Moalboal & Oslob

20160827_09455120160827_09581520160825_20301620160826_112533To get to Moalboal is relatively easy from Manila. All you have to do is take a flight from Manila to Cebu City which should run you about 2000pp or $40 usd. Then you’ll take a 3 hour bus to Moalboal, which should only be 116pp. The scenery while on the bus is quite beautiful too, it goes from trees to ocean and back again. Once you get off the bus make sure to walk away from all the men trying to get you on their tricycles. We actually had a guy throw his popsicle at us because we didn’t want to ride with him. But the ride from the main city to the beach area should only be about 30pp/ person.

Moalboal is a beautiful beach town with a few good restaurants like Pleasure Café or something of the like, they serve a great spicy red curry and the pork belly is delightful as well. If you’re looking for a night out, then head down a few paces to Chilis bar. They have an amazing view of the sea, Wi-Fi, pool tables, and great music all day and night. The prices are all slightly more expensive in Moalboal, with a San Miguel Light being 65pp, and dinner will usually run around 300pp.  We stayed at the Marina Hostel which ran us 300pp/night, the rooms all only had 2 beds in them so it wasn’t just sleeping in a big room with strangers, and if there’s only 2 of you then it’s close to getting a private room for dirt cheap. The only downfall was there isn’t any air-conditioning, but there is a huge fan above you so it’s really not bad.

During the day we went canyoning at Kawasan Falls, for about 1000pp they take you out with a guide and you jump off 10m, 12m, and 5m cliffs with a few swings and a slide mixed in there too. With the tour we went on they wanted us to either choose if we wanted to go under the falls now or later, we chose the former and it really was an experience. They take you out on a bamboo raft (which you should negotiate to have included in your fee). The guide has your party all lay down, then he takes you under the falls a few times over. Once you get over how cold it is, it’s actually quite nice but it does batter you up a bit. After a few jumps they serve a beautiful lunch, and you’re able to swim around in the turquoise lagoon, and then you head back to the town. I made the huge mistake of landing on my booty after the larger jumps and I have the bruises and bruised tailbone to prove it. If you wish to dive, Cebu Dive Center is one of the best places to go. The owner Cameron is American, and a pleasure to banter with, not to mention the prices from what I’ve seen are fantastic. They do an open water course for 10,000pp, and I’ve been kicking myself for not doing it there since it’s the cheapest that I’ve seen so far in the Philippines. If you want to just do a fun dive I believe the boys paid about 1000pp/ dive. Moalboal is known for the sardine dive which is right off the shore and there are millions of sardines swimming about. This is also where James and Neil saw some turtles, which I have heard about, a million times since then. However, be aware that you could be waiting a few days to dive with this dive center, because they’re quite busy even during the off season. I had come down with a nasty cold complete with a high fever and cough, and if I hadn’t gotten sick I would’ve gone ahead and done my certification here.

Overall this is great town to stop by on your way to see the whalesharks in Oslob, with the beautiful scenery and friendly locals you really can’t go wrong here.

From Moalboal to Oslob is quite painless all you have to do is take a bus. Once you’ve arrived they will drop you off at the pier and it’s just a short walk down to the hostel. We chose to stay at Sharkey’s hostel, and though it’s under construction it still was okay but the staff is really the highlight of the place. A small Filipino woman who we all lovingly called Mama is the manager there and she will bend over backwards to help you and feed you biscuits and tell you stories all day. Mama was a midwife and care taker of the city until she retired a few years ago, and started managing her sons hostel. The room itself is a cement box with a few semi decent beds in it, a couple of fans and a shared bathroom. The real highlight of the city is the whale sharks. Before going out to see them I had very low standards, I was under the impression that we would see a few that were far away and that would be it, thankfully it was the complete opposite. The sharks are everywhere, they say to keep a 4m distance from them but that was near impossible. Just the sheer size of them is amazing not to mention the grace and beauty. After it was all over the guys and I headed over the singing man café. We called it so because all of their waiters serenade you throughout the whole meal, and whether you enjoyed it or not they’re the cheapest breakfast with a beach view. If you don’t care about the view, then there is a great little café right next to Sharkey’s with a good breakfast for about 80 pesos. After breakfast we headed out to the island just a 15 minute boat ride to Simulon island. Here we found the most beautiful turquoise water and white sand beach that I’ve ever seen. I could try to explain the beauty but it’s almost impossible. You truly have to visit to be able to understand. After a full day of activities Mama booked us a ferry out the next day and we were off to Bohol!

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