19 Km Osmeña Peak to Kawasan Falls Trail


Posted by geemiz | Posted in Byahe Pilipinas, Cebu | Posted on 09-09-2017

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All confident, I am ready for that Sunday trail. I have been exercising every day for quite some time now and I did my stretching as what my fitness instructor has told me before that long trek. Later did I know that no workout and stretching can overcome a 10-hour mountain descent ascent walk.

Osmeña Peak to Kawasan Falls Trail

My feet are trembling and left knee aching. The brain is telling me to give up and ride the first habalhabal that I would see. But no, I am here to finish this. I did not walk 14km just to give up the rest 5km. Still, at pace and with the help of my beloved, we walked till we reached the beautiful Kawasan Falls, satisfied of the longest traverse by foot I have made in my 30 years of breathing.

The Invite

Weekends are always lazy days for me and babe especially Sunday where we always adhere to a super rest day. But an invite to trek Osmeña Peak to Kawasan Falls is more than enough to get out of bed. Thanks to our friend Flora who initiated this adventure. Initially, there are only 4 of us who are certain for the trip but one day before this expedition there are 17 of us in total.

Why osmena peak is a must visit

Those mountain ranges in Mantalungon, Dalaguete

The Journey

2:00 am, babe and I woke up, ready our self to travel 33km to meet up with our companion at Cebu City South Bus Terminal – we live in north part of the province. We arrived at the renndezvous point one hour earlier so we squeeze a little nap time. We departed Cebu City past 4:00 am-ish and reached Dalaguete in the shortest 2 hours bus ride of my life – I am exaggerating, I was sleeping the whole time. After taking off the bus we faced the first dilemma which is to whether eat breakfast or not. Yes, to eat or not to eat can change your life (wink). After an hour of talking and deciding on what food to bring for lunch (another food concern), we rode a habalhabal for 30 minutes to bring us to the foot of Osmeña Peak.

Osmena Peak Cebu

Osmeña Peak

I can still remember my first visit to Osmeña Peak, it was cloudy and foggy and I just got my Yi Action Camera. Excited with my new toy I took selfie videos – then afterward saw that all I had is a video of my forehead, well at least with a great view at the back, the Osmeña Peak. You can read more about it here: Adventure in South Cebu with the list of the must visit Waterfalls.

This time the weather is beautiful. No fog, just the beautiful landscape of the mountain ranges of Mantalungon, Cebu and the spectacular view of nearby islands. Saw several campers fixing their tent and getting ready to end their Osmeña Peak Overnight Adventure, and here I am imagining on how it feels to camp outside. All I day dream is camping inside my room – yes building a tent or tepee hut in my bed/room and reading inside. I love the outdoors but camping outside is not yet in my to do list.

What to wear Osmena Peak to Kawasan Falls trek

Photos here and there. Taking gorgeous photo in every corner of Osmeña Peak. Making sure that we don’t miss an angle of this stunning mountain backdrop. We cap the Osmeña Peak visit with a group photo.

What to bring Osmena Peak

Osmena Peak what to wear

Osmeña Peak to Kawasan Falls Trail

(New Route and Adventure)

After an exuberant flow of selfies and photos, we were done defiling the peak with our vanity at 9:30 am. Camera and mobile phones almost had enough of the Osmeña Peak photos. It is time for the real adventure – Osmeña Peak to Kawasan Falls Trail.

A fine cloudy day, the expectation is to reach Kawasan Falls in just a 4-5 hour trek, but oh! overly optimistic millennials, we reached Kawasan Waterfalls 6:00 pm — a 10-hour trek instead. But wait to our defense, it is a new route – we had no local guide, there are 17 of us mostly trekking beginners, and the weather is very playful later on in our walk.

Osmena Peak to Kawasan Falls map

Photo and tracking by Andrew D. one of our head trekker.

First Leg – Of Vegetables and Walking Back

Passing by vegetable plantations of cabbages and chayotes (sayote) is the first part of the journey. I have not seen the common sight of locals carrying vegetable-packed baskets on their back, but we passed several of these fully loaded vegetable baskets on a stock. We were walking around 1 km already when the trek navigators Andrew, Irvin, and Therese informed us that we are on the wrong trail. Well, this trail still lead to Kawasan Falls too but not as daring to the planned trail and with a less likely view. We walked about 500 meters back before making the right turn this time.

Mantalungon Dalaguete is the Fruit Basket of Cebu

Baskets full of cabbages ready for transport.

Second Leg – Firts Stop and Cold Refreshments

Local communities were still evident in the second leg of the trek. There were cemented and wooden houses, sari-sari stores, basketball courts, native chickens, and still more vegetable gardens. We had our first stop at a sari-sari store for cold refreshments and another local store before entering the foresty part of the trail.


Tips when going to Osmena Peak

Cold drinks for the thirsty trekkers.

Third Leg – Appreciating Farmers and Locally Produce Products

The third leg of the trek is more of a downhill walk under small trees and some corn fields. I can’t imagine the efforts our farmers have to take to bring these fruits and vegetables to the town proper, so a friendly reminder to buy locally produce goods from our dear farmers and NO HAGGLE, please.

