BEST WATERFALLS & CAVE POOLS IN BOHOL, PHILIPPINES
Bohol is an incredible island with a diverse landscape and so many different attractions to visit. From Chocolate Hills to cave pools in Anda to sardine balls in Panglao, there truly is so much to do and see in Bohol. However, the attractions that are the most impressive are the beautiful waterfalls in Bohol all over the island. In this blog post, I will share with you all of the incredible waterfalls I have visited in Bohol so far. I’ll also add a few cave pools into the mix because they are equally as impressive.
*I’ve been to Bohol twice and still haven’t seen all of the waterfalls of course. Some that you might like (and I’d like) to visit that you won’t find on this last are:
- Kawasan Falls (Not the one on Cebu. Bohol has it’s own Kawasan)
- Pangas Falls
- Niligidan Falls
MY FAVORITE WATERFALLS IN BOHOL
Dimiao ‘Twin’ Falls (Pahangog Falls)
Dimiao Twin Falls was massive but also a little crowded. About 20 people were hanging out at the falls. Two different streams flow down from about 70 feet into a shallow pool. The pool does deepen in some parts making it safe enough to cliff jump into. Some parts were shallow so make sure you check the depth first! My favorite part about twin falls is actually the view in the opposite direction of the falls. It looks like a jungle wonderland, with makeshift tree bridges, floating coconuts and a backdrop of coconut trees and a setting sun.
The walk back up is pretty grueling with hundreds of stairs but well worth it. If you are on Bohol, I would meet a local, sell your soul or do whatever you have to do be shown some awesome waterfalls. There are lots of different falls all over the island but we only had time to visit two. Enjoy, be safe and always leave a place cleaner than when you arrived.
After parking at the bottom of the crazy winding road we headed off and stopped at the number of different pools along the way to jump in and swim. The water is a very vibrant blue and very refreshing after the long drive to Candijay. Make sure you check the depth of the pools as the water isn’t quite transparent enough to see. My favorite pool was one that actually had Can-Umantad Falls in the backdrop.
From this pool, you can head on up to the main waterfall, which is apparently the tallest waterfall in the province. The main cascade is 60ft but hits a plateau before finally dropping down to the main pool. It is very impressive and it’s great to be able to hang out in the water below the falls although the water itself was very deep so it wasn’t the best swimming hole. There are a lot of great spots beneath the falls to make your own and hang out while reading a book or relaxing.
When we arrived, there was not a soul in sight. Just a large pool of remarkably still, turquoise water. Stalactites hung dramatically, blissfully dripping water into the warm water below. A huge waterfall pouring into the pool was the soundtrack of the day. I could tell this was going to be one of the best cliff jumping spots on Bohol.
We had entered our playground for the day. There was a raft we could use to paddle around the pool and a rope swing hanging from the tallest branch. Almost 12 feet deep, the pool was perfect for cliff jumping, even the waterfall could be climbed. We spent the first 2 hours non-stop exploring, jumping, swinging and just being huge kids as Jammy watched on probably wondering why we are so crazy. We did convince her to jump from a 20 footer so she was in on it too.
The walk down to the falls takes about 10-15 minutes and is really beautiful. Along the way, we passed some carabao and there were lots of birds playing in the thick forest. It is quite steep but very short so most people are capable of making it down to the base of the falls. You can get a good look of the falls if you stay at the top but only if you own a drone. Otherwise, there is no great vantage point from above that I know of due to the thick trees surrounding the canyon rim.
We set our belongings to the right of the waterfall where we found a group of young boys. They were a cheeky bunch sharing cigarettes, some rum and coke and taking turns to jump into the pool of water. I joined them and they loved when we sent a few backflips into the pool. As a reward, they offered me some Tanduay rum in a half-cut soda bottle. Welcome to the Philippines. I always love when the locals are hanging out in the nature of their neighborhood and it isn’t just overrun by gawking tourists.
View full blog post: CAMUGAO FALLS IN BOHOL, PHILIPPINES
I’d never heard of this waterfall so I was unsure what to expect, which is a great way to enter an adventure. We paid the $1 entrance fee and then began the walk down to the falls. The cement stairs wound through the beautiful dense forest of trees. Despite the man-made stairs it truly was a beautiful walk down to the falls. It set the tone for the adventure as we immersed in the jungle.
From the viewpoint we stood on, some of the kids actually cliff-jump into the water. To be honest it looked super shallow and I couldn’t believe they were doing it. Try that one at your own risk. There is another cliff jump across the pool, which isn’t incredibly safe but much, much safer than the viewpoint. I’ve placed a photo of the viewpoint where the boys where jumping below.
The waterfall itself comes from quite a beautiful little canyon. Depending on the rainfall, it can be quite a powerful waterfall but on this day in February, it was a mid-strength. You could walk up onto the falls with ease. I think this is one of the best waterfalls in Bohol if you want to actually swim!
In the past, I have seen videos of Mag-Aso where it is raging with force. That’s why you always have to approach a location with caution and appreciate that it can be more or less dangerous on different days. on our visit, Mag-Aso was very calm and everybody was swimming without worry. If you visit in the rainy season please explore with caution. The jump spot is on the right-hand side of the photo below although the locals jumped from where I took this photo and the viewpoint in the second photo.
