Moalboal is the original diving destination in the Philippines and is definitely worth a stopover in Cebu.

It’s home to some of the country’s best reef diving, with nearby White Beach and Pescador Island the star attraction.

It also hosts the infamous ‘sardine run’, a dense column of fish that congregate just 30m off Panagsama Beach. There are literally thousands of fish swirling beneath the surface. And all you need to do is show up with a snorkel. Too easy.

Looking for more things to do in Moalboal? Try the canyoning tour in nearby Kawasan Falls. A full day costs from $2,500 pesos and includes abseiling, trekking, lunch and guides.

Moalboal: diving and snorkelling in the Philippines

Where to stay in Moalboal

Most backpackers stay at Panagsama Beach, a 20-minute tricycle ride from White Beach. While it doesn’t have its own beach as such, the narrow strip of restaurants and bars make it a fun place to spend a few days.

Sunshine Pension House has the best value private rooms at 850 pesos. The swimming pool is big draw-card.

There’s also a lovely homestay nearby with an ensuite double room out for 850 pesos. Call Marisa on 09322481166 to book.

Where to eat and drink

Chilli Bar is the place to party, with pool tables, loud music and flamboyant waiters.

V-lami Snack Bar, opposite Sea Quest Dive Centre, is best for cheap brekkies and iced coffees.

Hot Stuff restaurant is an unassuming family-run business that does a yummy noodle soup. The roof leaks when it rains but there’s something about it this place that we love. Probably the staff who bend over backwards to make you feel at home.

NEXT: Explore the Underground River in Puerto Princesa>>