cebu travel guide itinerary

South Cebu and Cebu City Travel Guide & Itinerary

I’ve already been to Cebu for our educational trip in 2013 and it got me the impression of “it’s just like Manila” with the traffic and crime rate. So it’s really not on my top list to go. But when Oslob and Badian are making names in tourism department nowadays, I got attracted once again. Queen B flew to the Queen City of the South for 4D/3N!

Cebu airport

Cebu airport

The downside of sale tickets is the time of flight. We arrived at 12 midnight in Cebu!

PLANE TICKETS

I got our plane tickets in Cebu Pacific 7 months (November 2015) before the flight (June 2016) for only 1,050 pesos round trip. It’s already a good buy but I’m pretty sure you can return tickets lower than mine. Cebu is always on P200 sale on Air Asia so keep an eye on that.

Sale tickets are only limited to less than 10 seats per flight so big groups are hard to book, plus some are real whiners and can’t decide instantly. So my tip is used the 24 hours reservation of your chosen airline company. With that way, you’ve reserved the tickets already while your group talked about it. If some of your friends back out, you can let your seat reservations be open to sale again after but be sure to monitor when it pops again on the website. The downside of this is that you need to pay cash.

Cebu mybus

A cheap way from Mactan Airport to the city.

TRANSPORTATION

Mactan Internation Airport TO Cebu City:

via MyBus shuttle service (25 pesos) Yes, it is way, way cheaper than any taxi ride! The bus trip starts at 7:00 AM until 9 PM and the endpoint will be at SM Cebu City. Guides and other routes for this myBus can be seen here. The buses are big and just like the ones abroad and very cheap. Very good Cebu, very good!
via taxi (approx. 300-400 pesos) We arrived after midnight so we have no choice but to take the taxi to South Bus Terminal. But don’t worry, Cebuanos are kind and charming people. They won’t scam you but still, make sure that you’re paying via its meter. Also, they strictly implement overloading so one taxi can only accommodate 4 people.

AROUND CEBU CITY:

via taxi: Of course, this is the most convenient way for your DIY Cebu City tour but it is also the expensive one. One taxi driver offered us a trip to Tops or Temple of Leah for 1,000 pesos!

via numbered jeepneys: Cebu jeepneys are more organized than the one here in Manila. A respective number (and letter) has a corresponding route. This is cheaper than taxis but it’s inconvenient and time-consuming to look for the right jeepney to ride. You can check this out if you plan to do this.

via rented car: This is our travel hack to our Cebu City tour. It is convenient, fast and the most comfortable as well. We rented a Wigo for P2,000/24 hours in Safe Ride Car Rental. We were 5 in the group so I end up spending only P400 pesos with my Cebu City itinerary that includes Tops, Temple of Leah and Taoist Temple.

CEBU CITY TO NORTH/SOUTH CEBU:

Going north: If you want to go island hopping in Bantayan and Malapascua Island, you have to go to Cebu North Bus Terminal near the SM Hypermarket/ SM Cebu City. I think you can walk from SM Cebu City.
Going south: But if you prefer to swim with the whale sharks and some canyoneering extreme adventure, then go to Cebu South Bus Terminal which is near Tamboan Market.

Cebu inns

The tourist inn we checked in after our exhausting day in Badian

ACCOMMODATION

I’m that kind of traveler who doesn’t spend too much on accommodation (except when I decided to have an R&R) since I’m out exploring most of the time. I just need a place with a clean sheet and pillow to sleep on after a tiring day. I advise you to book 2 weeks or more before your travel dates to avail the cheaper but good rooms. You can book with Travelbook.ph. They have a lot of cheaper hotels here. (*whispering* cheaper than Agoda’s) You can go check out their Cebu hotels. They have some from Oslob too.

Here is the list of the budget rooms we stayed on our trip:

Costabella Oslob – P1750/ night
Ging Ging Tourist Inn Badian – P1900/night
Beverly Hotel Boutique – P2800/night

Cebu inns

Here’s Paul so relaxed with our super-budget room in Badian.

