Cabugao Islet

10 under the radar white sand beaches in the Philippines you haven’t been to

After the widely successful remote beach list I posted last year, here’s another ten that will surely whet your appetite to travel and discover more of the Philippines.

Most of these beaches haven’t been included in other beach lists that you usually find repeated again and again and I’m proud to say that I’ve personally been to all these.

Mapped beaches across the Philippines

Mapped beaches across the Philippines

These are beautiful with white sand ranging from powdery white to cream colored to a mixture of sand, pebbles and other normal sea debris.

Not all of these are readily accessible though. Case in point, Brother Island is private (but possible to visit) and located near the northern tip of Palawan Island, farther than El Nido town.

Calugusan Beach on the other hand is actually accessible but you have to shed your imagined fear of that province. While another, Marilima Beach is just a short tricycle ride from Virac. Most of these are known only by locals and are not even listed in tourism sites.

I hope you will enjoy this list. But when you decide to visit this places, let’s respect the place, let’s respect nature.

Marilima Beach

Undeveloped, unspoilt white sand beach in Barangay Marilima, Virac, Catanduanes

1 Marilima Beach (Virac, Catanduanes)

This white sand beach in Barangay Marilima in Virac, Catanduanes is just one of many white sand beaches that are so under the radar for most Philippine tourists. Only locals frequent this beach, no loud visitors, no pesky touts and most of the time, you can enjoy your own space without going elbow to elbow with other swimmers.

READ MORE: Unspoilt, undeveloped beach in Catanduanes

Aguirangan Islet

Aguirangan Islet with its beautiful white sand beach

2 Aguirangan Islet (San Jose, Camarines Sur)

Most visitors to the Caramoan Peninsular usually pass this islet before the road was completed to that municipality. It’s quite small but with a very wide expanse of creamy white sand almost covering more than 50% of its surface area. There are low growing trees behind the cottages and a short rocky shore behind.

READ MORE: A beautiful white sand islet in San Jose

Deep blue waters and blue sky frame the white sand of Cabugao Islet in Isla Gigantes

Deep blue waters and blue sky frame the white sand of Cabugao Islet in Isla Gigantes

3 Cabugao Islet (Carles, Iloilo)

Cabugao Islet is so called because it looks like a half submerged pomelo (cabugao in Ilonggo). But it’s a very stunning islet with powdery white sand against a backdrop of deep blue skies and deep blue waters. This islet is just one of five stops in the Isla Gigantes group in Carles, Iloilo and is usually toured for a day.

READ MORE: Postcard pretty beach at Isla Gigantes

Brother Island near the tip of northern Palawan in El Nido

Brother Island near the tip of northern Palawan in El Nido

4 Brother Island (El Nido, Palawan)

It’s a private paradise, remote, and far from the town of El Nido but once you’re there, wow! I can’t forget swimming at the white sand beach, exploring the mini forest, staring into the vast sea from that rocky promontory and just lying down the bamboo bed and do nothing. It was one of the best escapes I’ve had.

GETTING THERE: Brother Island is a private island and you have to book via Airbnb

The Higatangan Sandbar off Naval, Biliran

The Higatangan Sandbar off Naval, Biliran

5 Higatangan Shifting Sandbar (Naval, Biliran)

It’s one of the best sandbars I’ve been to and because it’s not that popular with tourists, you can have it all to yourself. The water is crystal clear and cool, reason to just linger and swim, especially near the tip of the sandbar. Visitors usually include this sandbar with a trip to Sambawan Island.

READ MORE: In awe of Higatangan Island’s shifting sandbar

Bitoon Beach in Anda, Bohol

Bitoon Beach in Anda, Bohol

6 Bitoon Beach (Anda, Bohol)

It was noon and the whiteness of the beach can hurt your eyes against a backdrop of aquamarine waters. It’s popular with locals with a few beach huts at the shore. The projecting land is high enough for cliff jumping while the other end has picturesque fishermen’s outrigger boats docked at the shallows.

