One of my bucketlist includes the Canyoneering activity in Kawasan Falls, Cebu. I have heard so much about it from my friends about how they really enjoyed the activity and it is actually the best thing to do in Cebu if you’re really into adventures.
I just passed my board exam and wanted to go home to Masbate (I am based in Manila), so I checked the Manila- Masbate flights and it was really expensive (around P5,000.00). Next thing I did was to check the Manila-Cebu flights since Cebu is just a P600.00 boat ride away from Masbate and has cheaper air fares. Perhaps, its been a while since I visited the Queen City of the South and checking a bucketlist wouldnt be bad. And there, I was lucky to book a P1500.00 Manila-Cebu flight the next week.
So a week prior to my trip, I asked my Cebu-based friends to go with me in the canyoneering activity since it would be really boring if I just do it alone, Unfortunately, no one wass available in my chosen date. I contacted my brother who was in Leyte that time for a project, whom I know also likes adventures. I told him about my plan and he willingly agreed to go with me.
I then fixed our itinerary which is below:
Aug.5, 2017 (Saturday) —————— Arrival in Mactan, Airport at 9 in the evening
Hotel Check-in (Cebu City)
Aug.6, 2017 (Sunday)——————— Catch the 4am first bus trip going to badian
5pm- back in cebu city, Dinner @ SM
Aug.7, 2017 (Monday)——————– Hotel Check-out 12:00PM
Baggage Check-in at SM Traveller’s Lounge
Local City Tour
7PM – Cebu- Masbate Boat
It was just a quick lay-over trip so I had to maximize my time there.
I arrived in Cebu at around 10 in the evening with my brother waiting for me in the airport. We stayed at Tropical Hostel which a booked using agoda. It is located in the city and just a few kilometers away from the airport. I only paid around 200 using grab. It is also just a walking distance from SM. I only booked for a night but changed it into 2 nights when we arrived. Using the agoda app, the airconditioned twin bedroom we took costs P600.00 which originally costs P1000 because they have this promo. So technically, since I only booked for a night, the second night was not an agoda app booking so I was supposed to pay the second night without the promo but the receptionist/ cashier reconsidered it and charged me for only P1200.
I recommend the place if you only need a place to sleep or rest because their price is really affordable. Plus they have a really strong wifi signal internet connection. However, it is not for you if you’re meticulous because the bathrooms are communal (men are separated with women), the rooms are small, we were only given 1 pillow and blanket for 2 people and no towels, toothbrush, shampoo or soap given.
Although their bathrooms are communal, they are well maintained and their toilets have bidet. Yay.
Kawasan Falls Canyoneering Trip
We had a very early call time the next day for our Canyoneering trip because we needed to catch the earliest bus going to Badian, Cebu which is 4am and the last trip is 6pm. We took a cab going to the South Bus Terminal from our hotel and costed us only for P80.00 and it took only a few minutes. There is a Ceres Bus going to Badian every 30 minutes so even though we were an hour behind our supposed schedule, we were still able to ride the bus immediately after being dropped by the cab. We left at around 5 in the morning. We took the air- conditioned bus and we paid P150 each. Just tell the kunduktor that you’re going to the canyoneering activity and they already know where they’d drop you.
It is important that you take the Ceres Bus bound for Bato via Barili. Do not take the bus Bato via Oslob as this will not pass by Badian.
It was a smooth 3-hour ride. We arrived at around 8-9 in the morning. Prior to our trip, I already made arrangements for our tour which I only found on the internet. (I recommend him!!! 09261120868) I called her when we arrived and had us fetched by a motorcycle on where the bus dropped us off (a church).
We didn’t eat breakfast before leaving for Kawasan and told our tour guide so he brought us first to a karinderya/ eatery beside the church to eat. The activity was really extreme that you shouldn’t do it with an empty stomach.
