Camiguin is one cool destination. It’s hard not to fall in love with the “Island born of fire” and its natural wonders. But aside from the beaches, springs and waterfalls you can visit, the food scene is surprisingly varied, with an international flair.
There are no fast food joints or malls in this tiny island province because locals really want to preserve homegrown restaurants and cafes. And they have a lot to be proud of! Here are just a few of the must-try dining establishments in Camiguin.
Hayahay Café. Camiguin Circumferential Rd, Mambajao, Camiguin
This rustic little café offers healthy vegetarian and vegan-friendly fare with a focus on using superfoods and organic ingredients. They serve delicious meals like Smoothie Bowls, Tofu Rice, Kamote fries, fresh fruit shakes and more. Try the Black China, teriyaki-glazed tofu and veggies with rice and Sweet Potato fries with Tomato Purée. Hayahay is a laid-back place where you’ll want to chill out in the afternoons after a day of sightseeing.
La Dolce Vita
La Dolce Vita. Camiguin Circumferential Rd. Mambajao, Camiguin, Philippines (across Camiguin Airport)
You wouldn’t expect to find a traditional trattoria on such a small island. Located conveniently right across the Camiguin airport in Mambajao, La Dolce Vita dishes out high-quality Italian cuisine at affordable prices. They serve delicious thin-crust pizzas topped with premium ingredients like Italian sausage and mozzarella cooked in a wood-fired oven, homemade pasta and steak meals best paired with ice-cold beer. Their gnocchi and snoked salmon pasta with vodka and cream are to die for.
Guerrera Rice Paddy Villas and Restaurant. Pearl Street, Rocky Village, Yumbing, Mambajao, Camiguin.
Craving for good flavorful Asian food with great views to boot? Guerrera offers a unique take on Thai and Vietnamese dishes, making use of fresh ingredients, vegetables and herbs. Be sure to try their Lemongrass skewers, Pad Thai, local specialty Hibok-Hibok Express and amazing homemade ice cream. The restaurant’s warm and rustic ambiance offers a view of the ocean on one side, and rice paddies on the other.
Kurma Eco Beach Lodge. National Highway Yumbing, Mambajao, 9100 Camiguin
Originally a dive shop, Kurma expanded into an eco-beach lodge that offers accommodations and runs a restaurant that’s become very popular with tourists. They’re best-known for their coconut burger, which makes use of a coconut patty instead of meat. They dish out inventive dishes such as cast iron skillet eggs in homemade tomato sauce and fresh local vegetables, with homemade ciabatta bread & bukidnon butte as well as hearty breakfast bowls like oatmeal cooked in native chocolate, mixed with local island honey.
J & A Fishpen Lagoon and Restaurant
J & A Fishpen Lagoon and Restaurant. Taguines Lagoon, Mahinog, Camiguin
For larger groups and families craving for homey Filipino lutong-bahay dishes, J & A Fishpen Resort is a good choice. Chow down on favorites like grilled tuna, crabs, pancit, liempo, buttered shrimp, squid adobo, sinigang and more.
The restaurant has their own fishpens where they culture the fish, so you can be sure that what you order is fresh. Guests can watch the staff catch the fish fresh from the pens and have it cooked any way they like. There’s also a zipline nearby for those who want to enjoy a quick ride before or after their meals.
What other great dining destinations have you tried in Camiguin? Let us know in the comments section below!