CAMIGUIN | The most picturesque place of the dead, the Sunken Cemetery

After the unforgettable visit at the White Island, we headed to the most picturesque site of the dead, the Sunken Cemetery in barangay bonbon, the town of Catarman;  just a less than 30 minutes ride from the small town of Mambajao. 

Camiguin is a volcanic island, with an active stratovolcano, the Mt. Hibok Hibok, surrounded by the seven volcanic edifices. A volcanic eruption has been recorded in 1871 and once again erupted in 1948 to 1951, which resulted in hundreds of lives lost, buildings ruins, including the old church and the sunken cemetery”.  A 20 feet giant cross made up of hardwood and stone was built way back 1982 in replacement of the authentic one.  People could still see the original cross during low tide. An annual fluvial parade also organized by the people of Bonbon to commemorate the tribulation of that occasion. 

In the current days, this history dictated the future of the island, the disaster that struck in the past, is now the source of the livelihood of many. In fact, it is one of the most prominent landmarks in the region and the venue of several films made in the country. Shops and frequent vendor encourage you to buy souvenir items or even ask you to have a boat ride going to the main cross. Entrance is free but needs to pay a boat ride if you get closer to the giant cross.     

Sunken Cemetery is not a typical attraction that everyone can appreciate unless you understand its profound history of it. Like a great reaction of a friend that snorkeling and diving under the clear water are fun, but not in this place. Maybe it’s just a sort of imagination, in reality, the groups of colorful fishes, hundreds of corals and other marine species gives a life of the past and a great opportunity to be found underwater.

Camiguin has an available flight from Manila via Skyjet and/ or from Cebu via Cebu Pacific. From Camiguin airport, hire a motorcycle to reach the sunken cemetery; travel time is less than 30 minutes. 

If you're outside Manila, you may book a flight via Laguindingan Airport (CGY) from Luzon (NAIA, Clark), Visayas (Cebu, Bacolod, Ilo-Ilo), and Mindanao (Davao, Siargao, Zamboanga City); Airfare is cheaper base on experience.  Look for the Van terminal in the Arrival area bound for Cagayan De Oro City (Agora Terminal). Catch up a bus bound for Gingoog, Butuan or Surigao City then get off to BalingoanTerminal; the port is just a hundred meters away from the Bus terminal.    

At Camiguin, catch up a multicab or hire a motorcycle going to the Sunken Cemetery. 


  1. The article is very well-written. If I ever get a chance, I'll definitely like to visit the town of Catarman.

  2. Brilliantly described. I agree when you say it would hold no charm unless we knew the history of Catarman. And your pictures are amazing.

  3. This looks a great and adventurous place to make a visit. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Lovely serene, the pictures speakers fun already.

  5. Sounds like a place I would like to visit owing to its rich history. Thank you for sharing.