The Apo Island Adventure

I never knew that I will be given a chance to have a close encounter with a Pawikan despite me not being a pro when swimming in the Deep Blue Sea. It scares me. SRSLY. Sharks. Hahaha!

Anyway, here’s a more detailed IT on how to get to Apo Island if you’re coming from Dumaguete City. The total budget stated on this article is mainly good for at least 8 pax in a group.

So, tama na daldal! Hahaha!, here it is:

  1. From Flying Fish Hostel (the hostel where we stayed in Dumaguete), ride a multicab to Ceres Bus Terminal bound to Bayawan City 8 pesos / head


Siopao me, very happy riding the bus


2. Tell the bus operator that you will unload at Malatapay Market – 50 pesos / head

3. Once dropped off at Malatapay Market, you need to walk to the Information Center where you can hire a boat. It’s a 5 minute walk from drop off point (Malatapay Market). You can ask around the vendors in the market where it is.

4. Haggle a boat to Apo Island. We were 8 so we needed a bigger boat. And that’s the only one available when we arrived. – 3,500 pesos two-way (8 passengers) = 437.5 pesos / head

5. Registration Fee before loading the boat – 100 pesos / head

*** If you want your food to be prepared by the time you get to Apo Island, ask the “operator” from the Information Center if you can order food through them. They have contacts on the island. They will let you use their cellphone and talk to whoever you can order food to.

And off we goooo.

On our way to Apo Island
There’s Apo Island!


6. When you get to the island, your guide will be waiting for you to unload. I think kilala sila ng boatman kasi sila contact nila. Tulong tulong sa business guys. Haha. They will guide you going to another Information Center where you need to pay for the Environmental Fee – 100 pesos / head

7. Every one is required to hire a tour guide to be able to swim with the Pawikans. You can ask around who can be your tour guide during the swimming with the Pawikans. But usually, sila sila rin magkaka kilala so just let them go near you. – 300 pesos / 4 persons = 75 pesos / head

8. If you did not bring your own snorkeling gears, there are rentals – 100 pesos / head

9. If you are not confident to swim in the Deep Blue Sea like me, of course there are life jacket rentals. Hahaha! – 100 pesos / head

Us getting ready to swim and play with the Pawikans!
Me behind the Pawikan + legsssss. Hahaha!
2 of my friends behind Dong Pagong (Jappy and Tet)

10. As mentioned before, we ordered food from the 1st Information Center prior to loading the boat so we can have our lunch ready by the time we arrive. Yeay! Eating time! – 180 to 250 pesos / head

*** After all the fun and all the swimming with the Pawikans, your boatman will usually require you to be back at the boat by 1pm-2pm before the low tide hits. On our case, we did go back at 2pm and the water on our way to the Information Center near Malatapay Market has been quite rough. So if you don’t like to be sea sick, just follow your boatman.

11. Back at Malatapay Market, we were supposed to hail a bus but they pass by very seldom. Good thing, there was a Tuktuk ride that fits 8 people and the driver only asked us to pay for 400 pesos and he will drop us by our hotel. Yeay! 🙂 – 400 pesos / tuktuk ride = 50 pesos / head

Siksikan inside the TukTuk 🙂
Hello from my siopao face 🙂

*** This one’s just a lucky hit as almost all Tuktuk rides can only fit 4 people and still ask you to pay 400 pesos for the whole trip. Guess we’re luck that day! 🙂

TOTAL COST: 1,270.5 pesos / head (this is if we opted to order in the restaurant and rent snorkel gears and life jacket)


If you want to read more about our Do-It-Ourselves Dumaguete trip, just click HERE.