Osmeña Peak is a 1 hour drive from the small town of Alegria on Cebu and is an amazing sunrise hike with a stunning backdrop of steep cliffs.
Getting to Osmeña Peak Cebu
In the small town of Alegria in the Phillipines I woke at 3am, gathered my gear and met our driver at the front of our hostel. For 500 Pesos per person or $10 USD we had a return trip to Osmeña Peak, the tallest peak on Cebu.
The three of us crammed onto the habal-habal, which was easy on the wallet but incredibly uncomfortable on the butt cheeks. If you are a budget traveler it will be your only choice from Alegria when looking to hike Osmeña Peak, but if you have the cash rent a car or get some other way up there!
Alegria to Osmeña Peak
Aside from the numb butt cheeks, the drive was very peaceful as we expertly cruised through villages, small towns, mountains and farming fields. Having the driver was extremely valuable during this part of the trip as he knew all of the bumps, dips, ditches and obstacles we encountered along the roads. I have driven mopeds a lot and wouldn’t suggest this journey in the dark for someone unless you really are looking for a big challenge.
We arrived at the registration office, hopped off the bike and feel the feeling rush back into our legs. The entrance fee to hike Osmeña Peak was 30 Pesos or 60 cents. We didn’t ask for a guide but it seemed as though our driver had promised a nice old lady she would have two aussies to show up to the peak. It was still pitch black and we didn’t know exactly how long or well-signed the hike was so we decided to let the guide come rather than send her back to bed without making any money.
We definitely didn’t need a guide for the 15 minute hike in the end but our guide, Ninette, spoke decent english and told us a few facts and stories about the area. It is possible to hike from Kawasan Falls, which takes anywhere from 3.5 to 6. You can also camp on Osmeña Peak if you are looking for a bit more than the 15 minute walk. It is also common to hike from Osmeña Peak to Kawasan Falls.
We arrived at the peak, 1,013 meters above sea-level, with not another soul around and enjoyed the bliss. I tried to imagine what would appear around us when the sun would creep over the clouds on the horizon. The most picturesque view from the peak is towards Moalboal, which is actually directly away from where the sun is rising. From Osmeña, I took photos in both directions but would have liked the opportunity to see the sun set over those beautiful capped hills. The hike would also be great all morning in terms of lighting but I would suggest not visiting any time between 2pm and 5pm. The sun may be at its harshest directly behind the capped hills, which would make taking a photo a little difficult.
About 30 people had joined us at the top by the end of the sunrise and Ninette told us the number of people visiting per day ranges from 100-1000 depending on the day and the season. We visited in the low season and on a weekday. Weekends are notoriously busy as most locals enjoy a day off work on sunday and have some spare time.
On the way down from Osmeña you will get a great view of Guadalupe with the sun shining over the region. When we got to the bottom we ended up paying Ninette 300 Pesos or $6 USD to thank her for guiding us up to the peak and hanging out with us.
Osmeña Peak to Alegria
The ride home from Osmeña Peak to Alegria was great fun (apart from the numb butt cheeks again) as we waved to locals who stared, laughed and sometimes poked fun as the three of us cruised our way back down the mountain.
If you can haul yourself out of bed early enough and are up for a small adventure this was a fantastic morning, which wasn’t too physically draining at all. The view to Moalboal is definitely a unique landscape and I will let the photos do the talking than fumble around with adjectives to explain to you how it was so amazing (maybe just one adjective).
Osmeña Peak Map