The best activities in Cebu are directly related to the stunning natural surroundings of this south-central province of the Philippines. Cebu and many of the 167 other islands it comprises have become a prime holiday destination in the island country. To keep the herds of visitors who come to Cebu, Mactan, Malapascua busy - not to mention the other islands of the archipelago - is the main task of sports and activities.
From underwater exploration to jungle hiking, and from dolphin and whale watching to sky diving, a wide range of exciting leisure and sporting activities are at hand in Cebu. Check out our listing of Cebu’s most popular activities below.
Snorkelling is one of the most popular activities to do in Cebu, as this activity is, most of the time, not too demanding as an investment: basic equipment is available for rent or for sale at many beaches, and you can even snorkel directly from most beaches around Cebu. The best snorkelling spots on Cebu Island are located near Moalboal and Oslob, the two favourite destinations in the south of the island. Malapascua and Bantayan Islands, located a short distance from Cebu to the north, are also known as great snorkelling spots.
Scuba diving is another sought-after activity in and around Cebu. The snorkelling destinations mentioned above - Moalboal, Oslob, Malapascua, and Bantayan - are also famous in the scuba diving community. Located just south of Cebu Island to which it is connected by two bridges, Mactan Island is also a renowned scuba diving destination. You’ll find here a good choice of PADI dive centres which will take you to famed dive sites such as Marine Station Sanctuary, Shangri-La Marine Sanctuary, Tambuli Reef and Airplane Wreck, and many more.
Dolphin and whale watching are very popular attractions in Cebu. Located on the southwestern coast of Cebu Island, Oslob is the prime destination to go whale shark watching, while Moalboal – on the southeast coast of Cebu Island, is famous for its dolphin watching day trips. The Cebu Strait between Cebu and Bohol Islands is home to plenty of large pelagic species. Even though this activity may appear controversial to some, tour companies now try to implement strict rules regarding the behaviour of visitors and the level of interaction they have with the animals. In the end, the choice is yours whether or not to join a dolphin- or whale-watching tour.
If you want to experience extreme sensations and challenge your fear of the heights, then head to Crown Regency Hotel and Towers in the centre of Cebu City. The Tower One of this four-star hotel houses a great choice of fun and thrilling activities. From the translucent Sky Walk platform that goes around the building 126 metres above the ground to the Edge Coaster, a two-seater platform on rail that can be inclined by 55 degrees, 130 metres above the ground, there’s a good deal of emotions to be felt here. If you’re looking for a quieter activity, the Melvin’s Reef Black Light Mini Golf will surely please you and family.
- Opening Hours: From 09:00-18:00
- Location: Tower 1 at Crown Regency Hotel and Towers on Osmena Boulevard in Cebu City
- Tel: +63 32 418 8888
To the north and south of Metro Cebu, Cebu Island features mountainous areas covered with thick tropical rainforest. These areas host over 90 waterfalls that give wannabe explorers the opportunity to trek in wild areas in a way to find these splendid cascades. Exciting and sometimes challenging, a hike to find Tumalog Falls near Oslob, Kawasan Falls near Moalboal, Aguinid Falls near Samboan, and other cascades, is a great activity. It is recommended to hire a guide though, to ensure that you’ll come back safe from this exhilarating experience.
Wakeboarding, as well as a bunch of exciting activities such as horse riding, canoeing, fishing and many more, can be enjoyed at Papa Kit’s Marina Resort on Silot Bay, a large lagoon situated at the northern tip of Metro Cebu. These activities are at hand even if you do not stay in the resort, and just want to spend the day having fun with family and friends in a beautiful natural environment.
- Opening Hours: From 09:00-18:00
- Location: Papa Kits, Silot Bay, Liloan, to the north of Metro Cebu
- Tel: +63 998 544 9209
Rock climbing is a still new activity in Cebu at the time of writing. The island is made of different geological formations including limestone plateaus which offer great rock climbing playgrounds. The best area of Cebu Island to engage in rock climbing is Cantabaco, in Toledo City. Located in the central area of the island, just south of Biga Pit, you’ll find here tall limestone cliffs that just wait to be climbed up. Despite the scarce development of this area, you’ll find here a small community of climbers that will take you to the most beautiful crags at hand around. If you want to climb in Cantabaco, the person to contact is Enie Yonson, a local guide and climber. See his phone number below.
- Location: Cantabaco, Toledo City
- Tel: + 63 948 712 4875
This activity named potholing, which means cave exploration, is also directly related to the geologic formations of Cebu Island mentioned above in the Rock Climbing paragraph. Limestone is a rock formation soluble to water which dig in it like a hot knife in butter (more slowly though); it creates large caves through the centuries. From Guadalupe Cave in Cebu City, to Balay Sa Agta in Argao, to Lagtang Cave in Talisay, and many others, you can find exciting cave exploration opportunities all around Cebu province.
Canyoning is an exhilarating activity that has become very popular in Cebu, thanks to this region’s geological nature, juxtaposing limestone plateaus and rugged mountains. Canyoning is a rather demanding activity that blends climbing, walking, swimming, scrambling. The most famous canyoning site in the province is at Kawasan Falls on Bantayan Island. Cebu Island also houses a good choice of mountainous rivers and cascades offering a wild playground for canyoning; the best areas to enjoy this activity are around Moalboal, at Montaneza and Tison Falls. Professional tour guides are at hand to make you discover this thrilling activity.
Get ready for an experience you’ll remember for a lifetime! Run by Brad Vancina, a certified USPA Tandem, AFF instructor and Safety and Training Advisor, Skydive Cebu Adventures offers you to jump in tandem from a plane above the turquoise waters that surround Bantayan Island, an island lying 20 km east of Cebu Island’s northern tip. The experience is astonishing and will surely give you the taste to go for a second dive. If you become a passionate, Skydive Cebu Adventures also has courses for you to learn to skydive solo.
- Location: Santa Fe Airport in Badian Island
- Tel: +63 923 875 1689