Hinagdanan Beach or more popularly known as Kilometer-47, sits at the bottom of a roadside cliff in Brgy. Binungculan, in the municipality of Catmon, Cebu. The beach is a perfect choice for family outings or for friends looking for a day of fun without busting their wallets.
I initially wanted to scour the municipalities north of Cebu for good, but easy-on-the-budget beaches, calling it "beach-hunting." Since I was a little apprehensive at first that a city slicker like myself might be taken advantage of, I googled for Catmon's beaches and found this appealing beach oddly dubbed KM-47. My guess is that the area is exactly 47 kilometers away from Cebu City. Easy enough.
There's an interesting fact to be known about this place. The beach opened to the public in 1957, and was said to be inaccessible. For years, the family owners of this roadside property slowly chiseled the stairs until the road and the beckoning beach connected. Here, beach goers would then have to descend into the steep staircase littered with small cottages and bungalows tucked in the cliff wall.
Grabbing packed lunch in the early morning, I went to the North Bus Terminal just ahead of SM City Cebu to take a bus for Catmon. You'll have to shell out 40 pesos per head for the one hour trip. You will know you're near the place when you see imposing beachside cliffs dangling over the water's surface.
Hinagdanan Beach is more known as a beach for the masses, although, when I went there, it looked like the masses didn't seem to fit in there. Not to put it in a negative light in any way, but the area had lesser space than most regular beaches. Understandably, the natural shape of the cliff only allowed for so much area. The beach is quite secluded from public roadside view. It is truly a great asset for those wanting more privacy.
There is also a natural cove at the bottom of the cliff to your right, once you get down. It is usually made into a dressing room, or couples wanting a little more privacy. Further to the right is another beachfront property, which I didn't feel like venturing out.
The beach for me had a rural and rustic feel to it, or "inato," as we would call it. Yet don’t expect it to be at the caliber of Mactan and Cebu beaches. That didn't diminish the scenic beauty of the place however, as the cliff-side feature of the beach lent to its uniqueness and allure. Its accessibility is what we would want from any beach we'd consider visiting: popularly known, conveniently placed, but well hidden. Hinagdan Beach provides an immediate escape to nature and a considerable distance from a stress-filled metropolis.
(+) Cliffs and rock formations provide a unique beach setting which is hard to forget. Reasonable cottage fees. Steep staircases provide a great workout.
(-) If you're observant enough, one can see plastic garbage from the tops of the cliffs, which makes for uneasy swimming. Don't worry, it doesn't seem to fall off or encroach on the water. A smaller beach area means it can get pretty crowded too.
1) North Bus Terminal, Reclamation Area
2) Bus to Catmon
3) Brgy. Binungculan, Catmon
4) KM-47 Beach
Tip: Simply ask the bus driver to let you disembark at the beach entrance. It’s that accessible.
(photo source: http://mycebuphotoblog.wordpress.com/2007/02/05/km-47-northern-coast/)