READ MORE: A great time at Bitoon White Beach

Sumilon's sandbar is just one of three pristine and beautiful beaches around the island

Sumilon’s sandbar is just one of three pristine and beautiful beaches around the island

7 Sumilon Island (Oslob, Cebu)

This island is definitely one of the country’s best! For such a small island, it has a beautiful shifting sandbar, a rocky but interesting beach with marine life in the shallows during low tide and a pristine, white sand beach with a stunning coral garden. Hike the trails and you’ll come up to a very beautiful view of this stretch of sand that’s so dramatic and wild.

READ MORE: Stunning sandbar, pristine beach at Sumilon Island

The less visited Little Sta. Cruz Island off Zamboanga City, just near the bigger Sta. Cruz Island famous for its 'pink' sand

The less visited Little Sta. Cruz Island off Zamboanga City, just near the bigger Sta. Cruz Island famous for its ‘pink’ sand

8 Little Sta. Cruz Island (Zamboanga City)

Little Sta. Cruz Island is the other island off Zamboanga City. The other, Greater Sta. Cruz Island is the one famous for its pink sand. But for the former, it’s the spectacular serpentine sandbar that stretches for a hundred meters to see that makes this island unique in itself. Too bad, in order to visit, you need to ask permission first and swimming is not allowed as this is not for recreation purposes but for scientific study.

READ MORE: A snaking sandbar at Little Sta. Cruz Island

Tranquil Calugusan Beach in Lamitan, Basilan

Tranquil Calugusan Beach in Lamitan, Basilan

9 Calugusan Beach (Lamitan, Basilan)

It was quite and with no people around at this rather far off beach in Lamitan, Basilan. The water is pristine, cool and just picturesque, stretching more than a kilometer with a small wharf popular with teenagers for diving. Calugusan Beach’s northern section is private and gated and has the best waters.

READ MORE: Lamitan’s white beach strip in Calugusan

Kaputian’s white sand beach at the southwestern tip of Samal Island City

10 Kaputian Beach (Samal Island)

I never thought that this small bump of fine white sand with shells, small pebbles and driftwood can be so good! Popular with locals, the water is cool and refreshing especially during summer. The water is crystal clear but can go deep within a few meters.

READ MORE: This beautiful beach is just so crazily wow!

Estan Cabigas is freelance photographer, blogger and writer based in Makati City, the Philippines. A true blue Cebuano, he makes stunning images and meaningful photo stories. His work has been published in local and international publications including National Geographic Magazine, Geo (Germany), Sunday Times Magazine (London) and other publications. He is also a peripatetic traveler and has traveled to all 81 Philippines provinces. I'm open for work, collaborations and inquiries, including hotel, restaurant and site features and reviews.

27 Comments

  1. Estan Cabigas (@EstanCabigas)
    April 28, 2015 @ 19:46

    10 under the radar white sand beaches in the Philippines you haven’t been to: After the widely successful remo… http://t.co/74SQVKGNgw

  2. Estan, Ang Langyaw (@LangyawMedia)
    April 29, 2015 @ 12:32

    10 under the radar white sand beaches you haven’t been to – langyaw #beach #wanderlust http://t.co/3gWv17x3Kr http://t.co/Ir19ZH780M

  3. @riship
    April 29, 2015 @ 13:22

    10 under the radar white sand beaches in the Philippines you haven’t been to – langyaw http://t.co/ftvMaLYXmu

  4. tupe diaz
    April 29, 2015 @ 15:09

    awesome compilation! have been to some of these. and i want to experience cabugao island…

  5. Adrenaline Romance (@AdrenalnRomance)
    April 29, 2015 @ 16:56

    10 under the radar white sand #beaches in the #Philippines you haven’t been to – langyaw http://t.co/s2EawRMMNu

  6. @reinantonio
    April 29, 2015 @ 17:42

    Our beach is featured here- i remember when i was a boy i enjoyed playing and looking for turtle eggs in… http://t.co/NXB7qSokAx

