Cebu is one of the provinces in the Philippines I have always been looking forward to going. One, because almost all of my friends have been there and I haven’t and two, I want to see the whale sharks.
If ever you are traveling to Cebu and decided to focus on the southern part of the province, you can check out some of the tourist destinations below.
How to get to Soutern Cebu?
From Mactan International Airport, ride a cab and tell the driver to drop you off at South Cebu Bus Terminal then take a bus going to Bato via Liloan (if you are going to oslob or somewhere in South East Cebu) or Bato via Barili (if you are going to Moalboal or South West Cebu). Tell the driver where to drop you off. Travel time to Boljoon is 3 hours.
How to go around South Cebu?
There’s just one main road in South Cebu so getting around will not be that complicated. Go to this main road, wait for the bus and there you go. From the main road, your options to get to the tourist spots are either tricycle or habal-habal.
However, note that attractions in Southern Cebu can be a bit far from each other. Our original plan is to tour Southern Cebu entirely, Moalboal to Samboan to Dalaguete. Moalboal to Samboan will probably take 2 hours bus ride. Samboan to Dalaguete will also take 2 hours. We ended up just seeing the South East part of Cebu because we decided to visit Siquijor as well.
Where to stay?
We booked a place we found in Airbnb – Jaynet OceanView Resort. The resort is at Boljoon (located in between Oslob and Dalaguete).
The view is really nice and less people are there. It is just at the side of the main road so no problem in waiting for the bus. The staffs are nice too. Room rates are affordable and we didn’t expect that breakfast is included on the rate.
However, it takes some travel time to get to attractions which are mostly in Oslob. Probably 30 to 1 hour travel time to reach Oslob.
Here are the places we visited in Southern Cebu.
From the main road, you can get to Tumalog Falls by riding a habal – habal that will take you to the jump-off point. You can ask your driver to wait for you, an hour or so maybe good enough. From the jump-off point, walk down this very steep road that will directly lead you to Tumalog Falls. The walk will probably take you 10-15 minutes.
I am adding this market because they have the most delicious chorizo I’ve ever tasted, seriously!
Oslob Heritage | Cuartel
After checking the Oslob Market, you can ask a tricycle to go to the Cuartel. This is located in the same spot as the Parish Church of Immaculate Conception. We were told that it was built for the Spanish troops that were assigned in Oslob.
Swimming With the Whale Sharks
You have to get here early as the activity will end at 12 noon. To get here, you can take a bus that will take you to Oslob and just tell the driver to drop you off at the whale shark watching area. For us, we rented a tricycle a day before to pick us up and to take us to Oslob.
We paid Php500.00 each to swim with the whale sharks, this includes life vest and snorkeling gear. Before heading to the boat, make sure to listen to their instructions of what to do and what’s not to do once you’re in the water with the whales.
They can be intimidating at first, specially when you see them heading to your direction for the first time. I kind of panicked but they are really friendly and I think are really used to people getting around them. They just swim in circles following the boatman that feeds them.
Sumilon Island Beach Resort
After your whale shark encounter, you can ask the locals where you can ride a boat that will take you to Sumilon Island. There are boats beside the whale watching area that can take you to Sumilon Island.
We paid Php 1,500.00 for the entire boat (orange boats) that will take us to Sumilon. Actually, Sumilan Island is a private resort, if you have the budget you can stay in their resort. Or if you have the time, you can take their day tour package which costs Php 1,500 per person. Or if you have less budget or time, you can just rent a boat that will take you to the sandbar, this means that you are not allowed to go inside the resort.
Osmena Peak, Little Baguio of Cebu
This is located in Dalaguete. From Oslob, riding the bus will probably take you an hour and a half to reach Dalaguete. Afterwards, you will ride a habal-habal to take you at the jump-off point.The habal-habal ride will probably take 40 minutes. You can ask your driver to wait for you. The trek will take about 30 minutes.
This is called ‘Little Baguio’ for a purpose as it is cold up there but since there’s trekking you won’t feel too cold.
The site reminds me of chocolate hills, a-bit-merged hills.Too bad it is cloudy when we reached the top but nonetheless, it is still great to see this spot in Cebu.
All that places can actually be visited in a day! Here is a One Day Itinerary for Southern Cebu.
|TIME||Per Person||Group Price||Description|
|6:00 – 6:30||Travel from hotel to Whale Shark|
|7:00 – 8:00||500.00||Whale Shark Watching
Fee Matrix:For locals/Filipino:
Entrance fee – 100.00 / head
Watch the whale shark – 300.00 / head
Swim with the whale shark – 500.00 / head
Dive with the whale shark – 600.00 / head
|8:00-8:30||Buy Food for brunch, go to the boat to Sumilon (right beside the whale shark watching area)|
|8:30 – 9:00||Boat to Sumilon island (about 15 mins only)|
|9:00 – 11:00||1500.00||Sumilon island day tour (1,500) OR just rent a boat (around 1,500 per boat) that will take you to the sandbar (cannot enter the resort).
Entrance Fee is 50.00. Take lunch in Sumilon
|11:00 -11:30||Ride a tricycle/bus or already rent a habal habal to Tumalog Falls|
|11:30 – 12:00||120.00||Habal-habal to Tumalog falls from the main road (20 to 30 mins)|
|1:00 – 2:30||Head back home (in Dalaguete) for a quick change|
|2:30 – 3:30||100.00||Bus ride to Dalaguete|
|3:30 – 4:30||100.00||Habal habal to start off point of Osmena Peak|
|4:30 – 5:00||Trek to Peak|
|5:00 – 5:30||Osmena Peak|
|5:30 – 6:00||Back to base|
|6:00 – 7:00||100.00||Habal habal back to Dalaguete|
|7:00 – 8:00||100.00||Bus back to Airbnb|
One more enchanted island close to Southern Cebu is Siquijor, check my blog for our itinerary – Itinerary for a Day in Siquijor, Philippines