Bohol, Chocolate Hill Island.
Bohol in the Philippines:
The home of the famous Chocolate Hills, Bohol is one of the most visited destinations in the Central Visayas region of the Philippines. The island province offers breathtaking spots for history buffs, lovely beaches and beautiful rice fields . Bohol is comprised of one major island and 73 smaller ones surrounding it, so you'll have plenty of places to explore during your trip here. One thing’s for sure: You’ll enjoy every second of your stay and love the diversity that Bohol offers.
The capital city of Bohol is Tagbilaran, but most tourists stay in the neighboring island of Pangloa. Both islands are connected by 2 bridges. The airport is located in Panglao, but if you come by ferry from one of the neighboring islands, there is a good chance that you will arrive in Tagbilaran. Fortunately, there are plenty of tuk-tuks to take you to your final destination. Bohol is known for its many activities. Below are the most popular:
Without a doubt, the Chocolate Hills are the most famous tourist attraction of the island. And we understand why, just the drive there through the many beautiful rice fields is a feast in itself. Once arrived there is a nice view point which gives you a good view over the Chocolate Hills. The chocolate hills consist of are no less than 1268 hills. They are very uniform in shape and mostly between 30 and 50 meters high. They are covered with grass, which, at the end of the dry season, turns chocolate brown. From this color, the hills derive their name. These iconic hills are even featured in the 200 Philippine Peso bill.
Entrance fee for foreighers: 100PHP.
The tarsier, the cute little monkey with the big eyes. Threatened with extinction, but in Bohol there is the possibility to see them. The Philippine tarsier measures around 7.5 to 15cm (3 to 6 inches) tall, thereby making it the 2nd smallest primate there is. So you expect a small monkey, but believe me, they are really mini monkeys. Often hidden under a leaf, but very touching.
We visited Loboc Tarsier Conservation Area on our way back from the chocolate hills. There were about 8 tarsiers in a small patch of forest. Unfortunately, it was extremely busy with tourists, and since the Tarsiers can't handle stress, it seemed to be more about making money than protecting the Tarsiers. Unfortunately we hadn't done our homework properly, because when we got home we found out that there are 2 sanctuarys, and that this is not the non-profit private organization in the Philippines that seeks to protect the Philippine tarsier. That's why: an advice that if you want to watch the Tarsiers, it's best to go to the the Tarsier Research and Development Center in Corella.
Entrance fee for foreigners: 100PHP.
Bilar Man-Made forrest:
This is another highlight for many, the beautiful forest that has been featured many times on Instagram. And the best part, it's free and it's on the road to the Chocolate Hills. However, be prepared for hordes of tourists along the way. This made us lose the magic of the place and so we didn't stop. But also from the scooter a beautiful forest.
It is very interesting to visit one of the many butterfly gardens, large butterflies and interesting explanations make this a wonderful trip. Please note, this also applies here, do your research well before your visit. Some sanctuaries have their affairs in order, but unfortunately there are also butterfly gardens which do not consider animal welfare the most important.
Finally, we stayed in Panglao, the ideal place with many beaches and water activities. Because there is so much to do here, we will discuss Panglao in our next blog, see you there...