An off-the-beaten-path experience lures curious travelers to Davao Region’s most remote island destination, the Sarangani Islands.

Not to be confused with Sarangani Province (located in mainland Mindanao) the Sarangani Islands are situated near the Indonesian border, off the coast of Southern Mindanao. This island chain is officially known as the Municipality (town) of Sarangani and part of Davao Occidental Province, the 81st and youngest province of the Philippines.

Scroll down and enjoy this list of spots to visit in Balut, Sarangani, and Olanivan, the three main islands that make up the Sarangani group of Islands.

Philippines Travel Essentials

See also: Davao Tourist SpotsThings To Do in General Santos Where to go in Lake Sebu | Best Places to Visit in the Philippines.

Balut Island

1. Balut Volcano Summit Trek

Location: Balut Island, Sarangani, Davao Occidental. Save on Google Maps.

Rising 862 meters above Balut Island, Balut Volcano is the highest peak and easiest landmark to spot in the Sarangani Islands. If you love to hike, you can go on the half-day trek to the summit. Instead of the typical volcanic crater & arid landscape, you’ll find lush jungles as this potentially active volcano has no known history of eruptions. The towering trees fully covered by vines and air plants is an enchanting sight, especially when the fog has rolled in and the forest-topped summit takes on a “Jurrasic Park” feel. From the high vantage point, you will also have a good chance to see remote islands of Indonesia on the horizon.

To help with your trip planning, I’ve added links to the locations on Google Maps. Feel free to click/tap on the links posted. Then, use the “save” feature on the Google Maps app for easy reference. I’ve also shared photos from my Instagram feed. Use Instagram’s save feature for quick access to your travel/feed goals.

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2. Sabang Hot Spring

Along the northern coast of Balut Island, a couple of steps away from a pebble beach, Sabang Hot Spring attracts visitors because of its vibrant turquoise-colored pool. Temperatures can reach as hot as 80°C. Although unsuitable for bathing, the hotspring is undoubtedly an interesting photo stop worth adding to your itinerary. Sabang Hot Spring is a 30-minute boat ride from Mabila, the port and polacion area (town center) of Balut Island. You can also reach the hotspring by habal-habal (motorcycle taxi) if you dare to travel on the very rough road. Travel time by habal-habal is around an hour.

Olanivan Island

3. Olanivan Pink Sand Beach

Location: Sarangani, Davao Occidental. Save on Google Maps.

There are a number of pink sand beaches in the Philippines and one can be found at Olanivan Island. Its characteristic hue comes from crushed red corals that have washed ashore and mixed with the white sand. Only a section of the beach appear this way and the color is more of a pale pink. Still, it’s pretty cool to see! Olanivan is the smallest out of the three main islands in Sarangani. You can walk around the island in around an hour. There are no large communities living here, so you can easily feel like you have this piece of paradise to yourself. Olanivan is totally encircled with a fine sandy beach and surrounded with gorgeuos crystal clear waters comparable to many of the Philippines’ most beautiful islands.

How to go:

Olanivan is the northermost island in Sarangani and the closest to mainland Mindanao. Travel time by ferry to/from Mabila Port in Balut Island is around 1 hour. Olanivan can also be accessed by pumpboat from Balangonan, Jose Abad Santos (in mainland Mindanao). This sea crossing also takes around 1 hour. Travel time by road from General Santos to Balangonan is 2 hours.

4. Bolae Cove

Bulae Cove in Sarangani Island, Davao Occidental, Philippines

Location: Sarangani Island, Sarangani, Davao Occidental. Save on Google Maps.

After visiting Olanivan Island, Bulae Cove is an excellent spot to start your tour of Sarangani Island. This narrow inlet is blessed with calm turquoise-colored waters protected from strong winds by coconut tree-covered hills.

5. Tuke Maklang Beach Resort

Tuke Maklang Beach Resort in Sarangani Island, Davao Occidental

Location: Sarangani Island, Sarangani, Davao Occidental. Save on Google Maps.

Blessed on both side with a sandy beach, Tuke Maklang Beach Resort offers a wide shoreline where you can enjoy the tropical island vibes. Climb the steps to the top of the hill for a nice view overlooking the blue green sea and neighboring Balut Island. There are picnic huts for day trippers and rooms for overnight stays. If you want to spend the night in Sarangani Island, Tuke Maklang Beach Resort is the best option. It’s affordable, convenient and safe. Keep an eye out for the huge tree on the property that’s home to hundreds of Flying Foxes (fruit bats).

6. Tuke Nonsul

Tuka Donsol in Sarangani Island, Davao Occidental, Philippines

Location: Sarangani Island, Sarangani, Davao Occidental. Save on Google Maps.

Instead of a beach, Tuke Nonsul (Tuka Donsol on Google Maps) has a rocky coastline featuring beautiful cave formations. Locals describe this place as an underwater paradise, so have your snorkeling gear ready when you stop over.

7. Paras Beach

Paras Beach in Sarangani Island, Sarangani, Davao Occidental, Philippines

Location: Sarangani Island, Sarangani, Davao Occidental. Save on Google Maps.

Paras Beach is a popular swimming spot on the southern coast of Sarangani Island. There’s a peaceful fishing community living along Paras Beach and locals are very friendly. Here, you can appreciate the simple island life. Handcrafted wooden google used by freediving fishermen, and miniature wooden (toy) boats displayed in front of the native-style homes were among the things I found interesting during my visit.

8. Isla Pabrosis Beach Resort

Isla Pabrosis Beach Resort in Sarangani Island, Sarangani, Davao Occidental, Philippines

Location: Paras Beach, Sarangani Island, Sarangani, Davao Occidental. Save on Google Maps.

Lying next to Paras Beach, Isla Pabrosis is another scenic beach cove in Sarangani Island. It’s privately owned and has wide sandy shoreline lined with coconut trees. Pick a spot under the shade and enjoy the relaxing view facing Balut Volcano.

More spots to visit in Balut Island

9. Mabila Port & Poblacion

Ballistic Islet (Marorong Islet) in Balut Island, Sarangani, Davao Occidental, Philippines

Location: Balut Island, Sarangani, Davao Occidental. Save on Google Maps.

Mabila is the port area and poblacion of the Sarangani Islands. If you want to visit the Sarangani Municipal Tourism Office/Sarangani Municipal Hall just walk straight after the exit at Mabila Port and follow the uphill road. When in town, enjoy a chat with the locals and eat locals dishes like pastel. Cool off with a sweet bowl of halo-halo.

General Santos & South Cotabato

General Santos Fish Port (Tuna Market) in General Santos City, South Cotabato, Philippines

Location: Southcentral Mindanao, southern Philippines. Save on Google Maps.

General Santos the the main gateway to the Sarangani Islands. Public ferries to Balut Island depart from Lion’s Beach Port (Balut Island terminal) near Queen Tuna Park, at around midnight and arrive early morning in Mabila Port. Travel time is around 5-7 hours.

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Where to stay

Davao

Aliwagwag Falls in Cateel, Davao Oriental, Philippines

Location: Davao region, Mindanao, southern Philippines. Save on Google Maps.

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Where to stayTours + discounts

What places have you added to your bucketlist? Have you been to beautiful places in Balut Island that should be on this list? Feel free to share your thoughts!

Places to visit in Balut Island

Balut Island tourist spots, things to do in Balut Island, where to go in Balut Island & more.

Note: Destinations featured above are not listed by rank.

Balut Island Essentials & Top Discounts

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