bounty beach malapascua island

9 Things to Do in Malapascua Island, Cebu 2024

Gearing up for your trip to Malapascua Island? Lucky you, we’re serving the best things to do in Malapascua Island in 2023!
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Gearing up for your trip to Malapascua Island? Lucky you, we’re serving the best things to do in Malapascua Island in 2023!

I can promise you, this is the most up-to-date guide you’ll ever read about traveling to Malapascua Island as I had just been there the first week of January 2023.

Malapascua Island in Cebu is popular among divers for its consistent sightings of rare thresher sharks. But there’s more to the island than sharks.

Also Read: Malapascua Island Travel Guide 2023: Requirements, Getting There, Fares, Internet, and Itinerary!

9 Malapascua Island Activities You Shouldn’t Miss in 2023

We’ve put together all the worthy things to do in Malapascua Island, so you don’t need to go anywhere else. Here are the most worthwhile activities you can do here:

1. Dive with rare thresher sharks

Diving with thresher sharks has been a huge reason the island is on the bucket list of many travelers, making it one of the most popular things to do in North Cebu. You can count the places with your one hand where you can see thresher sharks 365 days a year; Malapascua Island is one of them.

Thresher sharks in Malapascua Island are spotted in Monad Shoal, accessible only by boat about 8 kilometers east of the island. Of course, Monad Shoal is also home to other marine life such as hammerhead sharks, eagle rays, manta rays, devil rays, barracudas, and wrasses, among many others.

There are many diving shops in Malapascua. Or ask your hotel’s front desk about it.

thresher shark malapascua island
A thresher shark spotted at Monad Shoal in Malapascua Island (Photo courtesy of Klause Stiefel via Flickr)

2. Go beach hopping

Malapascua Island has so many beaches you can visit. Some are unspoiled, so swimming might not be recommended as sea urchins live there.

Whether you want to just chill by the beach or watch the sunrise/sunset, beach hopping in Malapascua is one ultimate experience.

  • Bounty Beach is Malapascua’s main beach filled with restaurants, bars, resorts, and dive shops.
  • Logon Beach is perfect for watching sunsets.
  • Langob Beach is located northernmost part of Malapascua, hence the other name North Beach.
  • Guimbitayan Beach is an undeveloped, tranquil beach tucked a few meters west of Langob Beach.
  • Bantigue Beach is another unspoiled cove just a few meters east of Langob Beach.
  • Gugma Beach is a hidden beach on the northeast side of the island accessible via a dirt trail from Bantigue Beach.
  • Rock Beach is located south of Malaspascua Lighthouse.

If you are doing beach hopping, I recommend getting a scooter to get around the island easily.

3. Go island hopping in Malapascua Island

Island hopping is one of the major things to do in Malapascua Island. Most island hopping tours include at least three of the following sights: Dakit-Dakit Island, Coral Garden, Japanese shipwreck, lighthouse, and Lapus Lapus Cliff.

Choose Dakit-Dakit Island and Coral Garden if you want to snorkel; the Japanese shipwreck if you want to dive into a sunken battleship from WWII; Lapus Lapus Cliff if you want to jump off cliffs; and the lighthouse if you want to get a good view of the sea and island.

lapus lapus cliff malapascua island
The view from Lapus Lapus Lapus Cliff (Photo courtesy of Lean Linx via Facebook)

4. Drink and chill at Hippocampus at night

At night, Bounty Beach lights up and is popular among drinkers and party-goers. Hippocampus, in particular, is a great spot where tourists and locals come together on weekends to enjoy a live band playing and dance the night away.

5. Watch sunset from Malapascua Lighthouse

If you’re not taking any island hopping tour in Malapascua Island, you can go to the lighthouse by yourself. There you can enjoy a nice view of the ocean and a sunset like no other.

Nearby is Rock Beach, and as the name suggests, it’s rocky but definitely swimmable. A few meters from the beach is a reef where rich marine animals like the flamboyant mandarin dragonet, highly venomous blue-ringed octopuses, and seahorses live.

Twilight at Malapascua Lighthouse (Photo courtesy of Evolution Diving)

6. Brave the 50-foot Lapus Lapus Cliff

A small inlet covered with craggy cliffs, Lapus Lapus Cliff is a popular tourist spot in Malapascua Island for cliff diving. Although it takes a lot of courage to jump off 50-foot cliffs, the view of the ocean and the sky from the cliff is already worth visiting.

Just a gentle reminder if you feel like trying cliff-diving: A 50-foot dive into the water can be painful if uncontrolled. If you have a guide, better ask the guide where the shorter cliff is for you to jump.

Lapus Lapus cliff on a good day (Photo by Mario Manlupig / CEBU INSIDER)

7. Explore Gato Island’s underwater tunnel

Gato Island sits peacefully in between Malapascua Island and Carnaza Island. This small rocky island is quite popular for diving where the underwater landscape is insanely good, even better than Monad Shoal.

From the massive rock formations to thick living corals to marine biodiversity, Gato Island never disappoints. But one thing that makes the island unique is its underwater tunnel, which is home to a variety of marine life, including whitetip reef sharks, sea snakes, moray eels, nudibranchs, frogfishes, pygmy seahorses, and cuttlefishes.

Many dive shops in Malapascua Island go to Gato Island for dives. Or you can ask your hotel’s front desk about it.

gato island
Gato Island from above

8. Make a side trip to Kalanggaman Island

One of the most stunning islands in the Philippines that I’ve been to is Kalanggaman Island. The island has crystal-clear blue water and fine white sand and is small enough to walk around. At whichever angle you take pictures, it’s always a masterpiece. No residents live here, but there are facilities on the island, such as a hall, huts, and toilets.

Kalanggaman Island is 2 hours away from Malapascua Island. You can go to Kalanngaman Island from Malapascua Island through a large outrigger boat that can accommodate about 40 people. These are daily community-organized trips, which means you’ll be joining other passengers.

Boat from Malapascua Island to Kalanggaman Island
A big outrigger boat carries passengers from Malapascua Island to Kalanggaman Island (CEBU INSIDER PHOTO)

The fare for these community-organized trips is 800 PHP (~15 USD). The first time I went there in 2016, it was just 300 PHP (~6 USD). Inflation, I know! You can charter an entire boat for 3,5000 PHP (~64 USD).

Upon arrival, you need to pay the entrance and conservation fees of 150 PHP (~3 USD) for locals and 500 PHP (~9 USD) for foreign tourists. There are no hotels on the island, but you can camp there overnight for a fee.

9. Make a side trip to Bantayan Island

If you’re exploring North Cebu, making a side trip to Bantayan Island is a no-brainer. Bantayan Island is a much bigger island than Malapascua Island with 3 towns.

From beaches to adventure activities, there are so many things to do in Bantayan Island you may enjoy.

Read our full guide on How to Go to Bantayan Island from Malapascua Island!

More Things to Do in Malapascua Island

Still confused about your Malapascua Island itinerary? I’d love to help!

Drop your questions in the comments so I can help customize your itinerary to best suit your time and budget. For now, that’s all for this post.

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Mario Manlupig
Mario Manlupig

Mario is the Founder of CEBU INSIDER. In March 2018, he left his full-time job at the Philippines' biggest TV network and became a digital nomad, traveling all over the country until the pandemic happened. He now calls Cebu City his home.

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