Best activities in Cebu, Philippines

Best activities in Cebu, Philippines

Cebu is one of the most popular & touristic destinations of the Philippines. Each year thousands of people come to this island in search of the beauty of natural lush scenery, stunning waterfalls, idyllic beaches and thrilling activities like swimming with whale sharks. In this guide, you will find all the best activities and everything else you need to know to enjoy your Cebu experience to the fullest!

Canyoning in Kawasan Falls

This absolutely stunning waterfall is a good enough reason to visit Cebu by itself and it is one of the most popular activities of the island. The stream cascading 15 meters down into turquoise waters of its pool is breathtaking. Set in a lush jungle, this place is the perfect spot to come and relax for a few hours.

TIP : The entrance fee is 40 pesos

We highly recommend the Kwasan Falls canyoning, as its thrilling and super fun adventure. You will hike and jump from numerous waterfalls, swim in the rivers and witness the incredible natural beauty of the canyon.

Read : Kawasan Falls Canyoning – an Afternoon Full of Adventure

Relax at Mainit Hot Springs

Set deep in the lush jungle Mainit Springs located just 25 minutes drive from town of Alegria, are the best hot springs in Cebu. Its small pools with temperatures varying from 42 to 36 degrees seem like an open jungle spa. It’s a perfect place to relax after a long day of adventures.

Whale shark in Oslob

Swimming with whale sharks in Oslob is definitely one of the most popular activities in Cebu. Those incredible marine creatures measure up to 12 meters, are the largest fish in the sea and are harmless to humans. Swimming with those giant, yet gentle animals is an unforgettable experience.

Read our guide: Swimming with Whale Sharks in Oslob to find out more.

Hike Osmena Peak

Osmena Peak is the tallest peak in Cebu and is located 23 km from Alegria town. It is a fantastic place for both a sunrise or sunset hike. There is a small registration office where you have to pay 30 pesos entrance fee. There will be a guide that can show you the way up, who you should tip at the end. You can also decide to go up by yourself. The walk itself is not hard and takes only 15 minutes. The views at the top are said to be breathtaking and we cannot wait to go back to Cebu to finally see them for ourselves.

Note : We were so excited for this hike, but we messed up ?On the day of our departure from Oslob, Hamilton dropped our wallet with all the cash in it at the reception of our hotel. We realised it after driving for already 2 hours towards the Kawasan Falls and so we had to drive back to the hotel in Oslob to pick up the wallet. Then we drove back to Kawasan Falls for the canyoning, which meant we lost 4 hours in total… so we didn’t have time for this afternoon adventure ?Little note: always check if you have everything while leaving a hotel ?

Hike and swim in Cebu’s numerous waterfalls

There are many incredibly beautiful waterfalls in Cebu:

Tumalog Falls

One of the most popular falls in Cebu. Located just a short drive away from Oslob. The wonderful waterfall has a large pool at the bottom, perfect for swimming.

Kabutongan Falls

Requires a 30 min trekking, which is great in itself as it follows the beautiful blue river until you reach the stunning waterfall.

Inambakan Falls

There are multiple pools on different levels surrounded by a lush jungle scenery. Hire a guide to take you to all 5 levels and swim in the turquoise blue waters of each pool.

Dao Waterfalls

The best part of this waterfall is the fun trek in the lush jungle and canyons. You will have to walk through the water, boulder and across a wooden bridge. All this it set in a paradisiacal jungly scenery.

Montpeller Falls

There is a big painted sign marking the entrance of the waterfall as it is not that popular. A single stream of water cascades on a giant rock below. It’s a great place to stop to refresh yourself after hike to Osmena Peak as it’s located close by.

Aguinid Falls

There are 5 levels of pools here again, each with beautiful blue waters. The Aguinid Falls trek is a great, adventurous activity, similar to Kawasan Falls canyoning. It is advised to take a guide.

What you need to know

Cebu has an international airport, therefore you can arrive here directly without stopping in Manila.

Cebu city is one of the biggest in Philippines so it experiences heavy traffic and pollution. We highly advise going there only as an arrival and/or departure point.

Traveling around Cebu by bus…

Most of the activities are located in the south and south-west part of Cebu. The only public way of transportation is the bus. Buses leave from Cebu South Bus Terminal and each of them has a board displaying the destination. There are the Ceres Buses (yellow buses) that will take you to almost anywhere on the island and you can request special stops. The ticket from Cebu to Oslob costs around 150 PHP (2,5EUR).

… or by car

We have decided to rent a car in Cebu and it was the best decision ever! We were independent, traveled as we wanted and were very comfortable. Most people advise to not drive in the Philippines, but we enjoyed it a lot and had no troubles at all.

We rented a car via a small, local company Safe Ride Car Rental and were very satisfied with our choice. The communications via email was easy, we were picked up at the Cebu airport by a driver with small Toyota, and after signing few documents and issuing the payment, were on our way. 2 days rental costed 3000 PHP (50 EUR) and there was a 8000 PHP deposit required, which we payed in cash and were given back on the day we returned the vehicle.

TIP : The international driving license is required to rent a car in the Philippines. You may want to check (or ask in advance), that your car don’t have a tainted front windshield. Our car had one and when the light dims at dawn it became extremely hard to see in front because of the lights of the car coming on the opposite side and the tainted windows. It was like driving with sun glasses at night.

If you do not wish to drive yourself, Safe Ride Car Rental rents also cars with a driver.

Where to stay

There are many choices of hotels and B&B everywhere on the island. If you are staying for few days, it’s a good idea to base yourself in Moalboal as most of the activities of Cebu island are in the area (max an hour drive). There are also beautiful hotels in Oslob and Santander. We stayed in Eden Hotel in Santander and were blown away by the stunning pool views of the sea and sunset.

Find all hotels for Oslob on

We recommend: Eden ResortRavenala Beach Bungalows (located in Moalboal)

TIP : Do not pay attention to the amount of stars hotels put next to their names in the Philippines. People seem to evaluate the properties by themselves ?

Where to go next?

From Cebu City you can take a ferry to Bohol. It takes only 2 hours and it’s a comfortable journey. The ferry departs almost every 2 hours from Pier 1, Cebu City, Cebu, Philippines and tickets costs 12 EUR.

Cebu has a well functioning airport from which you can fly to most of the Philippine islands. Get on the plane to Siargao next, to continue your 3 weeks trip in the Philippines.

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