4 DAYS ITINERARY

Whenever I travel, I’m very hands-on on itineraries that it can be my professional job already. You can click the places and read my detailed blog post about it. [Prices are in Philippines pesos]

Cebu 2016

Day 1
Read my OSLOB & SUMILON stories

1:30 AM – Arrival to Cebu/ taxi to terminal – P350 (P65/each)
2:00 AM – South Bus Terminal – P165
5:30 AM – Witness sunrise in Oslob
7:00 AM – Check-in backpackers style & SLEEP!! – P1750 (P350/each)
11:00 AM- Oslob Town Proper/ Lunch / Grocery – P230 (soshal lunch)
3:00 PM – Sumilon Sandbar  – P1500 for the boat (P300/each) + P20 environment fee
5:30 PM – Last boat ride from Sumilon 
7:00 PM – Dinner near the Oslob whale shark (grilled tuna and pusit)  – P750 (P150./each)
TOTAL: P1,280

**If you’re not tired from the travel south, you can go to Tumalog and Aguinid Falls after check-in. We got to talk to a local (contact no. 09495499623) that he can give it for P300/pax/ RT for the two falls. Also, if you are availing the Bluewater Sumilon Day Tour, skip the Oslob town proper and go there directly to enjoy your P1,500.  

cebuday2

Day 2
Read how my CANYONEERING BADIAN experience

6:00 AM – Oslob Whale shark Watching  – P500
8:30 AM – Check out / Breakfast  – P130
9:30 AM – Commute to Badian – P140
12:00 NN – Canyoneering with Highlands PH!!! – P1,300
5:00 PM-  Kawasan falls
7:00 PM – Checked-in in Badian –  P1,900 (P380/each)
TOTAL: P2,450

** I advised you to check-in in Carcar city instead of Badian so you’ll be just one bus away to Dalaguete early morning and can go to Osmena Peak then Simala church. I also heard Dalaguete has nice beach resorts.                                          Cebu 2016

Day 3
Read what you can see in SIMALA CHURCH & LA VIE PARISIENNE

10:00 AM – Checkout (too tired from Canyoneering)
10:15 AM- Bus to Carcar City – P65  
12:30 AM – Lechon lunch at Carcar City –  P650/kilo (P130/each)
2:00 PM – Simala church in Siboanga – P200/trike/RT (P40/each)
3:30 PM – Bus to Cebu city – P70
6:00 PM-  Check in Hotel Beverly Boutique – P2,800 (P550/each)
8:00 PM – La Vie Parisienne – P150 
10:00 PM – Mango Square (KTV night) – P350
TOTAL: P1,355

**Bus to Cebu City from Simala church is hell so better go to the city before the rush hour of 4 PM. Also, our hotel is a jeepney away from Mango Square, cheap and clean too.

Cebu 2016

Day 4
Read how we managed to do a 1 day Cebu CITY TOUR

10:00 AM – Safe Ride Car Rental near SM Cebu City – P2000 for automatic Wigo + P500 gas (P500/each)
11:00 AM- Magellan’s Cross, Sto Nino church  & Plaza Independencia
12:00 NN- Tamboan Market  – P350 for pasalubongs
1:00 PM – Checkout
1:30 PM – Lunch at Casa Verde main branch – P180  
3:00 PM -Taoist Temple
4:00 PM-  Temple of Leah – P50
5:00 PM – Tops  – P100
7:00 PM – Lantaw Floating Restaurant in Mactan – P200  
1:30 AM- Bye Cebu
TOTAL: P1,380

GRAND TOTAL: P6465 + P1000 airfare = approx. P7,500

This is my first trip without my parents and first with Paul as well so I’m very much on budget. I spent almost P7,500 all in on this trip and that is not bad at all with all the places and activities. I’m still in post-travel blues and already, I can’t wait to go back for some Mactan beach resort adventure or island hopping in Northern Cebu. See, I really did fall in love.

