MOALBOAL: The Mini Boracay

Moalboal was the last destination of my 8-day travel to the south of Cebu. It is a town just west of Oslob, though it is much more developed. They don’t have much to offer tourism-wise other than canyoneering at Kawasan Falls (which is technically not it Moalboal) and the Panagsama Beach. This is the entry hub for people who want to do the Sardine Run, learn how to dive and island hopping. It is also where Moalboal’s nightlife is located.



From the South Bus Station, alight the Ceres bus going to Moalboal. The bus fare is around 130 pesos and takes around 4 hours.


Since I came from Dumaguete City, I had to ride a ferry from Sibulan Port to Liloan Port. The ferry ride is roughly 40 minutes long and costs around 60 pesos. From Liloan Port, I rode a habal-habal going to Bato Bus Station where the buses to Moalboal are. The bus ride is 2 hours and is the fare, as far as I can remember is less than 100 pesos. Ask the driver to drop you off at the main town.


You have 3 options in going around town. First is the ever trusty habal-habal, second is a tricycle. If you’re a solo traveler like me, the habal-habal is the cheapest route. You only pay 20-30 pesos per ride and to be honest, the tricycle drivers will scam you into paying 100-200 pesos just to go to Panagsama Beach. If you’re staying for more than a week, the third option is to hire a motorbike. When I asked around, it costs about 350-500 pesos a day, depending on the bike.


You see, a certain red lady visited me moments after I checked in at Moalboal Backpackers Lodge. Honestly, that’s one of the worst things that could happen to a girl when traveling. I was so disappointed because I planned out activities for my 2-day stay there and I couldn’t do them. I went up the hostel’s rooftop where they have hammocks and regrouped.


I went out and explored the beach then hired a habal-habal to bring me to town. We stopped by an elementary school and an old dilapidated church where I had my picture taken by a grade schooler. My habal-habal driver and I also watched a basketball game.  After that, I went to Robinsons and looked around. And yes, they have a Robinsons mini mall. Mcdonald’s too! 😛


For dinner, I decided to check out the bar near the hostel called 7 Sins Bar. I made friends with the waitresses there and they invited me to a local party the following night. I had my dinner, ordered a couple of beers and played pool.

Pool/billiards is almost like a way of life for the people of Panagsama beach. In all the bars I’ve visited there, there is a pool table or two available. Even the kids as young as 7 years old play. I asked the kids why they are up so late and if they had school. They said yes but their parents work in the surrounding bars and restaurants and they’re waiting for them to come home. One of the girls even said it’s none of my business so I backed off.

This kid beat me at pool every time 😀


It was around 11 PM when Anna Marie arrived. She’s from Dumaguete and she’s on a month long vacation in Moalboal and after a couple of minutes Vinnie, a French backpacker came and introduced himself to us. Anna Marie was a lot of fun and very friendly. Vinnie was also the same. We then decided to go to Chili Bar, which is arguably the most famous bar in Panagsama Beach.

It reminded me of Boracay where the atmosphere screams party. Pool tables are in the middle of the room, where locals and foreigners alike play, good party music, and very very cheap alcohol. One beer costs around 50 pesos and most cocktails are priced from 100-150 pesos. Compared to Manila prices, it was a sweet deal. Chili Bar also offers something called The Fucket. Basically, they mix 500ml of vodka, island mixer and an energy drink in a big ice bucket, put a lot of ice and then straws. Voila! You have The Fucket. It was only 300 pesos and it’s very tasty. It’s definitely a must-try when you’re in Moalboal. It’s better when it’s paired with Chili Bar’s pizza.

Hours into the party, Anna Marie got into a fight with a transgender and she had to be sent home. We partied way into the night and closed the bar. All in all, it was a great night.


Us with The Fucket
Anna Marie, Vinnie, and the waiter


I had my breakfast at The French Coffee Shop and it was honestly one of the best breakfasts I had. I ordered the American Breakfast which is composed of homemade bread with a huge chunk of butter and marmalade, sausages, 2 scrambled eggs, coffee, juice and fresh fruits. All of that for 190 pesos.

Panagsama Beach is actually a culinary hub because there are a lot of restaurants that offers different cuisines. I wanted to try them all but since I’m on a budget, I couldn’t. I guess that’s one of the downsides of budget travel.


After breakfast, I slept my hangover away and woke up in the middle of the afternoon. I was in a rut because I had nothing else to do for the rest of day. I walked around the beach again and I found a tattoo shop. An idea came to mind and I booked an appointment that night to get my tattoo done. I spent the rest of the afternoon thinking of what design I wanted. I only paid 500 pesos for my tattoo since my artist charges by the hour and mine only took 15 minutes. I wish all tattoo places here in Manila are like that. I decided to get the Nordic Rune Symbol that means “Travel in fortune” for good luck in my upcoming travels. Check out Kuya Rick from Araw Tattoo Studio, he’s really good!


My flight back to Manila was at 9 PM so I had to leave Moalboal in the morning. I checked out the hostel around 8 AM and rode a habal-habal to the main town. From there, I just waited by the road for a bus going back to Cebu City.

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