A Simple Travel Guide to Leyte: What You Need to Know Before Your Trip

Cuatro Islas and Kalanggaman — both of these booming tourist spots are in the Province of . If you are planning a trip to see these beautiful beaches, then you have to read this travel guide. While there are many summer destinations in , there’s more to it than just its pristine waters and white sands.

is one of the six provinces of Eastern Visayas Region. It is important to note that The island of has been divided into three provinces: Biliran, Southern and . This travel guide will cover (Northern) .

Also read: Escape the Crowd: These 10 Beaches in Eastern Visayas are Totally Unspoilt

Some Things You Need to Keep in Mind

  1. The provincial capital is City.
  2. The local dialect in is Waray-waray.
  3. is one of the most disaster-prone provinces in the Philippines.
  4. It has been more than two years since Super Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) and most areas in have recovered.

How to Get There

Image credit: Camera and Cheese


The best way to go to is by air. The main jump-off point is the airport in San Jose, City. The airport operates everyday and holds three different airline companies — Cebu Pacific, Philippine Airlines and AirAsia. The flights are mostly going to either Manila or Cebu. Travel time usually takes about an hour to and from Manila and roughly 45 minutes to and from Cebu.


Correct me if I’m wrong, but as of now, the best seaport in is the one in Ormoc City. Most of the people coming from other parts of the country especially from Cebu by boat would dock in Ormoc, which is one of the cities in .


is actually a big island. While it is possible to go there by car, you will have to cross the sea if you are coming in from other islands in the Philippines.

How to Get Around

Image credit: Iloilo Wanderer

The main mode of transportation from town to town is by van or bus. Most of the fares of transportation companies are the same due to competition. Within the municipalities or cities, you can find jeepneys, multicabs, tricycles and habal-habals. Please note that apart from the non-metered taxis servicing the airport in City, there are no other taxi cabs in . The cost per ride will depend on which town you are and how far your destination is. Commonly, especially in more urban areas, the minimum fare is PHP 8.00 for up to five kilometres. Students, persons with disabilities and senior citizens have discounts.

Things to See and Do



City is the capital of the province. It is usually where people head to if they visit . In one day, here are the places you’d want to visit in the city.

Image credit: Camera and Cheese

Completed in 1973, has been an iconic tourist destination especially for first-time visitors. The stretch of over two kilometres is what connects the islands of Samar and .

Image credit: Camera and Cheese

When Super Typhoon Haiyan a.k.a. Yolanda hit , many ships from the port got swept to mainland. One of these ships, or rather a part of it, remained and was turned into a memorial marker.

Image credit: JinJian

The Capitol is one of the oldest buildings in . Fun fact: it once served as the seat of the Philippine Commonwealth Government under President Sergio Osmeña, Sr.

Image credit: JinJian

This classic mansion is one of the 29 rest houses built by President Ferdinand Marcos. It was seized by the government after the People Power Revolution. Although it is slowly deteriorating, I think there’s so much culture and history that you can learn inside.

Lake Danao , Ormoc

Image credit: Brenda Bonjoc

When visiting Alto Peak, guides usually include Lake Danao National Park as part of the itinerary. It is about 700 metres above sea level and almost similar to Tagaytay so the air is cooler. You can take as many photos as you want and even enjoy a short boat ride. Lake Danao is also the jump off point to Alto Peak.

Alto Peak, Ormoc

The peak is the highest in Eastern Visayas. If you wish to hike, it is best to go with a local guide. Just a friendly warning, there have been clashing incidents in the mountains so before you go, ask for advice from the Department of Tourism in Ormoc.

Also read: 12 Best Hiking Getaways in the Philippines

MacArthur Landing Memorial Park

Image credit: Camera and Cheese

MacArthur Park, as it is locally called, is an iconic monument of General Douglas MacArthur. It is the exact spot when he promised and said “I shall return” at the Red Beach. On weekends, locals like to go there to enjoy picnics. I also remember flying kites when I was younger.


The Municipality of Tanauan boasts its high waves ideal for skimboarding. Called the Skimboarding Capital of the Philippines, Tanauan hosts the annual Skimboarding Competition.



Proclaimed as a national park in 1937, Mahagnao Volcano boasts its variety of floras and faunas, hot springs, lagoons and of course the beautiful view. Don’t worry, it is now a dormant volcano.

Image credit: Camera and Cheese

Now we’re talking beaches! One of the recently booming tourist destinations in is Cuatro Islas. You can choose among four beautiful islands and set up camp. Most people stay overnight at Digyo island as it is the only one with facilities. If you’re feeling more adventurous, you can also explore the rest of the beaches.

Image credit: Camera and Cheese

And of course, the ever popular Kalanggaman Island should never be missed if you’re coming to . In fact, this summer, people visit only to go to Kalanggaman. Enjoy the pristine white sand, rich blue waters and awesome stars at night.

Also read: Kalanggaman Island Travel Guide: All You Need to Know Before Your Trip

Where and What to Eat

Rafael’s Farm, Babatngon

Image credit: Vicente Dy

About an hour away from City is a private landscape with a restaurant. They serve mostly Filipino food and they are all yummy! You also have to try their juices. The best part, for me, is the landscape. If you’re looking for a place to escape to from , or a spot for a romantic dinner date, eat at Rafael’s.


Image credit: dbgg1979

Tanauan’s lechon, according to many, is the most delicious in . Many locals order their lechons in Tanauan. However, if you are in , you can also choose from multiple vendors in Sagkahan. One kilogram only costs PHP 400.


Image credit: Judgefloro

Binagol is a Visayan sticky cake made up mainly of talyan root, coconut milk, condensed milk and sugar and steamed in an empty coconut shell or bagol, hence its name. If you’re looking for a really sweet snack or pasalubong, you can buy binagol practically in almost any municipality in . I suggest, if you’re flying out from the airport, that you buy a box of binagol at Salazar Street, where delicacy shops are aplenty.

Also read: The Ultimate Filipino Traveller’s Bucket List: 101 Challenges You Need to Complete

While there are still so many places that you can explore in , these are some of the best that I know of. I’m sure you will not be disappointed.

Brand Managers!

Want to see your brand or business in this story?

Talk to us now

Subscribe our Newsletter

Get our weekly tips and travel news!

Recommended Articles