I have detailed blog posts of all the places we’ve been. You can check it out on my Cebu tag. (or just click here) If you have questions and inquiries about Cebu (or even not), go comment down below and I’ll gladly answer. 🙂

Related Posts

96 Comments. Leave new

I am dying to go to Cebu. Huhuhu.. This is a nice post. 🙂

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I love that I came across this post when my friends and I are talking about buying tickets to Cebu! I’ll bookmark this to come back to in the future. Mehee.

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This got me excited to go to Cebu! We’re gonna celebrate the father’s day – weekend there 🙂

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Handy guide! We’re going to Cebu in July, this is just right in time!

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    Can’t wait for you to experience Cebu and your blog after. Hihi. You can also check my upcoming detailed posts about each places. 🙂

    Reply

You can always come back, Bea!

– Seyra x
http://www.pavementsarerunways.com/

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Wow, you got really lucky on your plane ticket. 🙂 When I went to Cebu few months back I think our sale ticket cost us around 1700. So great catch for that! And another wow cos your itinerary is so detailed. Hahaha!

Last travel in Cebu is also a first time for me to go with just friends and w/out the parents. Hahaha! I do have an entry about that actually. 🙂 I hope you could read it too, para relate talaga tayo together. joke! I hope I could visit Oslob too, sa Bantayan kasi kami nagpunta. Anyway, nice entry you got here. 🙂

xoxo, rej | reeejoyce.com

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    Hello new blogger friend!! I’ll read yours kasi I want to go back for Bantayan naman. Your plane ticket is good na rin! ❤

    Reply

[…] If you’re going anytime soon to Cebu, you can go book affordable hotels with Travelbook.ph! You can also check out my Cebu travel guide and itinerary. […]

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Hi! Just wanna ask what are the names and rates of the hotels you checked in? Will surely appreciate your response. Thank you!

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Hey, cool itinerary you have here… I am planning to have this as our itinerary as well when me and my friends visit Cebu soon next month Feb on a 4D3N trip. I just want to ask if the hotels you’ve stayed, you booked it early online or they all accept walk-in like a transient stay?

Thanks ?

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    Hi Vence!

    It’s all walk in but the one in Oslob, I called her a day before swinerte lang na may room. Its better to book a room in Oslob weeks before your tour kasi like our landlady said peak season whole year sa oslob.

    Reply

Hello! Isn’t it hard to do the city tour via rented car? Baka nakakaligaw yung way or mahirap mag park? But this is really a good option at mura. 🙂 hope you could share your experience.

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    Hello Ruth!

    On our experience, hindi naman. We used Waze at di naman kami naligaw. About the parking, all the places we’ve been too have free parking so okay naman kami. Yung mahirap lang is yung sa Sto. Nino Church kasi wala talagang parking near it. Siniwerte lang kami sa Mcdonalds na katapat nun. 🙂 I’ve blog about it. You can read it here -> wwww.beadeegee.com/1-day-diy-cebu-city-tour

    Reply

Hi po! Where did u stay in Badian po? 🙂 Thanks.

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Camille Cabebe
February 11, 2017 5:26 am

Do you have a contact guide in this trip?

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    Hi Camille! This whole trip is DIY backpacking style. We don’t have any guides. I’m sorry. There’s a lot of tour agency in Cebu. 🙂

    Reply

7k per head?

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Hi, do the buses from Cebu City to Oslob operate 24hours? We will be arriving at 1145 pm in Cebu and I’m planning to checkin somewhere in Oslob. Thanks in advance!

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    Hi Ajean! Yes it is but mas less ang biyahe sa madaling araw so there will be a chance that you’ll wait for 30 minutes – 1 hour. We arrived at 1am sa Cebu and swerte kami na paalis na yung bus nung pagpunta namin South Bus.

    Reply

Hi, Bea! Are all of your Day 1 activities doable on a Sunday? 🙂

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    Hi Jo,

    It is! The Oslob town proper and Sumilon is open even on weekends. Also, add Tumalog Falls since it’s beautiful at this time of the year.

    Reply

Hi Bea,

can you recommend a travel / tour guide fors Oslob + canyoneering?

Thanks

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    Hi Joyce!

