A day for relaxation, October 9, 2015
Date of trip: October 9, 2015

Life lesson from a falls: It is ok to have a little rain once in a while, it makes you more alive and beautiful.

This three-tiered falls is dubbed as the Philippine version of the famous Niagara Falls in Ontario, Canada, because of its long water curtain. The three tiers of this falls has different structures and wonders to offer.

The name of the falls, Tinuy-an, is a local dialect which means intentional or the action is planned or intended (note: when I asked my friend who is from Butuan City about the word, she told me that it could be Bisliganon, a local dialect of the people from Bislig City). At first, I thought that when they say that it is intentional, it means that the falls is man-made, however, it is not the case. Legends says that long time ago, the people living on the Magdiwata Mountain were turned into slaves by tribesmen from Agusan. These tribesmen were so cruel and did not treat the slaves humanely, forcing them to do very difficult tasks. Eventually, the slaves felt tired of their abusive masters, they planned on attaining their freedom. While they were rowing the gakit (bamboo raft), the slaves jumped into the water and forcefully pushed the gakit towards the waterfalls, consequently killing their masters, and ultimately attaining their freedom. This action of the slaves were planned, or intended, hence, the name of the waterfalls.

Tinuy-an Falls is a co-management effort between the tourism office of Bislig and the Manobo Tribal Council. The Manobos serve as the volunteer guides who can take you all the way up the third tier of the falls. For them, the area is sacred, and therefore, should pay our utmost respect to it. They believe that their are spirits dwelling around the waterfalls that take care of the whole place.

After taking a tour at the third tier of the falls, we rest for a while and headed to our next destination, the Enchanted River of Hinatuan. For about 2 hours of stay, we were able to enjoy most (if not all) the natural amenitiesthat Tinuy-an Falls has to offer.

When we left, we took nothing but pictures, we left nothing but memories.


Additional notes:

  • Be sure to the third tier of the falls. The rock formation, and the overall appearance of the falls, on this portion is very much different with the first and second tiers. For me, it is more picturesque than the other two.
  • Always be reminded of a simple rule: garbage in, garbage out.
  • For accommodation, you can check-in at White Palace Inn (WPI), which is located at the crossing going to Tinuy-an Falls. You may contact WPI through:
    • (086) 853-5527 (landline);
    • 09082490809 (Smart); or
    • 09179844725 (Globe).


I would like to send my sincerest gratitude to Ms. Carenne Amador-Jabay for providing me with the travel guide and as well as the estimated budget; also to her family for allowing us to stay at their home. 

Travel Guide    
Route Mode of Transportation Estimated Travel Time
Bancasi Airport (Butuan City) to bus terminal Multicab (Route 4/R4) 20 minutes
Butuan City to Bislig City Bus (Mangagoy bound) 5 hours
Bislig City to Tinuy-an Falls Motorcyle or Van/Multicab 40 minutes


Estimated Budget (in Philippine Peso)  
Transportation (one-way)  
Bancasi Airport (Butuan City) to bus terminal 20
Butuan City to Bislig City* 240
Bislig City to Tinuy-an Falls** 250
Entrance Fee  
General Admission 50
Children 7 years old and below free
Accommodation (Tinuy-an)  
Airconditioned room (good for 2 pax) 600
Additional bed (on top of 600) 150
Accommodation (White Palace Inn)  
Single bed twin sharing 650
Single bed twin sharing w/ hot and cold 750
Double bed twin sharing w/ hot and cold 1,200
Double bed (good for 3 persons) 1,000
Family rooms good for 10 persons  2,400
Extra bed 250
Food (Good for group of 5) 600
Cottages (for 6 hours)  
Small 300
Big 500
Parking fee (for 6 hours)  
4-wheeled vehicle and up 20
Motorcycle and tricycle 10
Raft rowing (good for 30 minutes) 150
Life jacket 30
Rubber raft (salbabida) 30
Camping site (per night) 100
Tour guide*** 150
*Another option is to board a bus bound for Davao but alight at San Francisco. From San Francisco, transfer to another bus or van that is bound for Mangagoy and tell the conductor to drop you off at the crossing going to Tinuy-an Falls. The cost is Php 250 (Php 130 for Butuan to San Francisco, then Php 120 for San Francisco to Mangagoy)  
**You may hire a van or multicab for one whole day that will take you to Tinuy-an Falls, Enchanted River and Britania Islands. This is safer than motorcyles and cheaper especially if you are traveling in a big group. The cost of van is Php 4,500 to Php 5,000. You may negotiate directly with vans/multicabs that are in the terminal or through the inn that you will be staying (though they may be a bit more expensive).  
***Tour guides are volunteer, the amount of fee that you want to give them is entirely your prerogative. 


Some photos at Tinuy-an Falls:

Tinuy-an Falls and a rainbow
Tinuy-an Falls and a rainbow
a closer look at the falls
a closer look at the falls
the falls from afar
the falls from afar
the steel trail on the way up the upper portions of the falls
the steel trail on the way up the upper portions of the falls
walking along the falls
walking along the falls
the upper portion of the falls
the upper portion of the falls
some tourists taking picture
some tourists taking picture
look up!
look up!