Jude The Tourist

Best 7 Catanduanes Tourist Spots 2023

It is often overlooked as a travel destination, but it’s definitely worth checking out! A hidden gem in Luzon – Northern Island of the Philippines that is waiting to be discovered by you. This small island province is located in the Bicol region and boasts breathtaking landscapes, pristine beaches, and a rich culture and history. This province is a nature lover’s paradise! From its picturesque pastoral hills, stunning cliffs, to pristine beaches, there’s no shortage of sights to see and activities to enjoy here.

Catanduanes - Happy Island
Catanduanes – Happy Island (Photo by spot.ph)

Catanduanes is a relatively new tourist destination in the Philippines. While it has been known for its stunning natural beauty for many years, the island’s local tourism branch was only established in 2016. This means that there is still so much to discover in this island, and visitors can expect to experience a sense of unspoiled charm and authenticity that is often lacking in more established tourist destinations.

Despite its status as a newcomer to the tourism scene, the Happy Island has quickly gained a reputation as one of the most exciting and captivating destinations in the Philippines. With its pristine beaches, lush forests, and rugged terrain, the island is a paradise for nature lovers and adventure seekers.

Attractions not to miss when you visit Catanduanes

Catanduanes is a hidden gem in the Philippines, located in the Bicol region. Known for its rugged terrain, pristine beaches, and rich cultural heritage, it’s a destination that’s worth exploring. Here are some of the top attractions in the happy island that you should not miss.

1. Binurong Point

Catanduanes - Binurong Point (Photo by Kim Nana)
Catanduanes – Binurong Point (Photo by Kim Nana)

Binurong Point is a breathtaking hilltop located in the town of Baras. The hike up to the viewpoint takes about an hour, but the stunning views of the coastline and the lush greenery that surrounds it are well worth the effort. It’s a perfect spot to witness the sunrise or the sunset.

2. Puraran Beach (Surfers’ Paradise)

Catanduanes - Puraran Beach (Photo by Spot.ph)
Catanduanes – Puraran Beach (Photo by Spot.ph)

Puraran Beach is a surfer’s paradise. Known for its powerful waves, it’s a popular destination for surfers from around the world. Even if you’re not a surfer, the beach is still worth visiting for its natural beauty. The clear blue waters and the picturesque rock formations make it a perfect spot for swimming or just relaxing.

3. Maribina Falls

Catanduanes - Maribina Falls (Photo by Edgar Alan Zeta-Yap)
Catanduanes – Maribina Falls (Photo by Edgar Alan Zeta-Yap)

Maribina Falls is a series of cascading waterfalls located in the town of San Miguel. The falls form natural pools that are perfect for a refreshing swim. The surrounding area is lush and green, making it a great place for a picnic or just enjoying nature.

4. Caramoan Islands

Catanduanes - Caramoan Islands (Photo by Klook.com)
Catanduanes – Caramoan Islands (Photo by Klook.com)

Caramoan Islands is a group of islands located off the coast of Catanduanes. It’s known for its pristine beaches, crystal-clear waters, and vibrant marine life. It’s a perfect spot for snorkeling or just lounging on the beach. The islands have been featured in several international TV shows, including Survivor and The Amazing Race.

5. Museo de Catanduanes

Catanduanes - Museo de Catanduanes (Photo by GoCatanduanes)
Catanduanes – Museo de Catanduanes (Photo by GoCatanduanes)

Museo de Catanduanes is a museum that showcases the island’s rich cultural heritage and traditions. It’s a great place to learn about the history of the island and its people. The museum houses artifacts and exhibits that date back to pre-colonial times.

6. Palumbanes Islands

Catanduanes - Palumbanes Islands (Photo by Ironwulf)
Catanduanes – Palumbanes Islands (Photo by Ironwulf)

Palumbanes Islands is another group of islands located off the coast of Catanduanes. It’s known for its enchanting beauty and is a perfect spot for island hopping. The islands have crystal-clear waters and white sand beaches, making it a great place for swimming and snorkeling.

7. Bato Church

Catanduanes - Bato Church (Photo by Karlo Guevarra)
Catanduanes – Bato Church (Photo by Karlo Guevarra)

Bato Church is a historical landmark located in the town of Bato. The church is known for its intricate architecture and rich cultural heritage. It’s a perfect spot for history buffs or anyone interested in learning about the island’s past.

