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15 Best SORSOGON Tourist Spots (Gateway to Southern Philippines)

Sorsogon is absolutely a precious gem that’s worth visiting in Southern Luzon. Also known as the “Gateway to Southern Philippines”, the province became famous for its pristine beaches, beautiful landscapes, and of course, the majestic Mt. Bulusan.

It’s also one of the fastest-growing provinces in our country so prepare to exceed your expectations once you come to enjoy Sorsogon’s best hotels, resorts, and city amenities. Compared to its neighboring provinces like Albay, Quezon, and Batangas, Sorsogon seems to be a lesser-known tourist attraction mainly because it’s located at the southernmost tip of Luzon island.

Well, that actually became a blessing in disguise because everyone who’s been to Sorsogon claimed that its natural wonders such as mountains, beaches, and tropical islands are in perfect pristine condition. It definitely exudes a peaceful and laid-back ambiance that will make you feel like you’re indeed in a tropical paradise.

explore, travel, 15 best sorsogon tourist spots (gateway to southern philippines)

Aside from its stunning natural features, Sorsogon also has an incredibly abundant supply of seafood given that it’s situated in a prime location surrounded by thriving bodies of water. Also, one of Sorsogon’s major products is no other than Pili Nuts, which are relatively indigenous to the province, so make sure to take some on your way home! Oh, and finally, another unique and maybe a once-in-a-lifetime experience you shouldn’t miss in Sorsogon is Whale Shark Watching. As we all know the Philippines is home to almost 2,000 Whale Sharks or Butanding, the largest species of fish in the whole world!

See? There surely are countless fun and exciting things to do in Sorsogon. So if I were you, I’d prepare myself for a whole lot more because we’re only getting started! Come and join me as we both explore the 15 Best Tourist Spots in Sorsogon!

1. Subic Beach in Calintaan Island

The first one on the list and absolutely something you shouldn’t miss is the famous Subic Beach of Calintaan Island. This pristine, pinkish, fine white sand beach of Matnog, Sorsogon draws the attention of all beach lovers out there because of all the exciting and at the same time relaxing things you can do in this tourist attraction.

explore, travel, 15 best sorsogon tourist spots (gateway to southern philippines)

Wow!

explore, travel, 15 best sorsogon tourist spots (gateway to southern philippines)

Good bye Subic Beach. Photo Credit: Michelle Garcia Lomotan

From swimming, beach bumming, kayaking, island hopping tours, and many, many more, I’m sure that you and your friends will have an unforgettable adventure here. The turquoise waters are truly worth seeing so make sure to prepare yourself and have some fun!

2. Tikling Island

We’re just getting started! Right next on our list is another must-visit island destination known for its untouched beauty. Tikling Island is a privately-owned property that became popular for its pinkish fine white sands, aquamarine waters, and lush forests.

explore, travel, 15 best sorsogon tourist spots (gateway to southern philippines)

Welcome!

explore, travel, 15 best sorsogon tourist spots (gateway to southern philippines)

Jump Shot!!!

There is absolutely no entrance fee required to visit Tikling Island and there are no cottages, huts, or resorts established anywhere. So it’s really a bare island where you can peacefully relax and appreciate nature’s virgin beauty at its finest. You are free to explore and swim around the island where you can take pictures of some stunning rock formations, coral reefs, and colorful fishes!

3. Bulusan Volcano Natural Park

Ah, there it is! Probably the most iconic attraction in Sorsogon City and undoubtedly its most precious gem is Mt. Bulusan. Standing tall at an elevation of 1,565 meters above sea level, this stratovolcano is one of the most active volcanoes in our country next to Mayon, Taal, and Pinatubo.

explore, travel, 15 best sorsogon tourist spots (gateway to southern philippines)

The volcano is also home to a thriving ecosystem that is well-preserved and protected by the 3,673-hectare Bulusan Volcano Natural Park. There are several lakes, rivers, and rainforest landmarks within the vicinity of the natural park where tourists can visit and observe beautiful species of flora and fauna. And speaking of which, there are also rare animals living inside the park such as Flame-Breasted Fruit-Dove, Philippine Hawk-Eagle, Warty Pigs, Monitor Lizards, and many more!

Actually, Mt. Bulusan just recently had an alarming phreatic eruption which forced thousands of residents of Sorsogon to evacuate. The volcano had two major activities within the 2nd week of June 2022.

