Cebu is a great stop to either begin or end your tor of the Philippines, especially if you’d like to avoid two trips to Manila. This is thanks to the affordability of Cebu Pacific Airlines out of Mactan Cebu International Airport, so if you want to make things easy on yourself then try to plan to either leave or arrive here. Cebu is the most densely populated island in the Philippines and if you like diving then this is a great place to come.
The oldest city in the country can seem a bit like Manila as it has a colorful culture beneath a rough exterior that is often overlooked by travelers passing through. If you take the time to explore however, you can find a hearty nightlife here as well as a revealing collection of museums if you are interested in the cultural side of the city.
Everybody likes waterfalls, but most people really LOVE them if you have the perfect blue water. As with most things that are beautiful, the Kawasan Falls have become more and more popular leading to more people visiting them. When you decide to go, be aware that it is quite the walk unless you rent a motorbike. When you’re walking to the falls, it helps to have good shoes since it can be quite muddy and slippery. You’ve got the opportunity to rent a raft as well which can be an enjoyable experience. There are three different pools and the lowest ones are definitely the most crowdy. If you like your privacy, we advise you to head up to the highest pool either really early or by the end of the day as most people have left. Although it can be busy and you need to be aware of tourist traps, you are swimming in an amazing aquamarine pool. And next to that, the fresh and forceful water on your back can definitely give you that deep tissue massage you desperately needed!
Connected to Cebu City by two bridges, this busy island is home to the Mactan Cebu International Airport as well as some excellent diving on the southeastern coast and beautiful island hopping in nearby Bohol. For those staying over between flights, there is a lot of high end accommodation here that is certainly not cheap but is very convenient.
This small village in the southwest of Cebu is a great spot for divers. Just to the west of Moalboal proper is Panagsama Beach, the main attraction for visitors, and really the only reason to come here is for the excellent diving that this area provides. It suits a range of travelers and has options from luxurious resorts to modest backpacker hangouts, and it is a good place to use as a base as you explore the wider area.
If you’re looking for something quieter, then White Beach is a less developed and relaxing option that is only 20 minutes by trike from Panagsama. Unlike Panagsama, White Beach is a local tourist spot and less well known among travelers, so it gets crowded at weekends and is usually pretty empty during the week.
If you want to dive with sharks, Thresher sharks to be exact, then Malapascua is the place to do it. A small island ranking among Cebu’s top attractions for its diving, Malapascua has a charming atmosphere and beautiful setting, although it has been growing in popularity over the years and as such is more crowded than it used to be. Still, if you are a thrill-seeker who can’t miss the opportunity to dive with sharks then this is one of the best places to do it.
If you’re looking for picturesque beaches and an array of dive sites, then Cebu surely won’t disappoint. In addition to the pretty scenery here and island life there is also great connectivity in and out of Cebu City via its airport. In that sense it makes a sensible addition to your itinerary if you are travelling around the country and world class idyllic destinations like Malapascua make it easy to stay here for a while.