Kawasan Falls in Cebu- The ULTIMATE Guide
Every year, Kawasan falls in Cebu, Philippines draws in thousands of visitors with its crystal clear waters, canyoneering tours, and the plethora of activities available. When you walk into the Kawasan waterfall complex, it looks like a standard waterfall. But what people don’t realize is that this three-tiered beast is nature’s best water park! Kawasan Falls in Cebu is easily the best day trip from Moalboal and the best waterfall in the Philippines. That’s why we’ve created the ultimate Kawasan Falls visitors guide! So that you can take full advantage of this popular, but still underrated waterfall in Cebu, Philippines.
What to do in Kawasan Falls?
As I’ve mentioned, there are dozens of activities available for visitors who visit Kawasan Falls in Cebu. Whether you’re into adventure, hiking, or would rather just relax and enjoy the scenery, there is something for you at Kawasan Waterfalls.
1. Kawasan Falls Canyoneering
One of the most popular things to do at Kawasan Falls in Cebu is canyoneering. Let me tell you something, canyoneering at Kawasan Falls is not for the faint of heart. The canyons at Kawasan Falls range between 3 feet (1 meter) and 50 feet (20 meters) in height. With three enormous tiers, deep water, and dozens of places to jump from, it makes sense why Kawasan Falls canyoneering is so famous! But before I go into how to go canyoneering at Kawasan Falls, you’re probably wondering…
What is Canyoneering?
Canyoneering, or canyoning as it’s also called, is exploring canyons by climbing them, swimming through them, sliding, and rappelling. Or in the case of Kawasan Falls canyoneering, jumping off them. Canyoneering may sound unsafe, but with the proper gear and the help of a guide, it can be a very safe (and fun) activity to do! The height of the canyons at Kawasan falls can range greatly from 3-foot jumps to 50-foot jumps. Scary and adrenaline pumping as it may be, all of the jumps are optional and the guides teach you how to do it safely.
How to go Canyoneering at Kawasan Falls in Cebu
To go canyoneering at Kawasan Falls, it is required to have a guide present that tells you where to jump from and how to jump in. Since the jumps are quite high, it is imperative that you listen to your guide’s instructions as you can get very hurt. It’s not common for people to get seriously injured, but deaths during Kawasan Falls canyoneering have happened. Guides will also include the rental of a helmet, life jacket, water shoes, and waterproof bag. The tour usually runs between 2-4 hours depending on your pace and how busy the park is.
Kawasan Falls Canyoneering Cost
The cost to go canyoneering at Kawasan Falls varies on the type of tour. Whether you decide to go with a private guide or a guided tour group you will have a great time. Below I have information on both types of tours and what you should expect to pay for them:
Private Tour Cost for Canyoneering at Kawasan Falls
Private guides for canyoneering at Kawasan falls cost about 1,200 pesos ($24 USD) per person. These tours last for as long as you want to jump if you book them when you get there. This includes your life jacket, helmet, water shoes, and the guide for the whole day.
The benefit of getting a private guide at the park is it will save you about $20 than booking online. The caveat to this is that you will have to figure out transportation from your hotel to Kawasan Falls on your own. Keep reading to find out how to get to Kawasan Falls from Moalboal and Badian. If you want to have peace of mind and book a private Kawasan Falls canyoneering tour ahead of time. This tour is a great option and runs you about the same price as a group tour that you book through your hotel (2,500 Pesos/ $50 USD). Same price, but a private experience.
Group Tour Cost for Canyoneering at Kawasan Falls
If you book your Kawasan Falls Canyoneering Tour from a hotel in Moalboal, it will almost always be a group tour. This will include transportation and cost you 2,500 pesos ($50 USD) per person. These tours may sometimes include other activities grouped like the Oslob Whale Sharks, an island-hopping tour, or a trip to Pescador Island. If the tours include multiple activities and you’re running low on time in Cebu, it’s a good deal. But always make sure with the hotel what’s included with your tour package. Prices and packages vary greatly from hotel to hotel.
Additional Kawasan Falls Tour Information
If you are planning on grouping Kawasan Falls canyoneering with another activity on the same day, make sure that you read the inclusions carefully. A popular day trip that people take in Cebu is Kawasan Falls and the Oslob whale sharks. Tour prices can be very similar but take note: For the whale sharks, there is a difference between “whale shark watching” and “whale shark swimming”. If you want a private tour that groups Kawasan Falls canyoneering AND swimming with the Oslob whale sharks, this is the best tour I could find. It includes all of the transportation, fees, lunch, lasts 14 hours and will pick you up from ANYWHERE in Cebu.
