MALAPASCUA ISLAND: Travel Guide 2018 (Budget + Itinerary)

Malapascua is an island located in North Cebu, Philippines that  has attracted local and foreign tourists, especially divers, because of its rich marine sanctuary.  It is best known for Monad Shoal where thresher sharks can be seen regularly before sunrise. But diving is not the only activity you can do in this island, it is also an idyllic destination for a  laid-back holiday or a weekend getaway from the hustle and bustle of Cebu City. Malapascua island is also a jumping-off point to Kalanggaman Island in Palompon, Leyte.  I will be writing a separate Kalanggaman Travel Guide, but in the meantime, here’s my Malapascua Travel Guide with budget and itinerary to help you plan your trip.

 

WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO VISIT MALAPASCUA

malapascua island weather

 

The best time to visit Malapascua is around December – June during the dry season so you can enjoy its beaches without having to worry much about an incoming rain or storm.  The summer season (April – May) is usually crowded, especially during weekends and holidays. See graph above.  Always check the weather updates before proceeding.

 

 

MALAPASCUA DIY TRAVEL GUIDE

 

type A socketPOWER PLUG: Electrical socket is Type A.  220 V, 60 HZ. See illustration.

 

MODE OF PAYMENT: Stack up cash (Philippine peso) as almost everything here is on cash basis.

ATM: There are no ATMs scattered in Malapascua.  If you need to withdraw money, you have to go to Bogo town where ATms abound (Metrobank, DBP, Landbank, BPI,etc), about an hour away from Malapascua.

SAFETY: Malapascua island is pretty safe for tourists.

PARKING: If you are bringing your own vehicle, you have to park it near Maya Port since there’s only an outrigger boat to Malapascua Island from mainland Cebu.  No passenger ferry.You can park at Sugbo Maya or D and N Lodge beside it.  Parking fee is PHP 100/ USD 2 / EURO 2/SGD 3/ MYR 7 per day.

If you miss the last boat to Malapascua, you can stay at D & N Lodge, a few meters away from the New Maya Port.

 

How to Get to Malapascua from Cebu City

 

 

MALAPASCUA MAIN BEACH

 

  1. Head to North Bus Terminal in Cebu City.
  2. Ride a van  or Ceres bus bound for New Maya Port.  Bus fare is roughly PHP 210/USD 4/EURO 3.41/SGD 5/SGD 5/MYR 216. The trip takes roughly 4 hours. Take note that there are 2 ports in Maya to Malapascua: Old Maya Port and New Maya Port.  The Ceres buses go to the New Maya Port, other buses end up in Old Maya Port.
  3. Walk to the port or take a motorcycle for PHP 20/USD 0.38/EURO 0.32/SGD 0.51/MYR 1.50 per person.
  4. Sign up and pay the ticket counter. Boat fare is PHP 100/ USD 2 / EURO 2/SGD 3/ MYR 7 per person. Travel time is about 45 minutes.
  5. If it’s low tide, the boat can’t dock near the shore so you will be transferred by a small boat. Fare is PHP 20/USD 0.38/EURO 0.32/SGD 0.51/MYR 1.50  per person.

Important:

  • Boats trips from New Maya Port to Malapascua and vice versa run every 30 minutes from 6:30 AM to 4:30 PM only.  You need to wait for other passengers for the boat to leave.
  • In case of 2 time interval overdue and last tripper in schedule where no minimum passenger are available, a negotiated trip of PHP 1,000/USD 19/EURO 16/SGD 25/MYR 75 will be applied.
  • If you want a special trip (rent the entire boat), fee is PHP 1,500/USD 28/EURO 24/SGD 38/MYR 112, maximum 15 passengers.  If more than 15 persons, additional PHP 100/ USD 2 / EURO 2/SGD 3/ MYR 7 per extra person will be collected.
  • If you miss the last boat to Malapascua Island, there’s a lodge near the New Maya Port  – D & N Lodge, contact #: 0917 721 0118/ 0917 774 4414 or call 032 437 3996.

 

What to Do in Malapascua Island

 

malapascua island beach

1. Swimming and Beach Bumming

Malapascua although flanked by hotels, restaurants and bars has surprisingly retained its serenity. Lounge on the beach shores like most foreigners do.  There are some secluded coves  in the island that are ideal for swimming since they aren’t crowded by tourists.

2. Snorkeling and Island Hopping

 

If you want to go snorkeling, you can rent a boat for island hopping that includes snorkeling.

