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Leyte

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Leyte – off the beaten track

Leyte located in the eastern Visayas is less travelled area of the Philippines. It is most famous for being the place in which General MacArthur landed on the beach of Tacloban and Palo, the staging point for the liberation of the Philippines from the Japanese in World War II. The place in Palo where MacArthur landed is known as MacArthur Landing Memorial Park a popular tourist site near Tacloban. Fierce battles and fighting occurred all around the area as the Americans pushed back the Japanese, some battle grounds sites can be visited and are simple know as Hill 120 and Hill 522. Leyte doesn’t have the breathtaking white sandy beaches like other parts of the country, but it still has decent ones to enjoy. One of the most popular beaches, White Beach is located a few kilometers from Tacloban and easy to get to.

If you’re arriving from Cebu by ferry you will depart at Ormoc City. If you’re connecting to other parts of Leyte (Tacloban around 3 hours, Maasin around 4 hours and Naval around 2 and a half hours) you need only to walk a few meters from the pier to the main Ormoc bus terminal  and v-hire vans. Across the road from the bus terminal is large Hotel Don Filipe which overlooks the bay. For a tourist, things to visit and see in Ormoc and around include the beautiful fresh water Lake Danao around 20kms out of town. Here you can hike, picnic or camp. A little north of the city is a geothermal energy plant.

Leyte resorts and hotels

Leyte’s two biggest cities Ormoc and Tacloban have the greatest choice of hotels in Leyte. When in Tacloban try the Leyte Park Hotel with the best views on the Island. While areas are in need for a renovation the try the newer villas with the infinity private swimming pool overlooking the bay and Samar Island one word describes it – WOW! If your budget is a little bit more conservative, head to the city. Hotel Alejandro with its historic memorabilia adorning the hallways is like sleeping in a museum. For a hotel in Ormoc the 2 best options (as in nicer rooms and more expensive) are the Sabin Resort just out of town and Ormoc Villa, both have swimming pools and garden with Sabin Resort also having ocean front (but no beach).

Sugarland Suites

Hotel Alejandro

Hotel Don Felipe

The Oriental Leyte Hotel

Grand Royal Suites Hotel Tacloban

 

Things To See in Leyte

Tacloban is the capital city of Leyte and is known to be the largest while Ormoc is also a popular city of Leyte. Lake Danao Natural Park attracts the attention of most of the tourists to the small and lovely city of Ormoc. People can easily walk around the city visiting their favorite places such as Centennial Park. It is famous for its sweet pineapples and therefore known as the pineapple belt. Eighty hectares of land is offered by the Leyte Golf and Country Club which makes it a unique spot for golf players.

 

Festivals

One of the admired festivals of Leyte is Pintados-Kasadyaan Festivals, which is held in Tacloban in the last week of June. Dancers bodies are covered with different colours. The festival represents the local culture along with lots of music and street dancing.

Travel to Leyte

Ormoc

By Boat  Cebu to Ormoc

Fast craft

Supercat Departs Cebu City 3 times daily ( 5.45am/11.00am/4.40pm) approx 2 and 30 minutes.

WeesamExpress (tel (63 32) 412 9562/231 7737) Departs Cebu City twice daily (10.45am/4.30pm) and extra service every Saturday and Monday (5.30am)

Slow boat

Cebu Ferries Daily Mon-Fri.  Mon/Weds Depart 8.00am (4 hours) Tue/Thur dept 8.30am (4 hours) Fri depart 12.00 noon ( 5 hours 30 mins)

Super Shuttle Ferry Mon/Wed/Fri Depart 9.00pm

Tacloban

By air

Cebu to Tacloban

Cebu Pacific daily approx 40 mins

AirPhil Express daily approx 40 mins

Manila to Tacloban

AirPhil Express daily approx 1 hour 10 minutes

Cebu Pacific daily 3 or 4 times daily depending on the day

Zest Air twice daily.

