travel

Revisiting Kawasan Falls: Canyoneering in Badian

Canyoneering (also referred to as Canyoning) is an outdoor activity that involves hiking,  walking, climbing, jumping, rappelling and swimming between a series of canyons in order to descend from a significant height,  such as waterfalls. This activity makes the Kawasan Falls a famous destination in Cebu, offering a great adrenaline-filled experience for tourists and thrill-seekers.

Kawasan Falls lies between the borders of Alegria and Badian.  It is a  three-level waterfall system that boasts bright turquoise water coming down from the mountain springs of Alegria.

February 25, 2017 — There are numerous tour operators around Matutinao where one can book for a canyoneering activity. We booked the package that was offered by our accommodation, JoePro Adventures. What I liked about JoePro Adventures is that they pioneered the activity tours in Badian and their knowledge of the place shows in their efficiency at work. Their canyoneering package costs ₱1,500 (a price mandated by the government), inclusive of transportation going to the jump-off, gears, tour guide, and lunch.

 

Kawasan Falls Canyoneering Badian Cebu

 

Kawasan Falls Canyoneering Badian Cebu

 

Kawasan Falls Canyoneering Badian Cebu

 

Kawasan Falls Canyoneering Badian Cebu

 

There are two ways to do the canyoneering adventure. One is upstream, where the trek would start from Kawasan Falls’ first level, going up against the currents until the third level of Kawasan is reached. The second option is downstream, where the canyoning starts from Kanlaob River in Alegria to  Kawasan Falls in Badian. In our case, we started from Alegria and went downstream.

At around 8 am, we rode the habal-habal from the hostel going to the Alegria jump-off. After the registration, we trekked for 15-20 minutes before we officially jumped into the water. The first jump was about 8 feet, and then after that comes another. As the adventure went on, the height of the cliffs and canyons increased.

 

Kawasan Falls Canyoneering Badian Cebu

 

Kawasan Falls Canyoneering Badian Cebu

 

Kawasan Falls Canyoneering Badian Cebu

 

Kawasan Falls Canyoneering Badian Cebu

 

This whole adventure has tested my physical endurance. There was a point where I found it difficult to proceed with walking. After 4-5 cliff jumps, slides, cave encounters and swimming, my knees already felt like jelly. But resting for long wasn’t an option because we didn’t want to ruin the momentum.

TIP: Make sure to wear the safety gears properly, especially when there were lots of slippery rocks and narrow low-ceiling passages.  Also, be mindful of the leg straps! It could cut your skin especially after jumping to the water. (Don’t strap it too tight.)

It’s a constant battle between jumping or not. When there’s a great deal of trekking and cliff jumping, there’s also a great deal of fear and adrenaline rushing through the veins. The 30-feet jump was one for the books! I had the hardest time contemplating whether I’ll go for it or not. There was no perfect time to be ready, but what I learned is that the longer I  stood at the edge, looking down on where I’d land, the harder it was for me to take the jump. Indeed, fear is all in the mind!

Canyoneering Kawasan Falls Badian Cebu

 

Canyoneering Kawasan Falls Badian Cebu

 

At the second level of Kawasan Falls was the 50-feet jump. (Or is it over 50-feet?) I just went for it! By the end of this canyoneering, I noticed 2 huge contusions on the leg area. (Falling didn’t go smoothly. Lol!) After the landing, there were already people swimming at this level of the falls.

The 50-feet mark was the last jump we had to make.  We hiked down to the first level where there were some groups bamboo-rafting and other people swimming around the basin. Exhausted and drained, we rested for a while and were rewarded with a hearty lunch meal. Very much satisfied!

There were a handful of vendors and eateries at this part, and also comfort rooms available for those who would like to answer the call of nature. 😛 After eating, we swam a  little longer before finally heading back to Matutinao highway. The water was still unbelievably blue!

 

Canyoneering Kawasan Falls Badian Cebu

 

Canyoneering Kawasan Falls Badian Cebu

 

Canyoneering Kawasan Falls Badian Cebu

 

Canyoneering Kawasan Falls Badian Cebu

 

Canyoneering Kawasan Falls Badian Cebu

 

We headed back to the hostel after 20 minutes of walking from Kawasan Falls’ first level. The trail to Kawasan Falls is much different when I visited in August 2015. The water was not as clear back then, and the current of the stream was really strong we didn’t enjoy our stay that much. I’d suggest first half of the year is the ideal time to go to Kawasan Falls and brave the canyoneering activity.

Back at the hostel, I still couldn’t believe that I was able to jump that high!! (Bragging rights achieved. :P)  This whole adventure is definitely not for the fainthearted, that I guarantee.

