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Bantayan Island is home to some of the best beaches in Cebu – its coastline dotted with pockets of white sandy coves, azure blue water and rows of swaying palms. We’ve wrapped up the 6 best Bantayan Island beaches to add to your itinerary whilst you’re in paradise! 

Best time to visit the Bantayan Island beaches

To make the most out of your Bantayan Island trip, you’ll want to hit the sweet spot when the weather is good but the crowds are minimal. This means aiming for November – April when it’s the dry season, but avoiding weekends, public holidays and most importantly, Holy Week. Unless, of course, you happen to like crowds of tourists. 

How to get to Bantayan Island

Bantayan Island is located in the northern part of the Province of Cebu. From Cebu City you’ll need to travel by car/bus to Hagnaya Port in San Remigio which takes around 3 hours, and then ride the ferry for 1 hour across to Santa Fe Port on Bantayan Island. 

Ferry Schedule

Click here to view the Bantayan Island ferry schedule

What to bring to the Bantayan Island beaches

If you’re interested in photography and/or videography this is the gear we can’t live without:

Professional camera: Sony a7iv (click for price)
Action camera: GoPro HERO10 Black (click for price)
Drone: DJI Air 2s (click for price)

Related post: What's in our camera bag

Click here to see our complete camera gear

6 Best Bantayan Island Beaches

1. Paradise Beach

Paradise Beach isn’t just one of the best Bantayan Island beaches, it’s also our personal favourite! Hidden behind a jagged limestone wall, Paradise Beach is shielded from unknowing eyes, but take the staircase down to the beach and you’ll be blown away by what awaits. 

This stunning stretch of coastline more than lives up to its name, with fine white sand and crystal clear water inviting you to spend a day in paradise. Don’t forget your mask and snorkel, because with water clarity this good you’ll definitely want to get a better look below the surface. 

Paradise beach bantayan, sandira beach bantayan, paradise beach bantayan island, bantayan island cebu, sta fe bantayan, things to do in bantayan island, bantayan island tourist spot
Paradise beach bantayan, sandira beach bantayan, paradise beach bantayan island, bantayan island cebu, sta fe bantayan, things to do in bantayan island, bantayan island tourist spot

2. Virgin Island

 It may be found just off the coast, but Virgin Island is still regarded as an amazing Bantayan Island beach. This island hopping destination attracts tourists from all over, looking to explore its pristine beaches, rugged cliffs and stunning waters. 

To reach Virgin Island Bantayan you’ll need to take a 30-minute boat ride from Santa Fe. As you make your approach you’ll be met with glistening white sand and vibrant blue water – a true sign that you’re in paradise. If you’re looking to do more than just beach bumming, there are a number of activities including cliff diving on Virgin Island.

3. Kota Beach

Kota Beach is perhaps the most popular Bantayan Island beach with its wispy white sandbar and calm waters, perfect for paddleboarding. SUP Bantayan is posted at the entrance so you can rent a paddleboard to explore this shapeshifting sandbar, then grab a cool coconut or cocktail at Kota Beach Resort to freshen up. 

4. Sugar Beach

An invisible line in the sand separates Kota Beach from Sugar Beach, so you can expect just as soft – if not softer – fine white sand and crystal clear water. Sugar Beach Bantayan is less developed than the Kota Beach end, with rows of short coconut trees lining the coast. As most tourists flock to the sandbar, Sugar Beach is far more secluded despite its close proximity to Kota Beach.

5. Santa Fe Beach

Located right next to the Santa Fe Port, we were left totally in awe of the beachfront at Santa Fe Beach Club. Whilst it looked like any other beach resort, the sand at Santa Fe Beach Club was the finest we’d come across in all of Bantayan.

Guests of the resort can enjoy the beach facilities as part of their reservation, but if you’re staying elsewhere and just want to experience the beach you can purchase a day pass which also includes access to Ogtong Cave Resort

Book Santa Fe Beach Club

Click here for the best rates for Santa Fe Beach Club

6. Balidbid Lagoon

Last but by no means least is Balidbid Lagoon, the most unique Bantayan Island beach we have on our roundup. This winding waterway merges the river with the sea, and is an awesome place to explore on paddleboard. The guys of SUP Bantayan also operate tours through Balidbid Lagoon, so you can make your way through the mangroves, stopping at the secluded beaches along the way.

Where to stay in Bantayan Island

Amihan Beach Cabanas

A boutique beachfront resort with stellar service and picturesque views.

Santa Fe Beach Club

Located mere metres from the port, Santa Fe Beach club has comfortable rooms and the best beach on the island.

Carl's Island Inn

An affordable and charming bed and breakfast for budget travellers.

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6 Best Bantayan Island Beaches Travel Guide

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Asia | Philippines

April 26, 2022

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