Siargao for foodies

Where to find great food on an island best known for surfing.

Siargao island boasts breathtaking natural beauty that leaves tourists—surfers, especially—in awe. Best known for Cloud 9 beach, it’s renowned for its world-class surfing waves and relaxed atmosphere.

But what about for non-surfers? This island paradise is making a name for itself with its food offerings too, much like other Philippine destinations such as Palawan, Bohol and Boracay, where you can park yourself in cozy cafes and restaurants to enjoy the laidback lifestyle.

There’s a long list of dining recommendations in Siargao that usually makes its way to visitors who ask. We won’t pass that on to you. Instead, here’s a short list of places we have actually dined in and recommend for different reasons.


Photos by Eric Cabahug

Literally a turo-turo kind of eatery but not the run of the mill variety. For one, the menu is an interesting mix of typical and surprising fare. There’s the Nasi Goreng with peanut sauce. There are the couscous dishes—one with oven-baked veggies and a pink variant with beetroot and lemon. There are pasta options that aren’t spaghetti, including one with creamy scampi. You also don’t usually see croquettes and dumplings in carinderias, but Kurvada has them. Even the barbecue skewers aren’t limited to pork and chicken: there’s  tuna, peri peri pork, squid, and shrimp.

Beyond the food, the payment process is also different: after eating, you pay at the cashier by presenting a photo of your entire meal, including drinks, if any. That’s a clever touch right there, one that’s so plugged into today’s food pic culture: everyone takes these pictures anyway so might as well use them to make  payments more efficient and an enjoyable part of the entire dining experience. No wonder the place is popular with Pinoys and foreigners alike. 


This one has a sign that says, “At least 30 minutes waiting time.” It’s practically a permanent fixture on the reception desk at dinnertime. To dissuade people from leaving before their names are called from the wait list, the bar has a Buy 1, Get 1 offer on all its signature cocktail drinks. There are other options to while away the time: shop for Siargao-made shirts in the store beside the resto; take a dip in the resort’s swimming pool (for a fee for guests not billeted in the Kermit resort); or take selfies and other snaps in the surfboard pavilion and the garden.

The author Eric Cabahug with friends at Kermit, Siargao

Is the food worth the wait? The pizza and pasta are. That shouldn’t come as a surprise from an Italian restaurant that prides itself on a brick oven imported from Italy. Diners who want more than pasta and pizza have plenty of non-Italian options including kinilaw, chicken nuggets, and fish and chips for starters, curry dishes, chicken pork adobo, and chicken and fish kebabs for mains, and, for dessert, choco lava cake and several floats. 

Isla Cucina

One of the best-looking dining places in Siargao also has one of the widest menus. This restaurant of Isla Cabana Beach Resort offers everything from Pinoy classics such as Lechon Kawali, Grilled Tuna Steak, Beef Caldereta, and Pork Sinigang, to international favorites such as Grilled Australian Rib Eye Steak, Pad Thai, Nasi Goreng with Satay, and Seafood Laksa, to over a dozen wood-fired pizza flavors including your own creation, to pasta, burgers, and sandwiches. The drinks and dessert menus include fresh fruit shakes, veggie smoothies, hot and iced coffee, and lots of different cakes and pastries. This cucina definitely has good food to back its good looks. 

Starbooks Cafe

It’s not a Starbucks ripoff that the name implies. It’s more of a restaurant, albeit one with a rather slim menu of breakfast meals (the choices are Hungarian, Corned Beef, Tocino, and Spam, each paired with egg and rice), a few heavy meals, sandwiches, and salads. Of course, there’s a variety of coffee including Espresso, Iced or Hot Coffee, and Ice Blended Coffee. Other drinks include their Special Tea, Calamansi Juice, Matcha, and Gumamela Tea.

What truly sets this diner apart are two things: it has books and group games such as Uno, Scrabble, and Bad Dog that diners can enjoy while waiting for the food to be served, or even while eating; and it’s the only dining place in the entire island open 24/7. 


A vegetarian cafe that’s one of the few dining spots in Siargao to serve healthy smoothie bowls using locally sourced organic produce. Smoothie bowls consist of fresh fruits and homemade granola, and house favorites include the Super Bowl, a fruit medley with yogurt, and Cloud 9 Kook, an energy booster made of banana, peanut butter, cacao, and coconut milk. The best part? Diners can enjoy these refreshing and light-tasting but tummy-filling delights al fresco right on the beach of the island’s most popular location—the surfing capital of Cloud 9. 


If you’re neither a surfer nor particularly fond of the beach but love smoothie bowls, you don’t need to go all the way to Cloud 9 to enjoy one. Several-months-old Sanabowl has a menu of its own delicious fruit-and-nuts concoctions you can choose from. It also has a couple of veggie and bread bites you can pair with your smoothie bowl. It’s a small but cozy and Insta-worthy cafe located along the General Luna main road about midway between Cloud 9 and the town proper. 

Halika Siargao

Nothing says you’re in Siargao better than this gelato store: there’s literally a sign that says Nandito ako sa Halika Siargao. And to make sure nobody misses it, as though it was possible, the sign is in neon lights. This amusing piece of wall art alone is worth the visit. The actual product is even more worth it. And to make sure nobody misses the reasons why, there’s a sign that lists down the advantages of gelato over ice cream. They include more milk, less fats, more than 20% air, and fresh and natural. Located smack in the town center near the big church along General Luna Ave. 


This month-old shop has the distinction of being the first to offer ice baths in Siargao. According to this article, the practice of taking a 10 to 15 minute dip in very cold water (also called cold water immersion or cryotherapy) after an intense exercise session or competition is believed to help reduce muscle pain and soreness.

Mujo, which has three such bath tubs, makes perfect sense in Siargao, the country’s surfing capital and home to the longest international surfing competition in the Philippines. With “Refresh in Ice” one of its calls to action, it also makes sense for the shop to have a fresh juice bar with all-signature concoctions featuring interesting mixes of fruits including apple-pear-orange, tomato-beetroot-carrot, and cucumber-pineapple-passion fruit. A truly refreshing idea brought to cool, cold life in usually hot Siargao. 

The new lifestyle.