Boat rental for Malapascua island hopping is PHP 1,200/ USD 23/EURO 19/SGD 31/MYR 90, good for 1-2 persons and PHP 1,500/USD 28/EURO 24/SGD 38/MYR 112, good for 4-5 persons.

 

3. Malapascua Motorcycle Tour

MALAPASCUA - LANGUB BEACH

 

You can go on a motorycle tour around Malapascua.  Day tour is PHP 700 or PHP 200 per hour including the driver. Or you can rent the motorbike and drive on your own, same price. I won’t recommend driving the motorbike by yourself as you will get lost along the way, the road is tricky since you have to pass through small alleys in the village peppered with houses. You’ll just waste your time. Having a local driver helps, and saves you time. It’s the same price anyway. Tipping the driver is optional.

The tour includes a visit to the following beaches:

Lapus Lapus Beach – A typical cream sand beach in Malapascua.  

Los Bamboos– This is where you can go cliff jumping in Malapascua.  Our driver told us, they don’t really promote cliff jumping here as it can be dangerous. But you can jump at your own risk. The cottages here were destroyed by the typhoon. Entrance fee is PHP 25 per person.  The view of the rock formations here and the neighboring beaches are beautiful.

The Lighthouse– There’s a white sentinel crowning the island of Malapascua, it’s a good spot for sunset watching.

Langub Beach– My favorite beach in Malapascua.  It has powdery white sand and azure water.  Not crowded and not developed yet.

Bounty Beach –Not really a part of the motorcycle tour, but if you are arriving in Malapascua, this is the first beach that you will most likely see. Bounty Beach is the main beach in Malapascua fringed by hotels, dive shops and restaurants.

 

4. Malapascua Island Diving

 

Dive shops are scattered around the island. Malapascua is known for its thresher sharks. You may check out :

 

  • Thresher Cove Resort

Logon Malapascua Island

MORE INFO HERE

 

  • Ocean Vida Dive Resort 

Bounty Beach Logon, Daanbantayan,Malapascua

 MORE INFO HERE

 

  • Little Mermaid Dive Resort

Malapascua Island, Malapascua

MORE INFO HERE

 

5. Cliff Jumping

LOS BAMBOOS BEACH

 

For adrenaline junkies, during your island hopping tour or motorcycle tour, you can go cliff jumping at Los Bamboos.  Jump at your own risk. This is not really encouraged by the drivers and tour guides in Malapascua but it’s not prohibited either. This place has become a popular site for cliff jumping, just make sure someone is there to assist you (who knows how to swim), in case something happens.

 

6. Sunset and Sunrise Watching 

Malapascua has one of the most beautiful sunsets and sunrises in the Philippines. Don’t miss it!

7. Happy Hour

Some bars and restaurants usually offer Happy Hour like Ocean Vida, they offer buy one take 2 on selected drinks from 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM and 9:00 PM – 10:00 PM

 

malapascua island restaurant

 


Where to Stay in Malapascua Island

Malapascua Hotel
Malapascua Hotel

 

There’s a wealth of resorts in Malapascua Island, you will never run out of a place to stay.  Here are some of the top-rated Malapascua Resorts according to Agoda users.  To check the room rates and resort photos, change the date to your preferred booking date and click search.

 

  • Malapascua Garden Resort

Logon Village, Daanbantayan, Malapascua Island, Cebu, Philippines

         CHECK ROOM RATES HERE

 

  • Thresher Cove Resort

Logon, Malapascua

         CHECK ROOM RATES HERE

 

  • Slam’s Garden Resort

Brgy. Logon, Daanbanatayan, Malapascua

     CHECK ROOM RATES HERE

 

  • Hippocampus Beach Resort

Bounty Beach, Logon

      CHECK ROOM RATES HERE

 

  • Blue Corals Beach Resort

Malapascua Island, Brgy. Logon, Daan-Bantayan, Malapascua Island, Cebu

       CHECK ROOM RATES HERE

 

Click photo below to find more resorts in Malapascua

Untitled

 


Where to Eat in Malapascua Island

 

A restaurant in Malapascua Island
A restaurant in Malapascua Island

Malapascua Restaurants

Food in Malapascua are quite expensive as most restaurants cater to foreign tourists, prepare around PHP 250 /USD 5 /EURO 4/SGD 6/MYR 19up for  a decent meal, but you can still ask the locals for the nearest eateries.