 

History

On April 7, 1521, Portuguese explorer (under the Spanish flag) Ferdinand Magellan arrived in Cebu. He was greeted by the king of Cebu, Rajah Humabon. The king and his wife and about 700 natives were converted into  Catholicism on April 14, 1521. Magellan was killed by Lapu-Lapu a king of the neigbouring island of Mactan( April 27th). This event stopped the Spanish from claiming the island of Cebu for the crown of Spain. It wasn’t until 40 years later on April 27, 1565, Spain colonized the area with the arrival of Spanish explorers led by Miguel López de Legazpi, together with Augustinian friar Andrés de Urdaneta arrived in Cebu. The Spaniards established settlements and renamed the city on January 1, 1571, from San Miguel (Saint Michael) to Villa del Santísimo Nombre de Jesús (Village of the Most Holy Name of Jesus). Cebu City became the capital of the Spanish East Indies. during this time. In 1898, the city was given over to the United States after the Spanish-American War. In 1901, the city was governed by the United States for a short period but in 1936 it was given the status of a city and Filipino government. Following the end of the Japanese occupation in World War II, the city gained independence from colonial rule in 1946 as part of the Republic of the Philippines.

 


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June 2, 2014 |

Bohol

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It’s a little paradise called Bohol


Discover the Top 10 Tourist Attractions in Bohol.

Video guide to Bohol best tourist spots.

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 villages  For such a small island, Bohol is packed with dozens of must see tourist 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


One of the top resorts in Bohol – The Bellevue Resort. Read more and get rates on this resort here

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 ResortPanglao 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 ResortAlona 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.

Resorts in Anda Bohol


Video guide to places to stay in Anda Bohol

Anda on the eastern side of Bohol is and area growing in popularity with tourists coming to Bohol.  The beaches around Anda are some of the best in Bohol (see video) and it’s not surprising in recent times there have been a lot of new resorts popping up in the Anda area. Most of these resorts are pretty small and the whole area is a lot more quiet than the less”touristy”  than the popular Alona Beach area on Panglao Island. I find the resorts a few kms away from Anda Town a higher standard than the ones in town. Although the resorts around Anda Town offer better value. The nicer resorts a few kilometers out of Anda Town Anda White Beach Resort, Vitamin Sea Resort and J&R Residence. Other resorts near here include La Petra Beach Resort, Casa Amihan, Flower Beach Resort, Amun Ini Beach Resort & Spa, Blue Star Dive Resort. In Town there are a number of accommodation options, one of the most popular is Anda de Boracay in Bohol Hotel right on the beach. A number of more budget friendly options are available in the likes of Anda Global Beach Resort (cell 09077 951286), Little Miami Beach Resort, Anda Longbeach Resort (cell 09157409209, 09494878052), Anda Lodge (Cell 0999 480 8055) and R & S Seaside Accommodation (Cell 0939039228).
Hayahay Resort Bohol

Lost Horizon Beach Dive Resort

Alona Kew White Beach Resort Bohol

Anda White Beach Resort

Dumaluan Beach Resort

—–>See All

 

Tour Bohol

Balicasag Island Guide. For more details click here.

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 snorkelling (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 Eco Tourism 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).


Bohol Earthquake Tour Video

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. Since the earthquake in 2013 another popular way to tour Bohol is to see the earthquake effected areas. I used a guy by the name of Ronnie (cell 09063343357) which you can see in the video. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to compare prices due to my tight schedule I arrived after 8 pm and needed to do the tour first thing the next morning.  I paid 3500 PHP for the tour which I’m sure is on the higher price level. I’m sure prices could be negotiated under 3000. Anyhow don’t pay more than 3500. Another reputable company is Bohol Travel Buddy you will need to contact them directly for a quote. Most days tours of Bohol will 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 colouring, 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!

Visit the gorgeous Pamilacan Island – One of the top island hopping trips from Bohol

More?  You can scuba dive, sail or snorkel around the coral reefs, and take look at the most glorious undersea salt water 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. Or how about the Bohol Bee Farm where you can tour this popular tourist spot in Panglao. Here you can take a tour of the farm and educate yourself on bees or dine on some organic food at their famous restaurant. Stay overnight at the Bohol Bee Farm or visit their website for more details on this unique farm in Bohol.

Lamanok Island Mystic Island Experience Tour


Open 8.00 am – 3 pm

Estimated tour time : 3 hours

Tour rate: 300 PHP

If you’re staying in beautiful Anda. Visit Lamanok Island for one of the Mystic Tours. Learn about Filipino Folklore and history in this fascinating tour.  The caves in Lamanok where visited by spiritual healers who preformed rituals to heal the sick. As well as having burial cave with boat coffins and burial jars. Please see video for more details.