Mantalungon Vegetables

Farm life of a child on a weekend.

Back to the traverse story – It is lunch time and the perfect spot to eat is under a Marmol cliff where the heat of the sun cannot penetrate us and with the perfect corn field view. As everyone enjoys their lunch, an old couple with their son came in the scene to rest, and with them is a piglet carefully wrap in a banana trunk on a basket. The jolly old man whom we exchanged jokes and laughter told us that they bought the piglet from the next barangay and will bring home to nurture it. Another plus memorable encounter with the guys is trying out the tobacco wrapped in lomboy leaves (duhat/black palm leaves). Before we bid goodbye, the good couple gave us a tip about the trail, on where to turn next and some landmarks (I heard about bamboos) and we continued our Osmeña Peak to Kawasan Falls trek.

Trail to Kawasan Falls from Osmena Peak

There is no perfect lunch spot than this.

Smoking like the locals do.

Fourth Leg – Buko is Life!

The fourth leg of the trail is more of a downhill slope with few uphills in between. Tired and excited, that is how I feel at that moment. Every step means getting closer to our goal and I can’t wait to swim in the cold Kawasan Falls.

New route Osmena Peak to Kawasan Falls

Perfect trek is to walk under trees and in between bushes.

We heard dogs barking, and my first thought is at last! a local community, and does this mean that we are near to our destination? We reached a house that aside from flowering plants they have coconut trees in their yard. The plan is just to ask the couple if we are on the right track to Kawasan Falls, but we ended up replenishing our energies with buko juice and few minutes of rest.

From osmena peak to kawasan falls

Buko is life!

How many km osmena peak to kawasan falls

Rest is lifer!

Fifth Leg – Aching Knees

The fifth leg of the trail from Osmeña Peak to Kawasan Falls is walking in the barangay road where habalhabal sometimes pass. This time the view of Tanon Straight is highly visible. We can see one Badian Island and behind it is Pescador Island. Read more about Pescador Island here:  Sardine Run, Pescador Island and the Rich Marine Biodiversity of Moalboal. The weather started to play, with drizzle and sunshine as if playing hide and seek. We pass by locals and they already know where we are heading and with a southerner tone, they mostly say “sus layo pa kaayo” (it is still far! / you have a long way to go). But this does not break our hearts, for we know we are almost there. This time my knee started to ache.

Perfect time to trek osmena peak to kawasan falls

Persevere and you will reach your goal.

Sixth Leg – Courage

The sixth leg of this trip, the group was divided. Some need to ride the habalhabal for their hearts maybe courageous but the body speaks differently. We reached a chapel, sari-sari store, Badian canyoneering signage and I said well how far would this trek be! Knee aching and legs shaking I walk with babe who is patiently assisting me, and my right leg supporting my left.

What to wear when trking osmena peak to kawasan waterfalls

Full with energy and enthusiasm.

It was the longest walk of my life. Thinking what did I do wrong on this hike? I trekked the Tuburan side of Mount Mago of Carmen, Cebu last April 2017 and I was so fine. I can even run during that 5 to 7-hour trek from Tuburan Cebu to Carmen Cebu zigzaging around Mago Peak and it was dark and raining. “Well then, blame it on the footwear!” That is having worn my untested, newly bought Merrel Trekking sandal this time over the battle-tested barefoot Merrel running shoes previously.

Traversing Osmena Peak to Kawasan Falls

Pescador Island in a distance.

Seventh Leg – Most Downhill Slope and Kawasan Waterfalls

The last leg of this journey is hearing the zen flow of Kawasan Waterfalls. Though in so much pain I slowly traversed the most downhill part of the trail with babe carefully assisting my every step. Closer and closer the waterfalls is like music to my ears. The path leads us to level 3 (topmost) of Kawasan Falls.

The best of Kawasan Waterfalls

Third level Kawasan Waterfalls. Photo by Andrew D.

What we bring

  • 4 liters of Gatorade
  • 2 liters of water
  • 1 dozen fitbar
  • 1 loaf of bread
  • 1 serving of sisig from 7/11

Kawasan Waterfalls

Fulfilled and feeling victorious, we reached the level 3 of Kawasan Falls past 6:00 pm. I am hesitant to take a dip at first, for all I wanted is to give my feet a good rest. But everyone is so encouraging, and I am grateful that I obliged, for the cold water help ease my aching knee and legs. The water is so refreshing and my legs were happy in the water. We made our way down almost 7:00 pm, walking as fast as we can to catch the 8:00 pm bus. Yes, my knee still hurts but thinking about the whole day trek makes it feel better.

Kawasan Falls at Night

Time to go home. Photo by Andrew D.

We reached Badian hi-way at 8:00 pm and almost took a van to Cebu City at a steeper price, but luckily, the last bus had enough seats for 17 tired trekkers. I doze off the whole trip not knowing how fast the bus was running. I just heard stories of my fellow trekkers that the travel time is supposed to be 3 or more hours from Badian to Cebu City, but we only had 2. The exhaustion was indeed a gift, it saved me the frightening bus-ride experience.

