Philippines

Philippines

Top things to do in Bantayan Island

One of the most popular honeymoon destinations, beautiful beaches, amazing seafood, yet still almost untouched nature. The Philippines. This place should be on a bucket list for everyone who loves to visit incredible beaches, beautiful coral reefs and the amazing under-water diving world! The Philippines are simply amazing. People are so sweet and genuine; the cuisine is delicious, and the weather is great almost all year round! The Philippines are also quite big and sometimes it can be tricky to find, where it is worth to go. I have been only once in the Philippines, and we did research on where to go, and one of the secret hideaway islands is called Bantayan Island, located in the northern part of Cebu. That is why I wrote down the top places to visit in Bantayan Island, and how to get there. It is a paradise on Earth. Thanks Lord, for these beautiful places on this planet.

How to get to Bantayan Island?

Fly to The Mactan-Cebu International Airport. From the Cebu airport, the easiest thing is to take a taxi to the Hagnaya Port. There will be plenty of taxi drivers waiting at the airport, but always bargain with them! Alternatively, download the app Uber or Grab (used mostly in Asia). If you are on a budget, take a bus called myBus to the North Bus Terminal which leaves every 30 minutes from 7am-11am, and every 20 minutes from 11am-9:30pm for a fare of only P25. At the North Bus Terminal take another bus called Ceres bus to the Hagnaya Port. It will take approximately four hours. When you get to the Hagnaya Port, take a ferry to Santa Fe Port. Bear in mind that the first ferry leaves at 3am and the last one at 5.30pm. When you get to Santa Fe, you can either walk to your hotel or take a tricycle (also known as Tuc Tuc). Some hotels also arrange transport, so check it beforehand, and they will be there waiting for you.

Where to stay in Bantayan island?

Even though Bantayan island is quite small, there is plenty of resorts to choose from. We have looked at Booking.com, and Trip Advisor to find the most suitable resort for us. As we are students, we did not want to spend a fortune, but still, we wanted something nice and special. Then we found this amazing resort called Beach Placid Resort & Restaurant that is located F. Roska Street, Santa Fe, Bantayan Island, Cebu, 6047 Philippines and I can highly recommend it. It was just as authentic and beautiful as you can imagine it to be. We lived in a typical cottage with a view over the sea and private beach just for ourselves. The service in the resort was great and they also had own restaurant. It was just the perfect first couple holiday!

Where to go on the Bantayan Island?

#1 Boat trip to Virgin Island

On our very first day, our hotel personnel asked us if we want to do a boat trip to Virgin Island. We agreed, and the next day after we woke up, they asked us if we are ready to go. We were surprised, and actually, it was a private boat trip. It was amazing! We saw beautiful beaches and turquoise water. If you make it to Bantayan Island, definitely include a trip to Virgin Island to your to-do list, because this is a must. I think it is one of the most beautiful places that I have ever been to. Just look at the pictures. There is plenty of activities that you can do at Virgin Island from snorkelling, cliff diving, kayaking or simply relaxing on the beach and enjoying the moment of your life. There is also a restaurant there so you do not have to worry about the food. Our hotel personnel came to pick us up in around 6 hours. It was just an amazing day!

#2 Lagoon, Santa Fe

This is actually a quite secret spot, not known by many tourists. At least we haven’t heard any recommendations about it on the Internet. However, we were lucky to get to know some locals who were actually very sweet and took us to this super beautiful place – Lagoon in Bantayan Island. It is incredible. Just have a look at these pictures.

#3 Ogtong Cave Resort

Cool off from motorcycle ride at the underground cave of Ogtong Cave Resort! It is an absolutely amazing experience. You can swim in the cave, and also use swimming pools at the resort. It looks very nice there!

#4 Paradise beach

Continue your ride around the island and stop at the Paradise beach. It is a very nice and quiet beach. Just relax and enjoy tanning!

#4 Santa Fe Butterfly garden

We have decided to also visit The Butterfly garden in Santa Fe. It is very nice, and I recommend it. The best thing is to “release butterflies”!

#5 Peter and Paul Church

For those interested in history, architecture and spiritual experience visit St. Peter and Paul Church, Catholic church made of corals and stones.

What to do in Bantayan Island?

There is a plenty of activities that you can do while exploring beautiful Bantayan Island. For your inspiration I made a list for you:

  1. Rent a motorcycle and drive around the coast
  2. Swimming & Tanning
  3. Sky diving
  4. Cliff diving
  5. Snorkeling
  6. Kayaking
  7. Enjoy the Night Life in Santa Fe – MJ Square
  8. Dancing at the Fiesta
  9. Beer pong at the Liquido

Where to eat in Bantayan Island?

We absolutely loved eating out in Philippines. The food is so delicious and people in the hospitality industry here are super nice. Definitely recommend to eat in following places:

  1. Bantayan Burrito Company
  2. Coucou Bar & Restaurant
  3. MJ Square
  4. HR Native restaurant
  5. Caffe of Paul