    I’m not really good with travel tours since I’m more of a DIY girl. You can try Highlands PH. I know they have different tour around South Cebu. 🙂

    Reply
Iris Clemente
March 25, 2017 6:58 am

Hi. Just like to ask some details coz im trying to fix our itinerary. Which is much better, going to sumilon for the island hopping or just go straight to badian for the cayoneering experience? Or we can have both for just a day?

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    Hi Iris! It depends on Sumilon sandbar’s visibility. Baka kasi in the morning di naman siya visible so sayang lang yung punta niyo dun. Most likely Canyoneering is half day lang naman so if the sandbar is visible ng morning then you can go canyoneering ng hapon or Canyoneering ng umaga then Sumilon ng hapon. 🙂

    Reply

My boyfriend and I will be spending my birthday in Cebu this year. I so envy your pictures under the water. Unfortunately, I cannot swim so we do not make itinerary that involves the sea. Our itinerary is not yet done. I am thinking of including the Temple of Leah when I saw how stunning it was on the internet. Thank you very much for the tips. It will be very useful to us.

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Nice post. Really helped me a lot. Thanks 🙂

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Hii, just wanna ask about your website. Is it via wordpress or selfmade?

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Nichole Anne
April 21, 2017 6:11 am

Scored our Cebu ticket for 5200 for 4 in Air Asia last November. Can’t wait to travel this June!! Good thing I stumbled on your blog because this is really a great help for our DIY Cebu Trip. Thank you!!

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Hello, queen B thanks for visiting CEBU.. hope you had a great time with us.! 🙂 I can’t wait to see more of your blogs here. Do you also have an instagram account? thank you!!

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Hello! How was the weather during your stay? Planning to visit Cebu this coming June. Nice blog, anyways! 🙂

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    It is sunny that time but we got a rainy day on our last day. Good thing we rented a car so it’s okay na rin. Thank you!

    Reply

Hi Bea,

We’re going there next month. Do you have a contact number of Costabella? I cannot find it via Agoda, booking.com, etc. Thanks! 🙂 Great ITI, anyway. 🙂

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Hey Mej (cool name, by the way)!

Kudos on the hard work putting up this list. It’s definitely going to help many travelers with budgeting and planning their itinerary.
My family lives in Manila and I’m based in Cebu (currently). I’m glad I can just show this post to them as a neat package of all awesome things they can do in Cebu.

Sorry, ang taas ang comment ko.hahaha. Have fun traveling and keep up the good work blogging about your trips!

Cheers!

Issa

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    Hi Issa!

    Thank you for the sweet things you’ve said. It’s always a pleasure to help fellow traveler. Is you family going to Cebu anytime soon? I hope they got sold with my blog post. hihih!

    It’s okay. I love long comments. Thank you. And God bless you too!

    Reply
Allyzon mae Sabio
May 20, 2017 12:09 am

Hi! When you rented a car for your cebu city tour did you just go straight to safe ride car rental or contact them in advance?? Thank you for your cebu blog this really helps in making our itinerary too!

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To have a 4-days travel is great. This is what we are looking with my friends. Thank you for posting.

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Hi we are planning a one day tour po below. Is it feasible? Since we are going to Tumalog falls in Oslob po then Simala. My problem is po is ang papuntang Simala Sobonga from Tumalog Falls Oslob po.

04:00 AM departure time from Hotel (Taxi php 100 to South bus terminal) Bus to Oslob Php155
07:00 AM Arrival at Oslob then commute to Tumalog falls (habal-habal 25 one way ; 50 per head roundtrip)
07:30 AM Tumalog Falls P 20 – entrance fee to waterfalls
10:00 AM Lunch
10:30 AM RT habal2x. Going to Bus: Off to Sibonga, Cebu 80.00
12:00 PM Arrival at Sibonga, Cebu / P200/trike/RT (P40/each)
12:10 PM Tricycle: Going to Our Lady of Simala 20.00
1:15 PM RT Tricycle: Going to Bus Terminal 20.00
1:30 PM Bus off to South Bus terminal Cebu city (Bus is 2hrs and 30 min) Php 70 if Van php 100
3:00 PM From SBT rent a Taxi to JY Square Mall Lahug to Busay
3:30 PM Hire a motorcycle (habal-habal) to Taoist Temple, Temple of Leah, Tops Lookout and Sirao Flower Farm/ Tieza botanical garden PHP 700- PHP 1,000
6:00 pm back to cebu
7:00 pm dinner

Thank you so much

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    Hi, Jam.

