Guide to the 5 best Waterfalls of Cebu
Heyo it’s Léah! And in this article, let’s chase some waterfalls in Cebu, Philippines!
Cebu is one of the most popular islands in the Philippines. It has a vast array of activities like hikes (Osmena Peak), free-diving with sardines (Moalboal), swimming with Whale Sharks (Oslob) and island hopping. However, the island of Cebu is waterfall heaven.
There are over 100 waterfalls on the island of Cebu. So here’s a list of my favorite waterfalls on Cebu! It will be progressively updated as I visit more. I didn’t list them chronologically but really from my favorites to my least favorites ones.
TRAVEL TIP – SOLO TRAVELLER I mostly visited the waterfalls.. ALONE. And all the photos I am sharing are mine. So how did I take them? Well whenever you visit a waterfall, a local guide or “kuya” accompanies you and makes sure that you are safe, and shares some little stories. And thhey’ll kindly become your personal photographer! I was lucky to be alone during all my visits to take as many photos as I wanted haha of course, don’t forget to TIP them 😉
1. Dao Falls & Trek
To get to the epic Dao Waterfalls, you’ll have to go on a 30 minute trek that will amaze you and leave an unforgettable souvenir in your mind. And this adventure starts by crossing this astounding bridge!
During your trek, you’ll walk across vibrant green forest, wallow into deep blue waters in the middle of canyon walls, and hear nothing but the sound of nature.
For the non-hikers, don’t worry the trek to Dao Falls itself isn’t hard but it does require you to walk through the water and navigate your way around stones and rocks. You can even jump and swim in the clear blue waters in the It is a moderate journey with incredible scenery, which is far away from the crowds at Kawasan Falls.
At the end of the trek, there is a staircase that gives you a glimpse of the epic finale: the Dao Falls! I loved the view from there and actually had fun taking some cool shots and feeling adventurous being in the middle of the jungle.
Here it is! The outstanding Dao Falls that looks like a rainbow falling down on a wide wall of canyon boulders. Dao Waterfall is about 40-50m high and pours down into a large pool. You can swim safely in the pool and near the falls when the flow isn’t too crazy but of course be careful depending on the conditions. The water is naturally cold but very refreshing especially after the hike. Just take some breath to admire the impressive view.
My trek to Dao Falls was my favorite one as I explored the unique beauty of Cebu’s nature far from tourists and definitely felt in osmosis with nature.
2. Cambais Falls
First time I explored the Cambais Falls, it was all spontaneous. On our way back from Osmena Peak, my friend LostJuan and I stopped at the entrance of the Cambais falls.
I’m happy we did because it was such an amazing discovery.
Cambais Falls is an amazing waterhole in the hills of Alegria, Cebu. From Moalboal, it takes less than an hour drive to n get there. And there are several amazing waterfalls right next to it to make an epic waterfall adventure day!
As all many unique and authentic places on Earth, you’ll have to make a little effort to get there. You’ll start with a 15-20 minute super easy hiking to discover this first scenery!
Best part is… it doesn’t end there! Cambais has 3 distinct levels and different cliff jumping levels and great spots for swimming. For safety reasons, I wasn’t able to take any photos but LostJuan took some cool video shots! So here’s how it goes…
Do you see the water slide on the right side? Well it is the “door” to enter the next levels of the waterfalls . You’ll have to use a rope that is set up to help you climb and explore the Cambais Falls right behind the big stone green leaves…!
PS: Make sure to have tight waterproof slippers or be barefoot as it can be very slippery
I never felt so adventurous! We had to climb, jump, navigate through the waters to finally end on an hidden waterfalls on a huge stone! We jumped and enjoyed it to the fullest until we realise that there was no-one and the sun was falling down.. so we quickly came back and luckily we got to the scooter before the sunset goes down haha so here is my advice, don’t do like us, go there before 3PM with a local guide!
3. Inambakan Falls
Inambakan Falls is known for having a beautiful 100-ft waterfall that pours into a wide pool of blue water. Once there, you’ll witness an amazing scene in the middle of a lush jungle greenery. And I was lucky enough to explore it at the end of the day and see the sunset above the trees.
