The little town of Dauin near Dumaguete City is renowned for its world class diving and Apo Island turtles, but there’s more to Dauin than its spectacular marine life. The mountains in this area are full of adventure, and the secret hot spring & waterfall in Dauin definitely takes the cake. You might have heard of the Baslay Hot Spring, since it’s on most tourist maps, but this secret hot spring is completely natural and untouched which is why it stands out for us.
BEST TIME TO VISIT THE PHILIPPINES
HOW TO GET TO THERE
The secret hot spring & waterfall in Dauin is around 40 minutes outside of downtown Dumaguete, up in the mountains of Dauin. The best way to get there is via scooter or motorbike, which you can rent for $8 USD a day but if you’re not comfortable driving a scooter, you can rent a car for $40. Alternatively, you can get any public Ceres bus heading South from the Dumaguete terminal and get off at Dauin proper, then take a habal habal (motorcycle taxi) up to Magsaysay but you’ll have to negotiate a fair price since the driver will have to wait for you and take you back down to town.
There’s a little house on the left about 200 metres before the parking area where you have to write your name in a logbook. The ladies at the house tried to give us directions but as soon as we left, we immediately started walking down the wrong path. This is where Rey stepped in and offered to guide us. If you’d like to use a guide (which we recommend) you can call Rey on 0955 293 6686. Otherwise, if you just want to send it then follow these directions carefully and screenshot these photos as you won’t have any signal.
The entire hike is only about 20 minutes, and is relatively easy even for asthmatics like Zowie. Once you park your car in the field, your hike starts at the path leading into the jungle on the right side of a big cement block. Follow the path through the dragon fruit farm (it looks like a cactus farm) and continue into the trees.
You’ll exit the trees just before this little house. Once you reach it, take the path leading right deep into the jungle and along the mountainside. If you’re unsure, you can always ask the residents of the house to point you in the right direction.
The path trails on the left side of another small house, along the edge of the mountain. The view from here would be incredible on a clear day, but it was pretty overcast when we went. With clear skies, you would be able to see Mindanao in the distance.
Stick to that path and eventually it will start to descend and you’ll hear (and smell) the waterfall. Keep following the dirt path deep into the rainforest and turn left once you reach the stream at the bottom. The big waterfall will block you from going further. Once you reach the big waterfall blockage, climb up the rocks on right side. The secret hot spring & waterfall in Dauin awaits you at the top.
OUR REVIEW OF THE SECRET HOT SPRING & WATERFALL IN DAUIN
First impression? WOW. All the colours. This little oasis in the middle of the jungle is seriously beautiful. The rocks are a rainbow of orange, yellow, green, blue… and the water is just the right temperature so you’re not cooking in a hot pot. We went on a rainy day so it was the perfect condition to be in a hot spring in the tropics.
The hot springs cascade down a waterfall into shallow pools where you can sit and soak, or enjoy a natural shower. If you climb up the waterfall you’ll find the deepest pool which is the perfect natural jacuzzi.
This little waterfall flows into a much bigger fall down into the river below, but it looked pretty impossible to get down there without proper climbing gear. We’re sure some locals have done it, but we’re just not that skilled.
This secret hot spring & waterfall in Dauin is a hidden gem that we recommend to everyone looking for a little untouched nature and adventure near Dumaguete. We couldn’t believe how secluded it was, given how easy it is to get to. We had the place to ourselves most of the time, except for when 3 teenagers who had been out collecting firewood stopped by for a quick dip.
If you’re in search of other hot springs in Dauin, you should check out Baslay Hot Spring & Waterfall on the next road leading up the mountain. It’s a lot more developed, but still worth the visit while you’re in Dauin.
PIN IT FOR LATER
WHERE TO STAY NEAR THE HOT SPRING & WATERFALL IN DAUIN
Most people who visit Negros Oriental are told to stay in Dumaguete, but what they really mean by that is stay around Dumaguete. True, Dumaguete City has plenty of tourist inns and budget hotels, but it’s the surrounding towns of Dauin and Zamboanguita that offer the best spots to stay. There’s not a whole lot to do in the city itself, so when you stay in the nearby municipalities there’s plenty of nature to explore whilst still being nice and close to Dumaguete City. Check out our top picks for accommodation near Dumaguete City.
LUXURY: Atmosphere Resorts & Spa, Dauin
Atmosphere Resorts & Spa in Dauin is the resort to stay at if you’ve got a big budget and fancy the finer things in life. Atmosphere has hosted its fair share of local celebrities and deep pocketed divers looking for the best beachfront luxury in Dauin.
MIDSCALE: Mike’s Dauin Dive Resort, Dauin
If you want to stay by the ocean without breaking the bank, Mike’s Dauin Dive Resort in Dauin is a comfortable midscale accommodation option perfect for diving enthusiasts. If you’ve never dived before, you can get your certification at Mike’s, and divers of all skill sets can enjoy the abundance of macro diving opportunities in and around Dauin.
BUDGET: Bongo Bongo Divers, Dauin
Bongo Bongo Divers is one of the most popular hostels in Dauin for backpackers looking for cheap accommodation in a convenient location. The rooms are simple, without any glitz and glam, but the vibe is fun and welcoming. They have a variety of room styles to choose from, ranging from couples rooms to AC or fan only dorms.
AIRBNB: Villa Amani, Zamboanguita
Villa Amani in Zamboanguita is the perfect holiday home for small families or groups of friends looking for privacy that a traditional resort or hotel can’t offer. The main house sleeps 4 with additional space for 2 in the guest house, or you can book the guest house separately if it’s just the 2 of you and you’re on a budget. The property has a swimming pool, an unbeatable view of Apo Island and kayaks to use whenever you want.
MORE NEGROS ORIENTAL GUIDES:
Baslay Hot Spring & Waterfall, Dauin
Swimming with Turtles, Apo Island
Rock Point View Deck, Apo Island
Casaroro Falls, Valencia
Pulangbato Falls, Valencia
Tottyn Falls, Valencia
Original Casaroro Falls, Valencia