Malapascua Island: A Scuba Divers Paradise

Malapascua Island is one of the top destinations in the Philippines for scuba diving

The only place in the world you can dive with thresher sharks, located off the north coast of Cebu Island,

Not only does it have amazing diving spots but some of the best beaches the country has to off

malapascua island

Where Is Malapascua Island

where is malapascua island

Malapascua Island is at the far north tip of Cebu Island, around a 3 hours of road travel, a 1 hour boat ride will bring you to paradise, it’s seems far but it’s worth it when you get there

Malapascua has some of the best beaches, best diving spots in Asia, as you can see from the picture above it has a many beautiful white sandy beaches, clear blue water perfect for not just diving but swimming and snorkeling

Don’t worry, at the bottom of this page we will give you all the info on how to get here

Things To Do On Malapascua Island


 Most famous for it’s diving spots, beautiful beaches and the clearest blue waters in Asia

  • Beach Bumming

malapascua island beaches

With it’s beautiful white sandy beaches, relaxing under the sun is always a great option

Malapascua has several white sandy beaches, the largest being Bounty Beach where many of the dive resorts and beach resorts are located on

There are many other white sandy beaches all across the island, with the island being so small it’s easy to explore any of them by simple walking or taking a tricycle ride

  • Scuba Diving

If you know about Malapascua and reading this then your likely looking for the many diving spots, we won’t name all 28 of them but here are the:

TOP 10 Diving Spots in Malapascua Island

malapascua diving

  • Monad Shoal

monad shaol malapascua island

Monad Shoal is the only place in the world where you can dive with Thresher Sharks every day, there are also Manta Rays here on a regular basis during the year too

  • Gato Island

gato island malapascua island

Gato Island is actually a marine reserve, with no fishing allowed in the area, the marine life is abundant, so expect a huge vary of sea life here including sea snakes, cuttlefish, sea horses and many more

  • Lighthouse

lighthouse malapascua island

One of the many night dives available, specifically to see the beautiful mandarinfish and the lighthouse dive is one of the few places in the world you can see these fish

  • Lapus Lapus

lapus lapus malapascua island

A beautiful coral garden only 8 meters below the waves, full of untouched corals and plenty of marine life like frogfish and lion fish just to name a few

  • North Point

north point malapascua island

A soft coral that has a wide range of different fish like frogfish, several types of crabs including zebra crabs and candy crabs

  • Chocolate Island

chocolate island malapascua island

A shallow dive site perfect for you macro photographers, expect to see some sea snakes, sea moths and eels

  • Bugtong Bato

bugtong bato malapascua island

Very close to Malapascua Island are the resident batfish and squid

  • Kimud Shoal

kimud shaol malapascua island

Home to over 200 hammerhead sharks that can be seen during the months of December all the way til May, sometimes dolphins, thresher sharks, devil rays and turtles can be seen here all through the year

  • Calanggaman Island

calanggaman Island malapascua island

A small island with beautiful white sandy beaches, but go under the water and you will see rays, tuna, barracuda and clown fish

  • Dona Marilyn Wreck

dona marylin malapascua island

An old passenger ferry that sunk more than 20 years ago in a typhoon, now is home to many species of fish including marble rays, blue spotted rays, white tip sharks and a giant moray eel has made this ferry it’s home

The average cost of 1 dive is ONLY $35

Where To Stay

where to stay malapascua island

Most of the accommodation here on the island are diving resorts, as it’s a huge attraction for divers

The average price of a room per night is $50, below is a list of places to stay on Malapascua

Malapascua Dive Resorts

Here is a list for you guys who are looking to stay at a dive resort

evolution dive resort

Evolution Dive and Beach Resort

A 40 minute ride from the ferry port, this diver resort is right on the beach, also offering rooms with balcony, a restaurant and free wifi in public areas

The dive resort can arrange pickup from the airport if you need it, just simply contact them after you have made your booking

  • Twin Rooms From: 1800 PHP
  • Double Rooms From: 3000 PHP

little mermaid dive resort

Little mermaid Dive Resort

Being right on the beach the Little Mermaid offers not just sun and white sandy beach to guests but is a dive center that can arrange a trip to one of the many dive spots around Malapascua Island

