Aguinid Falls is one of the most epic waterfalls in Cebu, with eight incredible levels of turquoise blue water and rock formations to explore. It might not be the most popular waterfall in South Cebu, that award goes to Kawasan Falls, but it’s definitely up there and a must-visit Cebu tourist spot that you need to add to your itinerary!
A lot of guides will only take you as far as level five, but we had amazing guides that took us all the way up to level eight. We spent hours pushing our limits past each level and having the time of our lives. Having been twice already, Aguinid Falls is up there as one of our favourite places to visit in Cebu. Keep reading to find out how to get there, how much it costs and what to expect at Aguinid Falls.
HOW TO GET TO AGUINID FALLS IN SAMBOAN
Aguinid Falls is in the little coastal town of Samboan, around 140km from Cebu City. It’s a long and windy drive through the mountains and will take up to 4 hours to get there, so we recommend staying in either Moalboal or Oslob, at least for the night. Moalboal is the main tourist town in South Cebu and is 56km or around an hour’s drive from Aguinid Falls. Oslob is closer, only around a 30-minute drive, but the accommodation and restaurants are limited in Oslob.
From Cebu City you can get a public bus headed to either Oslob or Moalboal from the Cebu South Bus Terminal. It’s the cheapest option if you’re on a budget and will cost you around ₱150-200 (USD $4) one way. From Oslob or Moalboal you’ll then want to rent a scooter to get to Aguinid Falls, which you can usually find for around ₱400 (USD $8).
AGUINID FALLS ENTRANCE FEE
The entrance fee to Aguinid Falls has gone up in recent years, so any old blogs you might’ve seen quoting ₱60 are outdated. It’s now ₱300 but this includes two guides, a helmet and a life jacket. If you’re wondering if you can skip the guide, you can’t. It’s mandatory and completely necessary. There’s a lot of climbing involved and the guides are there to show you the safest route.
You might be reeling at the price, given most waterfalls in Cebu are around ₱50-₱100. However, Aguinid Falls isn’t just a look, see and take a dip for 10 minutes kind of waterfall, so the price is justified.
WHAT TO BRING TO AGUINID FALLS IN SAMBOAN
Prepare for your trip to Aguinid Falls with our must-have travel essentials.
Waterproof backpack & phone case: Earth Pak 35L or 55L Heavy Duty Backpack, IPX8 Waterproof Phone Case Included (click for price)
Quick-dry microfiber travel towel: Wise Owl Outfitters Camping Travel Towel (click for price)
Insulated water bottle: Hydro Flask Vacuum Insulated Water Bottle (click for price)
Hiking Sandals: Teva Women’s Hurricane Hiking Sandals (click for price), Teva Men’s Hurricane Hiking Sandals (click for price)
If you’re interested in photography and/or videography this is the gear we can’t live without:
BEST CEBU TOUR PACKAGES
ARRIVING AT AGUINID FALLS
When you first arrive at the Aguinid Falls entrance area, you’ll be given your helmet, water shoes and life jacket. As travel bloggers, there’s nothing we hate more than bright orange life jackets, but the guides were chill enough to let us take them off for photos.
If you have any valuables or non-waterproof items you can leave them at the front entrance with the staff, but we do recommend always bringing a dry bag on waterfall hikes. Once you’re all set, you’ll be allocated your guides, given a short safety briefing and then it’s time to hit the trail for the next hour or so (depending on how many photos you stop to take!)
WHAT TO EXPECT AT AGUINID FALLS
Aguinid Falls has eight levels, but technically it’s nine since you’ll start at level zero. This first section of the river is beautiful, with small cascades, blue pools and bamboo bridges. This part of Aguinid Falls is literally a walk in the park before you reach level one where the real fun begins.
AGUINID FALLS LEVEL ONE
Level one is the first true glimpse of Aguinid Falls’ incredible beauty, with a decent-sized waterfall cascading into a magical turquoise blue pool. The colours were impressive when we visited, but Aguinid Falls is usually even more vibrant when the water isn’t rushing so rapidly. We went during the rainy season so the silt had been disturbed, but even then it was still impressively blue.
AGUINID FALLS LEVEL TWO
The adventure kicks up a notch at level two of Aguinid Falls Samboan. You’ll need to scale this massive waterfall, but don’t worry, your guides are there to show you the way and the anchored rope and footholes make it an easy climb. The rock formations are also incredibly gritty so you slipping isn’t much of a concern, even if it looks scary! Depending on the recent rainfall, this waterfall could either be a trickle or a rush, but your guides will know what’s safe and what isn’t.
