Bantayan Island Guide – What To Do Other Than Island Hopping

About an hour’s ferry ride from Cebu, Bantayan Island is a popular beach getaway for locals and tourists alike due to its accessibility to islands nearby. However, if you’re not staying the night on the island and just want a taster of the island, this Bantayan Island Guide will cover some spots you should check out for your visit; day trip or not.

Getting to Bantayan Island

To get to Bantayan Island, you’ll have to take an hour’s ferry ride from Hagnaya Port. The easiest way (and best, in my opinion) is to hire a private driver to take you to the port. The car ride will take around 3 hours. I recommend you starting your car journey early like we did, at 2am, so that you can get to the port in time for the first ferry of the day.

The ferry ride costs PHP 300 for 1 way.

Read more: How to get to Bantayan Island from Cebu

1. Mangrove Eco Park

To explore the Mangrove Eco Park, you’ll have to stroll along the boardwalks surrounded by lush mangroves and serene waters. It isn’t a big park and it takes around 15 – 20 minutes to walk the entire boardwalk trail.

There is a viewing deck made of bamboo which you can climb for a beautiful view of the area, around 10 minutes into the trail. You can also buy fish food here to feed fishes.

View from the bamboo viewing deck

Entrance fee: Adult PHP 75, Child (4 – 12 years) PHP 20, Senior Citizen PHP 60

2. Sandtrá Beach

Sandtrá Beach, ideal for swimming and sunbathing, offers a tranquil escape with its powdery white sand and crystal-clear waters.

Do note that there are no huts or any form of shelter at Sandtrá Beach, which can be a problem if it rains, or when it gets too hot. When we visited in May, the scorching sun made it way too hot to enjoy the beach, and we left within 10 minutes.

Entrance fee: Adult PHP 40, Childrean PHP 30

3. The Ruins

The Ruins, remnants of an old Spanish fort, which now stand as a historical landmark amidst the island’s picturesque landscape.

There isn’t really a proper parking area for this landmark, so you will have to park your vehicle by the road. If seeing a vandalised set of old walls is not up your alley, you can catch a glimpse of it while in your vehicle as it is on the way to the next location.

4. Ogtong Cave (Ogtong Cave Resort)

Ogtong Cave, located within a resort, is actually an underground pool with cool, clear waters perfect for a refreshing dip. There are also other swimming pools in the resort, as well as chalets, so this could also be a spot for you if you’re looking to do more than a day trip to Bantayan Island.

Entrance fee: 665 PHP for a day pass, if you’re not staying in the resort

Ogtong Cave Resort Facebook

5. Kota Beach

Kota Beach is famous for its stunning sandbar that emerges during low tide. With its calm, shallow waters, it’s also an ideal location for swimming and relaxing by the beach. It also wasn’t crowded when we visited and there were a number of palm trees that provided shade for those that wanted to lay out a mat on the sand!

Oh heads up, avoid the restaurant by the name of Kadlawon Restobar at Kota Beach. Service here is really slow and the food isn’t good as well.

Getting Around Bantayan Island

Transport on Bantayan Island

The main modes of transport on the island are motorbikes or tricycles.

There are also cars on the island, but hailing a taxi is not easy. Private hire apps like Grab or Uber also don’t work on the island.

We recommend hiring a tricycle for the day to take you around the island like we did. There will be many by the port when you get off the ferry and they will try to upsell you, so do be careful. We paid around PHP 1,0

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