    Yung mga bus from Oslob-Cebu dadaan na yun sa Siboanga. 10AM naman kayo pabalik so okay na yun dahil di tayuan sa bus. Magpababa na lang kayo sa konduktor sa entrance kamo ng Simala Church. Then from there marami ng trike na mag aakyat sa inyo pataas sa mismong church. Yung sa amin P200/trike/RT na yun.:) Sobrang hapit ng sched niyo ah. I’m not sure if magagawa niyo ng 3 hours yung lahat ng activites mo for 3:30. Sirao is a little far sa Top & Temple of Leah pero push. Balitaan mo ko! You can email me or DM sa FB if you have questions pa.

    Reply

    Hi Jam,

    Na-push nyo ba tong itinerary na to? 🙂

    Reply

hi yung P200/trike/RT good for for persons na po yun?

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    yep. kami nga 5 kaming nagsiksikan dun. HAHAH! basta P200 yung buong trike bahala na kayo paano niyo isiksik sarili niyo. 🙂

    Reply

Did you already booked the canyoneering beforehand?

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Great article, thanks for the tips! Indeed, Philippines is a beautiful archipelago of islands of adventures and getaways. Unfortunately, there is a large number of tourist targeted scams and safety concerns over here.

Do be wary of the Ativan gang/family scam, familiar face scam, sob story scam, the bump and drop, paedophile scam, cards/poker/blackjack scam, beggars, fake goods, pickpockets, fake travel agents, bullet in bag scam, airline desk overweight luggage, immigration officer bribe, taxi spray scam and many more!

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[…] If you prefer to squeeze in more destinations in a day, you may check Aurika’s Cebu Guide or Bea’s Cebu Itinerary. You may also head on to Journey Freaks if you plan a Bohol side trip. You are […]

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Good thing I came across this. My boyfriend and I are going this monday. Sayang di kami mag canyoneering. Thanks for sharing this

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this is really informative. Thank you soooooo much.
I have a question though, do you think we can just rent a car going to the exact location of temple of Leah, Tops, Taoist Temple and Sirao Garden

More power and thanks once again

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Hi,

Where do you stay in Oslob, and Badian?

thanks!

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Hi Bea! When you get back to Cebu, try also visiting Moalboal and swim with sardines and sea turtle! If you’re lucky enough, dolphins are also there too! I suggest going to Pescador Island if you love snorkeling. I was there few months ago, you can also check it at https://asaniquen.com/things-to-do-in-moalboal-cebu-sardines-sea-turtles-dolphins-even-archery/.

I’m happy to know you had a great time in Cebu!

I really enjoy reading your adventures. I’ve never been to Luzon and I hope one day I can be able to explore northern Philippines soon.

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Hi, i would just like to seek your advise po where did you check in when you arrive in OSLOB?
We have the same detailed flight po kasi. Did the place allowed early check in? as usually 3PM ang regular time ng check in?
Thank you. Hoping for your response.

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    Hi Shiela,

    Yep pinayagan naman kami mag early check in kasi nagkataon na may nag check out ng umaga. Just talked with your landlady. If not available, diretsong whale shark na muna kayo. 😀

    Reply

This is great! Will definitely share this.

But I was wondering if you could suggest the best month to travel in cebu? where there is low tourist and the air fare is low also? thanks!

