to an underwater camera during your trip to Sugba Lagoon. With this, you will still be able to take photos using your phone without any fear that it will get wet and damaged. Even if your smartphone is marketed as “waterproof,” be sure to bring this pouch along for added protection.

Small bills

The Philippines still uses cash for most of its transactions. Debit and credit cards aren’t widely accepted, and stores and services won’t even take 500- or 1,000-peso bills because they might not have change.

Withdraw cash from your bank account, and try to get smaller denominations like 20s, 50s, and 100s. Having these smaller bills on hand will be really handy, especially for paying fares and other small expenses.

Water bottle

Constantly buying bottled water can get expensive. Thus, I highly advise that you carry a reusable water bottle with you so that you can drink anytime, anywhere. Then, just refill it when you get the chance.

Food and snacks

Expect to get hungry after you swim, dive, or paddle around the area. Thus, feel free to pack some snacks before you go to Sugba Lagoon, as your trip can last hours. 

Sunblock or sunscreen

Sugba Lagoon is a place where you get to bask under the sun. Bring sunblock or sunscreen and use it if you don’t want to get sunburnt. A sunscreen with SPF 30 will suffice.

Microfiber towel

Bring a travel towel with you so you can wipe yourself dry after swimming or jumping into the water. I’m personally a huge fan of microfiber towels—it absorbs a lot of water but dries quickly, and won’t take up a lot of space in your bag.

Hand sanitizer

Some restrooms in Sugba Lagoon, even on Siargao’s main island, don’t have hand soaps. Make sure to bring sanitizers with you so you can clean your hands properly until you can properly wash them with soap. You’ll be able to buy these at most convenience stores or the shops you might come across as you make your way to Del Carmen.

Toilet paper

Not every restroom in Sugba Lagoon will have tissue paper. As such, in addition to hand sanitizers, you should also bring some toilet paper for when you need to go to the comfort room. You can find these at most convenience stores. Have at least one roll with you at all times.

How to Get To Sugba Lagoon

There are several ways to go to Sugba Lagoon. If you’re traveling from outside the Philippines, you can take a flight to Siargao from Manila or Cebu. Just make sure to verify that your flight is bound for Siargao, not to another place called Surigao. The mix up can add an additional two to three hours of ferry time if you end up in Surigao instead.

Anyway, once you’re in Siargao, make your way to the Del Carmen port. From there, all you have to do is ride a boat to Sugba Lagoon. 

Rent a scooter

Renting a scooter is the best and most popular choice for tourists, especially those who plan to stay in Siargao for around a week. You can ride the scooter to Del Carmen, park it, and just take it back when you return from Sugba Lagoon. 

Scooters can be rented for about 400 Php (7 USD) a day, and that rate goes down the longer you rent them. 

On a scooter, it’s easy to find the port regardless of your location in Siargao. All you need to do is find the main highway (the Siargao Circumferential Road) and follow it to Del Carmen. 

Ride a tuk tuk

Second, you can pay to ride a tuk tuk (a type of rickshaw) to reach the port. This is the more expensive option, but it’s more convenient. If you don’t have a license to rent and drive a scooter, you’ll probably end up on a tuk tuk, too. Tuk tuks are also an excellent option for those who don’t want to join a guided tour and explore Siargao at their own pace.

Also, don’t be afraid to haggle! Some tuk tuk drivers might overcharge, especially when they find you’re a tourist.

Join a guided tour

Lastly, you can just book a tour and enjoy the trip hassle-free. When you choose this option, transportation to and from Sugba Lagoon is typically included in the package. 

There are a variety of tours available online, but most of them start from General Luna. If you’re staying in another part of Siargao Island, you’ll definitely have to do a DIY tour. Thankfully, you can still purchase a tour when you get to the Del Carmen port. 

These port tours vary in cost, but all of them include both the boat fare and driver’s fee. Up to six people can ride in these boats, so you can even split the costs if you want to. 

Here’s a quick look at some tours you can join from Del Carmen:

  • Tour A (600 Php/11 USD): This is a small tour that gives you a scenic view of the mangroves from a distance. 
  • Tour B (1,600 Php/29 USD + entrance and environmental fees): This tour takes you near the mangroves and gives you a better feel of the nature surrounding Sugba Lagoon.
  • Tour C (1,600 Php/29 USD + environmental fees): This is the most popular choice among tourists. It takes you to Sugba Lagoon, where you can swim, paddle, or dive jump from high points. 
  • Tour D (2,000 Php/37 USD + environmental fees and 150 Php docking fee): This tour takes you to Sugba Lagoon and your choice of either Pamomoan Beach or Kawhagan Sandbar. 
  • Tour E (2,600 Php/48 USD + environmental fees and 150 Php docking fee): This tour takes you to Sugba Lagoon, the mangroves around it, and your choice of either Pamomoan Beach or Kawhahan Sandbar.
  • Tour F (2,800 Php/50 USD + environmental fees and 150 Php docking fee): This tour takes you to all destinations: mangroves, Sugba Lagoon, Pamomoan Beach, and Kawhagan Sandbar.

It takes about half an hour for boats to get to Sugba Lagoon from Del Carmen. If you’re based in General Luna, you can directly ride a boat going to the lagoon from there. The travel time is longer (up to an hour and a half), but you won’t have to ply the roads anymore. 