4. Paguriran Island and Lagoon

Another beach destination worthy of being included in the list of the most beautiful island destinations in the Philippines is Paguriran Island and Lagoon. Located in Bacon, Sorsogon, this precious gem boasts of its white-sand beaches, azure waters, and incredible limestone formations.

explore, travel, 15 best sorsogon tourist spots (gateway to southern philippines)

Wow!

explore, travel, 15 best sorsogon tourist spots (gateway to southern philippines)

Wacky! Photo Credit: Nhel Montuya

These limestones are actually what sets Paguriran Lagoon apart from everything because it allows colorful fishes to thrive in crystal clear waters. Lots of tourists prefer to swim around and out of the lagoon from the beach during the low tide season because it’s relatively bearable and safe for everyone! Both the beach and the lagoon are must-visit tourist attractions full of exciting things to do so I suggest you bring your cameras and a lot of energy for this trip because the scenery and landscapes are really mind-blowing. The locals even say that the Mayon Volcano sometimes makes an appearance during a clear, bright day!

5. Donsol Bay (Whale Shark Watching)

Ah, of course! Another one of Sorsogon’s iconic attractions aside from its precious natural wonders is the Donsol Bay which is known for Whale Shark Watching. It’s one of the most beautiful places in the Philippines where you can find and interact closely with Whale Sharks!

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Photo from Bicol Tourism

Well, that’s because Donsol is highly recognized as the “Whale Shark Capital of the World”! You can interact with these lovely and gentle giants by snorkeling, scuba diving, or simply waiting for them to come up to the surface and just be mesmerized by their beauty.

But remember, these gorgeous creatures are considered to be endangered species that’s why as tourists, we have to do our part and strictly follow the proper protocols and safety reminders set by the Donsol Whale Shark Interaction Center.

6. Irosin Hot Springs

After a long tiring day full of exciting activities and adventures while exploring Sorsogon, nothing can beat a relaxing bath in a natural hot spring! That’s exactly why our next destination will be the magnificent natural springs of Irosin, Sorsogon!

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Group shot! Photo Credit: Nhel Montuya

The municipality of Irosin sits at the bottom of Mt. Bulusan that’s why it became known as the “Hot Spring Capital of Bicol Region”. It’s also because you can find several hot spring resorts within Irosin each with its own incredible amenities and features! Trust me, there are a lot of excellent resort choices in Irosin for your next pampering and relaxing escapade, so be sure not to miss out!

7. Juag Lagoon Marine Sanctuary

The Juag Lagoon Marine Sanctuary is a fantastic attraction aimed to promote the preservation of aquatic wildlife animals such as different species of fishes, corals, and other sea creatures. It provides an all-in learning experience especially for children because they’ll be able to closely meet and interact with various colors and sizes of fish!

explore, travel, 15 best sorsogon tourist spots (gateway to southern philippines)

There are also observation areas, viewing decks, and feeding grounds where guests have the chance to further enhance their experience with these lovely animals. Some of the most notable aquatic animals you can meet here are lobsters, crabs, starfish, and even some local species like Lapu-Lapu, Maya-Maya, Talakitok, and many more.

8. Panumbagan Sandbar

Without a doubt, Panumbagan Sandbar is definitely one of the trending and emerging tourist destinations not only in Bicol Region but the whole country. Located in Pilar, Sorsogon, the sandbar stretches for about 5.5 kilometers and sports a beautiful tamarind-shaped landmass.

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Photo from Sorsogon 101

Aside from exploring the island by walking along the white sands, the clear waters, and the rock formations of Panumbagan, tourists are also welcome to try and experience the activities offered by the Pilar Marine Sanctuary such as snorkeling, scuba diving, kayaking, and more. Oh, and another experience you shouldn’t miss is trying to eat some sea urchins and sea grapes for your snacks. There’s always a first time, right? So be sure not to miss out!

9. Rizal Beach

You can never go wrong with a quiet, peaceful, and serene beach getaway, right? Well, when you spend your vacation at Rizal Beach, I’m sure you’ll be able to enjoy all of the things I’ve just said and much, much more. Located in Gubat, Sorsogon, this beach destination has become a go-to beach attraction for everyone who wants to take a break from the noises of the city and just quietly spend time with their families.

