Cebu is a prime destination for good reason. The province has many beautiful islands. One of which is Bantayan. The island has pristine, white-sand beaches and clear, cerulean waters. Its idyllic ambiance and laidback charm make it the ideal place to forget everything.
Located in Northern Cebu, there are regular bus and boat connections that make it easy to access. From the North Bus Terminal, board a bus bound for Hagnaya Port which will cost P165. Once at the port, board a boat going to Santa Fe, Bantayan. The fare is around P170 plus P10 for the terminal fee.
If you’re interested in visiting, here are some of the places to visit and things to do.
WHAT'S IN THIS GUIDE?
Chill in Ogtong Cave
This small cave in a resort is worth a short stop if you’re in the area. The pool inside allows you to cool off after a day of exploring the island and getting a tan on one of the beaches. There is an entrance fee of about P100.
Get a Glimpse of History at Saints Peter and Paul Church
Beaches aren’t the only attractions in Bantayan. You can learn more about the island’s history too. Visit the Saints Peter and Paul Church to get a glimpse of the past. The church was built centuries ago in 1580. It is one of the oldest churches not just on the island, but the entire region.
Cebu’s islands are some of the most beautiful. Just off the coast of Bantayan are places you shouldn’t miss. Virgin Island is a good place to snorkel and free dive because of its clear waters. It is privately owned and has an entrance fee of P500 for the first two people and P100 per person for the next few. The other stops you can include are the islands of Hilantagaan and Kinatarkan. Wade in the aquamarine waters, laze on the shore, snorkel or just chill during your stay. A day tour boat rental costs around P1000. If you just want to spend half a day, the rate’s P700.
Chill at Kota Beach and Sandbar
Bantayan Island has an idyllic atmosphere that makes you forget your worries. If you want a slow day of just relaxing, head on over to Kota Beach and Sandbar. This destination has a laidback vibe, making it a good place to chill, dip in the waters to cool off, sunbathe and do nothing. However, this place can get crowded at certain times of the day and especially during summer. You can add this stop to your tricycle tour that costs around P700.
Learn more about Bantayan’s history with a trip to this destination. The park used to be a Spanish fort. The Spaniards had it built centuries ago at around the 1790s. Take a leisurely stroll around and imagine what the place was like during colonial times.
Explore Omagieca Mangrove Garden
This mangrove garden is another non-beach attraction to include in your itinerary. You’ll learn more about the importance of mangroves to the surrounding ecosystem in Bantayan. Go on relaxing walks around the garden for a stress-releasing time. Make sure to go up the tower to get bird’s eye views of the area.
Go on an Ultimate Adrenaline Rush by Skydiving
If you want an exhilarating experience after relaxing for a few days, skydiving might be what you’re looking for. Look for Skydive Cebu during your stay. Their rate for tandem skydiving is around P18000. You’ll go through the process from safety to what to do, etc. The activities take around two hours.
Beach-hopping and Bumming Around
Bantayan Island is the ultimate chill place. It has many beaches where you can laze on. Paradise Beach is a must-visit because of its fine, white shore, and glass-like waters. Go swimming, chilling and sunbathing during your visit. There’s an entrance fee of P50.
Mayet’s Beach is another noteworthy stop. Its white-sand shore and turquoise waters will entice you. Relax and unwind here, and go swimming to cool off. This destination has a P40 entrance fee. Other places where you can enjoy a lazy day beach-hopping include Alice Beach and Sugar Beach. You can hire a tricycle with a driver for up to P700 for this or rent a bike for around P200 to go on your own.
Watch the Majestic Sunset
The island has one of the best sunsets in Cebu. After a day of exploring, kick back, relax, get a cold drink and sit on the shore to watch the blue sky melt into a dark orange and then a faint red to cap off your trip.
Where to Stay on Bantayan Island
The island is small and easy to explore. There are several affordable and high-end accommodations in Santa Fe. They are within proximity of the beach so even if you don’t have beachfront accommodation, it’s easy to just walk or bike to the shore.
Here are some of the top resorts in Bantayan Island as rated by Agoda users (as of January 2019).
- Anika Island Resort. ✅ CHECK RATES & AVAILABILITY
- Kandugyap House by the Sea. ✅ CHECK RATES & AVAILABILITY
- Maia’s Beach Resort. ✅ CHECK RATES & AVAILABILITY
- Amihan Beach Cabanas Resort. ✅ CHECK RATES & AVAILABILITY