Lake Sebu is situated north of General Santos City and is one of the many underrated destinations in Mindanao.
This town in South Cotabato contradicts the image of the region as a conflict-laden area. Its placid ambiance, scenic landscapes, and charming culture make Lake Sebu a must-visit destination before even more tourists discover its many hidden wonders.
Why visit Lake Sebu?
See the famed Seven Falls of Mindanao.
Lake Sebu is home to the famed Seven Falls in Mindanao. The cascading waterfalls are hidden in a jungle, making it quite an adventure for those who love the outdoors. The seven falls are Hikong Alo, Hikong Bente, Hikong B’Lebel, Hikong Ukol, Hikong Tonok, and Hikong K’Fo-I.
Trekkers are rewarded with scenic views of the waterfalls where they can dip into its cool waters to rejuvenate tired bodies. Note that some of the falls are quite difficult to get to so prepare for a challenging trek through the jungle. As you hike, the serene atmosphere and the calming sound of water splashing into the ground will be there to keep you company.
Ride one of the longest zip lines in the region.
For the less outdoorsy adventure-seeker, riding one of the longest zip lines in the region is just as exhilarating as trekking through the jungle. The zip lines over the waterfalls measures 740 meters long and 420 meters long. The longest zip line takes around 50 seconds before you come to a complete stop. The breathtaking views as you fly through the air are enough to literally take your breath away. Get a stunning overhead view of Hikong Bente, Hikong K’Fo-I, and Hikong Lowig.
The second zip line lasts for approximately 30 fleeting seconds, giving you just enough time to scream your lungs out and make your best Superman imitation for the cameras. Get a second look at Hikong Bente as well as a spectacular view of the jungle and Hikong B’Lebel.
The rates for the zip lines are packaged at ₱250 on weekdays and ₱350 on weekends. You can buy a CD with your photos for ₱100.
See all the beautiful lakes in the area.
Lake Sebu is not the only lake in the area you can visit. Near the area are two other lakes: Lake Seloton and Lake Lahit. These lakes offer stunning views that are postcard perfect. Lake Sebu has lotuses waiting to bloom once the day starts. The flowers and the scenic view of the lake are quite a sight to behold.
You can spend an afternoon just marveling at the view with a cold drink in hand or perhaps munching on tilapia. You can get different views of the lakes by visiting resorts such as Punta Isla, Mountain Log, Sunrise Lake Garden, Estares, or Dolores. Then you can go kayaking and join a lake cruise in Mountain Lake Eco Resort. Kayak rental costs ₱25 while the lake cruise with lunch and cultural show costs ₱200.
Witness the T’Boli’s unique culture.
Lake Sebu is home to the T’Boli or dream weavers. The most prominent figure of the T’Boli is Lang Dulay, a National Living Treasure. The T’Boli weaves patterns based on designs that Lang Dulay has dreamed of. The T’Boli use wood and sap to create the vibrant colors of the patterns they make.
Another highlight of a trip to Lake Sebu is a lake cruise that includes a cultural show performed by Y’Gas, a multi-awarded chanter and dancer. The mesmerizing chant Lemlunay and the alluring courtship dance are perfect complements to the scrumptious tilapia served during the lake cruise.
Experience Lake Sebu’s cool weather.
The weather in Lake Sebu makes it one of the country’s summer capitals similar to Baguio and Tagaytay in Luzon. The cool weather is perfect for those looking to get away from the scorching heat of Manila and surrounding provinces during the summer. The weather allows accommodations around the lake to save energy on air conditioning. Mornings are cool but evenings are cooler.
How to Get to Lake Sebu
There are flights from Manila to General Santos City, the gateway to the summer capital of the south. The flight takes approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes.
Once at General Santos International Airport (GES), make your way to Bulaong Bus Terminal and get on a bus bound for Marbel. The fare to Marbel Bus Terminal is ₱83 one-way.
Once at the terminal, get on a van bound for Surallah for ₱20 one-way.
Once you arrive at Surallah, get on a van bound for Lake Sebu for ₱35 one-way. Once at Lake Sebu, hire a habal-habal or motorcycle for ₱50 to take you to your accommodation.
The entire trip can take up to 2 to 3 hours including waiting time.
Getting Around Lake Sebu
You can hire a habal-habal for ₱500 for a whole day tour of Lake Sebu. The driver can help you trek the Seven Falls, take you to the zip line center, take you to Lang Dulay, and take you to the different resorts around Lake Sebu.
Where to Stay in Lake Sebu
Mountain Log Resort offers rooms with bathroom starting at ₱750 per night for two.
+63 919 515 015, +63 83 236 1053
Punta Isla Lake Resort is centrally located and offers visitors splendid views of the lake. They provide guests with cultural shows, a tour around the lake, scrumptious tilapia dishes, and its own floating restaurant. Single deluxe rooms for 2 start at ₱950, while double deluxe rooms good for 4 start at ₱975.
Mountain Lake Eco Resort provides guests with comfortable rooms and amenities. A single terrace villa with toilet and bath, and cable TV start at ₱750 per night. The resort has lake-front open cottages, a videoke room, and a viewing deck just to name a few. Enjoy kayaking, canoeing, lake tours, and fish feeding while at the resort.
+63 917 521 4661
At Dolores Lake Resort, rooms start around ₱1000 per night. You can get family room that fits up to 8 people for around ₱2200 per night.