  • Deluxe Double Room With Fan From: 2000 PHP

hippocampus beach resort malapascua island

Hippocampus Beach Resort

Located right on Bounty Beach, this resort is perfect for divers and travelers wanting to be close to the town center to enjoy it’s nightlife and of course some shopping

  • Standard Double Room From: 3000 PHP
  • Superior Double Room From: 5500 PHP
  • Deluxe Double Room From: 8500 PHP

buena vida resort malapascua island

Buena Vida Resort and Spa

Located on Bounty Beach, a short walk from the ferry port, the resort and diving centers, offering guests a restaurant, spa and massage

  • Standard Double Room With Fan From: 2300 PHP
  • Standard Double With Air Con From: 3100 PHP

ocean vida resort malapascua island

Ocean Vida Resort

The resort is right on Bounty Beach, offering guests not only access to a beautiful white sandy beach but having a restaurant, garden and massage

  • Standard Double Room From: 3000 PHP
  • Deluxe Sea View Room From: 3800 PHP

malapascua legend resorts

Malapascusa Legend Water Spots and Resort

Located on a beautiful white sandy beach, your close to paradise staying here, with having a restaurant and outdoor pool for guests and bbq facilities, this resort is a perfect option to stay

  • Twin Room With Pool View From: 2500 PHP
  • Deluxe Twin Room From: 3500 PHP
  • Studio With Sea View From: 5000 PHP

kokays maldito dive resort

Kokay’s Maldito Dive Resort

The dive center is located on the beachfront with only a short walk from the main ferry port on the island

Offering guests a restaurant, massage and spa and amazing views of the sunsets

The dive resort can offer airport pickup that can be arranged by contacting them after you have booked your stay

Double Rooms From: 3500 PHP

Malapascua Beach Resorts

Here is a list of beach resorts in Malapascua Island

tepanee beach resort

Tepanee Beach resort

A small beach resort with only 15 rooms, a beautiful white sandy beach that reaches out onto a small island

The resort has a restaurant, water sports activities for guests, this is one of the most beautiful beach resorts in the Philippines and a must for those that want to come to Malapascusa Island

  • Standard Double Room From: 2600 PHP
  • Superior Cottage From: 2900 PHP
  • Deluxe Cottage With Sea Views From: 3800 PHP

thresher cove resort

Thresher Cove Resort

Located at the far north of Malapascua Island, the resort has a beautiful private white sandy beach for guests, a outdoor pool.

This is one of the best beach resorts in Malapascua, if not one of the best in cebu, with rooms overlooking the beach and sea, it has a real wow factor and you won’t want to leave once your here

  • Executive Double With Sea Views From: 5500 PHP
  • One Bedroom Villa From: 8000 PHP

blue corals beach resort

Blue Corals Beach Resort

Located on the beach very close to the ferry port, the resort offers guests not only a private beach area, water sports activities but has it’s own resaurant, a bbq area if you want to cook your own and a nice sun terrace to catch some some

  • Bungalow With Fan From: 1500 PHP
  • Standard Double Room With Fan From: 1700 PHP
  • Standard Suite Room From: 1800 PHP
  • Deluxe Suite With Sea Views From: 2800 PHP
  • Deluxe Double Rooms With Sea Views From: 3000 PHP

moonlight resort

Moonlight Resort

The resort is set in an eco style, with many trees around the property, only a 5 minute walk to the nearest beach

  • Standard Twin Room From: 1300 PHP
  • Deluxe Fan Room From: 1500 PHP
  • Superior Double From: 2300 PHP

angelina beach

Angelina Beach Resort

With only having 4 rooms at this beach resort, this is one for those wanting to enjoy a private white beach with fewer guests around, perfect for a couples romantic break away from a busy life

Double Rooms From: 2500 PHP

mangrove oriental resort

Mangrove Oriental Resort
Other Places To Stay

Here are more ideas on where to stay, these are more cheaper options but still close to the beach and restaurants

mar and ems bamboo cottages
Mar and Ems Bamboo Cottages

Stay in a bamboo cottage close to the shopping areas and beaches, all cottages come with free wifi and balcony area, the closest beach is only a 10 minute walk away

  • Double Room With Private Bathroom From: 1500 PHP
  • Budget Double Room From: 1500 PHP
malapascua starlight resort
Malapascua Starlight Resort

Located close to the ferry port and only a 5 minute walk to the nearest beach, the starlight resort is a great place to stay as an alternative to a beach resort

