Contributed by A Wandering Cat
Early last year, I booked a flight to Cebu on a whim. I’ve read so many wonderful posts about Cebu and Bohol; I wanted to see and experience the sights for myself. Cebu City is the capital of Cebu Province, an island in the Visayas Region of the Philippines. The island has a rich past and is home to many historical structures and landmarks, including what is known as the oldest and shortest national road in the Philippines, Colon Street. The city is reminiscent of Metro Manila, but a cleaner, less chaotic, more polite version thereof.
There is so much to see and do in Cebu City that I had a difficult time coming up with a satisfactory itinerary. I decided that I wanted to explore Cebu’s rough side, thus the decision to climb Osmeña Peak and swim in the waters of Kawasan Falls.
Below you will find the itinerary, budget, expenses, notes, and some photos of our trip.
Where: Cebu and Bohol, PHL
When: November 12-15, 2015
Length of stay: 4 days; 4 nights
05:40 – departure from Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3 in Manila
07:00 – arrival at Mactan-Cebu International Airport in Lapu-Lapu City
08:00 – arrival at Crown Regency Hotel and Towers in Cebu City
Free day in Cebu City!
23:30 – drinks at Crown Regency’s Fifties Café until midnight for birthday salubong.
07:00 – complimentary breakfast buffet at GLO Cafe & Restaurant
07:45 – arrival at Cebu City Pier 1; registration for Bohol Day Tour c/o Island Skip Trips
07:50 – visited Fort San Pedro, Plaza Independencia, Magellan’s Cross, and Basilica del Sto. Nino
08:55 – departure from Cebu City Pier 1 to Tagbilaran Wharf in Bohol via SuperCat 2GO Travel ferry
11:00 – Bohol Day Tour c/o Island Skip Trips
17:55 – departure from Tagbilaran Wharf via SuperCat 2GO Travel ferry
19:30 – arrival at Cebu City Pier 1
20:00 – arrival at Crown Regency Hotel
21:00 – complimentary dinner buffet at Sparkz Restobar
23:00 – experienced hotel’s complimentary Sky Walk Adventure
* We visited Magellan’s Cross and Basilica del Sto. Nino on a Friday, so I’m not sure if this happens everyday, but there were some women in yellow garb in the area. At the entrance of Magellan’s Cross, they asked for our name. We thought it was for registration, but then they started chanting/praying for us, after which, they gave us 10 candles each and told us they cost 100 pesos per person. Five candles were left at the foot of the cross and they told us to light the other five at Basilica del Sto. Nino.
* As of November 2015, Magellan’s Cross and Basilica del Sto. Nino are still under construction due to the damage they got when an earthquake hit the province in August 2015.
06:00 – complimentary breakfast buffet at GLO Cafe & Restaurant
11:00 – checked out of Crown Regency Hotel
12:30 – departure from South Bus Terminal to Dalaguete via Ceres Bus Liner
15:30 – arrival at Dalaguete-Mantalongon junction; bought food
16:00 – habal-habal to Osmeña Peak jump-off
17:00 – arrival at Osmeña Peak jumpoff
17:20 – arrival at Osmeña Peak
08:15 – start trek going down Osmeña Peak
08:45 – habal-habal to Kawasan Falls in Badian; bought food at Mantalongon Public Market on the way
10:15 – arrival at Kawasan Falls entrance
10:30 – arrival at Kawasan Falls
11:00 – lunch by the river/falls
12:30 – rode a raft to experience the Kawasan Waterfalls up close
13:30 – departure from Kawasan Falls
14:00 – tricycle to GT Express Terminal in Moalboal
14:30 – departure from Moalboal to Cebu City via GT Express van
17:30 – arrival at GT Express Terminal in Cebu City
18:00 – taxi to Zubuchon in Lapu-Lapu City near the airport
19:00 – dinner at Zubuchon in Lapu-Lapu City
20:00 – multicab to Mactan-Cebu International Airport
20:20 – arrival at Mactan-Cebu International Airport
12:45 – departure from Mactan-Cebu International Airport
14:30 – arrival at NAIA Terminal 3 in Manila
Plus emergency and pasalubong expenses, 10k is more than enough to visit the places in Cebu and Bohol mentioned above. Actually, this budget is a bit excessive because we wanted to try sleeping in a fancy hotel for once. So you can easily bump down your expenses a whole lot if you make different choices.
The majority of locals we met were extremely helpful and honest. We had no trouble finding our way across the province: whether in a taxi, on foot, in a tricycle, or on a habal-habal. For future reference, this is what a habal-habal (plus driver) looks like.
Our driver was so amused when we told him we had no idea what a habal-habal was, which was why we didn’t know exactly what we were looking for when we reached Dalaguete. I told him a habal-habal could be a carabao pulling a cart for all I know.
We purchased the “3-Days/2-Nights Stay for 2 Persons at Crown Regency Cebu with Breakfasts, Dinner Buffet, Sky Rides for PHP 6,999 instead of PHP 14,400” voucher from Metrodeal and I have to say, it’s definitely worth it. I’ve read some bad reviews about Cebu’s Crown Regency, but I personally have nothing to complain about. We enjoyed their amenities and freebies, and the complimentary meals were delicious!
Crown Regency Cebu © A Wandering Cat
Sky Walk Adventure © A Wandering Cat
Fifties Café © A Wandering Cat
Plaza Independencia © A Wandering Cat
Fort San Pedro © A Wandering Cat
Magellan’s Cross © A Wandering Cat
Chocolate Hills © A Wandering Cat
Tarsier Sanctuary © A Wandering Cat
Osmeña Peak © A Wandering Cat
Kawasan Falls © A Wandering Cat
Important: You might want to read the Leave No Trace Principles to familiarise yourself with the best practices of a responsible tourist.