 

 


Video guide to the Bohol Bee Farm Tour

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.

Festivals

Bohol comes alive with Festivals in the month of May – the time flowers and trees are in full bloom.

 

 

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


How to get from Cebu Airport to the pier to catch the ferry 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. I prefer to use Supercat (part of 2Go Travel)  (tel (+63 2) 5287000) has 3 daily services (dep Cebu 8.45am/2.00pm/6.40pm) regular one way 625P for tourist class/ 825P for Business class. Check their website for latest rates and promos. Ocean Jet offer numerous daily trips (dep Cebu 6.00am/8.00am/9.20 am/11.40am/2.00pm/4.20pm/6.35pm) 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.

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.

 


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June 2, 2014 |

Liloan (South Cebu)

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Liloan is about 135 km south of Cebu City on the very bottom tip of Cebu. Most popular with divers for the excellent diving opportunities (it is easy to reach the dive spots around Apo Island as well). It is also a port for connections to Negros Oriental (Sibulan) around 25 minute boat road and then it’s just a quick ride to Dumaguete.

Resorts in Liloan

Liloan is home to some great resorts in Cebu and is a popular place for divers including the newly renovated Noblesse Resort.

Marine Village Dive House

Pebbles Beach Resort

Eden Resort

Bonga Villa Beach Resort

 

Things To See and Do

Festivals

Rosquillos Festival – The making of these little ringlet cookies

Places To Eat

Restaurants and places to eat are rather limited to the resorts that you stay in.

How To Get Here

From Cebu City’s southern bus station there are regular buses (catch the bus with Bato sign) it takes approx. 3 ½ hours air con bus 170PHP

 


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June 2, 2014 |

Tabuelan

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Tabuelan is in Cebu’s north approx 90km away from Cebu City.

Accommodation

Maravilla Beach Club

Durhan White Beach Resort

 

Things To See and Do

Festivals

Ani-Anihan Sa Tabuelan Festival held on the 24th of June celebrates in honour of their patron St John the Baptist.

 

How To Get Here

transportBuses leave from the northern Bus station and take approx 3 hours.

 


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June 2, 2014 |

Sogod

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Sogod is in the north of Cebu about 80km away and takes around 1 and half to 2 hours to reach.

A resort in Cebu with a touch of class and elegance

If you’re coming to Sogod it has to be for Alegre Beach Resort, one of the finest beach resorts in Cebu. In Spanish the word means “happiness” and thats certainly how you will feel and more after visiting this premier resort in Cebu. Private beach coves, lush tropical gardens, luxurious villas everything you dream about in a holiday.

Things to see and do in Sogod

Alegre Beach resort has everything you could possible need and do. A pool, the beautiful beach, try a bit of scuba diving, snorkeling, island hopping to the nearby islands, tennis, games room. After all this you will need to relax at The Alegre Spa.

How To Get Here

transportThe resort offers it’s own pick up transfers, check with the resort when making your reservation. Sogod can be reached by bus from the northern bus station, it will take approx 2 hours.

 

 


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June 2, 2014 |

San Remigio

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San Remigio boasts of having Cebu’s longest shoreline. Beaches there are described as ‘naturally extraordinaire’. Resorts includes, Lingay Beach Resort, San Remigio Beach Club, Victoria Hard Rock Beach Resort and Fishing Village, Warren’s Beach Resort, and Verdimar Resort. Additionally, public beaches still in a long stretch of white sand are also available for any locals and tourists. Today, San Remigio has become a new diving destination. There are a few marine sanctuaries and new dive sites being discovered on a regular basis. A PADI dive shop in San Remigio Beach Club caters to beginner and experienced divers who want to enjoy San Remigio’s marine life. In the water, you can see shark rays(guitarfish), white tip reef sharks, bamboo sharks, nurse sharks, schools of Barracuda, Whale sharks, turtles, Manta rays and a lot more.

San Remigio Resorts

San Remigio offers ample choice in accommodation from luxury down to pension houses. Many of the resorts can offer great views of the coast and mountains  and most places

Things to see and do

San Remigio is home to some great beach resorts in Cebu with  number of these resorts located along the shoreline. It’s also home to a couple of golf courses (Mercedes Plantation Golf and Verdemar Golf Course). San Remigio makes an easy stop over for travellers heading onto Bantayan Ialand. It could also provide a back up plan in case the ferries are cancelled going to Bantayan Island as the pier (at Haynayan is only around 20 minutes away).