Inambakan Falls is a solid four-hour journey from Cebu City. But when I visited, I was based in Fantasy Lodge at Samboan which is 20 minutes away by motorbike or tricycle.
As I went there at the end of the day, I was pretty exhausted and the sun was going down.. Thus, I was just able to enjoy the first scenery on the huge stone and take my “Tarzan & Jane” kind of photo!
Because it was late and sun goes down in the Philippines early around 5pm, I wasn’t able to explore all the levels of the Inambakan Falls. But after some research I read that there are five levels at Inambakan, and it takes a full-day adventure there!
According to “Journeyera”, “The third level was such an incredible spot. A crystal clear pool, deep enough for cliff jumping, sits in front of a backdrop of idyllic palm trees. It is a slice of paradise right in the middle of the jungle.”
I would definitely go back there and take time to explore all the corners of the Inambakan Falls! What about you?!
4. Aguinid Falls
The Aguinid waterfalls is one of the most popular ones in Cebu but still hasn’t surpassed the popularity of the Kawasan Falls. The Aguinid trek is very fun, easy and perfect if you are looking for a big adventure and yet avoid too many tourists.
Aguinid Falls is split up into multiple levels. Before, it used to have eight levels. However, since there were a few accidents and fatalities on the higher levels, you must be accompanied by a local guide and you will only reach level five. Don’t worry this is more than enough adventure!
Let the adventure begins! Here is level 1 to 2!
The whole attraction is going up and up the different levels. You’ll have to navigate on the big boulders, use a strong rope (don’t be surprise by the odor haha) to get to the next level. Don’t worry the cliff isn’t vertical it is 45degrees and you can go up safely.
Always be careful as some parts or slippery, but the Kuya is always there to guide you.
Level by level, you can enjoy the views, jump off the cliff and swim! And finally you’ll reach to the final epic 5th level where the waterfalls pours down a rounded big stone. You can go explore inside the cave and jump in the private pool and refresh up! One of the coolest waterfalls if you are looking for a big adventure!
5. Kawasan falls Canyoneering
The most popular waterfalls of Cebu are the Kawasan Falls! And what makes it popular is that there are 14 levels to explore and that you can do “Canyoneering”, the most popular tourist activities on the island.
Thousands of tourists participate in the adventure every day.
They usually want to experience the canyoneering! A full tour is worth $20-30 but my friends and I went to a half tour – only the first 7 levels and that was way enough!
It can be very tiring to get up on all the levels and you may feel like it’s the biggest adventure you can do on Cebu but it’s not. Indeed, trekking to Dao Falls or Cambais Falls even feels more adventurous because you will be the only ones there. However, I do encourage you to do the canyoneering at Kawasan Falls!
TIPS: To enjoy the whole scenery, go to the Kawasan Falls at the earliest at 6AM (opening time) to avoid the wave of tourists.
The canyoneering starts in the jungle where you’ll first meet many food vendors selling local fruits, delicacies (chocolate donut, corn etc) and canyoneering tours services. Once you pick one, you will wear a helmet and a life vest. For aesthetic reasons, I removed them for the photos haha
You’ll be accompanied by a guide who you will go up the different levels with you and you’ll have fun scaling up the cliffs, jumping into the water and begin floating down the canyon.
PS: Too scared to jump off a cliff? Jumping from a cliff can be more impressive than you think… and things can get quickly scary … But here’s a tip! Take a deep breath and when you jump, make sure to stay straight! If not, you’ll end like me : on your BUTT! And you’ll get a huge bruise haha Now if you don’t feel like it, don’t force yourself and just watch the people instead. It can be very entertaining 😉
My favorite part was the rope swinging and the natural slides haha after my first incident, I kept it safe and I just enjoyed watching people. The canyoneering ends with the highest jump cliff is 20ft – the tradition is to jumped off of it . I didn’t but my friends Mark & Joseph did! BRAVO! It was definilety a fun experience!
But again, don’t be surprise to meet a lot of tourists because everyone wants to experience a full big adventure of chasing waterfalls in Cebu 🙂
Hope you enjoyed the little guide!
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