View full blog post: MAG-ASO FALLS IN BOHOL, PHILIPPINES
After hiking up Mayana Peak, my guide told me to go drive down the hill and explore Kinahugan Falls. It was a local tip I knew would be worth pursuing so I headed off to find Kinahugan Falls. In a small little village amongst the rice fields, I found the entrance. I sat and talked with the local family there for a bit and asked them what the entrance fee should be and they said there isn’t one. That undiscovered theme continued as there was no-one at the falls the entire time I hung out down there. It is good for a little swim but not the most epic waterfall in Bohol. It’s more of a magical little area for exploring and hanging out than a huge, impressive waterfall. I loved this spot and encourage you to diverge from the regular spots to check it out.
Canawa Cold Spring
The Canawa Cold Spring is in the Candijay region (pronounced ‘Candee-high’). I drove my bike up here from Panglao (popular tourist area) and it took about two hours. I was continuing on to Anda after so I made it the stop on the way. If you plan to return to Panglao it will be a long journey of 2-hours driving each way.
The first part of the Canawa Cold Springs is very man-made and not particularly beautiful. It’s like a narrow quarry with benches and table on either side. It is set up for local families to come and swim on the weekends not to be some sort of natural, tropical oasis. However, at the end of the channel, there is a huge swimming hole, surrounded by beautiful trees. ‘Cawa’ means Pan in the local dialect, which perfectly describes the shape of this miniature amphitheater. In windy moments the wind would blow some of the leaves off the trees and they would swirl around in the sunlight, slowly floating down to rest on the surface of the water. As light crept in between the gaps in the foliage, this swimming hole section of the Canawa Cold Spring was beautiful!
On the far side of the natural pool, I spotted a rope. I checked the depth and then swam over to the rope and climbed it all the way up to a branch about 10-meters high. I was there by myself, so there was no-one to capture a photo, but it was a great cliff-jump and a really magical spot. I hope to see a photo from here in the future so let me know if any of you visit and jump. Don’t worry too much about the depth in the middle of the pool. Many of the locals have tried reaching into the depths but no-one has ever touched the bottom.
View the full blog post: CANAWA COLD SPRINGS IN CANDIJAY, BOHOL (CLIFF JUMP)
Tambuko Cave Pool
Hidden away from sight in a Barangay of 300 people deep in the mountains is this incredible cave pool. I arrived in the village and the boys led me down inside the caves and when we emerged at this pool I couldn’t believe my eyes. They had never swum in it but I convinced them to jump in with me and next minute we were sending backflips from the sides. They forgot to tell me to climb out it would be 15 meters of almost vertical rock climbing. Once we made it back to the village we shared a beer and before long, half the village had come to see who the guy with the beard was. We chatted in broken English as cheeky kids tapped my shoulder and hid wondering if I’d chase them down the street or laugh. As I drove off on my bike with 40 kids and locals waving goodbye, I knew that for me this is the Philippines. Beautiful nature but people that outshine even the most magical watering holes.
Anda Cave Pools
In the north of Bohol, in a world away from Panglao is the beautiful town of Anda. Here the main attractions is the great sunset beaches and the peculiar cave pools. Anda has multiple cave pools, which are quite unique to the region. Seemingly in the middle of nowhere, pools of water are found in sinkholes all throughout Anda. The most popular cave pool is Cabagnow Cave Pool. When I visited they were having some ownership/tourism licensing issues so they had removed the ladder and fenced it off. However, normally they have a ladder inside so you can jump in and out. With no ladder, you will be stuck in the pool for eternity. Trust me, I considered it!
WHERE TO STAY ON BOHOL
Read my full blog post: BEST AREA TO STAY IN BOHOL
Bohol Beach Club – Luxury: It’s everything you would expect from a luxury resort in a tropical location. It’s beachside with amazing pools, bars, and chill-out areas. Right near the restaurants, bars, and action of Alona Beach but hidden away so that you can relax after a day of island-hopping or adventures.
Venezia Suites – Value: The Venezia Suits present the best value on Bohol. If you are looking for luxury but only want to spend mid-range often you need to get lucky. Venezia will hook you up with a beautiful suite that comes with a pool and living space. It’s a damn good deal and located right near all the action of Panglao so you are in a good spot.
HM & B Backpackers Inn: As a backpacker generally you check the price, location, and cleanliness. HM & B ticks all those boxes as one of the cheapest hostels near Alona Beach but also maintains good reviews, cleanliness and is pretty cheap compared to everything else near Alona Beach.
ARE YOU KEEPING UP WITH MY BOHOL SERIES
I’ve been to Bohol twice and both times I explored extensively on my motorbike to the popular tourist spots and to locations many people have never heard of. I document it all in my BOHOL TRAVEL GUIDE: 27 Awesome Things To Do
Are you a waterfall chaser? I’ve put together a list of My Favorite Waterfalls and Cave Pools on Bohol with detailed directions and photos.
Maybe you are an adrenaline junkie like me and want to find out the Best Cliff Jumping spots on Bohol.
The popular tourist area where most people stay is Panglao Island. I’ve put together a blog post guide about the Best Things to do on Panglao Island
If you aren’t quite sure whether you want to stay on Panglao Island or venture north to Anda, I’ve written a blog post about the Best Places to Stay on Bohol, which helps you decide what region is best for you depending on your preferences.
One of the best activities on Bohol is the island-hopping to Balicasag and Virgin Island. I’ve put together a guide with everything you need to know about the adventure here: Virgin Island and Balicasag Island Hopping Tour Review