One of the main attractions for tourists heading to the Philippines is the wide array of water sports that are available. Whether you want to go snorkeling with whale sharks, get an intimate view of the rich marine life while diving, explore mangroves on a kayak or simply swim in the turquoise waters of El Nido, the Philippines seems to have it all.
With the growth of stand-up paddle boarding in the Philippines, this South East Asian archipelago is quickly becoming one of the premier water sport attractions in the region. While stand up paddle boarding may be relatively new, it is quickly becoming one of the more popular sports for visiting expats to the Philippines.
What is Paddle boarding?
Commonly known as SUP, standup paddleboarding is a fast growing water sport that is increasing growing in popularity all over the world and especially in the Philippines. SUP involves using a board that is similar to a surf board as well as a long paddle. The paddle boarder stands on top of the board and uses the paddle to move on the water. Imagine a sport where canoeing and surfing comes together and you basically have SUP. It is an incredible way to explore lakes, open waters and for the more advanced you can even use SUP to ride waves.
Where can I go Stand up Paddle Boarding in the Philippines?
As SUP is still relatively new, there aren’t a lot of options as of yet but that is quickly changing. Many resorts offer paddle board hire as part of their onsite amenities but there are two places where you can do day tours with experienced paddle board instructors.
1) Taal Lake
Situated just an hour and a half outside Manila sits his charming and tranquil lake. It’s a peaceful spot with calm waters which makes it perfect if you have never paddle boarded before. The lake has a calm atmosphere and often you will see children playing on the banks and fishermen out on the waters looking to make a catch.
A good way to explore the lake is to sort out a SUP tour in Manila and head out with your instructor. Even though the waters at Taal lake tend to be pretty calm, it is not unheard of to run into windier times when you are out paddling, but rest assured that your instructor will be aware of any changing conditions.
Paddle boarding Taal lake is a game changing experience as it allows you to catch a different perspective of the lake which you cannot view from the shore. After getting a hang of how to paddle board, you will be able to enjoy the stunning views that surround the lake including the famous city of Tagaytay which sits on a small mountain. Other highlights include views of Taal Volcano on Volcano Island, the surrounding mountainous landscapes as well as the cute little houses that make up Wawa.
Bohol is known for its beaches in Panglao as well as the Chocolate Hills but perhaps the most majestic experience can be had in the river town of Loboc. Many people skip Loboc but with the option of paddle boarding now available, it is quickly becoming recognized as one of the more beautiful spots on Bohol.
Situated in the town of Loboc lies the Loay River where all the paddle boarding takes place. The water here is extremely calm which makes it much easier and accessible for all paddle boarders, especially beginners. The river is wide enough for you to avoid the handful of rowing boats and floating restaurants you may come across.
Loay River is a fantastic spot to paddle board as
it is a treasure trove of natural attractions including waterfalls, exotic wildlife, plants and mangroves.
If paddle boarding for hours on end is too much, don’t worry as there are several tour packages available.