2. Swimming at Kawasan Waterfalls
One of my favorite parts about Kawasan Falls is that it has multiple enormous pools for swimming! When you first walk into the waterfall, you’ll immediately find one of the largest pools that you can swim in. The water is crystal clear, a beautiful shade of cerulean blue, and absolutely freezing! I’m talking no more than 65 degrees F (18 degrees C)! Although the water temperature may shock you at first, your body will soon acclimate. Then you can just focus on enjoying it! Also, have you ever seen water this blue?! The picture above has NO filter! That’s how blue and clear the water is at Kawasan Waterfalls.
As you start walking up to the second and third levels, you’ll find tons of small pools for swimming. The pools may not be super deep, or spacious to get a good swim in, but they are definitely quiet. These are great if you are trying to avoid the notoriously bad crowds at Kawasan falls.
3. Hiking at Kawasan Falls Philippines
Kawasan Waterfall is a HUGE waterfall complex that encompasses three distinctly different levels. To get to these different levels, you are going to have to hike up the mountain that the waterfalls sit on. This will take you between 45-minutes to 1-hour assuming you don’t get in the water and just hike. If you like hiking, you are going to love going through this gorgeous waterfall in Cebu. We had to go across the waterfalls on bamboo bridges, climb some steep rocks, and walk through water to get through to the different levels.
Outside of being a beautiful place to swim, hiking through Kawasan Falls was my favorite part. Cutting across natural springs, listening to the exotic birds chirping above us, and having nature all to ourselves was the best. While everyone was fighting over the main waterfalls, we had the hike completely to ourselves. I could spend an entire day hiking through this gorgeous waterfall in Cebu, Philippines.
4. Have a Picnic at Kawasan Falls
I had no idea we could bring our own food to Kawasan Falls! Locals were going in with coolers and were having a proper picnic! Next time we are bringing our own liquor, food, water, and snacks! There are tables for rent on the first and second tier of the waterfall, and free tables on the third tier. The cost to rent a table is 300 pesos ($6 USD). Although that may sound pretty steep for just a table rental, it can save you money. Especially if you’re traveling with a large group or a family! Bringing your own food into Kawasan Falls can save you from buying meals at the restaurants. Not to mention, it’s fun and the views are beautiful!
We have more information on the cost of restaurant meals below.
5. Use the Rope Swings and Natural Water Slides
If you’re like me, and canyoneering is just not in your blood, there are other slightly less adventurous activities that you can partake in at Kawasan Falls Philippines. In between tiers 1 & 2 and my personal favorite, tier 3, you can find rope swings that cost you only 10 pesos ($ 0.20 USD)! These rope swings don’t require a special guide, and you can use them over and over again! Keep in mind that if you use the rope swing you MUST let go! If you stay holding on for too long, you will smash into some very sharp rocks. Not fun!
On the third tier, you can also get on the natural waterslide! I will admit, the natural water slide gave my butt rug burn. The natural waterslide is at the very top of the waterfall and is very powerful. So, if you are not a strong swimmer, I don’t recommend you do it without a life vest. Life vests can be rented for the day on the way to the first tier for 50 pesos ($1 USD).
What Time Should I Go to Kawasan Falls?
If you want to avoid the crowds we recommend getting there early! We arrived at Kawasan Falls at 6:30 AM and had the waterfall completely to ourselves as you can see above. For the first hour, we were the only ones in the park. It was peaceful, quiet, and simply beautiful. The first batch of people started trickling in at around 7:30 AM, and it started getting busier by 9:30 AM. We also recommend going on weekdays since most people go on the weekends.
How Long Should I Spend at Kawasan Falls?
This is a tricky question. A lot of people will tell you that you can see the entire waterfall in 2 hours. Although that is true, we really recommend that you spend a good 5-6 hours there. Like we mentioned above, there are tons of awesome things to do at Kawasan Falls. It honestly feels more like a waterpark than a waterfall. Take your time! Do canyoneering, take your time with the hike, and explore the three levels! As a matter of fact, the third level is our favorite! It’s a beautiful place and we wish we wouldn’t have rushed it.
What to Pack for Kawasan Falls
When we went to Kawasan Falls, we were not prepared. We want you to have an amazing time, so make sure you don’t leave any of these items back home!
The sun is HOT in the Philippines. Though there are many places to get under the shade while at Kawasan Falls, you should still bring plenty of sunscreen. Even though we reapplied sunscreen twice while we were there, we still got very burned. Especially when we got on our motorbikes to drive back to Moalboal. Be prepared, bring sunscreen, and reapply often. This sunscreen stick is carry-on-travel friendly, has high SPF, and is water-resistant!
