Michiel- (yes proper spelling) my self (Lyon) have been living in Cebu City for almost 2 years. If your in Cebu and want to take the the coastal tour on a bus down to Dumaguete then read forward as I will walk you through the process.
We hit the road from our location in Cebu to the south bus terminal station around 7:30 AM the taxi to the station is reasonable about 85 php or $1.30 taking about 25mins to get there. Arrival at the station will cost you 10php to enter with your taxi and bags. Yes I know if your a foreigner like me your gonna do a lot of head-scratching at the small but yet adding-up fees you pay everywhere along the way in the Phillipines.
Once at the station your gonna want to look for a bus that says Dumaguete in the front upper left of the main window at the driving end of the bus. The cost for a one way trip is 275 php now this fee includes just the bus ticket. The bus drives to a port and will reverse onto a large boat called Maayo shipping. The boat ride costs 70 php so in total the entire trip per person is 300 php or $6.00.
Trust me when I say this do not take the bus with no air-conditioning as the Phillipines is humid so for an extra 50php you will have a direct AC vent over your head. Length of bus ride from Cebu to Dumaguete ranges from 5 to 6 hours according to traffic. I noticed once outside Cebu City the traffic lightens up with just one road going along the coast.
What will you see along the way from Cebu to Dumaguete.
The Phillipines has some of the greatest diversity I have seen in my travels. The bus drive is ultimately a great way to see some of places and people, how they live, what they live on, and what they do. If your from a country that has a clean trash policy then bear in mind your gonna have a strong opinion about how much trash your gonna see as it seems people living in the Phillipines just don’t clean up the surrounding environment. There are some beautiful sites along the way also mainly rice fields, small towns, and open ocean views.
Vendors will try to sell snacks to you on the bus.
Once your on your way, I mean that literally as you will notice that really nothing follows an exact schedule in the Phillipines. My assumption leads me to believe there are just so many people that it’s hard to mandate a schedule to mass lines and the arrangement to situate these numbers on a timely bases. Although Filipino people are one of the most effective in writing everything down and collecting information with written receipts for just about everything. You won’t find much electronic processes to check in or out except for airports that have modernized the process of expendedency. Put on your Patience hat as your next step will adjust to the vendors that will come through the bus selling goods, these vendors are already on the bus as other passengers. I didn’t buy any but many people do buy crackers, chips , cookies, water, along with other only made in the Phillipines items.
Maayo Shipping takes about 40 minutes to cross the channel.
Side note about bus ride: Along the way we stopped to use the bathroom once, if you have a small bladder like me I advise you not to drink much as the drive will be a pretty big test as I found out.
The boat ride is the shortest part of the trip, about 40 minutes total and will actually be the nicest if you enjoy a open ocean breeze and views. Once the bus backs up into the boat the driver will say it’s time to exit and get out and head up to where the seating is. There is happily a bathroom on the boat also. The Phillipines has some of the calmest seas throughout the year as multiple islands block incoming swells from the larger part of the Pacific Ocean.
Another 35min to Dumaguete from the Maayo port at Negros Oriental.
So once you make it across the channel from Visayas to Negros Oriental the province where Dumaguete City is located you will get back on the bus and drive another 35 minutes to Dumaguete City. The cost of this portion is included in your initial 275 php which you paid upfront. The trip in itself is actually quite nice although our little guy got sick from the trip along the the way but otherwise well worth the $6.00 also being the cheapest way to get to Dumaguete from Cebu city.
Side note: You will pay for your bus ticket once your seated on the bus at the south bus terminal, a ticket manager comes to your seat and issues a slip and collects payment. Good to know this as you might end up wanting to find a ticket terminal at south bus terminal and there isn’t one.
Please read my next blog on where to stay and eat in Dumaguete, Aloha Lyon,Michiel and Miller💙