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Travel | Joyful Island Hostel - A Great Way to Spend Time in Cebu

Cebu has always been a great city for me.  Biased maybe but its true.  After having spent time in my younger years in Cebu (without the SM malls yet), I love reminiscing the old Cebu that I came to know.

Not that the new Cebu is bad, it has grown better since I left with lots of places to go, and places to eat,  which lead me to be excited every time an invite is made to me to make a visit.

As Cebu is a great visit, what a great way to spend it there is to find a budget hostel for you to stay in.  One such place is the Joyful Island Hostel in Lahug.  The hostel is a 15 minute ride from SM City Cebu.  Actually without the traffic, it would have been faster but during our visit, there was a road upgrade so we had to endure.

How to get there.
From the Airport, take the Mybus shuttle to SM City Cebu. Then take the Jeepney or Public Utility (PU) with "Lahug" as its signboard.  Cost would only be Php49 total.  Just tell the driver to drop you off at the St. Therese Church.  The hostel is already a block away from the church.

The hostel is not easy to find, but if you happen to see a "Cebu Budget Hotel" sign, that's it.  The building houses three, yes three hotels or hostels.  Our Joyful Island Hostel is located at the 5th floor.  You need to tell the security guard that you are guest and they will assist you to the elevator.  

Their elevator is secured, and you need a keycard to punch in 5th floor, so you need the guard to do that for you.

Once on their said floor, you will find a table (not a concierge) with a lovely lady greeting you with a big smile.   I already made my reservations prior so saying my name was enough to check me in.  With just a few more pen strokes with registration, I was lead to my room.

I took the dorm type so I was given a choice of my bed.  There were 12 beds (I think) in the room and since there were no other guests, I was lucky enough to be given the opportunity to choose which bed I was to take.

My bed was clean,  on top of it, I had my toiletries (a small bar or soap, a roll of tissue, a sachet of shampoo and a hotel).  Nifty and great for the price of my stay.  For Php500 per night, its a great way to spend time in Cebu.

Hotel staff was pleasant and nice.  The room had aircon and since there were only two other guests staying the same room, I slept soundly.  Room was clean, and water strong and with hot water, staying here will be a great one for sure.

What we liked
1) courteous staff
2) clean room
3) strong and with hot water
4) ample toiletries
5)  mixed gender dorm rooms
6)  great dorm and room rates

What we said they should improve on
1) free breakfast - Bread and spreads and coffee.  Most hostels offer menial breakfast and I told them they should have this.  The  nearest eatery or convenience store is two blocks away from them.  I solved this problem by buying my breakfast the night before.

2) provide for lockers - another important amenity is this.  This works well for guests using the dorm type of accommodation where they are mixed with other guests.  I told them to provide simply the lockers and that guests should provide their own lockers for safety.  This is a common amenity I encountered in our travels so I have a padlock with me when I travel.

We do hope that they listen to my suggestions, and if you do stay with them, send me an email at and tell me if they did these.

For bookings, they can be reached faster via facebook at