Cebu Canyoneering Experience with Cyan Adventures

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Before I bid goodbye to 2017, I promised myself to brave one of my greatest fears: HEIGHTS. Because Jonas and I booked seat sale flights to Cebu via Philippine Airlines (only cost us Php 3k each), I convinced him to go Canyoneering with me at Badian Island in Cebu.


I'm glad I was able to talk to Johnn Mendoza of The Crazy Juann, also a local in Cebu, prior to my trip because he gave lots of recommendations and advice when traveling the Queen City of the South. One of his best tips is to book a Canyoneering activity with Cyan Adventures. We'll get to the Whys as we go through this blog post. 😊

To set expectations, here is what's included in the Canyoneering package we availed with Cyan Adventures:


Life Jacket
Special non-slip canyoneering shoes
Full wetsuit
Safety climbing helmets
Lunch at the end of the tour
Water and snacks during the tour
Entrance fees
Tour guide
Microfiber towels
Pickup from hotel in Moalboal
Pictures and videos after the tour via Dropbox

After booking online, Jen of Cyan Adventures emailed me a day before the activity asking for my hotel location and food restrictions. This is because they provide a feast after the whole canyoneering experience and a free pick up and drop off within Moalboal area.

4:22 am - 5:00 am. Since our booked hotel (The Center Suites) is located in the city, we booked a Grab ride going to the South Bus Terminal for Php 116. From the terminal, we rode an ordinary bus going to Moalboal for Php 115.


We opted for an ordinary bus since we departed around 5:00 am. There was no traffic during this time and the air during the dawn is equally cold compared to riding an airconditioned bus at that point in the morning.

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7:00 am - 8:30 am. We didn't expect to arrive early at the Moalboal Bus Terminal. Upon arrival, we found out that we're about to be picked up in the area around 8:00 am that's why we walked to Mcdonald's in Gaisano Grand, Moalboal (a 1 KM away from the terminal) to grab a light breakfast first.


A red multi-cab waited for us outside of Mcdonalds after an hour of standby. Then for less than 15 minutes, we were already at the headquarters of Cyan Adventures in Moalboal.

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8:31 am - 9:10 am. Upon arrival in the HQ, we were asked to fill up a form and a waiver each. Afterwards, we were asked to do the following: secure our belongings in the locker provided, wear the full wetsuit halfway, and fit the perfect special non-slip canyoneering shoes for the activity. We didn't wear it all the way because it'll take us at least 45 minutes to the starting point at Badian.


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The locker and wetsuit rental are inclusive on the Canyoneering package we availed at Cyan Adventures.

I had a little issue with the wetsuit because I can't seem to find the perfect fit. Apparently, there's none for me because my body isn't proportion in the first place! lol Luckily, I was able to find a size that I can work with. The staff of Cyan Adventures was also nice enough to help me pull the damp suit on the leg area because my left hand already got blistered during my previous attempt to pull it on my own. Eeeeckkk!

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An OOTD specifically for Canyoneering

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Their certifications are displayed on the wall of their HQ

9:11 am - 9:56 am. We still rode the same multi-cab going to our location. The road to the starting point at Badian isn't perfect. The first 50% is cemented while the remaining are still bumpy and under construction.  We picked up our tour guides along the way.


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We got personal crates where the gears and our personal items are stored. 

With us are our own personal crates where the things that we'll need for the activity is carefully kept. Don't be fooled, we won't be bringing these crates all the way to the water rapids. Haha!

9:57 am. Touchdown Badian starting point! While the other canyoneering tours got ready at the side of the road where we fetched our tour guides, we assembled and wore our gears at the basketball court situated at the starting point. Our crates are placed in front of the bench of the court so that we can wear our canyoneering shoes with ease. 


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We left the following on our crates: footwear (mine was a pair of aqua shoes), dry clothes, personal hygiene kit, and the microfiber towel. The rest of our stuff (includes the ff: life jacket, climbing helmets, and bottle of 250 ml) were brought to the 30-minute trek to the jump off point.

10:30 am. The trek was a tad hard if it is the longest time since you last engaged in cardio activities. Exhibit A is me. Hahaha! I found myself panting on the steep road, but I was eventually able to overcome it.


At the last 10 minutes of our trek before we reach the jump-off point, we can already hear the gushing of water and some screams from the people. I immediately felt the excitement and decided to finish the first part of the trek strong!

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Our tour group is composed of Pinoys, Europeans, a Mexican, and a Russian.

It was already rewarding to see how the jump-off point looks like. On this area, we looked for a huge rock where we can settle and wear our life jacket and helmet. Afterwards, we took some photos that also graced the start of a fun-filled trip to the canyons. 

In case you're wondering where I placed the water bottle that I had since the starting point, there is a pocket in front of life jacket where I can keep it secure. 😊

Canyoneering /ˈkanyΙ™niNG/: the sport of exploring a canyon by engaging in such activities as rappelling, rafting, and waterfall jumping.

Given the definition of Canyoneering above, we were only able to experience waterfall jumping, walking in neck-deep water level, and trekking by land. With this, I still had the best time of my life sliding through the rocks, floating in the water, and getting carried away by the rapids. To be honest, no words can express how much I loved everything that we did. It felt like I was in a natural water park for adults!

