So, how’s Malapascua Island since COVID-19? Traveling to and staying on the island is now possible. There are government and health protocols to follow, of course. Health remains everyone’s priority. Quite curious, I decided to revisit the island years after my last visit (story here: Malapascua Island: A Relaxing Summer Getaway) with some friends.
Disclaimer: This is a personal blog. The views, opinions, and tips expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of the other travelers. I’m not an expert. My purpose of writing is to share my story, hoping, somehow, to be helpful and inspirational to some – if not all.
Everything seems in increment since the pandemic. Our date of travel was on a holiday (holy week), and so we expected to have a long, busy trip. The bus ride from Cebu City to Maya Port in Daanbantayan already costs 255 for one way. Once at the port, you need to register at their tourism office and pay 75 pesos for the environmental fee and 150 pesos for the boat ride across the island for roughly 45 minutes.
From the distance, nearing the island, I already noticed the walkway to its dock. This is nonexistent the last time I was here. The locals are still very accommodating in leading us to our reserved accommodation.
Note: Reservation of your accommodation is a must before even getting to the island. Same with the other destinations in Cebu province or even the whole world at large.
Resorts and some establishments are operating but many are still close at the time being. Many tourists spent a long holiday on the island but their number is lesser than the usual flock during holidays. It’s a privilege for me as I can enjoy the paradise without having to juggle with the other visitors.
My primary purpose of this short vacation without my usual travel buddies is to sit on the sand and watch the sunrise and sunset by the sea. Yes, it’s unusual but I didn’t prepare an itinerary for this trip. We ended up having lots of activities as we got here though.
There are so much to enjoy on the island aside from the overrated deep diving and island hopping:
You’re right, food choices here can be very expensive if you are getting it from the restaurants. Try exploring the island and you will find cheaper alternatives. There are food stalls in the market offering food and services at affordable rates. Food choices are sumptuous as well. Some notable restaurants frequented by most tourists also serve affordable menus.
Try the following activities if you’re no swimmer, nondriver, or just want to do something new:
Each resort on the island offers different services to guests. Just take a walk through the alleys or take a motorcycle or bicycle to go around. Explore, see, and know the culture of the islanders. There is so much to see here.
Find a spot where to take a dip of the pristine waters around the island. Swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, and paddleboarding are among the usual activities. This could be great areas for your vlogs, TikTok, or any other social media pastime. You can even wait for the sun to rise and/or set at any of the beaches.
If you want somewhere secluded, try staying at D’ Avilas Horizon where Langub Beach is something you would be expecting from a vacation. Their crew, much more the owner himself, are very accommodating to ensure you have a great time off.
Seashore walk is usual. Why don’t you try trekking to the hilly, bushy parts of the island and get some views from atop? You’ll be amazed at what is in store for you up there. Plus, you’ve got some physical health programs. Isn’t it cool?
We’re lucky to have had local guides who made us see and experience the island. We went to the lighthouse, Kaosting Beach, Gugma Beach, Bantigue Cove, Mangrove Resort view, and the Ruins.
Sunrise and Sunset View
You can find different spots to watch sunrise and sunset throughout the island. Both can be viewed in the front, ocean view of Blue Corals Resort. However, watch the magnificence of the rising sun at the Easternmost part.
Meanwhile, sunset is best at Guso Beach beside the house of actress Pilar Pilapil. This is in contrary to the well-known spot at Langub Beach. Maybe you can get most of the setting sun when you are at the ruins, facing it.
Experience some chill night, good food and drinks, listen to music and embrace the island vibe with friends and loved ones. Having a guitar or any instrument and sing with your tune would be a great idea as well. You will be lucky enough to stargaze under a fine night sky. Find your passion and enjoy the island life.
If it is your first time here, hopping through the islands and beaches surrounding or around the island is a must. Preferably, the 3-hour tour includes Dakit-Dakit Island, a Japanese shipwreck of submarine chaser Mogami, Langub Beach, and the Coral Garden.
Of course, Malapascua would always be associated with diving for its abundance of thresher sharks all year round. The marine life of the island is very rich and mostly visited by tourists even abroad.
7-11:30 am – Cebu City to Maya Port
12-12:45 pm – Maya Port to Malapascua Island
1 pm – Lunch (market)
3 pm-6 pm – Land tour
D’ Avila’s Horizon
7 pm – Dinner (market)
6 am – Sunrise
7 am – Breakfast
8-11 am – Island Hopping
12 – lunch
4 pm – Land tour
6 pm – Sunset viewing
7 pm – Dinner (market)
8 pm – Night out
7 am – Breakfast
8 am – Stroll and swimming
12noon – Checkout, Lunch
12:45 pm – Back to Maya Port
1-6 pm – Cebu City
510 – Bus Fare (back and forth)
300 – Boat Fare (back and forth)
75 – Environmental Fee
1000 – Accommodation (2 days)
450 – Island Hopping (400 if you have your own gear)
2335 – Total excluding food and other personal expenses
For a local guide, motorcycle ride, or anything across the island, just contact Kuya Renato Santisas at his FB page or 09217997184.
P.S. Vlog to follow
*Some photos are not mine, they belong to the rightful owners (friends).