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Photo from Wonders of Sorsogon

The beige-colored sands, the clean and clear waters, and the laid-back coconut trees all exude the qualities of the tropical paradise escape we’ve all been dreaming of. Whether you’re planning to have some BBQ dinner with your loved ones, inuman sessions with friends, or just a simple getaway with your special someone, Rizal Beach is absolutely perfect for you.

10. Ogod River (Firefly Watching)

Hmm, we’re done interacting with whale sharks, various species of fishes, and also some lovely wild animals at the Bulusan Volcano Natural Park, right? Well, now it’s time to go Firefly Watching at the Ogod River! This one’s actually located in Donsol as well, so it usually comes with whale shark watching as a package.

Cruising through the peaceful Ogod River in the dark of the night and just enjoying the quiet and serene state of the forest is already quite an experience you’ll never forget. But wait ‘til you witness the aesthetically pleasing spectacle brought upon by the emergence of the lovely fireflies flickering around the trees. It’s truly an amazing and romantic sight you shouldn’t miss!

11. St. Joseph Parish (Barcelona Church)

The St. Joseph Parish or more commonly known as the Barcelona Church is Sorsogon’s most-visited religious landmark thanks to its amazing architecture and colorful history. Built in the year 1874, the church is now almost 150 years old but still portrays how Christianity plays a huge role in the everyday life of Filipinos.

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Barcelona Church

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Yeah! Photo Credit: Nhel Montuya

The church itself is a spectacle in itself because the original design of the facade was perfectly preserved as well as the interior paintings, mosaics, and statues of saints. After offering some thoughts and prayers during your visit, I suggest that you also take some time to visit the equally famous Barcelona Ruins Park. This incredible landmark has become a popular picture-taking spot thanks to the scenic and nostalgic structure and the beautiful landscape in the background.

12. Palogtoc Falls

You’ll be surprised how a small waterfall, known as the Palogtoc or Palogtok Falls was ingeniously utilized by the creative minds of Bicolanos as they were able to build a man-made earthen leisure pool where tourists and locals can bathe with crystalline cold waters!

explore, travel, 15 best sorsogon tourist spots (gateway to southern philippines)

Photo from Palogtoc Falls

The water supply is natural and free-flowing so you’re guaranteed that it’s clean and safe for everyone. Palogtoc Falls is indeed a wonderful natural attraction worth visiting in Sorsogon because it’s a nice place where families, friends, and even workmates can have memory-making activities by swimming, having a picnic, and bonding sessions.

13. Prieto Diaz Mangrove Ecopark

Another one of the highly anticipated unique experiences Sorsogon is offering is no other than the Prieto Diaz Mangrove Ecopark. The thriving mangrove ecosystem covers a huge area of more than 1,000 hectares where you can find several species of flora and fauna.

The breath of extremely fresh air, the silence of the forest, and the solid experience of cruising through the Mangrove River definitely is something you won’t be able to experience on a regular basis. So be prepared and make the most of it!

14. Dancalan Beach

With its prime location being near most of Sorsogon’s must-visit tourist attractions, spending your time at Dancalan Beach throughout your Sorsogon escapade is one of my recommended hacks! It’s located near Dansol where tourists can go whale shark watching, firefly watching, and many more.

explore, travel, 15 best sorsogon tourist spots (gateway to southern philippines)

Photo from Sorsogon 101

The creamy white sand, crescent-shaped beach, the crystalline waters, and the surrounding lush trees all promise an exciting beach getaway for everyone. Dancalan Beach is a public beach so anyone can book an all-day stay here for as low as P10! There are also cottages for rent as well as stalls scattered around the beach where you can buy food and drinks.

15. Mt. Pulog

Ah, finally! The perfect way to end our spectacular Sorsogon adventure is by conquering the peak of Mt. Pulog, one of the sought-after hiking destinations by several enthusiasts from different parts of the country. It’s actually coined as one of the Bicol region’s best-kept secret mountains.

Aside from the mesmerizing sight of the sea of clouds, the majestic Pacific Ocean, and the stunning landscapes of Sorsogon, it also has a breathtaking lake in the middle that really stuns everyone who witnesses it for the first time. It’s actually the main attraction of Mt. Pulog because it’s what makes it special as you can see from all the pictures of the mountain circling around the internet. The best part about hiking atop Mt. Pulog means that you can achieve it within a day. So be sure to bring your friends and fellow hikers and invite them to conquer one of the country’s beautiful mountains now!