Check out the video below to see some snippets of the fun we've had during our Canyoneering adventure:


During the trek, I already lost track of time because of how beautiful the surroundings were. At one point, most probably around lunchtime, we stopped by one big rock to eat snacks like freshly-cooked rice cakes (suman) and bananas. The two suman and half of a banana filled me up real quick yet the tour guide is offering me some more. I respectfully decline because I'm feeling a little bloated already. πŸ˜…

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Since most of us were beginners, we followed the downstream route of the river. I saw myself worrying at times because the water rapids may take me, but the knowledgeable guides know what to do in times like such. I sometimes feel that the guides were holding my life jacket because the water is taking me already. πŸ™ˆ

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I loved how the guides were also opportunistic when it comes to taking photos with their waterproof cameras. #GottaDoItForTheGram, right? πŸ˜‰

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After hours of canyoneering, we stumbled upon another sari-sari store where snacks can be brought. Because we didn't have any cash with us, our tour guide willingly offered to purchase for us and pay him in return at the HQ.

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We stayed here for good 15 - 20 minutes before proceeding with the trip.

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Out of the six major jumps of various height on the trek (65 ft is the highest), I was only able to do three. I chickened out on the 30 - 60 ft high jumps because I think I've had enough for the day. Hahaha! It was fun watching thrill seekers gasp for air as they jump off the cliff while I'm floating in the water though. lol

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In my observation, our group was able to trek on harder routes because we wore a full wetsuit with a protection on our hips for rock sliding. At first, I thought we were overdressed because, during my research prior the trip, I saw other people canyoneering wearing only shirts and even bikinis. 

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Our trek ended with a pristine view of the Kawasan falls. By the time we arrived here, we've already unzipped our wetsuit halfway though that's why we didn't get to swim in this area. If we were fully clothed with our wetsuits, I don't think we'll still swim here there were also lots of tourists swimming and rafting in the vicinity by the time that we came. 

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3:00 pm. It took us another 20 minutes to reach the Matutinao Beach Resort where we reunited with our crates. There was a clean shower room in the resort to rinse and change to dry clothes. After this, we proceeded to the dining area of the resort where a feast awaits us just by the sea.


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The food prepared in front of us is the perfect set to eat after swimming: roasted chicken, lumpiang toge, chop suey, pancit, and fish fillet. We also capped off our meal with freshly sliced mangoes. We also get to pick a drink of our choice between soda, canned juice, iced tea, or just plain water. It was a truly fulfilling meal that we didn't even get to finish everything. 

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4:00 pm - 5:00 pm. After eating our late lunch, we headed back to the Cyan Adventures HQ with our respective multi-cabs. Upon arrival, they parked inside the vast space of the headquarters (which we could use because our legs are starting to ache!) 


It's amazing how the timeline mentioned on the website is followed down to the last minute! With that, participants can manage their schedule for the rest of the evening after engaging in canyoneering activity for the day. 

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With the kind of activity that we just did, I don't think I can enjoy the adventure if I'm trekking and taking photos and videos at the same time. It's a great thing that photos and videos were already included in the package. I already got a copy of the photos and videos from Cyan Adventures in less than 24 hours via Dropbox. How efficient, right? It was like having a documentation team with you as you enjoy canyoneering. πŸ‘Œ

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Here are some few tips to remember if you wish to do canyoneering soon:

1. Bring a face mask and a sweater if you’re going to Moalboal via an ordinary bus on an early morning. The wind can be a little colder and the road can get a little bumpy and polluted.

2. Stretch before starting the trek. Our legs became sore the day after the canyoneering and Ibuprofen is the best bet to ease the pain. (Too bad I am allergic to it!)

3. Listen very well to tour guides during the entire activity. They know the route well that's why you should pay attention to their words and action. 

4. Do not bring too much cash and gadgets with you. Before leaving the hotel, anticipate the cash that you will be needing for the entire day since you'll be leaving your stuff in the lockers. There are also cases where dry bags got drenched in water that's why as much as possible, protect your gadget or do not bring one if it's not 100% waterproof.

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VERDICT


If I'm to rank my entire canyoneering experience with Cyan Adventures, I would give it a 9/10. From the gears, tour guides, snacks, sumptuous late lunch feast, down to the free photos and videos, they basically got everything covered. On top of that, I feel secured entrusting myself to the hands of the guides because they know what they're doing. I wouldn't mind paying a premium because I think I experienced the best of what the canyoneering activity in Cebu has to offer.

A special mention of what I love about Cyan Adventures is that they make the groups do touristy things together which makes everything more worthwhile. An example is us sliding through a not-so-high rock. Instead of us sliding through it normally, they asked us to lie on the water and let the rapids take us down to the river.

I also loved how a knowledgeable PWD (mute) person guided us in the trip along with non-PWD guides. Talk about supporting livelihood to every local! πŸ‘ 

My only wish to Cyan Adventures is that the video provided can come in a higher resolution because Youtube is life. πŸ˜‰

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I personally recommend everyone to book your Canyoneering with Cyan Adventures. They live up to their words of highly standardized office and tour procedures to ensure top service for every customer every time. You may book through their website or visit their Facebook page to know more. 😊

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