Activities & Adventure

7 Things To Do in Calayan Island

Written by Patrick

What to do in Calayan Island, a pristine and unexplored sanctuary.

Found in the northern part of the Philippines, Calayan Island lies in the Luzon Strait and is part of the Babuyan Islands group along with Babuyan, Dalupiri, Fuga, and Camiguin.  It covers an area of 196 square kilometers, making it the largest island in terms of area among the island group.

A hidden gem in the Philippines, Calayan Island is relatively untouched thus a great destination for adventurers and nature enthusiasts looking to experience pristine natural beauty.

If you are planning to explore the Calayan Island, here are some things you may want to do there.

1 | Experience the peaceful atmosphere

View of Calayan Island from Tagipuro Islet

Caption: View of Calayan Island from Tagipuro Islet | Image Source

Considering its remote location, Calayan Island is not as crowded as some of the more popular tourist destinations in the Philippines.  As a result, it offers a serene and peaceful atmosphere, allowing visitors to unwind and reconnect with nature.  The absence of large resorts and commercialization has helped preserve the island’s natural charm.

2 | Spend the day beach bumming

Entrance to the beach in Sibang Cove

Caption: Entrance to the beach in Sibang Cove | Image Source

Like many remote islands in the Philippines, the beaches in Calayan Island feature pristine waters and cream to white colored sand perfect for beach bumming.  Don’t miss Sibang Cove, the star of the island, and Caniwara Cove with its unique rock formations.  You might want to see Cababaan Cove as well.

3 | Enjoy the views from the hills

View of lighthouse in Nagudungan

Caption: View of lighthouse in Nagudungan | Image Source

Within walking distance from Sibang Cove lies Nagudungan Hills that offer 360 degree views of the surrounding areas including Sibang and Caniwara Coves.  Another spot where you can see stunning views from above is Bangaan Hills, an hour’s walk from Nagudungan Hills.

4 | See the waterfalls

Bataraw Falls

Caption: Bataraw Falls | Image Source

Aside from beaches and hills, Calayan Island is blessed with a few waterfalls too.  The two most popular waterfalls are Bataraw Waterfall and Caanawan Waterfall.  Both can be easily accessed via short hikes.

5 | Explore the rich biodiversity

The island is home to the Calayan rail, a flightless bird of the rail first discovered in 2004.  The bird’s population is classified as vulnerable with only about 2500 to 4300 mature individuals existing today.  In addition, the island is also home to some endemic species including Philippine coucal, gecko, and others.

6 | Try cliff diving

Cliff in Calayan Island

Caption: Cliff in Calayan Island | Image Source

Want to try something exciting?  Include Tapwakan Cliff Diving site to your itinerary and try jumping off the cliff straight into the refreshing water.

7 | Take photos of scenic landscapes

Sibang Cove

Caption: Sibang Cove | Image Source

Whether you are into photography or not, the scenic landscapes will surely inspire you to take some photos – photos that will remind you of the good times you had on the island.

Calayan Island is a slice of paradise hidden in the Philippines. It offers a rare opportunity to experience untouched natural beauty, immerse yourself in a peaceful atmosphere, and engage with welcoming locals. While it may require some effort to reach, the rewards of exploring this remote and breathtaking island are well worth it for those who seek adventure, tranquility, and an authentic connection with nature.

READ MORE: Activities & Adventure in the Philippines

Any worthwhile activities on Calayan Island that we might have overlooked?

About the Author


Patrick is an entrepreneur, digital nomad, explorer, and photographer. Patrick is always in search of fun and adventure. He is well travelled throughout the world, and although location independent, his home base is Phoenix, Arizona in the USA. Patrick loves island lifestyle which is no wonder why he is so interested in spending time in the Philippines with it’s over 7,000 islands. Patrick created this site to share his knowledge of and experiences in the Philippines with Filipinos as well as other foreigners.

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