If you’re interested in visiting one of the best waterfalls in the world, then you’re reading the right thing.
Kawasan Falls is a 3-tier waterfall located in the southwest of the Philippine island, Cebu. Cebu itself is an interesting and beautiful place to visit, but in this post, I’m going to concentrate on the waterfall itself. I first saw a picture of the Kawasan Falls on an Instagram travel account I follow – @doyoutravel. I Immediately added it to my bucket list.
The location of the falls isn’t in the most convenient of places, but the dirt cheap cost of transport in Cebu makes it easily accessible.
GETTING THERE FROM CEBU CITY
The chances are you’ll be staying in Cebu city. This gives you 3 options:
Bus – The cheapest option is to take a bus from the main bus station. The bus ride takes 3 – 4 hours and costs as little as 200 PHP ($4 USD).
Car – A more expensive but more comfortable option is to take a taxi. Taxi drivers charge about 3000 PHP ($64 USD) for the round trip. Between a few people, 3000 PHP is still very much affordable and in my opinion is worth the extra time you’d gain….. and the air-con!
Bike – The third and probably the most exciting option is to rent yourself a motorbike or scooter and drive there yourself. After experiencing the roads of Cebu, I will say to anyone doing this – BE CAREFUL!
Additionally, there are several hostels and resorts located closer to Kawasan Falls. If I ever visit Cebu again and have more time, I’m definitely going to stay away from the city center and explore more of the island!
Before you reach the waterfalls, you’ll need to trek for about 15 minutes from the National Park entrance. Like most national parks there is an entrance fee. For foreigners, this fee is 30PHP, which is very little. The path to the falls is mostly flat and adjacent to an azure-colored river, so the walk is rather enjoyable despite the heat.
When you arrive at the falls, it’ll take a few minutes for your brain to figure out that it’s real and that you’re not dreaming or watching some CGI’d masterpiece.I think it’s worth noting that despite its natural beauty there typically aren’t as many tourists as you’d expect at the falls. Instead, there are many locals having a good time! It’s also worth knowing that the falls are at their busiest on the weekends.
If you’re on a budget it’d be wise to bring your own food and drink because the vendors on location sell their products at high prices. It is a bit of a money trap.
And speaking of money trap….. Immediately upon arriving at the falls, you’ll be swarmed with local Filipinos asking to be your guide for the day. Despite saying “no, thanks” several times, we still ended up with a guide at our side who helped us around and told us a little about the area. Even though we did not want a guide in the first place, we still paid him and thanked him at the end of our stay.
There are actually 3 waterfalls. The first is the most impressive and is where the majority of the food, people and rafts are. Yes, rafts. 3 or 4 large bamboo rafts have been constructed in the waterfall pool. You can rent these rafts and even get a local to take you to the actual waterfall and go under it. The water gets VERY powerful and didn’t go nicely with my sunburn! But it was fun!!
The other 2 waterfalls are just a little further up than the first and can be found within a 5-minute walk.
If you’re looking for a dash of adrenaline to your day then go canyoning!
A few tour operators at the falls offer the chance for you to canyon down the 3 falls.
I really cannot rate the Kawasan Falls high enough! I’d go again, if only just to look at it for 30 seconds. It’s stunning! Go and experience it for yourself.
This Lonely Planet guide to the Philippines has all you need and much, much more!