The beauty of Kawasan Falls
This majestic waterfall cascade tumbles down the lush, green mountains, creating a series of crystal-clear pools that are perfect for swimming, canyoneering, and simply relaxing in the beauty of nature.
The beauty of Kawasan Falls in Cebu is one of a kind, its water is unlike anything you’ve ever seen. It’s a stunning turquoise colour, it is so clear that you can even see the fish swimming below. The falls themselves are surrounded by lush jungle vegetation, making it more refreshing place for relaxing.
History of Kawasan Falls in Cebu
Beyond its mesmerising turquoise waters and cascading tiers lies a fascinating history. It was around 1980’s that Badian Municipality recognised the falls’ potential as a tourist haven, and with that they started its development. It includes constructing infrastructure like bridges and pathways, alongside restaurants and cottages. And most significantly, it marked the birth of “Kawasan Falls,” a name evocative of the Cebuano word for “cascade,” perfectly capturing the essence of the cascading tiers: from “Mantayupan” to “Kawasan”.
Legends and Lore
In every journey, locals silently whispers “prayers” or “chants” to appease mystical beings, ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience. They believe and narrate tales of spirits residing in the lush foliage, guarding the falls’ serenity, even they believe and perform offerings. Others speak of a tragic tradition, claiming a soul must be claimed by the falls every two years. While these stories might be shrouded in mystery, they contribute to the majestic and captivating aura that surrounds Kawasan Falls.
Three tiers of Kawasan Falls in Cebu
Each tiers have its own unique beauty and appeal.
The first tier: As the first and most easily accessible tier, it’s no surprise that the first tier of Kawasan Falls is a vibrant social hub and the most popular. Laughter fills the air as families lively splash together, friends pose for photos by the cascading water, and local vendors offer refreshing drinks and delicious snacks. Its large pool at the base of the falls is perfect for swimming. The current is gentle, making it perfect for a leisurely swim or simply floating on your back, gazing up at the sun-dappled leaves overhead.
The second tier is bit more secluded and for the true adventurers. Hidden beneath the cascading wall lies a natural jacuzzi wherein you have to squeeze through a narrow passage behind the falls and discover a swirling pool hidden from view and get yourself rewarded by a massaged by the rushing water.
Reaching the second tier requires traversing slippery rocks and navigating a steeper path. Wear sturdy shoes with good grip, and be cautious especially during rainy weather. The natural slide, while exhilarating, can be slippery. Assess your comfort level and proceed with care.
The third tier is the most challenging to reach, but it’s also the most rewarding, with stunning views of the surrounding area. The path to the third-tier weaves through dense jungle, a symphony of emerald leaves dappled with sunlight.
The third tier is not just another waterfall; it’s a cascading spectacle. Water surges over moss-covered cliffs, plummeting into a deep, turquoise pool below. The sheer power of the falling water sends a mist shimmering into the air, and if you’re lucky enough you will see formation of rainbow halo around the sun.
Reaching and experiencing the third tier requires significant physical effort and a good dose of caution. The climb is steeper and the terrain is rocky. Sturdy shoes with excellent grip are a must. The rope swing, while thrilling, carries inherent risks. Ensure you are comfortable with heights and follow safety precautions before taking the leap.
How to reach Kawasan Falls in Cebu?
The closest airport to Kawasan Falls is Bohol-Panglao International (TAG) Airport, situated 50.9 kilometres away. Other nearby airports comprise Dumaguete (DGT) (52.9 km), Mactan–Cebu (CEB) (87.4 km), Bacolod–Silay (BCD) (115.3 km), and Iloilo (ILO) (149.4 km).
Cebu as the starting point: you can reach Kawasan Falls
- Via Bus: (Most affordable) This is the budget-friendly option. Head to the South Bus Terminal in Cebu City and look for buses heading to Badian. The journey takes around 3-4 hours depending on traffic and costs roughly 150 pesos. Ask the driver to drop you off at the entrance to Kawasan Falls, which is along the highway.
- Via Taxi: (Fastest) If you value time over cost, a taxi is the way to go. Hire a taxi from Cebu City and negotiate a fare to Badian. Expect to pay around 1,700-2,100 pesos for the 1-1.5 hour trip. The driver can take you directly to the Kawasan Falls entrance.
- Via Car: (Most flexible) Opting for car rental offers flexibility, allowing you to explore at your preferred pace. The journey from Cebu City to Badian via the South Coastal Road typically spans around 1.5 hours. It’s advisable to secure a car equipped with reliable brakes and excellent manoeuvring capabilities, given the winding roads and possible traffic. Parking facilities are accessible in the vicinity of the falls.
Things to do in Kawasan Falls
- Canyoneering- involves exploring through jungle streams, rappelling down cliffs, and diving into concealed pools under the guidance of a professional. Get ready for an adrenaline rush with thrilling waterfalls, exciting slides, and an ample dose of excitement during this adventure.
- Natural Slides-Both the second and third tiers boast natural rock slides that send you whooshing into refreshing pools below. Hold on tight and get ready for squeals of laughter!
- Rope Swing (Third Tier)- Take a leap of faith on the rope swing at the third tier, soaring through the air before plunging into the turquoise depths. Not for the faint of heart, but the reward is epic!
- Swimming- Take a dip in the crystal-clear waters of any of the three tiers, feeling the cool embrace wash away your worries. Relax under the cascading falls, let the current carry you away, and soak in the serene atmosphere.
- Sunbathing- Find a sunny spot near the first or second tier and bask in the warmth. Listen to the birdsong, read a book, or simply recharge under the tropical sun.
- Picnicking- Pack a delicious spread and enjoy a picnic along the riverbank. Shady trees provide perfect shelter, and the sound of rushing water creates a natural soundtrack for your feast.
- Hiking- Venture beyond the falls and explore the lush trails that wind through the surrounding hills. Spot exotic birds, encounter hidden waterfalls, and soak in the breathtaking panoramas.
Things to Remember
- Safety First: Wear sturdy shoes for slippery rocks, apply sunscreen, and be mindful of currents. Choose experienced and reputable guides for canyoneering and respect the limitations of your abilities.
- Leave No Trace: Pack out all your trash and keep the falls pristine for future generations.
- Be sure to pack plenty of water and snacks. Remember to keep yourself hydrated.
- Don’t be scared to try, but don’t push yourself too hard as well! At your own phase, take the plunge, explore, and create memories that will last a lifetime!
Best Time to Visit Kawasan Falls
Dry Season (December – May/June)
During this period that sunshine is abundant, pleasant temperatures, and reduced rainfall but expect larger gatherings/crowds and possibly elevated costs.
Wet Season (June – November)
In this season, you’ll encounter fewer people and reduced prices, but there’s an increased possibility of rain. The falls usually exhibit their most robust and awe-inspiring flow during this season, offering an electrifying experience for canyoneering enthusiasts but can be risky as well.
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