To travelers who are planning to go to the Queen City of the South, Osmeña Peak should definitely be a part of you itinerary. What great accomplishment would it be if you have been to the highest point of land in the entire island of Cebu, right?
Osmeña Peak is well known for travelers in Cebu mainly due to its popularity as the highest peak in Cebu at about a kilometer above sea level. Also, it is located at the south, where all other famous tourist destinations are located. So aside from having great experiences swimming at the beach with the Whale Sharks at Oslob or paddling the bamboo rafts and enjoying the cold turquoise waters of the Kawasan Falls, you could have a more complete experience by going hiking in the highest peak of all Cebu, away from all the watery wonders the island has to offer.
HOW TO GET TO OSMEÑA PEAK
O-Peak is located at Dalaguete which is south from Cebu City so you have to take the South Bus Terminal. Bus trip to O-Peak usually takes about 2 hours or more so I suggest that you go there very early between 1am to 4am (just to be sure) if you want to catch the sunrise to fully enjoy the experience. For more details, you can refer to their official site by clicking on this link: South Bus Terminal Schedules
For our experience, we stayed in this beach resort called Dakong Bato Beach and Leisure Resort the night before our planned hiking. If you are in a similar situation, you also need to wake up early at about 4 am. It took us some time to catch a ride and only Sikad/Tricycles or habal-habal rides are your options.
So either of the two options, you can stop at the Dalaguete Public Market cause the Habal-habal drivers are there early waiting for travelers. Each habal-habal can ride 2 people and they charged us 100 Pesos per head. There is no regulated amount so you have to negotiate with the drivers.
It would take about 15-30 minutes to arrive at the Osmeña Peak entrance and registration area from the Public Market and it is a uphill ride. You would notice the sudden change of temperature as you go up in altitude, yes, its early in the morning and its gonna be real cold. Keep in mind that the habal-habal drivers would also wait for you at the area after they drop you so they could take you back at the public market.
At the entrance you have to fill up the registration logbook before they would let you pass. They will charge you about 30 Pesos per head. You can also spend the night at Osmena Peak provided you have your own tent. They will charge you 50 Pesos for that. There is an open space just below the last hill where people usually camp.
From there you could have a 30 minute to an hour of hiking until you reach the highest point. Frankly, it is an easy uphill hike. I would recommend this for first time hikers or trekkers. There is also a guide with you during the trip so you will not be lost.
One thing I remember is that there are limited trees to see in the area as you hike, its just an open grassland as you go on the hills. Its truly beautiful. Along the way there are certain places where you could stop for some quick Instagram shots, but remember to always be careful as you could easily fall off the edge if you are not.
Once you arrive at the top of the last hill, you are in the topmost area of all Cebu. It is surrounded by all these tall green grasses, open fresh air and the view of the hills and mountains just below the horizon, and to see all of that around you with the sunrise is a truly amazing experience. From there you could pose for pictures at these awesome rock formations at the edge of the cliff. You just have to be careful.
Your guide would take you back to the registration are soon after. They would offer no charge for the guide, but you could also give a tip if you want, your call. Then the waiting habal-habal drivers would soon take you back to the marketplace terminal then that would be the end of your Osmeña Peak adventure. You could always ride a bus by the highway to wherever your next destination would be.