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HI!
how are u po?.. my friends and ‘i are planning to do diy cebu and sidetrip dumaguete apo island tour. manghihingi po sana kami ng advice kase never pa po kami ng diy and medyo nagaalinlangan po ako kung ano po ang magandang gawin. darating po kami ng cebu ng dec 17 mga 10am po ang landing ng plane namin from there po ng hesitateako kung mag cebucity tour po kami or diretso ng moalboal or dumaguete. and not so sure kung maabutan namin ang island tour sa moalboal.bali po 5 days and 4 nights po kami kasali dumaguete. any suggestions po sa magandang itinerary that includes, oslob whale shark,kawasan canyoneering,apos island,moalboal,chasing waterfalls.

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    Hi Irene,

    For me ah eto siguro magandang itinerary:
    Day 1: Arrival to Cebu then cebu city tour na. Mga 9PM, dun na kayo magtravel to Oslob. Mas okay to para di sayang oras.
    Day 2: Darting ka sa Oslob ng 3AM, rest then by 6AM mag whale shark kayo. After whale shark, go to the port pa Dumaguete. No idea sa ferry sched pero take note of that. Dumaguete city tour na lang din if may makikita dun.
    Day 3: Early morning Apo Island then after nun, catch the ferry to Oslob then travel to Badian.
    Day 4: Canyoneering ng umaga then travel to Moalboal after.
    Day 5: Moalboal then back to cebu city.

    Medyo hapit at mabilisan pero kaya yan! You can do DIY basta research research lang. Good luck!

    Reply

      Hi!
      I ask you last time s diy tour. I was wrong pala sa dates so dec17 dating namin ng umaga and then dec 22 (6:10) balik namin. So pwede po bang manghingi uli ng sample itinerary saka pwede po bang makahingi din ng numbers and where to stay po? ( oslob,osmena peak, canyoneering, chasing waterfall, apo island and dumaguete day tour and also pasalubong shopping) hope to hear from u soon. Thank you!

      Reply

please help me surprise may gf. 🙁 we will be in cebu on oct 22-24, 2017

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A very informative blog about city tour. If ever you want to go out of the city and experience a peaceful night under the stars, check out these four places outside Cebu City where you can have the perfect meteor shower viewing experience http://zeelifestylecebu.com/perfect-places-to-see-meteor-shower-in-cebu/

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hi ma’am bea pwede hingi ng idea kase may travel kami to cebu pwede ba na mag wahle shark watching kami after that daretso kami sa canoneering? anytime po ba magcanoneering at what time ba sila mgclose?
kase para di sayang ung day

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    Hi, yes. ganun ginawa namin eh. yung time is depende sa canyoneering agency na ibobook mo. 🙂 Pero alam ko until 2PM lang sila dahil it takes 3-4 hours dun sa activity tapos bawal gabihin.

    Reply

Hi Bea! Magkalayo ba ang Place ng shark watching and canyoneering activities?

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Wow! Great Cebu Itinerary. Thanks for this amazing travel guide.

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You just got me super excited planning my trip to Cebu! !!

Thanks for sharing!

Mick

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Hello, would like to ask. How much yung from city to simala? I mean including the tricycles if ever. First timer po. Thank you.

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    Hi, I think around 50 pesos ata yung ordinary bus one way. Siguro if Ceres wala pang 100 pesos yung per way. Yung trike nakuha namin ng P200 for 5 pax na roundtrip. 🙂

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Hi I need help. My contact ka po ba ng day tour sa sumilon island?

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Hi po.this could really help us in our DIY trip to cebu too..May i ask what camera did u use during swimming wd d whalesharks? Is it yours po or kasama sa 500 ung pgkuha ng pics? Thanks a lot..

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    Hi, sariling go pro ko yung gamit. Pero alam ko may nagpparent dun, dala ka lang ng SD card. Didn’t see how much pero yung 500 swim with whale shark lang yan. 🙂

    Reply

Hi,
I am planning to go Cebu in a month’s time with my friend. And i am intending to go swimming at Oslob with the whale sharks. Just checking, did you book the swimming with whale sharks with a tour group or would it be possible to just go to the area and make payment to swim with the sharks instead of going with a tour group?

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    Hi Hui,

    Yes, you can go straight there without a tour group. There’s a tourism office where you can pay and give you a number for your boats. That’s what we did. 🙂

    Reply

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