What we wore

  • Trekking sandals – I would suggest shoes for next time
  • Babe wore his running shoes. – Trekking shoes for next time
  • Dry fit shirts
  • I wore a rash guard under my shirt
  • Cap
  • Shades
  • Scarf
What to wear in Kawasan Falls trekking

The newbie trekkers all geared up.


The plan is to eat a sumptuous dinner, but we end up eating penoy and barbeque. Our tired and hungry body cannot take one more ride to a good restaurant. After dinner and few chats, we took a taxi for a 33km ride back home.Then, an hour after, we reached home, fixed the bed, and went to sleep triumphant of the day’s event.

Trek to Kawasan Falls

That moment when we don’t know what lies ahead.

It was a very good Sunday and I can still imagine myself doing the trek over and over again, of course with proper preparations and footwear :).

Although, I rarely engage in one, outdoors and nature have a special place in my heart. Outdoor activities is inasmuch a spiritual experience rather than a physical one. To me, it is a crash course of humility as a being. Through her, we can witness and allow ourselves to be lost in its vastness, and be reminded of how petty our daily work/life concerns are. She is raw, diverse, untamed, yet she is beautiful.

It is indeed a masterpiece — a by-product of chaos, adaptability and self-organization built through eons. There is much to learn from her, we have much to learn.

Crazy thing to do in Osmena Peak

Someone is having so much fun.

Helpful Reminders

  • Check the weather so you will know what gears to carry.
  • Bring enough fluids. 1 Liter each of Gatorade and water.
  • Wear proper clothing. Leggings or trekking pants and dry fit shirts.
  • Footwear is important. Shoes are highly recommended.
  • Must have accessories: cap and shades.
  • Insect repellant and sunscreen are a must.

Memories of the Trip

Osmena Peak Mountain Ranges

Beautiful mountain ranges.

Beautiful photo of Osmena Peak

Friends for treks 🙂

Friends in Osmena Peak

Best friends for treks 🙂

Couple in Osmena Peak

Prenup worthy moments.

Osmena Peak to Kawasan walk time

Basking in nature.

Osmena Peak Trekers

RJ and Shane the sweepers. They took good care of the newbies. Respect!

Route from Osmena Peak to Kawasan Falls

Smile and laughter despite odds.

Traverse to Kawasan Falls from Osmena Peak

Resilience and courage.

Have you tried trekking? How did it go? I would love to hear your story. You can comment it down below or send a message in Geemiz social media accounts found below.

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Meet geemiz

Geezelle Tapangan - A Management Accounting and Accountancy Graduate. She reads a lot and co-founded Cebu Book Club. She is a dog and nature lover. Gzell blogs about Travel & Life experiences.

Comments (28)

your pictures are STUNNING!

Osmena peak was a very good one and I love the way you guys explored the environment. My most liked scene is the beach because it is cool.

We were lost at some point of the trail and that makes the trek more fun. I love that amazing view of the beach too.

What an amazing adventure! The scenery is just breathtaking. Thanks for sharing.

Thank you and you’re welcome, Jane. I hope the photos give justice to the view.

I love a trip to nature and walking around in nature, I love to see how things a natural made.

Same here, nature is a great place to walk around.

What a great place to explore! I love all your pictures and it makes me want to hike! I can tell you had lots of fun with your friends! The farm life seems so simple and peaceful too.

Thank you, Edith. That is really an enjoyable hike. I love the farm life as well.

Beautiful pictures! I don’t think I can trek that long. Longest I’ve done was 10km, I was 40wks pregnant; I was trying to look for labor (by getting dilated).

Thank you, Linda. 10km is and pregnant, wow respect!

All the pictures are great. Looks like you must did so much fun and the the trekking in between the nature is a mind blowing experience. The mountains, greenery, streams and the roads..perfect for adventure.

All of us had a lot of fun. Immersing in nature gives a certain positive energy.

What a beautiful and amazing adventure!!! Your photographs are absolutely gorgeous!!

This is so gorgeous.

Wow. Great trip. Such huge mushrooms. So much to see around world

Wow, that’s a massive hike you guys did! I’m not sure if I could do it so kudos to you! Also I absolutely loveeeed the photo of the cabbages – so cool. Thanks for sharing 🙂

Thank you, Courtney. I love cabbages more now than ever. 🙂

what a great place it would to visit here. So much to learn in nature

I agree. We have so much to learn from nature.

It feels like so much fun to go on a trip like this with 17 people. Makes me want to plan one.

It is so much fun. It is also my first time to be on a large group.

what a nice trekking, I remember my experience going to kawasan falls that was also a quite long leg to finish but at the end it was worth it. love you photos and tips. thanks for sharing.

I agree, it is worth the long walk 🙂

The views are just breathtaking! What an amazing adventure, I would love to do something like this!

Oh such an incredible and stunning place..Looks like a lot of fun and adventure there..Love to visit there with my family..Awesome place!

Wow! This place looks so cool and beautigul. Ang sarap po siguro ng tubig sa falls. I hope i can visit here someday.

The cold water is very soothing. The falls is beautiful too.

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