oslob whale shark
Cebu,  Chronicles,  Experience,  Oslob,  Philippines

Whale Shark Adventure in Oslob, Cebu

Whale sharks are the most gigantic creatures I have seen so far. My big regret is not to be able to swim with them during our Oslob whale shark encounter because I was too frantic to be sucked into their huge mouth. Even though the guides assured that these are friendly creatures incapable of harming humans, I still didn’t plunge into the water. So if you have plans, dive, swim and enjoy. Don’t be a scaredy-cat like me.

Also read: Surviving a Canyoneering Adventure in Badian, Cebu

Here are a few tips if you wish to have a close encounter with the Oslob whale sharks

  • Wake up early. You should be in Cebu South Bus Terminal at 3 AM.
  • Travel Time: 3-4 hrs from Cebu City proper to Oslob so you’ll reach there at around 7 AM.
  • Tell the bus conductor to drop you off at the whale shark area in Tan-awan, Oslob.
  • Bus Fare: non-air-conditioned = Php 150; air-conditioned = Php 155
  • When you reach there, expect a lot of people lining up to pay the fees.

whale shark

Whale Watching Only fees

Php 300.00 = Local guest (with boat ride)
Php 500.00 = Foreign guest (with boat ride)

Whale Watching + Snorkeling fees

Php 500 = Local guest (with boat ride + snorkeling gear)
Php 1, 000 = Foreign guest (with boat ride + snorkeling gear)

whale shark

  • After paying, get your ticket/s and proceed to the briefing area.
  • It’s mandatory to wear a life jacket. Bring your own if you have or rent for Php 30.
  • You’ll be assigned to the designated color! (blue, yellow, green). Ask your guide to bring you to your designated group.
  • Ride the boat and enjoy! Whale watching/diving lasts for about 45 mins to 1 hr.
  • Estimated Budget = Php 600-700

Here’s our Butanding (Whale Shark) video:

Featured image (CC BY 2.0) from Janey

6 Comments

  • Manillenials

    It is one of my life long dream to swim with the whale sharks either in Cebu or Donsol. I just do not have the time and money yet. But I’ll make sure to add this on my bucket list this 2016.

    I wonder if you are with the guy in the picture? I thought it is prohibited to touch the whale sharks because it gives them skin infection.

    • Charmaine

      Hi Manillenials,

      Thanks for dropping by. Swimming with the whale sharks in Oslob has been frowned upon by animal / environmental conservation groups. But if you really wish to see them, you must be a responsible traveller. There’s an orientation before the swim and you are instructed not to touch or go near the whale sharks. But others don’t seem to follow these rules. The guy in the photo… is just a random photo I got from the net. I’ll change it soon, now that you’ve mentioned it. 🙂

  • Melissa Ruth Loh

    Hi Chermaine! Dropped by your post in TripAdvisors and here I am. (Haha :D)

    Finally able to go for some travelling. I’m planning to go for a trip to Cebu and visit the whale sharks somewhere around the mid or November of this year. I know this may seem like a very generic question, but how do you suggest I go about planning this trip?
    1. The “best” period to head there and stay there
    2. To go by a tour or simply planning and going ahead with my own itinerary

    How was yours like?
    How long did you stay for and how much did you spend in total? (Including flight, accommodation, food, whale shark seeing and the fun bunch of what nots!)

    Cheers,
    M. R.

  • Charmaine

    Hi Melissa,

    Thanks for dropping by my blog. As for the answers to your questions:

    1. Best time to go there is summer, between March-May.
    2. To go by a tour or simply planning and going ahead with my own itinerary – It really depends. You can DIY your trip like what we did. But if you want to go to other attractions South of Cebu, you may want to join some group tours to avoid the hassle of planning for everything.

    3. How long did you stay – Since we’re living in Cebu City, it was only a day trip for us. We just got home after the whale shark encounter.

    4. How much did you spend in total? For our DIY day trip, we only spent around Php 600-700. If you’re going to explore for more days, you should allot a bigger budget.

    Hope my answers helped! 🙂

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