Chasing waterfalls in Cebu

12:50 PM

Cebu Island
Cebu not only as the queen city of the south but also a home for turquoise waterfalls and beautiful white sand beaches. Traveling the island will leave you in awe of nature's magnificence and its crystal clear blue waters. In this article, I will unveil to you the best waterfalls in the island which is only 30-60 minutes apart, you can even visit in a day's time! I will also share to you our itinerary for chasing waterfalls and how we did it in a budget of 2,500 PHP (1 PHP : 45 USD).
First stop; initial cost of transportation. Coming from our hometown, Bacolod City in Negros Island, we decided to do a land trip via Dumaguete City to cross Cebu. This normally takes time but it is friendlier to the pocket. Bacolod to Dumaguete Ceres Bus fare is only 377 Php (One way) and will take you about 6 hours to travel. Along the way, tell the conductor that you will alight at Sibulan Port where you can take a fast craft which will bring you to Liloan, Cebu Island. The boat fare is only 45 Php per person and will take about 30 minutes to cross.
On the other hand, if you're coming from manila, Airfare to Cebu will depend on the Airline of your choice. Then, just go to Cebu South Bus Terminal to ride a bus heading towards Oslob which cost about 150 Php and will take you almost 3 hours to travel.

Here are the list of falls that we are going to visit:
  1. Tumalog Falls, Oslob
  2. Aguinid Falls, Samboan - Personal Favorite!
  3. Hidden Falls, Samboan
  4. Dau Falls, Samboan
  5. Kawasan Falls, Badian - Personal Favorite!
Upon arrival at Oslob look for a habal-habal (motorbike) or tricycle and hire them for the day. We're a group of 9 and we manage to contract 2 tricycles (5:4) for the day at 2,700 Php, that leaves us 300 Php per person for the two tricycles. Very cheap already, considering they will have to wait for you and secure your belongings while you're having fun with the falls. Again, the motto for this trip is the more the merrier and cheaper!

Tumalog Falls

One of the tallest cascades in the area is the magnificent Tumalog Falls. Although the water is not deep enough for you to jump in, I really enjoyed relaxing and floating along its turquoise waters while indulging my eyes with the scenic cascade.
If you hired a tricycle like us, most likely you will have to ride again a habal-habal from the highway up to Tumalog falls. This is because the road to Tumalog is too high or steep for them to drive. The fare for the Habal-Habal is 120 Php per person (Highway to Tumalog, vice versa). Entrance fee at Tumalog is only 20 Php per person and here you wouldn't need to take a guide. From the entrance, you just have to follow the road all the way down to the waterfalls for about 1 km.
We stayed there for an hour and half then we head back to our chartered tricycle waiting for us along the highway. It was almost noon that time so we went to one of the beach resorts in Oslob for our lunch. There are many beach resorts in the area which caters Whale watching, another famous attraction in Oslob but you have to go there early dawn to witness them.
After our delightful lunch with an awesome view of the blue sea, we head our way to Samboan, Cebu to continue our Chasing Waterfalls Adventure!

Aguinid Falls

The second falls that we went to and my personal favorite is the Aguinid Falls located at Samboan, Cebu Island. Approximately 20 minutes from Tumalog falls, Aguinid is an intrepid destination for those who wants adrenaline and rock climbing adventure.
Aguinid Consist of 5 waterfall levels and you will have to climb the cascades in order for you to get to the next level, so expect to be wet all the way. Secure your belongings with a waterproof bag or better leave them with the tricycle drivers, just bring your valuables with you in a plastic or waterproof case.
Entrance fee for Aguinid is 20 Php per person and you will have to take a local tour guide for your own safety. Local tour guide fee is more of a donation, no fixed amount, just whatever your goodwill can give to your guide.

Hidden Falls

Our third stop, Hidden falls at Samboan, Cebu Island. It will take you a few minutes of trekking to get to the falls. You'll passed by a field of coconut trees and on the first level you'll find a swing that will bring out the child in you.
Entrance here is another 20 Php and a tip for the local tour guide. If you're fond of jumping off the waterfalls, here's a destination for you where the water is deep enough for you to jump from a much higher ground.

Dau Falls

The final waterfall we visited for the day is Dau Falls. Still in Samboan and about 10 minutes away from the Hidden falls.
Dau Falls is another magnificent sight! Here you'll be passing by a beautiful mountain scenery, overlooking the beach, and cross a hanging bridge made out of bamboo. 
You'll also get to pass by the canyons and trek along its edge. At this point, we are already tired but we pushed ourselves to finish the trail and was relieved after seeing the beautiful falls. We got our energy back as soon as we dipped into its ice cold water!
Entrance fee for Dau falls is also 20 Php and consider a tip for a local tour guide. With regards to the duration of the trek, it took us about 30 minutes to get to the falls.
After Dau Falls we asked our tricycle drivers to look for or call on a Ceres Bus on our way back to the town proper of Samboan, so we could proceed to Kawasan Falls where we will stay for the night. We payed for the both of them 2,700 Php right after, as agreed.

