It's a little paradise called Bohol
The natives call it “God’s Little Paradise.” When you get off the plane (or boat), after those same natives yell “Maayong pag abot sa Bohol!” (“Welcome to Bohol!”), you just might agree. On this small island, part of the Visayas Island chain in the middle of the Philippines, you’ll see vast white-sand beaches, astounding coral reefs replete with tropical life, those big eyed but little cute tarsiers, historic churches, gloriously green mountain ranges (including the stunning Chocolate Hills), waterfalls, cliffs, tiny inlets with little civilizations still living on them. For such a small island, Bohol is packed with visitor attractions.
If you arrive in Bohol by ferry just outside the tourist office at the pier is a sign board is the Tourist Transport Rates, it tells the rates you should be paying for transfer to the resorts in Panglao or Anda and prices for a tour of Bohol. As there is so much to see in Bohol, the tours may need to be negotiated to include the tourist spots you would like to do, but use the sign board for a guide to prices. A transfer from the pier to Panglao drivers usually give you a discount to the rates of the board. Expect to pay (one way) P500 for car/van, tricycle P250 and a motorbike around P200, the trip is around 30 - 40 mins. If your heading to Anda (other than the van/car or prearranged with the resort) you can head to the bus station in Tagbilaran where a bus will cost around P 100.00 but you will need then to transfer to a tricycle to take you to the resorts. V-Hire operate out of the bus station as well and costs around P 130.00 but they will drop you at the resort.
Resorts in Bohol
Bohol resorts are among the finest in the world. Head on to Panglao Island for the greatest concentration of resorts (and most popular) with some of Bohol's best beaches. Here they maintain native bungalows, air-cooled by the glorious oceans, and maintained with every amenity you could wish for. For 5 star luxury resorts in Bohol, look at the clifftop Amorita Resort, Panglao Blue Water Beach Resort (sister hotel of Maribago Bluewater Resort on Mactan and the beautiful Sumilon Bluewater Resort in the south of Cebu) or you might venture to Eskaya Beach Resort and Spa with a beautiful infinity pool is one of the most luxurious hotels in the islands, with glorious luxury villas available. Just in case the villas of Eskaya Beach aren’t your cup of tea, Alona Beach has plenty of other options to keep any tourist happy. Mid priced resorts like The Oasis Resort, Alona Kew White Beach Resort or Hayahay are worth a look. Try the ever popular Bohol Beach Club, located right on some spectacular white powdery beach sand, where they have elegant dining overlooking the sea. Try one of their special cocktails at the bar, as you watch the colourful and vibrant sunset over the water.
Anda is another area with a number of resorts dotted around the area. Anda is less "touristy" and the resorts are more secluded than of Alona beach. Resorts around this area include Amun Ini Beach Resort & Spa, Anda White Beach, Vitamin Sea Beach Resort, Blue Star Dive Resort, Anda de Boracay in Bohol Hotel and FloWer-Beach Resort.
During the early morning, one of the true Bohol attractions is dolphin and/or whale watching. A number of professional former whalers, who decided to pursue a more humane lifestyle, conduct boat tours to the likely spots where these frolicsome animals cavort and play for you. A morning tour including the dolphin watching, a trip to Balicasag Island where you can do some awesome snorkeling (P 150 entry and guide per pax, pay extra for snorkel P 150, boots P 150) with the fish (see video) and make a stop on Virgin Island. The resort your staying at and many touts on the beach can organise these trips. Or enter the stunning adventure of E.A.T. Danao, the adventure park featuring free fall plunges over cliffs, as well as (for spectators as well as participants) some of the wildest heart pounding zip line riding ever! Loboc Ecotourism Adventure Park (tel 038 510 6254/537 9292/537 9308 or mobile 091 87256 108) also offers some thrill seeking zip line (P 350 per pax) and cable car rides (p 250 per pax).
Day tours of the island can be arranged by your hotel as well as the many touts you will meet on your arrival to Bohol. Expect to pay around between 1800 - 2500 PHP for a guided tour to take in the most popular tourist attractions in Bohol. Take in the sight of the amazing Chocolate Hills , over 1200 hillocks made by natural forces. Incredibly, these limestone hills are all approximately the same size and shape, as if created by the hands of giants long departed (if this legend were true, it would be a sheer effort surpassing the building of the Egyptian pyramids). Geologists to this day are unsure of the composition of the Chocolate hills (which get their name from their dark chocolate coloring, most obvious in the dry season), or how they came to be formed. They are a marvel for the eyes, however. Visit the Blood-Compact Site, where a subsequent explorer, Legazpi, made peace with the native chieftain by mutual blood-drinking. Check out one of the oldest stone Churches in the Philippines- Baclayon Church. Hop on the Loboc river cruise (for lunch), a dining experience that takes in the jungle sights (brace yourself for the Tarsier, one of the smallest primates in the world). Or dare to enter the cage with the largest snake in Bohol!
More? You can scuba dive, sail or snorkel around the coral reefs, and take look at the most glorious undersea saltwater creatures in the world. Or if you prefer a slightly more relaxed time of it, head for Alona Beach (if you're not already there!), where the soft sea waves and the gloriously warm sands welcome you and your party members to relax and enjoy the soothing surf.
These are only a few of the stunning attractions at Bohol. Maybe now you can see why calling it “God’s Little Paradise” might be an understatement.
|Bohol comes alive with Festivals in the month of May - the time flowers and trees are in full bloom.|
People Who've Been Here
Places to eat in Bohol
Along Alona Beach there are plenty of options with many restaurants lined the shores serving up fresh delicious seafood and many international cuisines, all within walking distance of each other.
How to get to Bohol
If your coming from Cebu you will most likely be taking a fast craft boat which takes around 2 hours into Tagbilaran pier. Supercat (tel (032) 234 9631) has 3 daily services (dep Cebu 8.30am/12.30pm/4.30pm) regular one way 625P for tourist class/ 825P for Business class. Ocean Jet 5 daily (dep Cebu 6.00am/9.30am/1.50pm/3.35pm/6.00pm) regular price one way 800 P for tourist, 1000 P Business class. Weesamexpress (Tel (032) 412 9562/231 7737/092 28660347) 3 times daily (dep. Cebu 9.00am/2pm/6.30pm) These companies have regular promo fares so check directly or on their websites. The only way to fly from Cebu directly is with Mid Sea Express (30 minute flight) they fly twice daily 3 times weekly Monday/Tuesday/Thursday (dep Cebu 7.30 am and 4.30pm) P 1400.00 one way.
From Manila (terminal 2) Philippine Airlines (PAL) flies 3 times daily to Tagbilaran (Bohol) 1 hour 20 minutes (dep 5.30am/8.50am/3.00pm) check airline direct for updated schedules and prices. Cebu Pacific flies direct from Manila twice daily (8.25am/12.10pm). Air Phil Express twice daily (9.45am/11.50am changing to 1.30pm from Aug 18)
Please check directly with ferry and airline companies for the latest schedules and updates as they can change without notice. All rates quoted are subject to change without notice.
Last Updated (Saturday, 13 April 2013 13:56)