 

  • Ging Ging’s Restaurant–The cheapest restaurant we found in Malapascua. Main Dishes start at PHP 100.
  • Ocean Vida Restaurant– opens at 7:30 AM – 11:00 PM offers Asian and European food.  Happy Hour at 4:00 PM -6:00 PM and 9:00 PM – 10:00 PM.
  • Magellan’s Bar and Restaurant– offers daily barbecue and seafood. Main dishes starts at PHP 295

 

MALAPASCUA ITINERARY + EXPENSES

Here’s a sample Malapascua itinerary with budget, perfect for those planning on a weekend trip.

Day 1ACTIVITIES
06:00 AMETD North Bus Terminal in Cebu City. Bus to New Maya Port, PHP 210/USD 4/EURO 3.41/SGD 5/SGD 5/MYR 16
10:00 AMETA New Maya Port.  Walk or ride motorbike to Maya Port.
10:30 AMBoat to Malapascua Island, PHP 100/USD 2 / EURO  2/SGD 3/ MYR 7
11:00 AMETA Malapascua Island. Hotel check-in, PHP 1,000/USD 19/EURO 16/SGD 25/MYR 75
11:30 PMLunch, PHP 250 /USD 5 /EURO 4/SGD 6/MYR 19
12:00 PMHire motorbike with driver for Malapascua Tour, PHP 700/USD 13/EURO 11/SGD 18/MYR 52
12:15 PMStart of Malapascua Island tour: Lapus Lapus Beach, Los Bamboos, Ligthouse, Langub Beach
05:00 PMEnd of Malapascua Island Tour
05:30 PMBack to hotel. Freshen up.
07:00 PMDinner, PHP 250 /USD 5 /EURO 4/SGD 6/MYR 19
09:00 PMSleep.
Day 2 
07:00 AMWake up. Breakfast.
09:00 AMSwimming.
11:00 AMHotel check-out.
11:30 AMBoat to New Maya Port.
12:45 PMETA Maya Port.
01:00 PMBus to Cebu City, PHP 210/USD 4/EURO 3.41/SGD 5/SGD 5/MYR 16

Malapascua Expenses

Here’s a sample Malapascua budget breakdown, this assumes you are a party of two and staying in Malapascua overnight at a PHP 1,000/USD 19/EURO 16/SGD 25/MYR 75 hotel, good for 2 persons.

 

ACTIVITIESEXPENSES
Bus to New Maya PortPHP 210/USD 4/EURO 3.41/SGD 5/SGD 5/MYR 16
Boat to MalapascuaPHP 100/USD 2 / EURO  2/SGD 3/ MYR 7
Malapascua HotelPHP 1,000/USD 19/EURO 16/SGD 25/MYR 75 (divide by 2) = PHP 500/USD 9/EURO 8/SGD 13/MYR 37
Lunch + dinnerPHP 500/USD 9/EURO 8/SGD 13/MYR 37
Motorcycle TourPHP 700/USD 13/EURO 11/SGD 18/MYR 52 (divide by 2) = PHP 350/USD 7/EURO 6/SGD 9/MYR 26

 

Los Bamboos Entrance FeePHP 25/USD 0.47/EURO 0.40/SGD 0.63/MYR 2

 

Boat to Maya PortPHP 100/USD 2 / EURO  2/SGD 3/ MYR 7
Bus to Cebu CityPHP 210/USD 4/EURO 3.41/SGD 5/SGD 5/MYR 16
EXPENSESPHP 1,995/USD 37.47/EURO 38.22/SGD 51.63/MYR 148 

 

 


Malapascua Island Travel Tips:

 

sunset watching in Malapascua
sunset watching in Malapascua

 

Stack up cash before you leave for the island because there are no ATM  and banks.  I traveled about 1 hour (one way)  from Maya town to the nearest ATM at Bogo town to withdraw.

If you miss the last boat trip to Malapascua, there’s a lodge near New Maya Port – D & N Lodge, contact #: 0917 721 0118/ 0917 774 4414 or call 032 437 3996.

Plastic straws are prohibited in Malapascua. Bring your own bamboo straw.

Don’t throw your trash anywhere! Take them with you and dispose them properly.

Do not collect sand as souvenir.

Use coral-friendly sunblock.

Bring dry bag to protect your gadgets.

