Top Tourist Spots in Basilan [And How To Get There]

Basilan is probably on the list of the least visited provinces in the Philippines due to the negative perception attached to its name. Basilan has actually something that you should see and experience. The white sand beach of Malamawi is one of the most popular tourist spots in Basilan but there’s actually more!

Top Tourist Spots in Basila
Top Tourist Spots in Basila

Must-Visit Tourist Spots in Basilan

Here are what people are missing out when overlooking Basilan as a potential tourist destination:

Malamawi Beach

Despite the troubles the province is facing, there is one side about Basilan that remains ever beautiful as seen through the shore’s unspoiled makeup and tranquil ambience—the Malamawi Beach. Not only is this place is peaceful for the relative absence of people, it also remains unscathed by the ravages of people in conflict in the region.

Malamawi Beach, Basilan
Malamawi Beach, Basilan

If there is anything which this seashore signifies, it is that there remains a place of serenity amidst a lingering turmoil. Without a doubt, Malawi Beach is one of the best tourist spots in Basilan.

How to get to Malamawi Beach?

Assuming that you are already in Isabela City, Basilan (if not, scroll down below to know how to get to Basilan) You can take a passenger boat to Malamawi Island. The boat fare is less than Php10 for a 5-10 minutes ride. After docking, take a habal-habal or tricycle to go to Malamawi Beach.

Lampinigan Island

Almost as barren as the majority of the province itself and its neighboring regions from the presence of people that would have otherwise flocked it, the Lampinigan Island makes for one of Basilan’s hidden gem. There are not many people who could brave going to this island, but those who do experience a kind of paradise that is unparalleled in its kind.

Like the many beautiful beaches that lie at the fringes of Basilan, the shore of the Lampinigan Island is remarkably composed of lush foliage, fine white sands, and turquoise, clear seawater. This island, too, is a hidden gem and is thus one of the best tourist spots in Basilan.

Bulingan Falls

Situated within the forest of Lamitan City, the Bulingan Falls never ceases to flow as it brings waters from a higher elevation to a lower basin for people to enjoy. If you love the idea of soaking wet for fun while also relaxing in the unending sound of white noise, the Bulingan Falls make for an ideal destination to getting the best of relaxation by the running water of a falls.

Basilan Capitol

What is Basilan without a capitol that is the seat of power that manages all of its political affairs? The Basilan Capitol is just that.

Not many will consider the capitol of Basilan to be a tourist destination per se. But if you happen to be in Basilan and is seeking a major landmark in the area, the Basilan Capitol is definitely it.

Sta. Isabel de Portugal Cathedral

The presence of Christianity is widespread across the Philippines. Nothing corroborates to this notion better than the comportment of Christians within the conflicted island-province of Basilan as well as the strong presence of the church, Sta. Isabel de Portugal Cathedral, that is the seat of the prelature of Isabela de Basilan.

While the city of Isabela was named after the Queen Isabela II of Spain, the church, on the other hand, was named after the patron saint, Sta. Isabel of Portugal.

Although the Sta. Isabel de Portugal is not as grand as those seen in the West, the church structure remains a powerful symbol with Basilan, especially among the practitioners of the faith in the area.

How to get to Basilan from Manila, Davao & Cebu

The jump-off point to Basilan is Zamboanga City. You can fly to Zamboanga from Manila, Cebu, Davao or Cagayan de Oro City. From there, take a ferry/boat to Isabela City or Lamitan City. Most travelers opt to explore Isabela City where Malamawi Beach is located.


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