Living in Cebu City for almost ten years, I tagged Moalboal and Badian as my personal retreats, away from my metropolitan woes and responsibilities. But Moalboal, for its many conveniences and locals, draws me more. I made several friends here and saw some kids grew up. And while I left the Philippines six years ago, every time I am back in Cebu, my first destination has always been Moalboal. So, in this post, I will guide you on how to go from Cebu City to Moalboal whether you take the bus, a van, or a rental car.
Quick Moalboal Cebu Local Tips:
Amazing Things to Do in Moalboal Cebu
The Top Moalboal Beach Resorts
How to get from Cebu to Moalboal
Where to Stay in Moalboal:
Panagsama Beach (lots of restaurants, where the sardine run is located)
White Beach (more relaxed, long stretch of white-sand beaches, perfect for couples and family with little ones)
If you are traveling with loved ones or friends, the most practial way to get from Cebu City to Moalboal is by renting a private van. You can reach Moalboal in no time, as the travel is comfortable and safe. You will be able to see beautiful sights of Cebu City and its surroundings. The driver will pick you up from your hotel, so don’t forget to bring your itinerary. This private service includes fuel fees and travel insurance. Book now for an amazing ride from Cebu to Moalboal.
1-3 people: 3 800 Php/68 USD
4-6 people: 4 200 Php/76 USD
7-12 people: 4 800 Php/86 USD
The easiest way to get from Cebu City to Moalboal is by bus. There are several bus operators that operate this route. All can be found at Cebu South Bus Terminal (CSBT).
The first step is to go to the Cebu South Bus Terminal located in Natalio Bacalso Ave, Cebu City. This is where you will find most of the buses going southbound including Moalboal.
At the Cebu South Bus Terminal, look for a bus with a board by the driver’s seat that says “Bato via Barili” or “Badian” or “Moalboal.” These three are the ones that pass by Moalboal. You can pay for your ticket at the bus itself later on. Buses always have a konduktor, as well called them, that asks you where are you going and gives you a small piece of ticket that looks like a lottery ticket with holes in them. It took me years to understand the holes. But in a nutshell, it entails the km covered and the exact fare.
As the name suggest, there is no working AC inside the bus but there are large windows that you can open. The good thing about this is that it is a lot cheaper than taking an air-conditioned one.
The disadvantage of taking a non-aircon bus from Cebu to Moalboal or anywhere else in Cebu for that matter, is that they are always full. You might end up standing the whole time or if you are lucky enough to get a seat, you will be sitting so close to the person next to you that your knees might touch.
The other downside of taking this kind of bus is that it can get really hot, especially during Cebu’s summer which is from March to May.
The air-conditioned buses are a bit more expensive but they are worth it, especially if you are taking the trip during Cebu’s hot summer days.
These buses are not as crowded as the non-aircon buses and they are a lot more comfortable. You will have your own seat and there is enough leg room for you to stretch your legs.
The only downside of taking an air-conditioned bus from Cebu to Moalboal is that they don’t have as many trips as the non-aircon buses.
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Another option that you have is to take a van from Cebu City to Moalboal. This is a lot more expensive than taking the bus but it is also a lot faster and more convenient.
The vans can be found at Cebu South Bus Terminal, and they leave as soon as they are full.
The advantage of taking a van from Cebu to Moalboal is that it is a lot faster than the bus. It only takes around two hours to get to Moalboal from Cebu City compared to the three hours that it takes by bus.
Another advantage is that you don’t have to deal with the crowds and the heat. The vans are air-conditioned and they are not as crowded as the buses.
The downside of taking a van from Cebu to Moalboal is that they are more expensive than the bus, and these vans are really packed and take 14 passengers. The best seats if you are lucky are by the driver or right behind the driver. The rest are just uncomfortable and tight.
Address of the VHire Station: 39 Junquera St, Cebu City, right beside USC Main (University of San Carlos Main Campus)
VHire is a Cebuano English for Van for Hire. Honestly, I dunno if this is still the VHire Station in Cebu. So please ask the taxi drivers or jeepney drivers since this is their turf.
A more comfortable version of the public VHire is a shared van with a hotel pickup. This service is more convenient as you don’t have to go to the bus station, and can just wait for the van at your hotel. The van drops you off at White Beach or Panagsama Beach. You can use this on your way back from Moalboal, where it will pick you up from the beach and take you to Cebu City.
Book here in advance.
Moalboal has two main beaches: White Beach locally known as Basdaku which literally means Big (Daku) Sand (Bas) and Panagsama Beach, otherwise called Basdiot, Small Sand.
Moalboal’s White Beach is the busiest and most crowded beach on weekends. But this 1km beach has a lot of quiet nooks that the busy parts can easily be avoided. On weekdays, it is a marvelous place.
The downside of staying near White Beach is that it can be quite isolated especially at night. But if you just want to chill with your loved ones and friends, then this is the right place. If you ask me, when I want some downtime and do nothing, I stay near White Beach.
If you know how to ride a scooter, then you can easily rent one from your accommodation
The Best Hotels in White Beach, Moalboal
The advantage of staying near Panagsama Beach is that you will be close to all the action. There are a lot of restaurants and bars near the beach, and there is always something going on.
It is where most of the dive shops are located, and it is also the jump-off point for most of the diving tours.
This is a great place to learn how to dive, free-dive, and there are a lot of diving tours that you can take. Moalboal’s famed sardine run and turtles are right in front of Panagsama’s drop.
The downside of staying near Panagsama Beach is that it can be noisy at night, and it can get really crowded during the day, and the beach is not as wide as White Beach. It is called Basdiot for a reason.
Shared Tricycle ₱10 – 20 (you have to wait til it is full)
Motorcycle ₱40 – 50
Chartered Tricycle ₱100
Tricycle ₱20 – 30
Motorcycle ₱70 – 80
Chartered Tricycle ₱150 – 200
Note: It is mid-2022, and gas price hikes up, so I will not be surprised there are drastic changes of the fare.