Cebu Festivals

Lapyahan Festival – Lapyahan is the term that mean shoreline, and being the longest stretch of beach in Cebu its something for the town to celebrate and be proud of.
 
 

Cebu to San Remigio

transportCatch a bus from the North Bus Terminal heading to Hagnaya around 120 Peso. The trip takes around 3 hours and passes San Remigio on its way to Hagnaya. It’s also possible to catch a bus to Bogo City as there are regular jeepneys doing the Bogo – San Remigio route. Bogo to San Remigio. San Remigio Beach Club does organise pick up from Cebu, check with resort direct.

History of San Remigio

mapSan Remigio was formerly known as “Kanghagas”, the name of a tree, which grew abundant in the place.

 


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June 2, 2014 |

Oslob Cebu

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Visit the Whale Sharks in Oslob


Video guide to swimming with the whale sharks in Oslob

If you’re heading to Oslob to see the whale sharks then you in fact want to go to Tan-awan, about 10 kms south of Oslob.  A lot of the resorts and upper end hotels in Cebu organise day trips to Oslob, but it is quite easy to do it yourself.  See how to get there below.  Due to time limits set for seeing the whale sharks (30 minutes per session) most people make use of some other tourist spots in the Oslob area. One of the most popular is Tumalog Falls which is only around 20 or so minutes away from the sharks.  The waterfall is quite beautiful (see video).  Sumilon Island (only a few kms away) offers day packages starting from PHP 1500 weekdays and PHP 2000 for weekends/holidays so many take this option to visit Sumilon Island. There is an exclusive resort on the island (Sumilon Bluewater Resort) and is one of the most beautiful islands in Cebu.  It is actually well worth staying overnight if you can afford it as it is a fantastic resort, although it is expensive.  The resort has a number of boat trips to and from the mainland of Cebu and a lot catch their 9.30 service so to use the whole day up at the island.  You can contact the resort direct for more details.  Oslob Town is also worth visiting with its Heritage Park, a lovely little park with Spanish old buildings (see video). When I travelled around the Oslob area I used a habal habal driver by the name of Lloyd 09423958064. His prices were pretty fair. If you want to rent a motorbike yourself in Oslob a lady by the name Lourdes rents one, although it’s not that cheap at about 500 PHP per day (negotiable)  her number is 09255888552.

Accommodation and Resorts in Oslob

With the influx of tourists to see the whale sharks as you would expect the choice of accommodation in Oslob has grown rapidly in the last couple of years. If you want to be within walking distance of the whale sharks you should look at these 4 resorts in Tan-awan.  These resorts offer pretty basic accommodation, both fan and air conditioned rooms. Some of them can accommodate up to 12 to 14 people in a room. MB’s Sunrise View Resort tel 09065869895 or 09232971176, Aaron Beach Resort tel 09334159460, BCD’s Place and Brumini Resort. About half a kilometer away is the Seafari Oslob Resort. This resort is build at the bottom of a cliff, and has a small swimming pool. About 10kms away in Oslob town itself is a number of pension houses. The best being Oslob Malonzo Pension House, their Facebook page  https://www.facebook.com/MalonzoPensionHouse. Further north of Oslob town (around 12 kms from the whale sharks) is Oslob Garden Stay Resort (cell 0922 811 1575 or 0922 803 1946 and 0917 546 0898), they have 2 air conditioned rooms and one beach house or check out their Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/gardenstayresort. Next door is Lagunde Resort Hotel which has swimming pool. Cel 0943 312 8164. Oslob Home Stay  (tel 0925 588 8552 email oslobhomestay@gmail.com) rents out a house complete with pool and they also rent a room out as well (see video).  Ermi Beach Resort and The Granada Beach House Hotel are other possibilities for accommodation around Oslob, although these resorts are about 20 kms away. Other alternatives that you could try are the luxury resort of Sumilon Bluewater Resort it’s about 15 minutes away (plus a short boat ride to the island). The town of Alcoy (less than an hour away) has a couple of resorts, or there are some resorts in Dalaguete (about 1 hour drive away) as well as Boljoon.  It’s also possible to stay in Dumaguete (Negros) and make the trip back and forth. Another possibility is to stay in Lilo-an as there are a few resorts in the area.

