Travelers can reach Butuan from Cebu through two main modes of transport. The quickest and most convenient way is to fly directly to the Butuan Airport from the Mactan International Airport in Cebu. However, the cheapest way mode of transport is to take a ferry, although it’s much slower.
The distance between Cebu and Butuan is 240 km, and this takes around 45 minutes to an hour via airplane. If you take a ferry, the distance between Cebu and Butuan is around 340 km by sea and the journey takes approximately 9 hours.
Traveling by ferry is the more affordable option, but if you prefer a quick, convenient route, we recommend taking a flight from Cebu to Butuan.
Ferry From Cebu To Butuan
If you have the luxury of time and don’t mind relaxing on a ferry, there are regular departures to Butuan. A ticket will cost anywhere from around PHP 700 to PhP 2,200 per person. The amount you will pay will depend on the type of accommodations you choose on board as there are budget and upscale options to choose from.
Ferries from Cebu to Butuan take around 9 hours, so this requires some patience from the traveler. Ferries provide several entertainment options on board including karaoke, food and drink stations, a salon, and – well... – lots of sea views to enjoy along the way.
2Go Ferries only have 1 departure every Saturday from Cebu to Butuan aboard the St. Leo The Great, which usually leaves at 10:30 AM and arrives at 7:30 PM.
Note! 2GO sails from Cebu to Butuan on SATURDAY.
The MV Filipinas Butuan of Cokaliong Shipping Lines leaves Cebu every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 7 PM, and the journey takes around 10 hours.
Although cancellations are rare, ferry operators may decide to cancel for the safety of passengers depending on the weather conditions.
Other than these bigger boats there us no fast boat service from Cebu to Butuan. All the ferries generally take 9-10 hours and are usually comfortable. 2Go Ferries have more upscale staterooms for those who prefer privacy, but cheaper seats usually entail sharing rooms or bunk beds with other passengers. It’s typically smooth sailing from Cebu to Butuan aboard a ferry unless there is a storm, but if you tend to get seasick easily, it’s best that you book a private room which is more comfortable and has air conditioning.
Flights From Cebu to Butuan
Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines operate daily flights from Cebu to Butuan. Travelers can expect to pay around PHP 2,000 up for a one-way ticket on either airline, but tickets on Philippine Airlines can cost as much as PHP 11,000 one-way especially during peak periods or if your booking date is too close to the departure date. Booking in advance is highly recommended, and if traveling via Cebu Pacific, you can save a considerable amount of money.
Cebu Pacific is ideal for a budget traveler; the cheapest seats already come with 7 kg of hand luggage included. On the other hand, Philippine Airlines offers 6 levels of seat prices ranging from no luggage to as much as 25 kg of checked luggage with the most expensive seat. Depending on your budget and how much luggage you have, you can choose from these two airlines that have flexible luggage allowances.
Both Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines offer direct and connecting flights from Cebu to Butuan. The direct flights are the more convenient option, taking only 45 minutes to an hour from one point to the other while connecting flights with the shortest layover possible normally take a little over 3 hours.
Butuan is a popular gateway to Mindanao, but travelers need to read up on the current situation prior to traveling. Since Butuan is located in Mindanao, the area that is prone to terrorist acts, certain political events may lead to cancelled flights and ferry services.
Should there be no political tension or travel warnings advised during your travel period, your journey from Cebu to Butuan should be a safe and pleasant one. Once you get to Butuan, you can enjoy the many wonderful natural attractions including surfing and visiting waterfalls.