The Catanduanes Tourism Board has provided a helpful map highlighting the current must-see tourist attractions in the Happy Island.

Catanduanes - Happy Island Guide. (Photo by Catanduanes Tourism Board)
Catanduanes – Happy Island Guide. (Photo by Catanduanes Tourism Board)

How to get to the Happy Island:

For those planning a trip to Catanduanes, here’s a starter guide on your journey to this stunning island paradise. This includes a sample 3D2N itinerary that will allow you to experience some of the most incredible sights and attractions that the island has to offer.


The most convenient way to get there is by booking a flight to Virac. As of the time of writing, the airline carrier Cebu Pacific operates one flight per day from Manila to Virac. By booking a flight with Cebu Pacific, you can ensure a hassle-free journey to this beautiful island paradise.


Another option you might want to know that getting there by land can take around 15-16 hours. But don’t worry, there are two options to choose from:

Option 1:

Hop on a direct bus from Manila (Cubao, Pasay, or Alabang) to Tabaco. The fare costs about P840, and the travel time is around 11-12 hours.

Option 2:

Another option is to take a bus to Legazpi, which takes around 12 hours. From the Legazpi bus terminal, you can take a jeepney or van bound for Tabaco. Once you’re in Tabaco, ride a pedicab to Tabaco Port.

If you’re planning to travel to San Andres Port or Virac Port from Tabaco Port, you have two options for passenger boats. The air-conditioned boat to San Andres Port costs P290, while the non-aircon option costs P220. For Virac Port, the air-conditioned boat is priced at P320, while the non-aircon option costs P240. The travel time is approximately 4 hours. There’s also a fast craft available to either port, which costs P320 and has a shorter travel time of 2 hours. However, the schedules for the fast craft are limited.

It is also recommended to head straight to Virac Port. As the capital of the province, it offers a variety of hotels and resorts that you can choose from.

In case you end up at San Andres Port, no worries! You can still reach Virac by riding a jeepney or chartering a tricycle.

Catanduanes - How to get to Catanduanes. (Photo by Catanduanes Tourism Board)
Catanduanes – How to get to Catanduanes. (Photo by Catanduanes Tourism Board)

Planning your trip to Catanduanes ahead of time is a wise decision. As the province is often hit by tropical storms, it is not advisable to visit during the rainy season. It is important to consider this factor when deciding on the best time to explore the island. Click to know more about the trip schedules.

Sample 3D2N Itinerary + Expenses

Sample 3D2N Catanduanes Island Itinerary & Expenses

Day 1

MorningArrive at Bicol International Airport
Depart to Tabaco Port
Depart for Catanduanes Island
Arrive at San Andres Port
Proceed to Virac
AfternoonCheck-in at the hostel & head for lunch
Half-day tour itinerary Bato Church, Maribina Falls, and Bote Lighthouse
Late Afternoon to EveningGo back to the hostel
Dinner out
Go back to the hostel + free time

Day 2

MorningPrepare for the tour & Breakfast
Proceed to Codon Port which is the Gateway to Caramoan Islands
Arrive at the port & Leave for Caramoan Islands
Island hopping tour around the Caramoan Islands
AfternoonEnd of Caramoan Island Hopping Tour
Arrive at the port
Head back to the hostel
Late afternoon to EveningOut for dinner
Head back to the hostel

Day 3

Early morningCatch the sunrise at Binurong Point
Arrive at the registration office
Trekking to Binurong Point
Arrive at the Binurong Point, Photo-op & Sightseeing
Back to the registration office
08:30-09:30 AMRest
Head & Arrive at Puraran Beach
Morning to LunchLunch
Back to Virac
Head and arrive at San Andres Port
Leave and arrive atTabaco Port
Head to Legazpi Terminal
Arrive at Legazpi Terminal, Proceed to the hostel
Check-in to our hostel
Dinner, free time

Sample Budget for a 3D2N Catanduanes Island Trip

Day 1
  • Bicol International Airport to SM Legazpi Terminal: Php 220
  • SM Terminal to Tabaco Port:  Php 76
  • Terminal Fee: Php 30
  • Ferry to Catanduanes Island: Php 300
  • Hostel for 3days and 2nights: Php 2000/2
  • Lighthouse Tour Guide: Php 260
  • Habal habal tour guide: Php 1500/2
Day 2
  • Caramoan Island Hopping Tour (Whole Day Tour): Php 4000/2
  • Habal habal ride: Php 1200/2
Day 3
  • Habal-habal guided tour: Php 750/2 (half day) 
  • Binurong Point Entrance Fee: Php 150
  • Ferry: Php 300
  • Terminal Fee: Php 10
  • Environmental Fee: Php 6

Total Expenses: Php 5,141 (per pax) 

Just wanted to give you a heads-up that these details may be subject to change. By the way, I wanted to let you know that Php 2000 each was paid for the Caramoan Island hopping tour because this is based on 2pax. However, the boat is actually good for 4-6 passengers, so keep that in mind if you plan on going with a bigger group.