Vbeachresort

 

Whales Sharks in Oslob

Oslob (or more exact, the small fishing village of Tan-awan) in Cebu’s south has become one of Cebu’s big tourist draw cards lately since the discovery of the whale sharks in Oslob in Sept 2011. Resorts offering whale watching tours have sprung up along the highway.  Around couple meters off shore a group of whale sharks can be seen.  The numbers of whale sharks that can be seen vary day by day, but usually you can get to see at least a few every day (they seem to alternate) . Whale Shark tours begin at 6 am (until 12 Noon) and after a mandatory briefing on how to behave around the whales (no flash photograph, no touching the whales and no sun screen). The boats tie themselves up and a rope so to keep out of the way of the swimmers and fishermen feeding the whale sharks. The price to swim with the whale sharks is listed below and allow  maximum 30 minutes each trip so to enable as many people to see the whale sharks (and to maximise their profits!). Local fishermen in dugout canoes paddle around feeding (with brine shrimp) them. The hungry whale sharks follow the fishermen’s canoes around allowing everyone to get a view of the sharks. Public holidays and weekends tend to attract bigger crowds so you will have more “people traffic” to compete with in the water. There are at times some small jellyfish to be aware of. I did have some minor itching on my bear arms. My friend also experienced some skin irritations. From my previous visit not long after they started these tours I have noticed it is a bit more organised.

Oslob Whale Watching Costs

Prices have rapidly increased; the latest increase was in April 2012.
Whale watching inclusive of boat ride – (local tourist) 300
(Foreigner) 500
This price is when you stay in the boat

Whale watching w/ snorkelling and boat ride – (local tourist) 500
(Foreigners) 1000

Whale watching w/ scuba diving (local tourist) 600
(Foreigners) 1500

With this you will get snorkel and facemask and life jacket.

Weekends and public holidays get crowded, so if you can avoid them I would recommend this.

 

Festivals

Sadsad Festival
8th of December (Oslob)
In celebration of the town’s annual fiesta, “sadsad” is a form of merrymaking and thanksgiving for the blessings received for the past year from the town’s patroness, the Immaculate Conception.

 

How To Get To Oslob from Cebu

transportLocated 117 kilometres away from Cebu City, Oslob can be reached by buses or by vans from the Cebu South Terminal. Pay approx 149 P for the regular bus and about 155P for the aircon bus. Expect the travel time of around 3 hours.

History

mapLong time ago, the place was once called “Bolocboloc” because of the spring located in the place in which the strong current of the water makes a boiling movement. Until now, the place is still surviving and is commonly called “Nigad” which is the name of the tree that grows near the spring. The place was like an oasis and became a favourite place among the travellers because of its huge branches offering shades and the fresh waters to quench the thirst. Under the tree the name Oslob came to be. According to the story passed through generations orally, a couple was resting under the tree, eating boiled bananas while dipping it in vinegar and salt. Spanish guards then suddenly showed up asking, “Como se llama esto pueblo?” or “What is the name of this town?” when translated in English.

*rates are subject to change without notice

 


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June 2, 2014 |

Dalaguete

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Video Guide to Dalaguete

Resorts and Accommodation in Dalaguete

Dalaguete has a number of resorts to stay at, before you enter Dalaguete there is the Rock Walled Resort set on a cliff that is popular with locals. Next door to this resort is the newly built Dakong Bato Beach Resort. The other resorts in Dalaguete are located on the other side of town, Ocean Bay and Just Inn (now called BB’s) . For more details on these resorts in Dalaguete see below. In town there is Kyleville Resort (tel 032 484 8950) rooms start from around 1000PHP, it also has a swimming pool – day use for adult 100 PHP and child 50 PHP. A a couple blocks behind here also in Dalaguete the Pink House Pension (cell 0923 6000 400) rooms starting from around 800PHP.

