Merloquet Falls is a popular day trip from Zamboanga City. It’s located about 2 hours away from the city proper, in Barangay Sibulao, near the border of Zamboanga Sibugay.
How to get to Merloquet Falls
Merloquet Falls is about 2-3 hours away from the city proper.
- From the Zamboanga Integrated Bus Terminal, ride a north-bound bus to Pagadian, Dipolog, Ipil or Cagayan and get off at Vitalis (2 hours, P180 per person). Alternatively, you may also ride a van at Southway Square Mall and get off at Vitalis.
- From Vitalis town proper, ride a habal-habal to Merloquet Falls (30 minutes, P300 round-trip). Your driver will wait for you to take you back to the town.
- From the jump-off point, climb down 370 steps to Merloquet Falls (10-15 minutes).
Our trip to Merloquet Falls
I visited Merloquet Falls as part of our ZamBaSulTa trip. I’d already toured Zamboanga City except for this one, so I took this chance to see it in person.
From the airport, I along with my companion Ja commuted to the bus terminal where we took a bus to Vitalis. From there, we each rode a habal-habal to Merloquet Falls. The route is easy as most of the road is already properly constructed and there are nice mountain and rice paddies views along the way.
We got to the jump-off point and left our backpacks, carrying only our cameras and other essentials. The trail to Merloquet Falls has already been paved — a stair consisting of 370 steps to the waterfalls.
Going down the stairs was easy of course. After about 5-10 minutes, the grandiose of Merloquet Falls greeted us.
Merloquet Falls consists of 2 tiers. The upper tier is 5 meters high and is located about 50 meters up from the lower tier which is the main cascade. The upper tier can be reached via a trail with ropes for support. Most tourists though only stay at the main cascade area.
Aside from the beautiful curtain of waterfall, what’s striking about Merloquet Falls is the stair-like rock formation.
We took photos and then enjoyed the cool water of Merloquet Falls. We climbed up the falls to experience hydro massage on our backs. Some rocks are slippery though, so you have to be careful!
There is a pool at the base of Merloquet Falls but it’s shallow and reaches below the waist level.
During our visit, the current isn’t that strong but it was still good for an afternoon bath. During rainy days, expect stronger flow but the path is also more slippery.
After we’d had enough of bathing in the falls, we climbed back up the stairs. It wasn’t as daunting as it sounds as we only took a few rests before reaching the jump-off point.
Budget and expenses
Here are the fees for Merloquet Falls (Updated as of 2020):
- Entrance fee: P15 per person
- Parking fee: P15
We also gave a tip of P100 each to our habal-habal drivers since they waited for us.
For a solo traveler, a safe budget would be P800-1000 including food.
Things to know before you go
- It’s safe to travel here solo.
- There is a sari-sari store in the jump-off point to the falls where you can buy water and food.
- Bring a change of clothes. There is a restroom beside the store, but bathing/washing up is not allowed.
- Wear durable slippers or shoes, which is needed for climbing up/down the stairs to the falls.
- Most tourists visit Merloquet Falls for a half-day trip. However, it may take a whole day depending on the traffic especially in Zamboanga City. In our case, we were at Zamboanga City town proper by 9AM from which we commuted to the bus terminal and then to Vitalis and got back at the city at 6PM!
- If you’re in a group, you may also consider getting a packaged tour to Merloquet Falls.
- There are other waterfalls you can visit in the area, including Tagbilat Falls in Zamboanga Sibugay.
Has this guide to Merloquet Falls been helpful to you? Let us know in the comments below!
What to read next:
Planning a trip to Zamboanga? Here are our articles on Zamboanga:
- Travel Guide to Zamboanga City
- Things to Do in Zamboanga City
- Where to Eat in Zamboanga City
- Zamboanga Hermosa Festival
Places to see in Zamboanga City:
Backpacking in Zamboanga and other places in Mindanao? Here are our guides:
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Katherine Cortes is a 30-something freelance writer/editor. She likes beaches, snorkeling trips, and relaxing staycations (preferably with bath tubs!).