When my friends said that we were going to Bislig in Surigao del Sur two years ago, I honestly thought we were going surfing (which I absolutely hate). I didn’t know that there was more to this province than its breathtaking beaches. I only learned about the fascinating culture of the local communities then.
Here are two of some of the tourist attractions in Surigao del Sur that I highly recommend. (Note that my friends and I visited these places in 2014, so the rates may have changed.)
The most beautiful waterfalls in the country, Tinuy-an Falls is flanked by lush thickets and tall, century-old trees, making it a perfect site for birdwatching. Its cool, shallow pools are ideal for swimming and bathing. This majestic natural formation can be found in Burboanan, Bislig City.
Dubbed by many websites and magazine articles as the Niagara Falls of the Philippines, Tinuy-an Falls is composed of several tiers of cascading waterfalls that are awesome to behold. We explored these falls with the help of our guide.
Every year, tribal folks perform a ritual called Diwatahan to honor the unseen spirits of the thick forests surrounding the waterfalls. In this ritual, the spiritual leader of the Manobo tribe living in the jungles offer the blood of a live chicken and a pig to please the kind spirits. This ceremony is usually held on the same day when Bislig City celebrates its (Christian) feast day.
How Tinuy-an Got Its Name
The word tinuy-an was derived from “tinuyo-an,” which is a Visayan word that translates to “an intentional act or performance to attain an objective or goal.” According to legend, two enslaved Manobos plotted to kill their cruel masters by driving them off the waterfalls, which is a 50-meter drop. They intentionally rowed their masters’ raft towards the edge of the falls, thus the name.
Things to Remember
- The entrance fee for adult visitors is P50. Children below 7 years get in for free.
- You can rent a raft for 30 minutes for only P150. If you don’t feel confident about your swimming skill, you can rent a life jacket for an hour for P30.
- Cottages and tables are available for those who want to have a picnic there.
(We didn’t have lunch in Burboanan because we wanted to try the restaurant in our next destination. Try it when you visit Bislig; I liked their schnitzel and their curry pasta.)
International Doll House
After having lunch at Ocean View Park Restaurant, we headed to the International Doll House, which was right next door. For a small fee (P20), we were able to view hundreds of vintage toy cars, and porcelain cups and saucers on display.
Of course, there were dolls from every corner of the world — from limited edition Barbies to Javanese shadow puppets. Needless to say, I loved everything about this museum!
The International Doll House is open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 10 AM to 7 PM. For inquiries, contact Werner, Ruelaine, or Geraldine at (+63) 86-853-4061 or (+63) 910-321-2568.
Next week, I’ll write about the last leg of our adventure in Surigao del Sur. Yehey!