A quick guide to visiting Sumilon Island on Cebu’s pristine coast. Everything you need to know with inspiring photos from my trip.
Sumilon Island is a small sandbar island located just a short boat ride around from Oslob. There’s no doubt that Sumilon Island is an epic spot for spending the day relaxing, exploring and swimming in some of the clearest water in Cebu.
In this blog post, I’ll outline everything you need to know about visiting Sumilon Island in Cebu, as well as showcasing this incredible spot in photos captured during my visit.
BEFORE YOU GO: Make sure you’re covered with the world’s best adventure travel insurance by World Nomads and save thousands of dollars in the unfortunate event of a travel mishap. Or, check out SafetyWing for digital nomads insurance.
How to Get to Sumilon Island? – The Cheap Local Guide
Since Sumilon sandbar is an island just off the coast, you’re going to need to catch a boat ride from the Oslob side of Cebu.
Consider an online day-pass for pool access + boat transfer: BlueWater Sumilon Day Pass
There are several boat operators that transport tourists and locals between the mainland and Sumilon everyday. However, don’t get caught paying for a private boat.
Instead, the local option is to share a boat or “banka” with others. If you’re getting a tricycle over to the boats, you can ask your driver for a cheap local boat transfer. Otherwise, head to the location pinned on the map below.
Once you arrive, ask for a shared boat. This means that the boat transport operators get a fair, fixed price for the journey. This way, up to 10 people can share the cost of the trip to Sumilon.
Sumilon Island Boat Price
The Sumilon Island boat transfer price is 1500 pesos per boat. As mentioned, this is per boat, not per person. Some operators might try to tell you that it’s 1500 per person, but don’t be fooled.
The boat operators might also try to tell you that others won’t want to share a boat, or that you’ll be waiting for hours for people to arrive. Don’t believe it. In the peak or shoulder seasons, you’ll certainly see other travelers wanting to share a boat to Sumilon Island.
There is also a 50 peso environmental fee per person. This goes to the local municipality to maintain the environmental integrity of Sumilon Island.
READ MORE: BEST THINGS TO DO ON CEBU
Best Things to See & Do On Sumilon Island Cebu
Snorkeling and Diving
Once you arrive, one of the best things to do is to check out the underwater world.
It’s possible to snorkel all around the sandbar. There are small patches of reef on the long stretch of white sand, with plenty of fish to see. However, the best place for snorkeling on the island is in the Marine Sanctuary. This is a protected marine area a little out of the way from the main sandbar swimming area.
There are also a few dive-sites on Sumilon. If you’re interested in doing any scuba diving, it’s best to speak to the Bluewater Resort. They organize trips to up to 5 different dive sites.
The Shifting Sandbar
An interesting thing about the island sandbar is that it is always shifting direction. You may have seen thinner, stretched sand reaching fat out from the Southern tip. This is due to monsoons bringing tropical rain and tide patterns that shift the sandbar.
The great thing about the island is that it’ll always look different, no matter what time of year you choose to check it out!
When is the Best Time To Visit Sumilon Island
The best time to visit Cebu and Sumilon Island will depend on the Typhoon seasons. There are two main seasons in Cebu; Dry and Wet Seasons.
Cebu dry season – December – June
Cebu wet season – June – December
The best time to check out the sandbar island is in the Dry season, or just before, from November to May. It is possible to dive and snorkel all year round, however, these months provide the best visibility and weather conditions on the island.
Sumilon Island Resort & Day Passes
The entire island has only one resort or accommodation option. For those with deeper pockets, you could also enjoy an excellent overnight trip while staying at the Sumilon Island Bluewater Resort.
The resort owns a large portion of the island, including the entire northern side. So, in order to fully experience the rest of this awesome place and to spend a night here, you’ll need to book a room.
However, visitors are free to explore the private side of the island by purchasing a day-pass online with Klook. This gives you access to all of Bluewater’s facilities including the private beach, infinity pool, lagoon, restaurant and snorkeling trips.
MORE PHOTOS FROM SUMILON ISLAND
I hope that you enjoyed this short travel guide to Sumilon Island Cebu. Before you head out, why not check out some Sumilon Island photos captured on my trip below? For more travel and adventure inspiration on Cebu, make sure to also visit some of my other articles found at the bottom of this blog post.