 

Canyoneering Kawasan Falls Badian Cebu

 

Canyoneering Kawasan Falls Badian Cebu

 

Canyoneering Kawasan Falls Badian Cebu

 

Our stay at JoePro hostel was the cherry on top of this trip. If not for Ate Janice and Kuya Jerwin (hostel co-owner), Justice (our guide) and Noel (another friendly guide), I might not have been able to “face my fears”! I also would like to send my warmest hug to Jun and Edna (roommates and part of the guided tour) and also to Agatha (my courageous best friend)

 

 

Guide to Kawasan Falls Canyoneering

    • Waterproof your things. Equip yourselves with waterproof cameras/cases/dry bags. If in case you don’t have waterproof case, you may buy from Kuya Jerwin (₱150)
    • Don’t deal with non-registered tours. Only sign up with operators that are trustworthy and experienced. Tours with prices below ₱1,500 are not legit.
    • Rent a locker. You may leave your things at JoePro Hostel. Just rent the locker space for a certain amount.
    • Start early. And finish early. Tours are open as early as 6AM. Last tour at 2PM.
    • Wear the safety gears. Please.
    • Listen to your guide. Do not go ahead of them. Wait up for your group.
    • Bring some money.  On the halfway of the canyoneering, there’s a barbecue grilling station! Since canyoneering takes 4 hours, have yourself a savory stick of your favorite grilled food first.
    • Chill at Kawasan Falls. Rent a bamboo raft for ₱500/group.

 

 

Things to Bring

  • Waterproof bag / dry bag
  • Action camera with waterproof casing
  • Extra money

 

Contact Persons

JoePro Adventures (Canyoneering)

Person to look for: Kuya Jerwin
Mobile Number: +639177196563
Website: http://joeproadventures.com/

 

Itinerary and Budget

Note: This is an itinerary fit for 2 persons during a 2017 trip. Be informed that this itinerary covers the whole Dalaguete-Badian-Bantayan Island Adventure.

 

February 24 (Day 1) 5:45 AM ETD from Manila ₱1,400/head (roundtrip airfare from seatsale)
7:00 AM ETA to Mactan Airport
7:30 AM ETD to Cebu South Terminal ₱300/ride (GrabCar to Cebu South Terminal)
8:05 AM ETA in Cebu South Terminal / eat breakfast
8:45 AM ETD from South terminal to Dalaguete ₱160/head (Bus fare to Dalaguete)
11:25 AM ETA in Dalaguete / ride habal habal ₱100/head (motorcycle ride to jumpoff)
12:40 PM ETA in Osmena Peak jumpoff/start trek ₱30/head (entrance fee)
1:05 PM Reach the peak / take photos
2:00 PM Back to registration area / ride habal-habal
2:20 PM Eat lunch at market
2:45 PM ETD from Market to Cambais Falls ₱30/head (entrance fee)
3:15 PM ETA in Cambais Falls / Start Trek
3:30 PM Swim / Take photos
4:30 PM Trek back
4:50 PM ETD to Cancalanog Falls
5:10 PM ETA in Chapel near Cancalanog / trek
5:20 PM Arrival at Cancalanog / take photos ₱30/head (entrance fee)
5:35 PM Back to chapel
5:45 PM ETD to Badian ₱600/head (from Dalaguete to Badian tour from Kuya Jun)
6:20 PM ETA to JoePro Hostel / check-in ₱300/head (lodging fee)
7:20 PM Dinner near chapel of Kawasan / wash
8:00 PM Socials
10:00 PM Sleep
February 25 (Day 2) 6:45 AM Wake up / prep
7:30 AM Breakfast / wear gears ₱1,500/head (canyoneering package)
8:20 AM Habal habal to canyoneering jumpoff
8:45 AM Registration / start trek
9:20 AM Canyoneering
12:40 PM End of activity / Reach Kawasan falls / lunch
1:20 PM Walk back to Joepro from Kawasan Falls
1:40 PM Reach Joepro / rest a while / wash / pack up
3:45 PM ETD to Cebu City ₱160/head (aircon bus from Badian to Cebu City)
7:45 PM ETA to South Cebu Terminal
8:00 PM Eat / roam around EMall
8:45 PM Check in at TMS Lodge / wash ₱550/room 12hrs (2pax)
9:30 PM Sleep
February 26 (Day 3) 5:30 AM Wake up / prep
6:10 AM Ride 01k jeepney to north bus terminal ₱8/head (jeepney fare)
6:30 AM ETA Cebu North Terminal /breakfast
7:00 AM ETD to Hagnaya Port ₱160/head (Ceres Aircon bus to Hagnaya Port)
10:45 AM ETA Hagnaya Port, Pay for Ferry / eat lunch ₱170/head (ferry); ₱10/head (terminal fee)
11:15 AM Boarding ferry to Bantayan Islands
11:35 AM Departure from Hagnaya Port
12:45 PM ETA Sta. Fe Port
12:53 PM Ride tricycle to Kota Beach Resort ₱20/head (tricycle to Kota Beach)
1:05 PM ETA Kota Beach Resort / Check in ₱900/room (non-aircon for 2pax)
2:00 PM Settle / rest / Rent Scooter ₱350/rental (scooter 24hours use)
3:00 PM ETD to Ogtong Cave
3:15 PM ETA Ogtong Cave / Swim ₱100/head (entrance fee)
4:30 PM ETD to Sto Nino Church
4:40 PM Eat ihaw / drive back
5:20 PM Back at Kota Beach / take photos / swim
7:30 PM Dinner at Kota / socials
9:45 PM Sleep
February 28 (Day 5) 6:00 AM Check out / ETD to Airport ₱100/ride (Uber to airport)
6:30 AM Check in at airport
9:00 AM Departure to Manila
10:10 AM ETA Manila
ESTIMATED EXPENSES ₱ 5,420 / head (not including food, airfare and other optional fees)

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