Cloud 9 is a world-renowned surfing spot in Siargao. Famous for its barreling large waves, this has become one of the favorites of surfers from different countries. An International Surfing Cup is held regularly here. On October 4, 2018, a hefty prize of $75,000.00 was awarded to the winner of the competition. This site is just one of the many surfing spots in Siargao that made the island become the “Surfing Capital of the Philippines.”
Traveling surfers discovered Siargao’s waves in the 1980s. The most popular surfing spot was later given the name Cloud 9 by an American photographer. He based the site’s name on a chocolate bar’s brand that is popular locally. The Surfer magazine later featured Siargao as a great surfing site in 1993.
Exploring Cloud 9
We went here after our afternoon siesta at Guyam Island. The site’s setup looks pretty neat. A leisure walk on its very long boardwalk is quite a pleasure because of the clean fresh air and the wonderful view of the sea. The colorful flags give it a fiesta-feel and make the atmosphere look more lively.
Before entering the Cloud 9, you’ll see a map of Siargao where the twelve different surfing spots can be located. They posted a label on what spot you should choose depending on your level of experience from beginner, intermediate to expert. There’s also an illustrated guide about surfing etiquette.
After a long walk to their boardwalk, we finally reached Cloud 9’s surfing tower. Its design may look modest and frail but it’s definitely sturdy and can withstand large and strong waves. Even if it gets damaged by large waves because of a storm, it can easily be repaired because of its simple setup.
The scenic view up there is perfect to watch a surfing competition or just to enjoy the horizon view. Photographers would surely love its panoramic sight and angle. It’s a good spot to capture great shots of the contestants as they ride Siargao’s barreling waves. It was nice to see plenty of visitors practicing to surf there even if it was a late afternoon.
Our Surfing Experience
We came back here the next day to know what it’s like to surf here. It was only our second time to try surfing and our first one was in Baler, Aurora. Upon arriving at Cloud 9, there were plenty of surfing instructors waiting outside which made everything very easy for us to help us.
Our initial impression is that surfing is pretty generic but we realized later that we’re wrong. We had to unlearn what we’ve been doing in Baler because the kind of waves in Cloud 9 was different. You need to have better timing and you should be able to stand up a bit faster on the surfboard when the wave suddenly bursts.
You’ll fail easily if you miss the short chance. I remember how easier it was to surf in Baler because even if you don’t stand on the surfboard, the waves will keep on pushing you to the shore for a longer time. This will give you more time to properly stand up to the board and get a good balance.
Cloud 9 Video
A large part of Cloud 9’s beach is fully of sturdy and sharp rocks but there are some portions where kids can freely play on the sand and swim. Our instructor told us to hop off the surfboard immediately the moment we get close to the shore to avoid hitting the big rocks.
I remember a case that was previously posted by the journalist Karen Davila regarding her son’s injury there. She said that her son’s rash guard was ripped apart and how he was heavily wounded. She also vented out her frustrations about how the instructors reacted to the incident.
It’s also very important to be mindful of the direction of where the surfboard might potentially hit. If you checked our video, you’ll see how a lady surfer accidentally bumped to our surfing guide.
Cloud 9 Rates
Entrance Fee: P50.00
Surfing Instructor: P500.00 / per hour
Surfboard Rental: P200.00 / per hour | P500.00 / whole day