Bus fare to Kawasan Falls, Badian is 60 Php per person and will take about an hour to travel. Upon arrival, we stayed again at Matutinao Beach resort to rest for the night. 
(Read more: Planning to do Canyoneering at Kawasan? Click here!)

Kawasan Falls

Majestic as ever, Kawasan falls never failed to amaze everyone who visits!
The leverage of Kawasan is convenience; it is more developed compared to other nearby falls. Accommodations are easy to find, there are even affordable accommodations beside the Main falls. Affordable restaurants can also be found in each waterfall levels.
Entrance at Kawasan is also 20 Php and if you're not going to do canyoneering you don't really need to take a local tour guide.
Other Attractions aside from canyoneering is the bamboo raft riding. Here, you'll pass by the falls and get a water massage! Awkwardly painful, like ticklish but so fun!
The bamboo raft rental is 300 Php. Beware of their offers tho, so that you'll won't be surprise like we did when they billed us after the ride. They usually offer the price of the rental for the bamboo raft only; without disclosing that you'll have to pay for the driver as well for another 300 Php. Just to be clear, we don't really mind giving it to the driver and we considered it as a tip because we had so much fun! But, I personally think it would be better and fair if they explained it to us in the first place rather than telling us after the ride, like the total cost is 600 (300 for the raft and 300 for the driver).

To sum it all, you can use the following itinerary as reference:
Chasing Waterfalls | 9 Pax 
Time Description Php/Person
Day 1
1:00 AM ETD: Bacolod to Dumaguete (Ceres Bus)            377.00
7:00 AM ETA: Sibulan Port, Dumaguete
Breakfast nearby Sibulan Port              50.00
8:00 AM ETD: Sibulan Port to Liloan Port, Cebu              62.00
8:30 AM ETA: Liloan, Cebu
Contract an Habal-Habal or Tricycle
9:00 AM ETA: Tumalog Falls
Habal-Habal (Highway to Tumalog, if you hired a tricycle)              60.00
Resort Entrance              20.00
10:30 AM Habal-Habal (Tumalog to Highway, if you hired a tricycle)              60.00
11:00 AM Lunch: Nearby beach resorts in Oslob            150.00
12:30 PM ETD: Oslob to Samboan
1:00 PM ETA: Aguinid Falls
Entrance              20.00
Tip for the guide (Subjective)
2:30 PM ETD: Aguinid Falls to Hidden Falls
3:00 PM ETA: Hidden Falls
Entrance              20.00
Tip for the guide (Subjective)
4:00 PM ETD: Hidden Falls to Dau Falls
4:15 PM ETA: Dau Falls
Entrance              20.00
Tip for the guide (Subjective)
5:30 PM ETD: Dau Falls to Kawasan
Tricycle Day Tour (2,700 / 9)            300.00
7:00 PM ETA: Matutinao Beach Resort, Kawasan
Ceres Bus (Samboan to Kawasan)              60.00
8:00 PM Dinner: Matutinao Beach Resort            100.00
9:00 PM Rest | End of Day 1
Day 2
6:00 AM Wake-up Call
*If you intend to do canyoneering, best time to start the activity is 7am, Budget 1,500 (Lunch Included)
Breakfast: Matutinao Beach Resort              70.00
8:00 AM Kawasan Falls
Entrance              20.00
*If you want to ride the bamboo raft, budget 600 Php
11:00 AM Lunch: Kawasan Falls            150.00
1:00 PM ETD: Kawasan to Samboan (Ceres Bus)              60.00
Room Accomodation (2,000 - 2,500 Php / Room)            400.00
2:30 PM ETA: Ceres Terminal, Samboan
Ceres Terminal to Liloan Port              25.00
3:00 PM ETA: Liloan Port
ETD: Lilon to Sibulan Port (Ferry is scheduled every hour)              62.00
4:00 PM ETA: Sibulan Port
Sibulan Port to Dumaguete Ceres Bus Terminal              20.00
4:30 PM ETD: Dumaguete to Bacolod City            377.00
End of Day 2
2 Day Budget for chasing waterfalls        2,483.00
Note: The Itinerary presented is made on a 9 pax group tour basis. Costs may vary due to the number of persons there are in your group. Provide allowances for personal needs, Tour guide tips, personal preferences, and souvenirs.

Happy Travels!
@doctoban |

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