Siquijor The Island of Fire

Siquijor is a small island located to the south of Cebu. It is an enchanting little island province full of beautiful beaches, waterfalls and caves. The island is also popularly associated with mystic traditions, magic and sorcery that have become the reasons why tourists are both attracted and repelled to go there.

In 1565, just forty-four years after Magellan landed on Cebu, the Spaniards started to notice the island of Siquijor and called it Isla del Fuego which literally translates to “Island of Fire”. The reason why the Spanish colonists called it so was because every time they pass by the island they would often see an eerie glow emitting from the shores. Later it was revealed the glow came from a great swarm of fireflies that lived in the numerous molave trees in Siquijor.



The images above were taken in Hambilica, Siquijor as found on their website.

When the Spaniards finally had the courage to explore the island, they found it was ruled by a king named Kihod. When the Spaniards asked the king for the name of the island they were on, the king replied with “si Kihod” (I am Kihod). Oblivious to the confusion, the Spaniards started calling the island Siquijor since then.