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Country > Philippines > Siquijor Island > Siquijor
Date > 2012 > Feb
Activity > Caving

Exploring the Cantabon Cave of Siquijor Feb 23, 2012

Exploring the Cantabon Cave of Siquijor

Location Google Map: Cantabon Cave, Siquijor, Siquijor Island, Philippines

Another Survivor Philippines Thing
Joy Mendoza, a staff of Survivor Philippines whom I met during my stint as a castaway, invited me to tag along for their trip to Siquijor. Siquijor has always been a source of good vibe for me. This time, with the itinerary of exploring Cantabon Cave up at Mt. Bandila-an, I was up for the taking. With her was Billy, another Survivor staff, and another couple. Yes, I was a fifth wheel, but it's all good.

The Hole at Blue Wave Inn
We stayed at Blue Wave Inn. Lovely place but showing signs of neglect. They have a weird sunken section. I thought it was a pool, but it had no water. On the base of the pool floor was another hole that opened up to the sea water. They said you can dive-in, but you won't reach the sea. I suppose they originally planned on building a pool but discovered it wasn't on solid ground - so they made it a bar instead. Weird!

6 On a Trike
It was tricky getting up there, all 5 of us on a tricycle. On steep sections, we all had to go down and walk up under the heat of the sun, until we reach a plateau where we can board the tricycle again.

There are a few caves in Siquijor. About 3 names being tossed around. The driver took us to Cantabon Cave. We were guided by 2 women who provided us with helmets and lights. The inside of the cave was rather spacious. I don't remember doing a body-squiggle, although most of the way was wet. At times, we would wade in hip-deep water. The inside of the cave was similar to that of Sagada - stalactites, stalagmites, curious rock formations, etc. The tour can take as long as 3 hours as the cave went on extensively. I don't know how far we went, but we didn't turn back. What happened was as we forged ahead, the scene looked familiar. That's when I realized, the guide took us on a loop - so I don't know exactly if we reached the end of the cave or rerouted to a bail-option. Altogether, it was quite an experience.

Exploring the Cantabon Cave of Siquijor
coming into an expanse

Sea Hag
Just outside the Guide Center, we were introduced to people selling healing potions (yeah, love potions too). Being close to Holy Week, we were told that the preparation to gather all the materials for the Holy Week celebration starts on this week. The main potion seller / healer happens to be the DENR representative as well - nothing wrong with that, but I somehow thought that to get those potions, you have trek the far reaches of the mountain into a cave with a wrinkled, bent and toothless lady stirring a simmering clay pot with a wooden handle. Oh well, been watching too much Sea-Hag cartoons.

Ending Thoughts
But kidding aside, Siquijor is doing the right thing by de-mystifying its tradition in putting these esoteric other-worldy practices out in the open. Not only does it replace something negatively eerie, but also comes as a source of tourism dollars. As I responded to one friend who cautioned me about the sorcery in the area, I said the only aswangs I know of are in Manila and they happen to be wearing Armani suits.

--- Gigit (TheLoneRider)
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Tristan LuczonTristan Luczon
(Apr 18, 2012) Asteg yan!!!

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More on Siquijor Poblacion:

Siquijor Poblacion Info
  1. Resorts - there are beach resorts in Siquijor Poblacion but the popular resort destination is San Juan.
  2. Transport - from Siquijor Poblacion, jeep, tricycle and motorcycle rides are available. There are local jeeps that ply the couter-clockwise route to San Juan and end up in Lazi. From Lazi, another jeep takes the continuing counter-clockwise route to Maria, ending up in Larena. Between Larena and Siquijor, only tricycles are available. Tricycles charge between PHP 20-40 until San Juan Poblacion. Tricycles and motorcycles can be contracted privately at higher fees.
  3. Siquijor Port - Siquijor Poblacion is the capital of Siquijor Island. It has the Siquijor Port which is the port of most inter-island ferries plying the Siquijor route. The other port is Larena Port.

More on Siquijor Island:

Siquijor Island Local Info

Jeeps - there are only 2 routes for jeeps within Siquijor Island - and they are rare. Most people have their own motorcycle transport.

  1. Siquijor Port to Lazi - last trip leaves at 3pm from station near market
  2. Lazi to Siquijor Port - jeeps depart from the Lazi Port area. 5 jeeps, the last trip at 12:30 pm. Lazi to San Juan, P50.
  3. Larena Port to Lazi -
  4. Lazi to Larena Port - 6am (daily) and 9 am (M-Th)
Siquijor Island Map
Siquijor - Dumaguete Boat Trips (as of Jan 2023)
  1. Montenegro Lines - at Siquijor? Larena? Port, P234.00/pax, P169/bicycle, 7:30am/10:00am/2:00pm/4:30pm/7:30pm
  2. Ocean Jet - at Siquijor Port, 0919.066.5964,,, 6:00am/6:00pm, P350/pax (tourist/open air), P580/pax (business class)
  3. Atlantis / Yohan Express - P250/pax, 9:45am (arrive 2:45pm)
Siquijor - Tagbilaran - Cebu City Boat Trips (as of Jan 2023)

En route to Cebu City, the ferries usually make a stop-over to Tagbilaran (Bohol) to pick-up more passengers or unload.

  1. Ocean Jet - 8:20am, at Siquijor Port,
    To Tagbilaran: P800/tourist & open air, P1200/business class
    To Cebu: P1600/tourist & open air, P2400/business class
  2. Lite Ferries - at Larena Port,
  3. -
  4. -
Suggested Destinations After Siquijor Island

These are the nearest popular destinations from Siquijor by boat

  1. Bohol - Bohol is an island northeast Siquijor. Tourist attractions are Chocolate Hills, Tarsier Monkey, Loboc River Cruise, Beaches of Panglao, whale sharks (recent offering), freediving (recent offering)
  2. Cebu - Cebu City is the usual gateway into the Visayas. But in Cebu Island itself, there are many offerings - Whale Sharks of Oslob, sardine run at Moalboal,Thresher Shark of Malapascua
  3. Dapitan (Zamboanga del Norte) - I haven't been there but a lot of island ferries ply this port. There must be something here.
  4. Dumaguete - Dumaguete is a small charming progressive coastal town in Negros Oriental. Cafe and restaurants line the famous Boulevard Boardwalk. Tourist attractions include Japanese Shrine, Casaroro Falls, snorkeling along the southern coastline (Dauin, Masaplod Norte, etc), Balinsasayao Twin Lakes
  5. Plaridel (Misamis Occidental, Mindanao) - I haven't been there but a lot of island ferries ply this port. There must be something here.


Siquijor Blogs
Siquijor Island
  • 1:4:2:3 Nadi Shodana Jan 26, 2023
  • Lazi's Boulevard Jan 22, 2023
  • Lazi: A Monthly Stay Jan 21, 2023
  • 7 Days in Maria, Siquijor Jan 14-21, 2023
  • Siquijor: In Search of Resonance Jan 9-14, 2023
  • Riding Around Siquijor's 86km Coastal Road Apr 3, 2012
  • Exploring the Cantabon Cave of Siquijor Feb 23, 2012
  • Jovee and Missy's Excellent Adventure Nov 6-7, 2010
  • Freediving in Siquijor's Marine Sancturaries Apr 23-24, 2010
  • Island Tour of Siquijor Apr 22, 2010
  • Kram's Siquijor Wedding Apr 21, 2010

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