Cebu island was long overlooked by tourists, due to the popularity of its neighbor islands of Palawan and Coron.
But Cebu is a rising contender since it has not only beautiful beaches but also amazing waterfalls with breathtaking blue color rivers.
One of the most famous waterfalls is the renowned Kawasan, the Philippines iconic waterfall, which is also famous for Canyoning. You can check a guide to Canyoning in this post. Other gems are one of the most famous places for snorkeling in the Philippines, where you get to see tropical fish, corals and the famous sardine tornado directly by snorkeling at the beach in front of Moalboal. The sardine tornado is formed since there are millions of sardines that
4 days 3 nights itinerary Cebu
Here's what we would recommend as the perfect itinerary for 4 days 3 nights in Cebu island.
Day 1: Arrival in Cebu city
There is not much to see in Cebu city and since the nature of Cebu island is one of the best things to explore, the best is to go south to enjoy that part of the island.
Arriving in the morning in Cebu city is the best, since you have enough time to go south to Moalboal. Arrive in Cebu city by airplane (from other islands, such as Busuanga or El Nido) or by ferry (from Bohol, or Siquijor) and go directly to Moalboal. One option is to take a taxi for 3000 PHP to go directly to Moalboal but a much budget-friendly option is to take a taxi to the South station of Cebu city for 400 PHP and from there take a bus with air-conditioning for just 160 PHP per person. The bus takes just 2h30 with a small stop about 1h away from Moalboal to go to the toilet or buy some snacks.
You will probably arrive by the evening and you can relax at the hotel and maybe go for dinner. We tried the Filipino Hungry Monkeys restaurant in Moalboal and it was delicious. Especially the sizzling dish!
Day 2: The Underwater World
The second day you can head to the beach to snorkel. If you don't have the gear you can just rent it for 150 PHP. The hotels and local people will try to convince you to get a guide as well for the snorkeling but if you can swim and snorkel it's actually very straightforwards since you only have to swim for about 20m to go to the reef where all the live is. You can see turtles, the famous sardine tornado as well as many other tropical fish.
If you're in the mood for more adventure you can also go to one of the waterfalls that is close to Moalboal, which is the Cambais Falls. You can get there by tricycle or by renting a motorbike for 300 PHP per day from the hotel or from a motorbike rental place.
Day 3: Swim and jump in the famous Kawasan falls
These waterfalls are the real highlight of Cebu and one of the best places to see in the Philippines. The blue water is similar to the beautiful rivers in the alps in Europe or in New Zealand.
There are many waterfalls to explore in Kawasan. If you go directly to see the waterfalls, most people stay in the southern most waterfalls close to the entrance but the waterfalls in the north are breathtaking and there are even some stalactites in the river combined with the waterfalls. We've never seen stalactites in such a blue river before! Maybe it used to be a cave a long time ago.
The best way to enjoy the waterfalls is in our opinion to do one of the canyoning tours since you go 3 to 4 km along the river, enjoying each of the waterfalls from north to south while also having the amazing adrenaline of canyoning itself. We have done a dedicated post for that.
But we leave you with a video of the adventure here
Day 4: Even more blue falls
For a thrilling day, venture to Tumalog Falls, a beautiful blue color waterfall tucked away from Moalboal.
You can base yourself in Samboan or Santander, conveniently closer to these breathtaking falls. A 1.5-hour taxi or tricycle ride brings you to the falls' vicinity.
Tumalog Falls is also a top Cebu attraction, providing a picturesque scene. A massive cliff frames the cascading water, forming a shallow pool with vivid blue water. The falls are surrounded by a jungle and bamboo trees.
While popular among tourists, especially those combining it with a whale shark trip to Oslob, we suggest an early visit to beat the crowds. We would not recommend doing the whale shark trip if you care about animals since they are kept and fed there so that the tourists can visit them and even touch them from what we have heard. Apparently it's very massified and the whale sharks are not taken care of so well and kept there in a non-natural habitat.
Although the water is too shallow for extended swimming, spending over an hour marveling at Tumalog's beauty is well worth it. Plan your trip wisely to fully appreciate this spectacular location.
To reach Tumalog Falls, drive by motorbike from Samboan (21km, 30 minutes) or Santander (11km, 18 minutes). Alternatively, take a bus and hire a motorcycle driver for the last 3km at 50 pesos ($1 USD). Embrace the adventure and soak in the magic of Tumalog Falls!
Discover the hidden gem of Cebu Island, a destination once overshadowed by the fame of Palawan and Coron. Boasting not only pristine beaches but also waterfalls with blue rivers, Cebu has become a rising competitor in the Philippines. The iconic Kawasan Falls, renowned for its canyoning opportunities, is just one highlight. Snorkel with sardines and tropical fish in Moalboal, explore Cambais Falls, and immerse yourself in the vibrant underwater world.
The perfect 4-day itinerary recommends venturing to Tumalog Falls, a gem near Moalboal, surrounded by jungle and bamboo. While popular, an early visit is recommended to savor the beauty of Tumalog Falls without the crowds. Whether you're seeking adventure, underwater wonders, or breathtaking waterfalls, Cebu promises a memorable escape.
We hope you liked this post. We have one week left in the Philippines ^^