 


 

EXTEND YOUR TRIP

ALSO READ:

CEBU CITY TRAVEL GUIDE

Swimming with the Whale Sharks in Oslob : Travel Guide

Moalboal, Cebu : Travel Guide

Osmeña Peak


 

About the Blogger : Gael is a Filipina travel blogger. Her work has appeared in local and international publications.

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For advertisements, sponsorship and partnerships, you may reach her at gaelhilotinblog (at) gmail (dot) com.

 

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Comments

  1. this is by far the most comprehensive presentation of Malapascua. Never been here but this post Gael will surely be my guide.

    Didn’t I told u you had a great photo here? they are inspiring and the narratives, best!

  2. What a comprehensive guide! I’ve never been to Malapascua and this will surely a big help when we plan on it. 🙂 Thanks!

  3. dahil sa happy hour isa to sa magiging paborito ko. hehehe… thanks for the guide Gael.

  4. Thanks sa guide. Mas malayo to compare sa Bantayan tama ba?

    1. just like 2hours by travel from bantayan island going to malapascua

  5. you’re lucky to experienced this, gael!
    malapascua’s the recent cover of lonely planet asia.
    binili ko nga agad sa magazine stand sa jetty sa george town, akala ko pinoy (travel blogger-photographer) ang photos at text, sayang di pala. nonetheless, that island at the tip of cebu is a must-visit based on this post and on that article. sana makarating din dyan someday!

  6. postcard perfect nga pala ang first pic for me.

  7. pinagpipilian pa kung alin ang uunahin… eto o ung sa moalboal.. 😛

  8. Thanks for this very informative post Gael!
    I’ll be going to Malapascua Island and this is just what I need.

  9. hi gael! this is so informative. sakto kasi i’m planning to go solo to malapascua this june. =)
    may contact kb sa bb’s guesthouse? thanks! =))

  10. What are the way to get off the island if i want to reach cebu? I cant find it anywhere. What is the latest time you can leave the island to Cebu with public transport?

  11. hi po. pwd po bang malaman BB’s guesthouse?

  12. Hi, i would like to ask of the schedule of the local boats from malapascua goin back to maya? Thanks

  13. Hi, great feature. Very helpful information. I would like to know if you have any information about the conditions of this island AFTER the Haiyan storm. I would like to visit in March this year, but I am not sure everything is still the same as described here. Any response would be helpful, thank you!

    1. I heard from friends that they’re recovered. So it’s fine to visit by March. Have fun! 🙂

  14. Thank you for the very informative post, were on our way to malapascua. Holiday trip…!

  15. How about the last boat trip from malapascua to Maya port? What time?

    1. Sorry failed to ask last time. Will update this in case I get to visit again.

  16. Hi Gael! What’s the name and contact details of the homestay you stayed at in Maya? Got a late afternoon flight going to Cebu and would like to move forward to get to Maya agad and get on the first boat to Malapascua in the morning.

    Thank you!! 🙂

    1. Hi Mai, I’m sorry, I forgot already. You can ask around, it’s just near maya port, about 100 meters.

  17. hi, can i ask what is the last trip from malapascua island to maya.

  18. Hi Gael. May i ask where in Cebu City is the van terminal going to Maya port located. Thanks!

    1. Not sure about the van terminal only the bus terminal

  19. God bless and Many thanks sa blog mo…It such a good help since im planning to go to Cebu coming Jan 2017. So siguro I will stick to my Cebu city and Lapu lapu Mactan area tour kesa Malapascua. Again God bless and thank you for promoting our coutryside……Been many places(Im seafarer by profession) but theres no place like PHILIPPINES…

    1. Glad you like it Joel, Try south Cebu also. Enjoy your vacation! 🙂

  20. Thank you for the helpful information. Malapascua is my next destination next month.

  21. Hi ms gael, your blog is very helpful para sa mga traveler who wants to discover some place. Haha I used your blog as a preference when we go to siquijor. It helps us a lot 🙂 I just wanna ask a few question bout maya port, meron bang barko just like montenegro in siquijor na pwedeng magdala ng motor papuntang malapascua?? naka booked na kami for july’s trip. Thankyou in advance. GODBLESS and more travel and blogs to come. Loveyou ❤ more power💪

    1. Not sure about that. Pero mukhang pwede naman isakay sa boat.

  22. Hi!! This post is very helpful! Planning to go there this weekend. Do you have highly recommended cheap hotels?

  23. A very comprehensive guide, as always! You should compile everything to a book!

  24. Thanks for all the great info, much apprecdiated

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