Bug spray is essential as you start hiking toward the upper levels of Kawasan Falls in Cebu. There are areas of the falls that have tons of mosquitoes, and my husband was getting eaten alive. You can find bug spray at the Gaisano’s on the way from Moalboal, or you can get this one that is travel-friendly and more effective than DEET.
Hiking Sandals or Trainers (NO FLIP-FLOPS)
This is one thing I can’t stress enough. The rocks on the way up Kawasan Falls are very sharp, steep, and slippery. My husband took flip-flops and realized it was a bad idea. I was thankfully wearing hiking sandals and had no problem. My husband, on the other hand, broke his flip-flops during the hike and had to do much of the hike barefoot. If you want my recommendation, these Tevas have been with me through thick and thin!
This may seem like a no-brainer when you’re going to a waterfall, but it’s worth mentioning. If you leave your towel at home, you won’t be able to find one at Kawasan Falls. The one that we use and love is this microfiber one. It weighs next to nothing, is super absorbent, and always smells great!
Since you’re going to be around water all day, I really recommend you bring a waterproof bag for your things. There were many times that people would jump in the water and splash our belongings accidentally. Thankfully, we didn’t take anything that would’ve been harmed by the water, but it would have been worth bringing one. They sell waterproof bags all over the surrounding areas and even within the waterfall complex. If you are doing any of the Canyoneering tours, they will provide you with a bag then.
Within Kawasan Falls in Cebu, you’re going to find many snack vendors and restaurants. Most of them won’t have change for large bills of 500 pesos or above. Be prepared and take about 1000 pesos worth in 100 pesos bills with a few smaller denominations. This will ensure that you’ll be able to pay for items without a struggle.
Other things that are nice to have…
- Snacks- You can buy them for cheap at Gaisano’s (the Filipino Walmart) on the way from Moalboal
- Water- You can buy water at the park, but it’s more expensive. Bring your own and save your money.
- Alcohol- People brought literal bottles of liquor without a problem
- A cooler- if you’re planning on a picnic we saw dozens of families with them
- A waterproof camera like a GoPro– because this place is beautiful and I promise you’re going to want to take pictures
How to Get From Moalboal to Kawasan Falls
If you’re wondering how to get to Kawasan Falls from Moalboal, there are many ways and at different price points. If you’re getting to Kawasan Falls in Cebu through a tour, the transportation to and from your hotel will already be sorted for you. For those of you planning your own trip to Kawasan Falls, here’s how you get there:
To get to Kawasan Falls from Moalboal via motorbike, you will need to rent a bike at Panagsama Beach. You can find a rental for as low as 250 pesos ($5 USD) for the day and it can seat up to 3. We personally chose this option because it gave us the greatest freedom, and was the cheapest option for transportation. A great place to rent motorbikes in Moalboal is Majonas Scooter Rentals on Panagsama Road (Click here for directions to Kawasan Falls from Majonas). You can find other motorbike rentals along Panagsama road and find information at your hotel. Just make sure the locale is reputable and that the bikes are in good condition.
The drive to Kawasan Falls in about 45 minutes without traffic from Panagsama Beach, and about an hour from Basdaku White Beach in Moalboal. If you don’t have internet to type the address into google maps, take a screenshot of the directions & these instructions:
Directions from Panagsama Beach, Moalboal to Kawasan Falls, Badian
From Panagsama Road, go straight until you see Julie’s Bakery which T’s the road. Take a right at Julie’s and follow that road for about 30 minutes. You might get confused when you see a statue right after Julie’s bakery because the road curves left. Follow that curve. When you pass the Gaisano’s on the left, you’ll know you’re going the right way.
About 30 minutes later you will see the sign that says Kawasan Falls 1.5 KM (image above) on the left-hand side. That is where you have to park your motorbike and then walk the 1.5KM into the park.
Park at the church and then walk the 15 minutes to the entrance. The Kawasan Falls Entrance Fee is 45 pesos ($.90 USD) per person. Parking costs 50 Pesos ($1 USD) for the entire day. This is also where you will be approached by guides to do canyoneering at Kawasan falls.
Jeepneys are the Philippines’ answer to not having tuk-tuks or rickshaws. You can hail a jeepney at Panagsama beach and ask them to take you to Kawasan Falls. This will run you between 300-400 pesos ($6-$8 USD) and can seat up to 3 people comfortably.