  • Deluxe Room With 2 Queen Beds (good for 4 pax) From: 2400 PHP
  • Standard Queen Room From: 1900 PHP
  • Deluxe Triple Room From: 2200 PHP
  • Deluxe King Room From: 2800 PHP
slams garden resort
Slams Garden Resort

A small garden resort with outdoor pool and restaruant, with only a few minutes walk away from 2 public beaches

  • Standard Double Room With Fan From: 2000 PHP
  • Superior Twin Room From: 2400 PHP

 

malapascua garden resort

Malapascua Garden Resort

Located between 2 beaches, both only a few minutes walk away, this resort is perfect for those wanting to visit Malapascua on a budget

  • Budget Rooms From: 1400 PHP
  • Superior Double Rooms With Fan From: 1500 PHP
  • Deluxe Double Rooms From: 2000 PHP
  • Superior Deluxe Rooms From: 2200 PHP
  • Family Rooms (good for 4 pax) From: 2800 PHP

mr kwiitz resort malapascua island

Mr Kwiiz Resort

Located a little further into the town, but still only a 10 minute walk to Bounty Beach, this resort is perfect for those wanting budget accommodation in Malapascua Island

There is free wifi, a restaurant and coffee shop for guests

  • Budget Double Room From: 570 PHP
  • Deluxe Aircon Room From: 1466 PHP
  • Family Room (good for 4 pax) From: 1800 PHP

Where To Eat?

where to eat malapascua island

Most the dive centers and beach resorts have restaurants for guests, but you can also check out our list of top 10 restaurants in Malapascua Island

Ristorante Angelina Restaurant malapascua island

Ristorante Angelina Restaurant

Located at the Angelina Beach Resort, serving fresh italian dishes to it’s guests and visitors

Ocean Vida Restaurant malapascua island

Ocean Vida Restaurant

Located in the Ocean Vida Dive Resort, this restaurant serves international dishes including European foods, Filipino and Thai food.

Having beautiful views of the beach and sea from the terraced restaurant

Amihan Restaurant malapascua island

Amihan Restaurant

Owned by an Italian chef, you can expect some real traditional and fresh Italian food

Located next to the Tepanee Resort, it’s easy to get to from anywhere on the island

craic house bar and bistro

The Craic House Bar and Bistro

A very popular Irish Bar & Bistro proudly serving home made foods from burgers to sausages, to their own recipie Irish Soda Bread, it’s also a bar so expect a warm welcome and luck of the Irish

oscars bar and restaurant

Oscars Bar and Restaurant

A rooftop bar and restaurant with amazing views over the beach and sea

Kokay’s Maldito Restaurant

A popular restaurant not just to it’s diving guests but other visitors to Malapascua Island, serving pizza, Filipino food and pasta

La Isla Bonita Restaurant malapascua island

La Isla Bonita Restaurant

Serving Thai food, pizza and also has a buffet style dinner service

Bakau Kiwi Restaurant

A family run restaurant, it’s only a small place but the food is something not to be missed

Mabuhay Foods Restaurant malapascua island

Mabuhay Foods Restaurant

Located on bounty beach serving Asian and European foods

Dano Restaurant malapascua island

Dano Restaurant

Serving a traditional Filipino breakfast and freshly made shakes

Malapascua Legend Restaurant

Great for a night out with live music during the evening

Getting To Malapascua Island?

getting to malapascua island

As you can see  from the map below, Malapascua is located right at the tip of north Cebu,so assuming you know how to get to Mactan International Airport,we will describe the best ways to get to the island from Mactan and Cebu City

map of malapascua island

So here are your 4 options on getting to Malapascua Island, the first part of your journey is to arrive at the ferry port to take the boat over to the island, here’s how to get to the ferry port

  • By Taxi

Typically if your coming from the airport or Cebu City, you will have to negotiate the price with the taxi driver

Also for those of you bring your own gear, you might have a fair few bits of luggage so a taxi is probably your best bet

If your coming straight from the airport, we seriously advice that you take a WHITE taxi as the fare will be cheaper than the yellow taxi’s

Cost Of Getting A Taxi To Maya Ferry Port: 2500 – 5000 Peso One Way (this depends on where you get the tax from, and your negotiating skills)