Tourist spots in Dalaguete

Dalaguete is a nice little town in Cebu’s south, about two hours from Cebu City. It’s in a great location for anyone looking for adventure. Osmeña Peak at just over 1 thousand metres above sea level is the tallest peak in Cebu. Osmeña Peak is part of the jagged like Mantalungon range that forms part of Cebu’s “vegetable basket” area. Here, due to the cooler climate of the mountains they can grow crops such as cabbage and carrots that usually don’t grow well in the tropics. For hikers, Osmeña Peak provides breathtaking 360 degree panoramic views, to one side you can see out to Bohol, the other Negros. Badian Island can clearly be seen from the peak as well. I hiked up at the end of February and we experienced mist of clouds rolling over the ranges, something reminiscent of the Scottish highlands. Clearly if you tried this in the wetter months (as it’s in  the open) you would be at the mercy of the elements. The drier months of the year (late Feb to end of April) would be a better time to attempt the hike.
To get to Osmeña Peak there are a number of ways to do it:
Hire a habal- habal. On the intersection (arriving into Dalaguete town) turning right to Mantalungon there are a group of habal- habal riders who can take you to the base of Osmeña (approx. 300 P return). I used a habal habal driver by the name of Ray (mobile 09 06468 5694) or you could hire them as far as Mantalungon (a town on the way to the peak for around 50 P) and hike the rest of the way (approx. 2 hours) or hire another bike to take you the rest of the way (20-30 mins).
Hire a motorbike yourself.  Ocean Bay Resort rents motorbikes for around 250 P per day (or if this is not available, the owner of the German Beer Garden Restaurant (in Dalaguete town) rents out a brand new bike but you pay more (500 P for 24 hours). Most of the road going to Osmeña Peak is sealed except when your nearing the peak itself and the road is a bit rough so take it easy especially if wet. The sign-age isn’t the best, but the locals will point out the direction (most of the time you will find yourself turning left). Eventually you will come to a dead end with a couple stores, this is where you have to walk the rest of the way (around 20 mins to the peak ). There is always a willing local to lead you to the summit (they will expect a tip at the end). The walk will take you on a trail around the vegetable fields and it’s probably a good thing to have good walking shoes, although we did it in slippers it’s not recommended! There is supposedly a 20 P fee but there was no one around both times I have gone. But I didn’t go on the weekend or on a public holiday. It’s possible to hike down the other side to Kawasan Falls (around 6 hours or so).
From Cebu City you can catch the bus from the Southern bus terminal to Bato (see how to get to Dalaguete below) or there is a mini bus that leaves from Caltex gas station near Carbon Market that will take you directly to Mantalongon Public Market.
The whale sharks of Oslob are only 1 hour drive from Dalaguete, so if you’re thinking of going to Oslob, Dalaguete could be a good place to stay overnight.

Obong Spring provides some refreshing cool water to escape the heat of Cebu. Popular on the weekends.
Dalaguete Church – San Guillermo de Aquitania Church (St. William de Aquitane Parish). Built in the early 1800’s the church actually served also as a fortification against Moro attacks.

There is also a museum in town as well Archbishop Manuel Salvador Museum.  If you are looking for a beach there is the Dalaguete Beach Park. I haven’t visited these places but you can read more about them at the Dalaguete Government website.

Festivals

Utanon Festival
The feast of San Guillermo is celebrated every 9th and 10th day of February.
Utanon Festival. It is a festival of music and dance in thanksgiving for the graces received.
-Its abundance in “utanon” or vegetables.

People Who’ve Been Here

Places To Eat

The German Beer Garden serves up some decent food. You may also want to try Ocean Bay Resort for their restaurant..

 

How To Get Here

transportCatch the bus from the Southern Bus Terminal (regular approx 101 P, aircon 105 P), around 2 hours.

History

map“COMO SE LLAMA ESTE LUGAR?” or “What’s the name of this place?” asked, according to the folklore, a group of curious Spanish soldiers who first chanced upon some women washing clothes where grew giant dalakit trees, who replied, “Dalakit, Dalakit.” Thus was christened this municipality of Dalaguete. As to the establishment of centuries – old buildings and structures here, dates maybe perceived indelibly etched on their facades and walls.

 


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June 2, 2014 |

Daanbantayan

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Daanbantayan is approx 130 km north of Cebu City on Cebu’s northern tip.

 

Daanbantayan Resorts

Daanbayantan has a number of beach resorts to relax and undwind.

Virgin Beach Resort

Skip’s Beach Resort & KTV

Monsanto Island Resort

Rock Beach Resort

 

Things to see and do

Apart from the beach resorts in Daanbantayan and the festival in August there is not a lot else for the tourist, its more a stop off point on your way to Malapascua Island.