Where to Eat at Kawasan Falls
If you’re not about the picnic life, rest assured, there are tons of dining options at Kawasan Falls. In the first tier of the waterfalls, there is a proper food court with snack shops, restaurants, and tables. This is a beautiful area to sit and eat and gives you a perfect view of the first tier’s waterfall.
On the way to the second tier, there is a snack shop that carries bottled water, candies, chocolate, and chips. You can also find powdered coffee and milo at this snack shop. Keep in mind they do not have a lot of change. So, note that you won’t be able to buy anything if you only have large bills.
On the second tier, there is a proper restaurant that has budget food options. The prices start at 150 pesos ($3 USD) and go up to 500 pesos ($10 USD). The menu above is the full price sheet for the restaurant on the second tier of Kawasan Falls.
Where to Stay at Kawasan Falls
Great places to stay near Kawasan falls in Cebu include the towns of Moalboal, Badian, and Alegria in South Cebu. Each town has its own charm, and they are all great hubs for South Cebu. Below I have listed 3 hotels that cater to three different budgets. All of them are within an hour of Kawasan Falls and are located in great locations with private rooms.
Badian is a sleepy town that bases much of its business on tourism. Specifically relating to Kawasan Falls and South Cebu. This 5-star resort located in Badian Island boasts stunning sea views, fancy rooms with private pools, and all of the amenities you could possibly dream of! Its mission of remaining eco-friendly and health-minded keeps this resort pristine and the best option for a luxury traveler. This hotel will coordinate transportation to Kawasan Falls for you. So if you go with this resort, you will be worry-free!
If you want to be close to Kawasan Falls, Alegria is a great place to stay. These cottages are absolutely beautiful and located literally on the water! Featuring private bathrooms, air-con, family rooms, wifi, and an on-site restaurant, the Matutinao Cottages are an excellent choice! Mega bonus, they are only an 18-minute walk from Kawasan falls which will save you money on transportation and parking!
Our favorite hub for South Cebu is Moalboal’s Panagsama Beach. Here you can rent motorbikes, have tons of dining options, tour operators, snorkeling, and even nightlife. J & C Guesthouse .01 miles aways from Panagsama beach where you can see the famous sardine run! And it is just a 10-minute walking distance from all of the food and nightlife you could ask for. At just $15 USD per night in a private room, this room is a bargain for its amazing location.
Staying in Kawasan Falls:
If you want to have front row seats to Kawasan Falls, you can stay inside of the waterfall itself! On the second tier next to the restaurant, there are bungalows for rent! These bungalows have air-con, feature a private bathroom, and can sleep up to 4 people.
Although the accommodations are far from luxurious, it’s definitely the coolest accommodation option. As a matter of fact, had we known about the accommodations there beforehand, I would have definitely stayed there. Imagine falling asleep to the sounds of the waterfall! Not to mention being able to wake up early and having the waterfall totally to yourself! It sounds like a dream to me!
The prices to stay at Kawasan Falls are as follows:
-2,500 Pesos ($50 USD) for 2 Double beds with air-con
-1,500 Pesos ($30 USD) for 2 Double beds no air-con
How Much Does it Cost to Go to Kawasan Falls
For those of you who are traveling on a budget, it makes sense to want to know the overall costs. At the bare minimum, you’re going to need to account for transportation/parking, entrance fees, and food. If you take a motorbike shared with another person, the cost of transport and parking will be 150 pesos ($3 USD) per person. The Kawasan falls entrance fee is 45 pesos ($0.90 USD). If you buy food from Gaisanos and bring it to the park with you, you will spend around $100 pesos ($2 USD). The total on the tightest budget would be $6 USD for a full day at the park.
This price changes pretty drastically if you’re trying to do canyoneering at Kawasan Falls in Cebu. Thankfully, the canyoneering tour prices already include your transportation, gear, entrance fees, and sometimes lunch. You can find those tours for as cheap as 1,000 pesos ($20 USD), and as expensive as 2,500 pesos ($50 USD).
Kawasan Falls, Philippines: Is it Worth it?
This place is absolutely worth it! Kawasan Falls in Cebu is easily the best waterfall in the Philippines. Some people will tell you Kawasan falls is overhyped, touristic, and over-crowded. What they fail to mention is the incredible amount of activities, hikes, and off the beaten path adventures in the park. For one, many people visit Kawasan falls in Cebu thinking that it’s just a waterfall, not a waterfall complex! Kawasan Waterfalls is made up of three tiers. It has dozens of secret coves, mini waterfalls, and nature havens that are completely free of people. The people who only stop to see the first tier are missing out on the best part! If anything, I recommend you spend a full day here and take the time to enjoy it!
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