The Best of Malapascua Island: Getting There and What To Do?

Malapascua Island in Daanbantayan, Cebu, Philippines is considered a jewel for professional divers. The island has become famous because it’s a haven for beautiful and amazing coral reefs and diving destination in the Philippines.

That’s why a lot of foreigners are docking in and loves to stay in the island due to its sanctuary of white sand bar beaches, crystal clear waters, beautiful coral gardens and excellent local dive spots, as well as further-out sites including the Gato Island, Kalanggaman Island, Chocolate Island, Dakit-Dakit islet, Monad Shoal, and Kemod Shoal.

The Monad Shoal is an underwater plateau where thresher sharks and manta rays can be sighted on a regular basis. Plus, there’s more exceptional diving experiences to discover in the island including the close-up encounter with thresher sharks, hammerhead point, sleeping sharks, wreck diving, and, lots of great macro stuff.

Where is Malapascua Island?

Malapascua is a tiny island located in Visayan sea, it is only about 2.5 kilometers long and 1km wide, located across a shallow strait from the northernmost tip of mainland Cebu island. The island is covered by the insular barangay of Logon (part of the Daanbantayan municipality), with eight hamlets. –

How to get to Malapascua Island?

  • Travelers must head directly to the North bus terminal located at Subangdaku, Mandaue City. Now the terminal is located at the parking lot of SM City Cebu, beside the Radisson Hotel.
  • Ride a Ceres bus liner or other bus available as long as it is via Maya. Fare rate is Php 210.00. Travel time is roughly around 4 hours.
  • Otherwise, you can also opt to ride via a private Van, which is apparently available at the terminal. They will be leaving daily at your preferred time and fare cost is same with Maya buses. Note: Fare rate may change in recent times.
  • Take note that they have 2 ports now in Maya to Malapascua – the Old Maya Port and New Maya Port.
  • Ceres buses usually end up at the New Maya Port, while other buses at the Old Maya Port.
  • Take a short walk to the port or you can also opt to hire a motorcycle that cost you Php 20.00.
  • Go at the counter and settle your ticket.
  • Boat fare is Php 100.00/head with maximum of 7 persons per boat.
  • So, another cost to shell out is when low tide, a Php 20.00 as transfer fee is needed so you can dock near at the shore.
Getting there…

Malapascua Marine life

The huge diversity of marine life in Malapascua includes hammerhead sharks, white-tip sharks, mandarin fish, countless nudibranchs, pygmy seahorses, frog-fish, cuttlefish, endless crustacean species, beautiful unspoiled coral gardens and much more. Source:

clear waters of Malapascua Island

Wreck diving activities

One of the highlights of wreck diving at Malapascua Island is the Filipino passenger ferry wreck, Doña Marilyn which sunk about 20 years ago on October 1988 during a Typhoon while sailing from Manila to Cebu. Other wreck diving spots are Macario Wreck, Tapilon Japanese Wreck and Pioneer Japanese Wreck.

Side Trip: Malapascua Island to Kalanggaman Island

Before we had this entire Malapascua trip, our first route was actually in Kalanggaman Island about 2 hours away and the location is in Leyte. Try to imagine the possibilities we can for as long as we’re eager to do it anyway? But anyhow, we had our overnight camp at Kalanggaman Island prior to our short but unexpected Malapascua Island journey.

To get to know more of our unforgettable overnight experience at Kalanggaman Island in Palompon, Leyte, I made another blog post of it, wherein it mentions about exciting reasons why you need to visit the Kalanggaman Island. Kindly check it out.

Kalanggaman is a bird-like shaped virgin island with two-long pure white sandbars. A must-sought visit and perhaps this island should be included in your bucketlist.

The idea to go on side tripping was originated from our guides (boatmen) since they wanted us to have a fulfilling Island tour so they introduced us to sail away through Malapascua Island.

10 Exciting Reasons To Visit Kalanggaman Island In Leyte

An island located in Palompon Leyte is recently at the hot seat as one of the popular island destination in Visayas esp. this summer. 

We had an additional arrangement of Php 800.00 on top of prior pre-arranged pump boat cost which is Php 6,000.00 for gasoline purpose, would be enough to navigate us all through Malapascua Island.

Our adventure was made even more splendid when our boat was sailing across the shallow ocean heading to Malapascua. Because, we saw dolphins in front of our naked eyes for the very first time. So amazing. The dolphins were so arrogant to show off their impressive skills like jumping around us. Then we learned from that experience that dolphins are likely to enjoy when people are applauding at them.

Tags: Malapascua Island photos all inclusive vacation packages, Beaches in Cebu, Beach Resort Philippines and Cebu Beaches. Series of pictures at Malapascua Island accommodation, Malapascua Island Hotels in Isla resort Cebu, Malapascua Island Beach Resorts, Malapascua Island Diving & Resorts and much more vacation packages all inclusive at the island.

Malapascua Island Daanbantayan Cebu
The beautiful paradise of Malapascua Island.

Foreigners would love to stay at Malapascua Island not just because of its reef sanctuary but the paradise-like ambiance at the island. So peaceful and romantic. Apparently, you will notice them staying outdoor and prefers sunbathing (while locals can’t afford the heat of the sun), whilst some of them are seated at the beach chair, reading books/novels.

In a situation where we see foreigners staying at the beach, while most of them are not sensitive enough of displaying their body, like wearing topless at the beach, laying on the sandbar (some wearing no bra), which most definitely not appropriate to locals but for them it’s just normal.

Anyhow, kindly click each photo below to view full-width of it.

Essentials at Malapascua Island

  • Be sure to bring extra cash because there’s NO ATM machines at Malapascua.
  • If you’ve unforeseen situation like insufficient cash, the nearest ATM is at Bogo City, Cebu. You need to travel back by boat and then ride on a bus going to Bogo City proper.
  • Most establishments at Malapascua are not accepting credit cards or will charge you an extra of 5-10% if they do.
  • Maintain respect to foreign citizens and act  modesty at them. Don’t be too much vulgar even if there are certain foreign citizens wearing bikinis off at the beach as they’re definitely been reminded.
  • And foremost, there’s WiFi available to certain establishments or in some areas.
  • Be a responsible traveller. Be sure to throw your garbage at designated garbage bins.
  • The Island has observed a no plastic policy. They are not using straws.

Malapascua Establishments

Island Accommodation

The best way to achieve a hassle free trip is to make a reservation online ahead of time. In this regard, I have listed down below as a guide if you are searching for best hotel and beach resorts in Malapascua Island. Kindly check each one in the link provided so you can see more details and can compare their prices.

For travelers who wish a less hassle adventure, booking ahead of your scheduled trip is a good idea. Make sure to book a hotel accommodation available in Malapascua Island, Cebu. Besides, there are numerous resorts offering with different prices, one of the safest ways to secure your online bookings is to settle with

If you desire for far more adventure island ventures, please be informed that there are connecting boats which caters to different neighboring islands.

Malapascua Island Map


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Janeth is the Admin based in Mandaue City, Cebu, Philippines. A budget traveler wishes to get venture on different adventure memories, lifestyle and entrepreneurship, that's everything you need to know about Cebu and beyond. Please count me in as your blogger partner, Thanks!.


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