Located in Cebu, Moalboal has plenty to offer. Cebu is less than 4 hours away from Singapore and is ideal for a short getaway trip. The small beach town is very laid back with a thriving marine life underwater, making it a popular destination amongst divers around the world. Situated within close proximity to other well-known attractions in Cebu such as Kawasan Falls and Osmena Peak, Moalboal is the perfect destination for adventure.
Here are 7 things you can do in Moalboal for a one-of-a-kind experience.
1. Come Face to Face with an Abundance of Marine Life across 18 Dive Sites, including Massive Sardine Shoals
When it comes to underwater marine life, Moalboal overdelivers. Moalboal is best known for its sardine run, where millions of these tiny fish gather together and swim in perfect unison to form a cloud-like formation. The huge shoals of sardines are visible at the cliff drop, just metres from Panagsasma Beach, and are resident at Panagsama all year round.
Other than the sardine run, there are plenty of diving sites and marine sanctuaries with an amazing variety of marine life and pristine corals. For more experienced divers, the airplane wreck at 20 metres depth is an interesting site you might want to explore. The two-seater airplane was deliberately sunk in 1993 to act as an artificial reef and is now home to small corals and unique marine creatures. With the variety of marine life Moalboal had to offer, it is definitely one of the greatest-value dive destinations around.
During our dive trip at Moalboal, we saw large sea turtles, lobsters, nudibranchs, discoshell, ornate ghost pipefish, puffer fish, razor fish, commensal shrimps, tasselled scorpion fish, and many more! The clear and deep waters at Moalboal also makes it a diving haven for scuba divers, free divers and technical divers.
2. Conquer your Fear of Heights through Canyoning
Moalboal is situated near several waterfalls that are suitable for canyoning activities, the easiest and most popular one being Kawasan Falls, with the highest cliff jump at 12 metres. Adventure-seekers who want to challenge themselves further can opt for canyoning trips to Montaneza Falls or Tison Falls, where you get to abseil down waterfalls 25 metres high!
It is a thrilling activity from start to end, as one has to navigate cautiously between slippery rocks, make countless cliff jumps into freshwater pools, slide down rapids, while enjoying the clear blue waters and serene nature all around.
3. Hike up Osmena Peak for an Interesting View
Osmena Peak is the highest point in Cebu at 1,013 metres above sea level. At the peak, you would be greeted with a panoramic view of a surreal terrain – a green expanse of jagged, sharp protruding hills with rocky, steep ridges. It is an easy hike if you start from the entrance in Mantalongon, Dalaguete, taking you less than an hour to reach the top. If you prefer a challenge, you can start the hike from Badian. It will take you 3 to 4 hours, where you get to walk past small private farms, grazing livestock such as water buffalos and goats, and small villages. The path is a tricky one, trekking through jungle soil and steep valleys, but nothing beats the thrill at the end of a completed hike upon reaching the top.
4. Rent a Mountain Bike to Discover Hidden Spots in Moalboal
With endless trails and dirt roads, Moalboal is a popular spot for mountain biking in the Philippines. There are trails available both for beginners and hardcore mountain bikers, where you enjoy scenic views of nature along waterfalls, rice terraces and caves. For those who do not know how to ride a bike, you can opt for horseback riding instead, where you still get to experience impressive views of the hills of Cebu.
5. Catch Moalboal’s Stunning Sunset at Andi’s Talisay
Located along the stretch of restaurants at Panagsama Beach is Andi’s Talisay, a cozy café serving inexpensive food and drinks with an amazing view overlooking the sea. It is the perfect spot to relax after a day of activity and watch the sunset. Sometimes, on a good day, they even provide comfy beanbags and live music for their guests.
6. Try Delicious Filipino Dishes and Seafood at Economical Prices
If you are at Moalboal, trying local Filipino dishes is a must! The average price for a meal at a local restaurant is around S$5. Our favourite restaurants along Panagsama Beach are Tipolo Beach Resort, Lantaw Restaurant and Ven’z Kitchen. They offer a wide range of options in their menu (Tipolo Beach Resort even has a wood fired oven for homemade thin crust pizza), but we highly recommend the following local dishes: adobo, sisig, sinigang and lechon (only available on Sundays).
7. Enjoy Refreshing, Cold Beer at Really Cheap Prices
Alcohol prices in Singapore are notoriously expensive, so much so that alcohol everywhere else seems crazily cheap in comparison. In Moalboal, you get to enjoy a bottle of San Miguel at only S$1.40 (55 PHP)! There are several bars along Panagsama Beach, the more popular ones being Chili Bar and 7 Sins Bar. Our favourite is One Eyed Jacks Bar, a 2-storey bar a little further down the road, as it is less crowded and have live music every other day. There are also swings at the bar counter on the second level. For those who enjoy a night of partying, Moalboal has disco night every Saturday at Pacita’s Disco Bar with an entry fee of S$0.75 (30 PHP) per person.