Cebu is like the Visayas’ Manila – the crowd, advancements and the traffic. The main difference, I would say, is the dialect. Personally, communication had been the greatest difficulty we faced on this trip ’cause I look like a local but I don’t speak the dialect. Whenever I ask for directions or something (in Tagalog), they’d always answer me in Bisaya. You could somehow understand them through context clues but it still requires some getting used to ’cause they talk quite fast.
Our flight was in the evening via Cebu Pacific. Luckily, it wasn’t delayed. Booking a Grab upon arrival wasn’t much that of a hassle ’cause we actually got one quickly. We stayed at Zen rooms hotel which is about 40 minutes away from the airport. Given the time, traffic isn’t so bad as it’s pretty late already. I got our room at a cheap price and the place was above my expectations – larger bed, clean and spacious room, working heater, etc. On top of that, I would say the location is good since it’s very near public transportation.
We checked out the following morning early to get to the South Bus Terminal. Our main destination for this trip: Moalboal. As soon as we finished having breakfast (at Jollibee), we headed out immediately to the bus station. Different bus companies are there and you can ask around on to which route you should ride on. We got on a bus headed to Bato via Barili which cost PHP 140 to Moalboal. The whole trip took 3 hours so as soon as we arrived we just headed straight t o our hotel to check in and just call it a day.
Our first full day is jam-packed. We negotiated with the tricycle driver that transported us to our hotel the night before to be our “service” for today. First stop was Badian for canyoneering.
Badian is roughly 30 minutes away from Moalboal. As soon as we got there, we were asked to register and pay the fees – PHP 1600 for the canyoneering and PHP 100 for shoe rental. We were wearing slippers back then and we didn’t know that it wasn’t allowed so we had to rent shoes. After that, we got into a habal-habal that dropped us off to the starting point of the activity.
It started with 30 minutes of trekking then a series of adrenaline pumping activities. First was a relatively short cliff jump followed by sliding though boulders, climbing here and there, and more jumping and sliding. I couldn’t really remember the sequence and stuff but you could expect A LOT. The water is turquoise and is very clear and cold. View around you is majestic enough you wouldn’t mind doing heart-pumping activities.
In the middle of the trail, there’s a short stop where you can buy food. Grilled BBQ, hotdog, rice, chips, water, etc. Of course, it’s a bit pricey compared to when you buy it in the city and not in the mountain area. So, for us who weren’t able to eat breakfast before doing all these stunts, the vendors here are our life savers.
It was mostly trekking after that short break. But this time, there are cliff jump points of different heights that you could try. I didn’t do any ’cause I’m not much of a jumper but I’m pretty sure it’s quite an experience. Each point you can see a part of the popular Kawasan falls. I was surprised that there are resorts in this area so it was really crowded. But hey, the view really catches anyone’s eye.
We finished it in 4 hours. Then off for lunch just at Gaisano in Moalboal then off to our next activity: island hopping.
What I like about this is that you get to talk with the municipal officers for this so there are no contractors here and there. For only PHP 2200 (for 2pax) we went into Pescador island, turtle watching and witnessed the sardine run.
The ride was bumpy and waves were literally crashing into our faces. Nevertheless, it was all worth it. Too bad we didn’t have any underwater camera but these places are a must-see when you come to Moalboal. (Make sure to have your GoPro!)
Since we pretty much didn’t take much photos and just swam around snorkeling, we were able to get back sooner where our ride was already waiting for us onto our last stop: Busay cave. It’s not really a very popular tourist attraction so when we got there, we literally had the whole cave to ourselves. Just paid fees – PHP 12.50 for entrance fee, PHP 25 for flashlight rental and PHP 150 for the tour guide.
The cave itself is small and the whole splelunking can be done in only 15 minutes. There’s not much obstacles except at the entrance of the cave where you can either swim through it (easy option) or go though the tiny hole at the side of it (hard option). We did both – went inside through the hole and swam to go out. We actually took our time swimming since we’re the only ones there aside from the locals looking after the cave.
It was a long tiring day so we just head to our hotel after and ate dinner at the restaurant (only restaurant) near our place. This is pretty much all there is to it in Moalboal. I’ll tell you more about our Cebu city tour on my next post. :)