After having our breakfast, we humped at the back of a motorcyle with our tour guide as the driver and went to the house of our tour admin to set-up our canyoneering gear (I suggest for you to wear comfortable clothing). So we put on our helmets and life vests. My brother did not bother bringing trekking shoes and luckily, our tour admin offers free rent of trekking shoes. We left our bags with our spare clothing in their house and brought with us a waterproofing bag for our phones, cash and cards. (You can bring cash because they have food stops along the canyoneering activity). This is the part where you’ll give the payment to the tourist admin. Even there were only the two of us, we were still charged P1500.00 only each contrary to the minimum number of persons I’ve read somewhere. It is the standard payment for all the tourist guide services in the area.
The fee is fine considering that it already includes the rental for helmet, life vest and shoes, a tour guide, a bottle of water which will be given in the beginning of the hike, a buffet lunch and entrance fees to all the falls.
We then proceeded going to the starting point. It was a 15-30mins ride. The road was really rough so you should really tighten your grip in the motorcycle.
Upon arrival, everyone is required to sign in a registration form together with your tourist guide.
After the registration, we then started walking under the extreme heat of the sum for 40 minutes to reach the first line of the falls/ rivers part.
See pictures below.
We started at around 9 am and finished at 2pm. I could honestly say that so far, its the most exciting thing I’ve ever done and I would recommend it to everyone out there who’s seeking for some extreme adventure.
- There will be cliffs that you will be required to jump to the water so you should be ready and prepared for those.
- The first cliff jump is around 4-5 meters. Good start to prep you up.
- Your camera should be water proof. I brought a gopro5 and my full charged battery lasted for the entire canyoneering activity. However, having a spare battery is always better.
- Let your tour guide handle your camera. Trust me, they know where to find the right angles and picture perfect views. They also know how to use your camera (I was surprised in this part) so let them carry it. Its gonna be extra hard to trek and swim with your other hand carrying a camera.
- To maximize the entire experience, I and my brother would always stop and take a moment to appreciate the beauty of the place. We also tried all the cliff jumps (even the 45ft ht). It would be better to try everything if you are anyhow capable.
- Even if you’re a super good swimmer, you are still required to wear the life vest every time within the entire activity. (except for the rope jumping).
- ALWAYS FOLLOW YOUR TOUR GUIDE’S INSTRUCTIONS. Please. They know better.
- You should be physically and mentally healthy for you to do the canyoneering activity. Theres too much action that some people are just not capable of doing.
Watch this video to know the entirety of the package:
My brother already left Cebu right after our Canyoneering trip so I was left alone on my second night. Upon checking out at lunchtime, I walked going to SM from the hotel and deposited my backpack in their Traveler’s Lounge and dine at the food court. Since I was alone, I chose to wear conservative clothing ( pants and shirt) unlike what I wear if I have a companion (I’d probably wear shorts because twas really hot). Whenever I am alone in my travels, I always make sure to wear conservative clothing for my security. By doing so, I believe that it would minimize the interest of people in me. But there still, there was this creepy late 40s man I met in the Traveler’s Lounge which I believe is a local who wants to accompany me that day and serve as my tour guide when he found out that I was alone. I just brushed him off because he’s getting really touchy and I just pretended to call my friend using bisaya dialect as if I am meeting someone. So beware girls. Especially if you’re traveling alone, always tell your family or someone about your whereabouts and plans.
Going back, after eating lunch, I went to the port to buy a ticket for my Cebu-Manila boat ride later that day at 7pm. I just asked the guards in the SM for the commute routes to save money instead of hailing a cab. I also had my phone’s gps turned on to know my location. After buying my ticket, I then rode a jeepney going to Sto Niño Church, a famous church in Cebu. Again, ask the guards for directions. They are the most reliable and effective persons to talk to.
At the back of Sto Nino Church is the famous Magellan’s Cross.
And a few blocks away from Sto Nino Church is the Cebu Cathedral.
I just took my time appreciating everything I’ve seen in the area. See pics below:
I finished my local tour at around 4 in the afternoon and I took a jeepney again back to the SM to claim my backpack at their Traveler’s Lounge for only P50.00. I then went to the foodcourt to have my dinner and rode a jeepney going to the port to catch my 7pm boat ride afterwards.
My quick Cebu lay-over trip was overall great. The Canyoneering Activity is something that I would never forget and will forever cherish.
Disclaimer: I don’t proofread cos I write spontaneously hence you might encounter some typographical and grammatical errors. My apologies 🙂