 

Cebu Festivals

Daanbantayan holds the Haladaya Festival, the biggest festival in the north of Cebu, colourful costumes and huge mardi gras parade highlight the celebration. Held on the 30th August and coincidences with the towns feast of St. Rose of Lima the town’s patron saint.

 

Cebu to Daanbantayan

Cebu AutoBus and Ceres Liner Buses to Daanbantayan and Maya are available at the North Bus Terminal in Cebu City. At the public market of Daanbantayan, it is possible to hire trisikad (the local version of a taxi) for transportation to one of the local beach resorts. Some of the resorts are just off the highway so check with the bus and they may be able to drop you off in front of your resort.

 

History of Daanbantayan

The name Daanbantayan was derived from two words: the word “Daan” (which means “old” in the Cebuano language, and the word “Bantayan” which refers to a place that served as a “look-out-station” for Moro raiders before the Spaniards obtained control. The original site of the town might have been located at an elevated vantage point near Punta which is situated near Tapilon. Some older maps and publications use both words independently from one another, as “Daan Bantayan”.

 


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June 2, 2014 |

Compostela

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Compostela is located about 25 km north of Cebu, just past Liloan. It is a popular place on the weekend for day trippers from the city to enjoy its beaches

Accommodation

There are a few resorts here, mostly catering for the day trippers. Stakili Beach Resort is the most popular and most famous.

Things To See and Do

*The Concord,
*Stakili Beach Resort,
*Q Park

Festivals

Caballo Festival
25th of July (Compostela)
A street dancing competition that honor’s the town’s patron saint, Señor Santiago de Apostol.

How To Get Here

transportFrom Cebu City, Compostela can be reached through public busses or V-hires waiting for passengers at the Cebu North Terminal. With the distance of 25 kilometers, the estimated travel time is only an hour to reach the destination.

History

mapIn the year 1844, a Spanish captain by the name of Manuel Aniceto del Rosario was commissioned by the higher Spanish authorities to establish local government units on the northern part of Cebu starting from what is now known as the town of Compostela as far north as what is presently called the town of Borbon. Compostela was among the early barrios of the Municipality of Danao established by Captain del Rosario. The newly establish barrio was named Compostela upon the suggestion of Father Jose Alonzo, a Roman Catholic friar who, by some historical account, reportedly came from the town of Compostela in Spain and brought along with him the image of the town’s patron saint, Senor Santiago de Apostol, Subsequently thereafter, Father Alonzo was designated as the first parish priest of the newly established barrio of Compostela. Adopting Senor Santiago de Apostol as the parish patron saint, Father Alonzo spearheaded the construction of the parish chapel out of light materials. As the population grew, the Spanish church authorities decided to elevate the chapel into a church so that in the year 1866 the Roman Catholic Church was constructed in the same site replacing the old chapel. Since then up to the present time, the same structure continues to be the major place of worship among the Catholic faithfuls in Compostela. The Early leaders who served as barrio capitanes of Compostela were as follows: Juan Gesulga, Intoy Terrado, Carlos Perales, Felix Kanen, Severino Calo, Arcadio Bantilan, Segundo Gesulga, Bonifacio Librero, Lorenzo Castro, Gregorio Kanen and Mario Castro.At the turn of the 20th Century, the Americans gained control over the Philippines when they defeated the Spaniards in the Battled of Manila Bay. As a consequence, the Treaty of Parish facilitated the reorganization and reclassification of all local government units in the country in accordance with their population and income. The actual reorganization which took place in 1903 resulted in the secession of Compostela to the Municipality of Liloan. In the year 1918, Compostela was finally considered to be converted into a municipality when a special committee headed by Hilario Kanen, thru Cebu Provincial Governor Manuel Roa, made representations to Hon. Sergio Osmena Sr., Speaker of the Philippine Assembly, to sponsor a bill creating the Municipality of Compostela. A year later, on that fateful 17th day of January 1919, Compostela officially became a municipality. When the Japanese Imperial forces was occupied and entered the towns in Compostela, Cebu in 1942. During the Battle of Guila-Guila in March 05, 1943, Filipino soldiers of the pre-war 82nd Infantry Division of the Philippine Commonwealth Army was entered and sending operations in Compostela, Cebu and helping the Cebuano guerrillas to fought against the Japanese soldiers led by General Sosaku Suzuki.

 


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June 2, 2014 |

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