“Have you been to Asik-Asik Falls in Alamada?” is what every local in Cotabato City asks us whenever we go around the city to look for a place to stay or restaurant where we can eat. Even before, I have heard about Asik-Asik falls already and it has been one of my major list to unlock in my country. Now that I’ve happily unlocked another epic adventure, here is DIY travel guide to Asik-Asik falls!
Important Things to Know
- Best time to visit is early in the morning to minimize tourists in the area.
- Important Contacts: Kuya Dodong 09480262262 and Kuya Nik 09265093179 for habal-habal from Libungan terminal. For homestay, contact Ate Sally at 09268605767 (PHP150.00/night/pax).
- Be early. Getting here is no walk in the park. It’s 2-3 hours away from the nearest airport (Cotabato Airport aka as “Awang Airport”).
- There will be a minor trekking of 1000 steps going down to the falls which will take about 15 minutes. The trek going back is the challenge because it’s going up. It will take about 30 – 45 minutes depending on your pacing. Some can hike back for 20 minutes only.
- Pack your food/snack if you’re planning to spend the whole day in the falls. I highly recommend spending a whole day because the place is truly relaxing. As for us, we bought pastel (local food in Cotabato: rice and chicken on top) and eggs for our lunch/snack in the falls.
- Please do not leave your trash in the falls. BE A RESPONSIBLE TRAVELER AT ALL TIMES.
- Here’s a sample breakdown of expenses below.
|Bus from Cotabato City to Libungan Public Market||PHP72.00 one-way fare|
|Habal-habal from Libungan to Asik-Asik Falls||PHP700.00 round-trip fare|
|Entrance Fee to Asik-Asik Falls||PHP30.00|
How to get to Asik-Asik falls DIY way
Option 1: From Lake Sebu
Proceed to the terminal and ride a van going Marbel, the fare is PHP150.00. Alight to Marbel Central Terminal then ride a van to Kabacan North Cotabato passing towns in Sultan Kudarat and Maguindanao. The fare is PHP86.00. Then alight to Kabacan for a bus ride going to Midsayap in North Cotabato for PHP40.00. From Midsayap, ride habal-habal that will take you to Asik-Asik falls. The regular fare for a round-trip habal-habal cost around PHP1,000.00 – PHP1,200.00 (good for 2 pax) depending on your negotiating skills.
Option 2: From Cotabato City (Asik-Asik Falls DIY)
This is the nearest airport if you want to go to Asik-Asik Falls (Cotabato Airport). From Cotabato City, proceed to the bus terminal and ride a bus to Libungan Public Market. The fare is PHP72.00 and the travel time is 1 hour. From Libungan, ride a jeepney to Alamada for approximately 1.5 hours and the fare is estimated of PHP100.00. From Alamada, you can charter a habal-habal going to the falls for PHP300.00/habal-habal which can accommodate 2 person.
Alternatively, from Libungan Public Market there are habal-habal drivers that can take you to Asik Asik Falls for PHP700.00/motorbike (good for 2 pax). The travel time will take about 1 hour going up to the mountain.
North Cotabato’s Gem: Asik-Asik Falls in Alamada
Discovered in 2010
The stunning falls in the mountains of Alamada wasn’t discovered until 2010, exactly a decade ago. Asik-Asik falls derived from its name meaning “sprinkle sprinkle” is a beautiful falls covering a large wall of green vines while naturally sprinkling waters to the ground. Its distinct characteristic made its way to spotlight after bagging an award in a national photography contest held in the Philippines in 2012.
I have always thought of coming to this beautiful paradise hidden in the mountains of Alamada in the province of North Cotabato after seeing a photo of it for the first time last 2018. As part of my SOCCSKSARGEN trip, the Asik-Asik falls is my finale and it’s definitely the best way to end a backpacking trip. The falls in front of my eyes is just truly amazing!
Roads developed due to its rising tourism opportunity
Getting to the falls is not as crazy as it usually had been. I’ve been reading countless travel guides about the falls and the difficulty to get here. The tourism office sensing an opportunity to provide jobs for the locals made the travel to get here easier! Before, the road to get here in habal-habal is the worst ride I’ve ever read and heard from the bloggers who shared their experiences. Now, the road has been cemented which minimized the daunting travel to get here.
In addition, stairs were developed and improved by the tourism office to lessen the hassle to get to the falls too. One of the locals securing the falls told us that the government is planning to put cable cars in the future. The reason is so that the children and elderly who can’t trek to the falls will have the chance to see this beautiful falls too.
Asik-Asik falls perfect for bathing!
Most people may think that they can only take photos once they get there. Well actually that’s the most common activity of people once they get to the falls. If you decide to spend the whole day in Asik-Asik falls, there’s a stream in the left side of the falls where people can bathe. Mind you, the water is truly cold! We also noticed that the stream has a wonderful shade of color from the surface! Check it out from my photos below!
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