AGUINID FALLS LEVEL THREE
The beauty of Aguinid Falls is that every level has something different. Level three is a chance to enjoy a natural shower in the jungle and snap some epic photos of this tropical oasis. The pool at the bottom of this waterfall has been dammed to collect more water, so it’s the perfect spot to swim and relax before continuing the adventure up to level four.
AGUINID FALLS LEVEL FOUR
This halfway point is where you’ll finally have your chance to cliff jump, even if it is just from a couple of metres. This pool is the deepest along the entire river, but even then we still touched the bottom with our feet so we definitely don’t recommend diving headfirst. Your guides will likely go first to show you the best spot to land and to check for any debris. If you’re familiar with the nearby Kawasan Falls Canyoneering trek, Aguinid Falls features a lot less jumping and a lot more climbing, so it’s an entirely different experience.
AGUINID FALLS LEVEL FIVE
For a long time, level five used to be the grand finale of Aguinid Falls for its impressive rock formation and the fact the path beyond wasn’t very well established yet. Even though now it continues up to three more levels, this is the last big waterfall so make sure you spend some time here taking it all in and getting some happy snaps.
Climbing above level five was probably the most difficult part of the whole trek because of how strong the water was. If it hasn’t been raining lately, you shouldn’t have much trouble, but for us, the water was smashing in our faces making it hard to navigate the climb. If you wear contact lenses like Zowie, you might even need to wear a mask or just close your eyes and put your life in your guides’ hands. Despite the difficulty, we all made it safely to the top of level five.
AGUINID FALLS LEVEL SIX
Level six of Aguinid Falls was a series of smaller cascades and shallow pools. By now we were deep within the jungle, and there’s typically a lot less foot traffic beyond level five. In saying that, we went when Cebu was still in lockdown so we actually had the entire place to ourselves, but typically there are a lot of people at Aguinid Falls.
AGUINID FALLS LEVEL SEVEN
This level features the last proper waterfall so make sure you take it all in. By now it was quite rugged, with no more ropes and footholes, just pure unadulterated nature.
AGUINID FALLS LEVEL EIGHT
After a long and physically demanding journey, we finally made it to the last level of Aguinid Falls. This is where the river starts sloping into the cascades that make up each level of Aguinid Falls. There’s not much in the way of waterfalls up at level eight, but there are some rock pools for a final soak to mark the end of your epic adventure.
HIKING BACK DOWN
The great thing about Aguinid Falls is that once you’ve finished the trek, you don’t have to turn around and go back the same way you came from. From level eight you’ll cut through the jungle, leading you to a road down the mountain. It’s a short hike back to the entrance and a good chance to dry off and take in the scenery.
MORE SOUTH CEBU TOURIST SPOTS
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WHERE TO STAY IN SOUTH CEBU
Southern Cebu is where all the adventure is at, from waterfalls and whale sharks to island hopping and diving. When visiting anywhere in the south, the best place to stay is Moalboal. It has the most accommodation options, and is a fun little town with dozens of cafes, restaurants and bars. Check out our top four picks below for where to stay in Moalboal.
BUDGET/HOSTEL: CHIEF MAU
Right on the main strip of Panagsama Road you’ll find Chief Mau, a fun and social hostel that dubs itself the chillest place in town. Clean, modern and affordable, boasting a restaurant, bar and billiards, Chief Mau is a favourite amongst backpackers
MIDSCALE: ADAM’S VIEW HOTEL
Simple but with all the amenities and facilities you need – including a massive pool – Adam’s View Hotel is our top pick for those looking for a little more luxury than a backpackers. Located in the main town, Adam’s View Hotel is right next to Gaisano Mall, but still close enough to the action of Panagsama Beach to remain convenient.
LUXURY: TURTLE BAY DIVE RESORT
If you have deep pockets and an appreciation for the finer things in life, Turtle Bay Dive Resort is the place for you. Tucked away on a private cove in the quieter part of town, this luxury resort is perfect for couples looking for a little exclusivity.
AIRBNB: LRS APARTMENT
We can personally attest to how great LRS Apartment is, having spent two weeks there. Aside from a beautiful private pool, the apartment itself is modern, well furnished and spacious enough for a couple. (And a cat!) It’s just a 5 minute drive from the hustle and bustle of the restaurants and bars along Panagsama Road, but far enough away to offer a little peace and quiet. We can’t recommend LRS Moalboal enough!
MORE CEBU TRAVEL GUIDES
Inambakan Falls Ginatilan
Kabutongan Falls Malabuyoc
Kawasan Falls Badian
Montpellier Falls Alegria
Cancalanog Falls Alegria
Binalayan Falls Samboan
Balaygsawa Falls Samboan