Mindanao Island – Philippines
Situated in the Southern Philippines, the Mindanao group of islands has beautifully sandy beaches and crystal clear waters, ideal for exploring and snorkelling. The second largest in the Philippines, it’s known as the Land of Promise, since it’s also known as the ‘breadbasket’ of the Philippines due to its large agriculture based export industry. Mother Nature truly did create a paradise island with plentiful supplies.
But what makes these islands appear on our deadly beaches list isn’t to do with Mother Nature, it’s a man made problem – terrorism. In recent years, the main city of Mindanao, Marawi, became overrun by fighters from Isis as tension grew between the government and pro Islamic State militant groups. Fighters declared a caliphate leading to these idyllic beaches becoming the scene of a bloody, five month long battle between the caliphate and the army.
Since the siege ended, groups of fighters have been forming again on the island, and there have been kidnappings and executions of foreign holidaymakers. The advice from the Foreign Office (FCO) is that on the whole, travel to the Philippines is safe, but to avoid travelling to Mindanao.