A Beach Lover's Guide to Island Hopping in Cebu

By Halal Trip | 04, Apr, 2016
A Beach Lover's Guide to Island Hopping in Cebu

Few people realize that the Philippines is made up of more than 7000 islands. Yes, you read that right! Within this mass of land amongst water, are different areas that are, in itself, an archipelago. Cebu comprises of over 150 islands, and is one of the most beautiful and exciting places in the Philippines. Don’t trouble yourself wondering how you’re going to cover them all though! That’s what our guide is for - to ensure you don’t miss out on the best.


Sumilon Island, Oslob


Just 15 minutes from the mainland, Sumilon Island has plenty to offer you - white sand beaches and water the colour of gems - that will take your breath away. Dive into those waters by snorkelling, and swim with whale sharks, observe the marine life that has been preserved since 1974, the first fish sanctuary in the Philippines. Whether you take a dip in the infinity pool, relax on a hammock with a book and the breeze, go kayaking in the lagoon, trek across the island to be one with nature, or climb the lighthouse to get a spectacular aerial view of Sumilon, this island gives you a well-rounded satisfying experience.


Funtastic Island (Gibitngil Island), Medellin


A little further away from the mainland is Gibitngil Island, a lush bit of land with clear aquamarine waters, also called ‘Little Pawan’, as the rock formations on the island resemble that of Pawan. Apart from natural beauty, the island boasts fun activities for thrill seekers, like cliff-to-rock ziplining - which holds you suspended above the clear blue waters making for a gorgeous view; strapped in with a life jacket, so don’t worry about falling or not being able to swim, and kayaking in the scenic surroundings. Treat yourself to a dip in the waters; and a trek through the island, taking in the plantations and buying fresh fish off fishermen you may meet. The biggest attraction Gibitngil Island has is cliff diving - a 40-foot platform labelled ‘Adventure of the Year’ in 2014 by a local show. Conquer your fear of heights by starting small, but make sure to check this off your bucket list!


Pacijan Island, Camotes Islands


This island offers more than just beaches and water sports. Lake Danao has two interior islands that can be reached by paddleboat or through a scenic lake cruise. A hiking and cycling trail covers the entire 18 kilometre perimeter of the lake. Mangodlong beach is one of the most visited beaches in the Camotes Islands, probably due to the coral islet opposite it. The Timubo Cave is great for exploring if you want a break from pristine beaches. A little bit spooky and a lot adventurous, this spelunking tour is more fun with a group, as you explore its crevices, stalactites and stalagmites, and take a dip in the dark depths of rock pools found within.


Malapascua Island


This tiny island is the perfect getaway, to relax on the beach, get a massage, or explore the marine life, as it is unspoilt by tourism. It is one of the best places for diving, which is a good thing considering the fact that you can cover the whole island in less than 2 hours. Malapascua Island is the only place in the world where you can see Thresher Sharks every day - with their long tails that are almost half their body length. It is truly a diver’s dream with giant manta rays up close, seahorses, cuttlefish and more, wrecks at various depths that allow beginner-level snorkelers to professional divers to explore them - including a couple from WWII, and spectacular night-diving that brings the sea to life while the world sleeps.


Olango Group of Islands


Olango is known for its floating restaurants, marine sanctuary, bird sanctuary, impossibly blue seas and an excellent view of the sunset. Mudflats allow for bird watching (attracting mudskippers and shells in the process), even in high tide - the bird sanctuary being created as Olango is a mandatory stopover for migratory birds on their way to Australia, including endangered ones. Even though the island may seem underdeveloped to tourists, it is all part of the charm. Flora and fauna is abundant here, around the rocky river paths and in the thick of mangroves, and the authentic natural food adds to the ambience of the islands.

Planning a trip to Philippines? We’ve got you covered with all the information you need on the tropical country here!


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