Malapascua Island is in Visayas region specifically in the northern part of Cebu. It’s famous and attracts foreign tourists who loves diving. If you’re lucky you’ll see thresher sharks in Monad Shoal near the island.
No need to worry for those non-divers because there are lots of other things that you can do in the island. There’s island hopping, snorkeling, cliff jumping and biking around the island.
Here’s how to get there
- Fly to Cebu (Airfare: P 1,180 | Travel time: 1 hour and 30 mins)
Book a flight to Cebu that will take you to Mactan Airport. It’s better to choose the first flight going there while take the last schedule for the your return flight so you can enjoy the 3-day trip.
Gate 116 to Cebu
- North Bus Terminal (Fare: P 180 | Travel Time: 6 hours)
From Mactan Airport, take a taxi and head to North Bus Terminal which will take around 20-30 minutes for P 200 then take a bus going to Maya Port. You can either choose the Yellow Ceres Bus or the Red Rough Riders Bus. Bus fare for aircon bus is around P 180 while non-aircon is P 163. Choose the aircon bus!
I missed the Ceres Aircon Bus that’s why I end up with Rough Rider’s non-aircon bus.
Travel time is around 5-6 hours depending on the traffic specifically near Consolacion. Some bus stops to pick up passengers along the way.
Cebu to Maya is 24 hours
Maya to Cebu from 1AM to 6PM
Other transportation to Maya port: (Fare: P 3,000-6,000 | Travel time: 3 hours)
- Pick-Up Vehicle – You can contact the resort where you’re going to arrange a pick-up from the airport to Malapascua Island for P 5,000-6,000 per way
- Taxi – Cebu taxis can take you to any part of Cebu but it definitely comes with a great (expensive) price.
- V-hire – It’s a short-term for Van for hire, they are located in SM City. It’s a good deal if you’re in a large group.
- Maya port to Malapascua Island (Fare: P 140 | Travel Time: 30 mins)
Upon arrival to Maya port wait for the public boat that will take you to Malapascua Island for P 100. If it’s low tide you need to pay P 20 for the small boat. It takes around 30 minutes to Malapascua Island. First trip is at 6:30 AM and the last trip is at 3:00 PM.
There are scammers saying that there are no public boats anymore and will offer you a private transfer for P 1,000-2,000. Say no!
One of the public boats to Malapascua Island
- Motorcycle or Habal-habal ride (Fare: Free from resort | Travel time: 5-10 mins)
Once you reached the island you can hire a motorcycle (habal-habal) to take you to the resort where you’ll stay. It cost P 20, the resort paid for my motorbike transfer.
Where to Stay
Pool Area in Thresher Cove Resort.
Where to eat
There are restaurants and eateries on the main beach. You can either hire a motorbike to take you there or you can walk and ask locals for directions. It’s totally safe to walk there at night. There’s Ging-Ging and Veah Ivan Eatery for affordable meals.
Vhea Ivan Eatery with the accommodating owners
We ordered vegetable curry, shrimp, crabs and our favorite tortang talong.
Things to do
- Island hopping
Rent a boat for P 1,200 for island hopping and snorkeling. Places to visit are Coral Garden, Small Island, Japanese Shipwreck and the Cliff Jumping Site. There are lots of corals and fishes to see underwater. Be careful at the Japanese Shipwreck area because there are lots of small jellyfish that will sting you.
Additional payment of P 50 for the Bantay-Dagat Police and P 150 for the fins and snorkeling gear.
Exploring at small island.
Island hopping with my new-found friends.
- Visit Kalanggaman Island
Rent a boat for P 3,500 to go to Kalanggaman Island. It’s in Palompon, Leyte and it will take you 1 ½ hour from Malapascua Island. You’ll enjoy the crystal clear water, snorkeling and the sand bar.
Closer view of Kalanggaman Island
- Diving Lesson
Start your diving lesson at the island for P 2,500 for discover scuba diving in the pool or P 3,500 for pool and open water diving lesson.
I read in other blogs that you can rent a bike and explore the island. It was part of my plan but I never get the chance to do it because I don’t have enough time. It’s better to book a 4-day trip or 1 week to enjoy everything.
Download Itinerary here.
DAY 1 – Cebu City tour and off to Malapascua Island
|03:50||Check in NAIA 3|
|05:50||ETD to Cebu|
|07:05||ETA in Mactan Airport|
|07:30||Mactan Shrine||Take a taxi||45 mins||
Basilica del Santo Niño
Cebu Provincial Capitol Building
Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral
|Take a taxi||1 hour||
|09:45||ETD to Bus Station North||Take a taxi to the bus station||20 mins||
|or Ride a cab 21D (drop off at SM Cebu) then 01K (North Bus Terminal)||30 mins||
|10:00||Ceres Line (Yellow)
Rough Riders (Red)
|12:00||Stopover (Lunch)||30 mins|
|15:30||Take a ferry Maya Port to Malapascua Island||Additional P20 if it’s low tide||45 mins||
|16:00||Ride a motorcycle||The resort will pay for it.||10 mins|
|16:10||Check in (Affordable Accommodation at Thresher Cove Resort)|
|17:00||Shower, Dinner and Social|
DAY 2 – Kalanggaman Island Tour
|05:00||Wake Up / Morning Swimming|
|08:45||ETD to Kalanggaman Island||2 hours|
|10:45||ETA in Kalanggaman Island||Boat Rent||4 hours||
(P 500 – Foreigners)
|Fins, snorkeling gears||
|14:30||ETD to Malapascua Island
(Expect strong winds and waves against the boat)
|18:00||Shower, Dinner and Social|
DAY 3 – Island hopping and Back to Manila
Cliff Jumping Site
|Boat Rent||3 hours||
|Fins, snorkeling gears||
|Ride a habal-habal to Main beach||The resort will pay for it.||10 mins|
|1:00||ETA to Maya Port||Additional P20 if it’s low tide||45 mins||
|19:00||ETA Mandaue City||Ceres Aircon Bus||6 hours||
|ETD Mactan Airport||Ride a Taxi or habal-habal||30 mins||
|19:30||Check-in via web or at the airport|
|21:50||ETD to Manila|
|23:10||ETA in Manila|
Days Recommended: 4 Days
I planned this trip with a budget of P 6,000 only and here’s the breakdown of expenses. Sharing the rent for the boats with my new found friends saved me a lot of money. That’s the tip! Make friends and split the bill.
Breakdown of Expenses
Tours and Rentals
- Book an early flight to Cebu while get the evening for the return flight.
- Book hotels on Agoda for cheaper rates. I booked the mixed dorm at Threscher Cove Resort.
- Stock Cash (NO ATM at the island)
- Bottle Water
- Snacks (Don’t want to starve for the 6-hours-bus ride)
- Best time to visit will always be off peak season to avoid the crowd.
I hope this article helps you plan your Malapascua Trip and don’t forget to share your experience.
Good luck on your adventure!
Check out my other Cebu trip articles.