Where to eat if we get hungry?

This beautiful province is located in the Bicol Region, which means you’ll get to indulge in some of the region’s famous delicacies, such as the mouth-watering laing and spicy bicol express.

Catanduanes - Laing and Bicol Express (Photo by clickthecity.com)
Catanduanes – Laing and Bicol Express (Photo by clickthecity.com)

But that’s not all – The Happy Island is also known for its delectable seafood! Whether you’re a fan of fish, shrimp, crab, or lobster, you’ll find an abundance of fresh seafood throughout the province. And the best part? The food here is incredibly affordable, so you won’t have to break the bank to enjoy a delicious meal.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Catanduanes Island known for?

Catanduanes - Happy Island (Photo by Will Garcia)
Catanduanes – Happy Island (Photo by Will Garcia)

It’s a province in the Bicol region and it’s known for its stunning beaches with fine white sand and crystal clear waters that will take your breath away. Plus, if you’re a fan of scenic views, you won’t want to miss out on the famous Binurong Point – it’s an experience like no other!

Despite being frequently hit by strong typhoons, the province has earned the nickname “happy island” because of the resilience and positivity of its people. They always manage to bounce back and keep their spirits high, no matter what challenges come their way.

Is it cheap to travel to the Happy Island?

You won’t believe how budget-friendly it is to travel to the Catanduanes Island! From the delicious food to the cozy accommodations, everything is very affordable. And if you’re looking for a tour guide, most tourists highly recommend our Michael Tanael. Kuya Michael is known not only great at taking pictures but he’s also super kind!

Is the signal good on the island?

Both networks on the island seem pretty stable.

When is the best time to visit Catanduanes?

The best period to explore the island is between March and May, which falls within the summer season. This timeframe is characterized by sunny, warm, and dry weather, making it an ideal time for engaging in outdoor pursuits such as island hopping, beach lounging, and hiking amidst nature. With the good weather on your side, you’ll be able to fully immerse yourself in the stunning natural beauty that this beautiful island has to offer. 

How to get around Catanduanes?

Getting around the Island is easy with several transportation options available. If you prefer a hassle-free ride, you can take public vans, jeepneys, or tricycles that will take you to nearby towns.

However, the best way to experience the island is by chartering a private motorbike or tricycle. It’s a great way to explore the island at your own pace and go off the beaten path. A motorbike tour of Virac’s attractions will cost around P500, while a longer trip will cost P1000 or more. If you’re comfortable riding a motorbike, you can also rent one for a day for around P500.

Is the Happy Island safe for solo travelers?

Catanduanes - Solo travelling (Photo by CGTN)
Catanduanes – Solo travelling (Photo by CGTN)

If you’re a solo traveler, you’ll be happy to know that Catanduanes Island is a great place to explore on your own. Not only is it a beautiful destination, but it’s also considered a safe haven for travelers like you who want to discover all that the island has to offer.

Where to stay on while on the Happy Island?

Catanduanes - Rakdell Inn, Virac (Photo grabbed from Google)
Catanduanes – Rakdell Inn, Virac (Photo grabbed from Google)

Sticking on a budget while in Virac? Rakdell Inn might be the perfect choice for you! They offer air-conditioned rooms for only PHP 1000 per night, which can comfortably fit two people. Plus, you can enjoy their complimentary Wi-Fi connection during your stay.

You can contact Sir Michael Tanael who can help you with your tour. You can easily reach out to him through his Facebook account or by giving him a call at 09487423206.

Things to Know Before You Go:

  • Once you arrive on the island, feel free to visit the Tourism Office in Virac for any assistance you may need.
  • If you plan on traveling to distant municipalities like Pandan or Caramoran, it’s best to do your research beforehand as the schedule of public vehicles may be limited.
  • Be aware that certain areas in the Island may have minimal mobile signal, so plan accordingly.

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