You’ll know when you’re already there because you will see a big sign at the entrance of the cove saying, “Welcome to Sugba Lagoon!”

What To Do In Sugba Lagoon

Once you arrive at Sugba Lagoon, your boat will dock at a two-story floating hut called a boathouse designed to welcome tourists. Tables and chairs are available for rent for about 50-100 Php (about ~2 USD). You can rent a table and leave your belongings here for locals to watch over. But with the number of people coming in and out of the place, it would be better to take your items with you inside a waterproof bag.

There are a number of things you can do inside Sugba Lagoon, most of them using the boathouse as base. Here’s a quick look at them:


Nothing beats swimming around in Sugba Lagoon. The water here is among the bluest you’ll encounter anywhere in the Philippines. Plus, while the lagoon is located in a natural sanctuary, you won’t find dangerous animals roaming around the area frequented by tourists. The most you might encounter are stray jellyfish, but these are not the kind that can sting you painfully. 

If you’re not a strong swimmer, remember to wear a life vest. Also, stay near the boathouse so you can call for help if you need to.

Rent a kayak, stand-up paddleboard (SUP), or a bamboo raft

Exploring Sugba Lagoon gets even more exciting when you rent a kayak or SUP (stand-up paddleboard). You might discover areas of interest like the secret high dive platform we’ll talk about shortly. You can also spot great photo opportunities for your underwater cameras.

If you want to go around with some friends, you can rent a bamboo raft instead and paddle around as a group. No matter what option you choose, renting a kayak, SUP, or bamboo raft will only cost you 300 Php (about 5.30 USD) per hour. 

Jump off high dive platforms

For an exhilarating experience, challenge yourself to climb the tall wooden platform near the boathouse and take the plunge from the diving board. This board is perched around five meters above the sea. This is the most popular attraction in the area, and tourists form lines to take turns to jump. Arrive early to avoid the queue.

If you want to dive somewhere where there are a lot fewer people, rent a kayak or SUP and follow the rocks around the corner to the right if you are facing away from the high dive platform. Paddle about 500 meters away until you arrive at another lagoon. Once you’re there, keep a careful lookout, and you’ll discover a “secret” platform nestled about seven to eight meters above a tree.

The platform provides spectacular views of the lagoon and the surrounding areas, but the climb is very risky and dangerous. Exercise extreme caution to avoid falling down to the rocks below. Plus, make sure to do a depth check before climbing to see if it’s deep enough for you to jump without hitting the bottom of the lagoon.

Take photos

If you just want to relax and not do anything risky, you can simply laze around and take photos. Take memories home with you! Sugba Lagoon is enveloped by lush greenery against a backdrop of varying blue waters. It’s also a great opportunity to strike up conversations and make friends with fellow tourists.

Things to remember

Here are some things you need to keep in mind for your trip to Sugba Lagoon. Doing these things will help ensure an enjoyable experience.

Prepare for a short trip

Currently, only day trips are allowed in Sugba Lagoon, which are any time between 7:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. There are no overnight lodgings in the vicinity of the lagoon. Pack light.

Buy pre-cooked food before going

Sugba Lagoon has a restaurant that serves meals for around 100 Php (1.75 USD) per person. However, their supplies tend to run out quickly because of the number of tourists. To make sure you have enough food, I highly encourage you to bring pre-cooked meals from where you stay or the eateries around Del Carmen. Some of them are even near the port, so they’re hard to miss.

Come to the port early

If you did not book a tour ahead of time and plan to purchase one at the port, come early. Boats only leave the port when they are full. This means you might end up spending a lot of time waiting for other tourists, especially if you travel during the lean months. 

If you’re coming from General Luna, make sure to leave earlier because it takes about an hour to travel to Del Carmen by scooter. 

Ready your cameras

Sugba Lagoon is a wonderful aquatic gem tucked away amidst stunning scenery. The journey to and from this tourist hotspot is an enjoyable experience on its own. Prepare your cameras and smartphones for a lot of serious picture-taking even before you arrive at the lagoon.

Sugba Lagoon has a limited capacity

Although Sugba Lagoon opens early and closes before the evening, there’s limited capacity to avoid congestion. It can currently accommodate a maximum of 100 guests and lets tourists stay for only up to three hours. If you want to maximize your visit here, come early before crowds arrive.

Sit as far as possible from the boat engine

Some boat engines can be very noisy. If you don’t want to suffer from the noise, sit as far as safely possible from the engine. Or bring some earplugs if you need to. Otherwise, just take the noise as part of the tour itself.

Don’t be scared of marine animals

Some locals have reported sightings of animals near Sugba Lagoon. These include orange-colored box jellyfish and some saltwater crocodiles along the surrounding mangrove forests. But don’t be scared! They do not frequent the lagoon itself.

Clean as you go

Lastly, avoid leaving any trash behind when you visit Sugba Lagoon. Bring any wrappers or food residue with you when you leave the place. 

Siargao at its finest

That wraps up our guide to the captivating Sugba Lagoon in Siargao. Follow our tips above to maximize your visit to this place. Think of Siargao as the main course and Sugba Lagoon as the delightful dessert and tea that follow the meal. It’s the perfect way to round off your Siargao adventure, offering relaxation before you move on to your next exciting destination.