The Philippines with its 7,100 islands, affordability, English-speaking Western culture, friendly and hospitable people has been a popular Southeast Asian destination for several years. Lately there is what is called the “Big 3” in Philippine islands: Boracay, Coron and Siargao.
Boracay started gaining popularity in the 1990s and grew to be a huge tourist destination . Several investors have come into the island and have made significant returns on their investment through years. In 2019 tourism revenue from Boracay tourists reached P62.3 Billion with tourist arrivals reaching 2 Million including 1 Million foreigners.
Siargao is one of the fastest growing destinations in the Philippines today and having selected by Conde Naste in 2019 as one of the most beautiful islands in the world. Formerly a secret destination shared among surfing nomads and adventurers, there were very few resorts and lodgings and facilities to stay at for visitors. It was in 2017, when the Sayak Airport in Siargao opened, that tourism took off with direct flights coming from Manila, Clark, Cebu and Davao.
Since that time, the growth in new resorts has exploded. But we are only scratching the surface on the island’s full potential. While Boracay has a total area of 10.32 square kilometers, Siargao has an area of 437 square kilometers with several activities for visitors aside from surfing: mangroves, islands, waterfalls, caves, beaches and a lot more.
Most of the development is currently around the Gen Luna area but there are growing areas in Malinao. Sta Fe, Pilar Pacifico San Benito and others. There are also plans to build an international airport which will make tourism grow even bigger.
Currently mostly of the investors in the island are local developers who have family properties, young entrepreneurs who are drawn to the surf and eco-friendly vibe of the island, and mostly European and Australian foreign investors who have discovered their paradise.