  7. RJ Kulotzkie (@rjkulotzkie)
    April 29, 2015 @ 21:13

    Wanna go to the #beach but hate the crowd? Check these unspoilt white sand beaches here in the #Philippines…. http://t.co/nchIT99bbm

  8. @hunkytraveler
    April 30, 2015 @ 7:38

    I will definitely include these Philippine beaches this year or next summer season @LangyawMedia http://t.co/3V9T34IEqD

  9. Rhodora
    April 30, 2015 @ 20:29

    Nakakaloka sa gandaaaa!!!!

  10. @gettheregetlost
    May 1, 2015 @ 2:35

    White sand beaches, anyone? http://t.co/ZoNHRey060 #Philippines #islands #whitesand

  11. @ohmymarc
    May 1, 2015 @ 13:16

    In great need of a trip to the beach http://t.co/xqY1bv3eYy

  12. @brodfitz
    May 1, 2015 @ 17:06

    10 under the radar white sand beaches in the Philippines you haven’t been to – langyaw http://t.co/yYktp6J0BE

  13. Nana Ciudad
    May 19, 2015 @ 7:48

    Oohsome! And mr.Stan, the Department of Tourism should be working with you! 🙂 Excellent job!

  14. Dani
    July 27, 2015 @ 15:29

    NSFW. NSFMondays. *_*

  15. @cfdetorres
    August 1, 2015 @ 18:34

  16. @emmalindseyrose
    August 10, 2015 @ 4:47

    Yet to visit any of these beautiful beaches in The #Philippines – http://t.co/Ml556jEWwq #travel http://t.co/nI1OpcB82u

  17. @NextGlobalTours
    August 10, 2015 @ 9:56

    10 under the radar white sand beaches http://t.co/YnitHAD5yI

  18. @GIN0SKIE
    August 10, 2015 @ 11:17

    10 under the radar white sand beaches in the Philippines you haven’t been to – langyaw http://t.co/vnwHkAndYL

  19. @dagumanedwin
    August 10, 2015 @ 15:36

    10 under the radar white sand beaches in the Philippines you haven’t been to – langyaw http://t.co/Hk4J3isvE4

  20. @imedabong
    August 12, 2015 @ 15:54

    10 under the radar white sand beaches in the Philippines you haven’t been to http://t.co/dEzFEldiFN #Travel #Photography

  21. Traveler
    August 16, 2015 @ 0:12

    Been to Kaputian Beach in Samal. Mabato at madumi. Walang maintenance.

  22. @myleenkanyek
    August 16, 2015 @ 12:02

    10 under the radar white sand beaches in the Philippines you haven’t been to – langyaw http://t.co/XWNnooCIQg

  23. @RNLDChrstphr
    August 16, 2015 @ 13:06

    WOW
    10 under the radar white sand beaches in the Philippines you haven’t been to – langyaw http://t.co/AkerEdQFFk

  24. Tourism Philippines (@PhilippinesANZ)
    August 17, 2015 @ 17:34

    Love the beach but want to avoid the crowds? You’ll want to be here! http://t.co/EyYPobbbdr #visitPH2015 #travel #beach

  25. @ChampRacini
    January 10, 2016 @ 11:45

    Thank you we are no. 3 as WHITE SAND BEACH IN THE PHILIPPINES UNDER THE RADAR SURVEY. Read more here!… https://t.co/mjz8xfwzhd

  26. @RheenzEemmaan
    January 10, 2016 @ 14:41

    10 under the radar white sand beaches in the Philippines you haven’t been to – langyaw https://t.co/xZzyBd3EDa

  27. Dexter
    August 27, 2016 @ 9:05

    When it comes to beaches, Philippines has plenty of it. My dream beach destination is North Gigantes. I saw it on TV and it really is enchanting. Does it cost a lot to travel to Gigantes?

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