The last time I went to the Queen City of the South was last October 2015 when I traveled to Japan. Cebu is one of the Philippines’ major hubs, with direct flights to almost all major cities in Asia. But over the years, whenever I go to Cebu, I always settle in the city, which I think is a lousy decision because I know, that there are more places in Cebu that are worth discovering – most especially the beaches.
I have heard a lot of Bantayan stories from friends and office mates that getting there is more convenient if you take the Cadiz City route. Some travel experiences were exciting, but there were also a lot of horror stories – and I am talking about rough sea condition.
Anyway, I am not really scared of riding a boat, so I went for it. As usual, I did some research and realized that Bantayan is a huge island. There are actually a lot of resorts to choose from, for everyone, which was great.
Travelling to the Cadiz ferry terminal is easy. From Bacolod, take the Cadiz City bus (from the newly opened Ceres North Terminal) for Php95 (1 hour ride) and the bus will drop you off at the Cadiz bus terminal. There are a lot of tricycles that can take you to the ferry terminal at Php25 so finding one will never be a challenge. I think the difficult part in the entire travel is the boat ride; there are times that the boat gets fully booked so you need to make sure that you travel early to avoid being offloaded. Rate for the bot ride is P290 one-way with 1 scheduled trip from Cadiz at 9:00am. Travel runs between 2.5 hours to 3 hours.
On the day of our trip to Bantayan, we want to make sure that we arrive there early and book the ferry since the seats get fully-booked fast. Unfortunately, a group of foreigners arrived earlier and booked the entire boat. Good thing the operators decided to run another trip at 11:30am – but sad that we need to wait longer.
Fast Forward… We arrived at Bantayan Island at around 2:30pm, and thankfully the sea was cooperating. It was a smooth ride and totally scenic. From Cadiz, you will get to see 3 major islands in a 360 degree view – Iloilo, Cebu and Negros. You will also see sand bars, welcoming you to an exciting trip to paradise.
From the Bantayan ferry terminal, you will ride another tricycle that will take you to the resort for about 20 minutes.
Bantayan is a huge province, but most of the resorts are situated in Sta. Fe. If you have been to Boracay, then you can say that the island is a mini version of it. Restaurants and bars are also sprawling, so your options for food and accommodation are endless.
Check out Café del Marre! They serve the best pastas and pizzas in the island. Although prices may be a bit expensive, but they are totally worth it. I would highly recommend eating here since they serve authentic dishes. Some local restaurants are super cheap but the quality of the food is not that good. But! Never miss the paluto at the local market. We ordered danggit, pusit and fish tocino and had it cooked for breakfast for only P30!
We stayed in Bantayan for 3 days and I was totally in love. The island is comparable to Boracay, but not too crowded – makes you enjoy the beach even more.
The best part of my trip is that I spent less than Php3,500 for 3 days which was super cheap. And I think it’s more practical to travel there via Cadiz for a much shorter route.
Let me know if you have plans of going to Bantayan and I will be glad to give you more tips!