Which photographic waterfalls of the Philippines’ 7,640 islands should you add to your bucket list? The options include Aliwagwag Falls in Davao Oriental, which is one of the tallest waterfalls in the Philippines with over 130 cascading falls. In 2019 such tourist destinations like Iligan City, known as the city of waterfalls, attracted over 8 million tourists nationwide. Whether you’re traveling to Luzon, Visayas, or Mindanao, you’ll have a wide range of options from mini to majestic waterfalls. Here are some of the best places to visit if you’re planning to see waterfalls in the Philippines.
Pagsanjan Falls- Laguna, Luzon
Pagsanjan Falls is a two-hour drive from Metro Manila, so it’s the perfect day trip if you live in the capital city. These falls were featured in the final scenes of Francis Ford Coppola’s Vietnam War-era film “Apocalypse Now.” Also known as Cavinti Falls, the most popular way to view the natural wonder is by a 2-hour relaxing canoe trek down the river. You’ll have to maneuver the small boat through whitewater rapids to the main waterfall. Use boatman skills to also paddle your wooden canoe through the Pagsanjan Gorge that includes large boulders and small falls.
The main waterfalls splash down into a blue-green natural pool. You can take a bamboo raft under the thundering cascading falls to Devil’s Cave, which is located directly behind the famous falls. The return trip is an adrenaline rush as you shoot the rapids downstream between narrow rocks.
Aguinid Falls- Cebu, Visayas
Kawasan Falls in Badian, Cebu is probably the most famous waterfalls in the region. However, if you’d like to avoid the crowds then Aguinid Falls in Samboan, Cebu is a great alternative. It’s a four-hour drive from Cebu City and one of the small municipality’s three main falls, which also include Dao Falls and Binalayan Hidden Falls.
The waterfalls consist of eight levels. Due to past accidents, a guide must accompany you up to level five. However, no worries because you can still enjoy a thrilling adventure. You’ll scale up the falls at around a 45-degree angle, with the help of bamboo bridges. The guide can help you navigate up the non-slippery rocks as you enjoy small white-blue pools. It takes about 30 minutes to reach Level 5 of the “King’s Crown” waterfalls. Reward yourself by exploring small caves and taking a dip in refreshing cool waters.
Tinuy-an Falls- Surigao del Sur, Mindanao
These waterfalls, also known as the “Little Niagara Falls of the Philippines,” are a 5-hour drive from Surigao City in Southern Mindanao. You can swim in natural pools on the second and third levels. Make sure to take safety precautions such as wearing a life vest or abstaining from alcohol before going to the falls, as not doing so are some of the reasons why accidental drowning occurs. In addition, watch your footing on dry and wet rocks, don’t lean over the edge of the top of falls, and secure your footing when taking photos. Tinuy-an Falls are much less commercialized than others sites such as the UNESCO world heritage sites in the Philippines so you’re less likely to run into crowds when you visit.
So how did Tinuy-an falls get its nickname connected to the famous US-Canada falls? This is due to the curtain of cascading water that descends a four-tier drop. It’s 55 meters high and 95 meters wide. You can take a bamboo raft under the falls, and it’s just like riding a ferry boat at Niagara Falls.
These three above-mentioned tourist spots are among the most amazing waterfalls in the Philippines. Visiting these places allows you to unplug while escaping the hustle and bustle of city life of the three main islands. So check them out, and relax as you take in the sights and sounds of cascading water in these destinations.