A toe of land with a striking volcanic topography and some little-known beaches, lakes, hot springs and waterfalls, Sorsogon province lies south of Albay and is the easternmost part of mainland Bicol. The province is best known to tourists for the chance to snorkel with whale sharks off the coast near Donsol, but it’s also a great area for activities such as hiking and caving. Sorsogon City makes a good base for exploring the area’s many lovely beaches – the nicest stretch of sand being Rizal Beach, in the barrio of Gubat to the east of Sorsogon City. There are many pristine coves to explore along the coast around Bacon while south of Sorsogon City, Mount Bulusan is a climbable, active volcano.

Driving through Sorsogon province you will pass many stalls selling items made from the fibre of abacá, the fibre of a species of banana tree and one of the major products of the province. Sometimes known as Manila hemp, although it also grows in Malaysia and Indonesia, it is processed to make everything from banknotes to teabags.

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