Direct From The Airport: 4800 Peso (Getting a taxi at the airport will be significantly higher fare)

Travel Time: 3 – 4 Hours

  • By Bus

If your planning on going by bus to the ferry port, the first thing you need to do is get to the North Bus Terminal to board a bus going to Daanbantayan, here is a map of where the bus terminal is

cebu north bus terminalDon’t worry, if your at the airport, you can just get a taxi to take you to the bus terminal

Bus Schedule: Buses Run 24 Hours A Day From Cebu To Maya Ferry Port, Every Hour

Cost Of Getting The Bus: 200 Peso One Way

Travel Time: 4 Hours

  • Arrange Pickup With Hotel

Many of the hotels, dive resorts do offer a airport pickup service, basically it will be a V-Hire van (mini bus) that will pick you up from the airport and bring you directly over to the ferry port

This is probably the fastest and more convenient way to get to the ferry port, but it will cost you alot more than getting a taxi or a bus

Once you have settled on what way your getting to Malapascua, the next thing you need to know is, the ferry times of the crossing, so below are the ferry schedules

Cost Of Arranging Pickup At Hotel By Private Transport + Private Boat: around 4500 – 6000 Peso One Way (price will depend on the individual resort or diver center)

  •  Ferry Timetable From Cebu To Malapascua

Because there is no set schedule, the boats will just leave Maya ferry port when they are full, we suggest that you get there late morning or early afternoon time so your not waiting a long time for the boat to fill

The Cost Of A Public Boat: 80 Peso Per Person + 10 Peso Port Fee

You should be aware, that if you don’t want to wait around for the public boat, it is possible to get a private boat once your at maya ferry port, simple by asking the ticket office

The Cost Of A Private Boat: 1500 Peso One Way

Travel Time Across The Sea From Maya To Malapascua: around 30 – 45 minutes

Helpful Information


  • Are There ATM’s On The Island?

No, the island is very small and does not have any atm’s

  • Can I Bring Foreign Currency And Change It There?

Yes, there are 2 banks located on the island where you can change your home currency for Philippine Peso

  • Can I Bring Travelers Checks?

I will admit, it’s very hard to change these here in the Philippines, we don’t advice you to bring these with you

  • Can I Use My Credit Card?

As far as i know, there are only 2 places on the island that accept credit cards, one being Thresher Shark Divers Center and the other being Oscars Restaurant.

I would personally just bring enough cash to last you your stay here, most rooms do have a safe to keep your money in

  • How Much Is A Meal On The Island?

As with anywhere in the Philippines, going out for dinner is very cheap compared to other places in the world,

Malapascua is a little bit more expensive than the main island of Cebu as everything has to be shipped over from the main land

But as a n example, you can enjoy a night out with dinner and drinks for around $40

  • Is The Water Safe To Drink?

In the Philippines, we do not drink the tap water but we buy bottled water. But don’t worry you can buy bottled water at restaurants and stores on the island

  • Is Internet Available On The Island?

Yes, some of the resorts do have internet for public use

  • What If I Want To Stay In Cebu For A While? What About Visa’s?

On entry to the Philippines, most countries are given a 30 day tourist visa upon arrival at the airport,

if you wish to extend that, then you can either at the airport (they will give you 59 days visa, but you will need to pay for the extension)

Or you can visit one of the immigration offices in Cebu,

If your coming for a diving internship at one of the diving centers here, they normally will sort out your visa for you before you arrive or during your stay

  • Can I Bring My Own Scuba Gear?

Yes, your more than welcome to bring your own things with you, including any diving gear you may have

  • Can I Rent Scuba Gear?

Yes, you can rent scuba gear during your stay on the island

  • What If I Arrive At The Airport Late And Need Somewhere To Stay That Night Before Going To Malapascua The Next Day?

We understand that is it very far to get to Malapascua and may of you might be arriving in Cebu either late afternoon or in the evening and wish to stay the night in Cebu before making your way to Malapascua

Here is a list of Cheap Hotels In Mactan Island

Don’t Forget To Visit Cebu’s other amazing islands:

 

Cebu Tour Packages – Take a look at some of the amazing tours you can enjoy while on your vacation to Cebu

Malapascua Island Page Resources

Accommodation Pictures Source: Agoda.com and Booking.com

Local Government Website: Daanbantayan Municipal Government


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