Our second day, we went to see more of what the province Surigao Del Norte had to offer besides the well-known spots in General Luna. The boat ride from Del Carmen to Sugba Lagoon took about an hour or so. Yes, the ride may seem a little bit lengthy but I promise you, the sites on the way to the lagoon and Sugba itself will leave you in awe. One of my most favourite part, was the entrance into the lagoon itself. It looks almost mythical in a way, like a secret place you’re not suppose to tell anyone.
The contrast of the turquoise water between the massive rock formations and mangroves, looks like a setting out of a wizard fantasy movie. The water reflects the sunbeams and the isolation of Sugba lagoon creates this source of tranquility.
Although, it may seem like there wouldn’t be much to do around because of the lagoon’s seclusion, that truly isn’t the case. People have the choice to go paddle boarding, kayaking, snorkelling, diving and swimming. My cousin and I decided to go paddle boarding, and I must say it was difficult to actually move at first. But we soon got the hang of it and explored this mystical lagoon.
As we were on our paddle board, I marvelled upon the beauty of nature itself. My cousin and I were astonished that this was an actual place, we couldn’t believe that something so ethereal is tucked away in the province of Surigao Del Norte. Little did we know, we were about to encounter another hidden gem.
After Sugba Lagoon, it was another 25-30 minute drive on the multi-cab to get to Magpupungko beach. Magpupunko is known for it’s natural rock formations and enthralling tidal pools. One thing to know is that, you can only witness and experience these rock pools during low tide. So it is recommended to visit Magpupungko before 4 p.m, because high tide usually occurs after 4 in the afternoon. If you’ve read my previous posts about Siargao, then you know that many of their island names have origins from the Visaya dialect. In terms of this beach, the term “pungko” means to sit or squat.
Unlike Sugba Lagoon, Magpupungko has various food vendors set up by the entrance of the beach. You can enjoy fresh coconut, mangoes or even try some of their local street food delicacies. However, if you’re not in the mood to eat I suggest to go straight ahead to the rock pools.
Like I said before, there is a limited time window to enjoy the tidal pools, so expect to see a lot of people. Since certain parts of the rock pools are shallow and with some of the clearest water, tourists took the opportunity to rent some goggles to snorkel. While others enjoyed Magpupungko by cliff jumping off various spots, perfect for adrenaline junkies! However, make sure you have water shoes if you’re planning to cliff jump, as some rocks are very sharp. Don’t make the same mistake we did, in which we climbed barefooted!! My cliff jump was worth the pain from the jagged rocks, because afterwards it just felt so exhilarating.
Sugba Lagoon and Magpupungko Beach made me appreciate the whimsical beauty of what nature has to offer. In fact, the entire island of Siargao has frankly exceeded my expectations on my search to find more of nature’s wonders.