Philippines: Bohol

It’s day 11 on our travel and we are already moving on to Bohol. The search for a taxi drove us nuts as we almost missed the ferry. Because of that our driver drove like crazy to get us to the port as fast as possible. So we were extremely happy when we arrived there and were still alive :) We took the fastcraft ferry to Tagbilaran on the island of Bohol, which took about 2 hours. In Tagbilaran we decided to stay in a better and newer hotel but not in middle of the city. It is located a bit above on the hill. The view we got was amazing but as it was a bit away from the crowd, it was also quite calm up there :)

Bohol is one of the islands on the Philippines which has many things to offer. Because it’s roads are well paved it’s great for self-exploring by motorcycle which we did on the next day. We rented to scooters and made our way to the Chocolate Hills. This is a must-do when you are on Bohol. It’s about 55km to get to the Chocolate Hills so we planned a few more stops on the way there, instead of just driving trough. On the way there we saw many different churches. Some of them are still getting rebuilt after they fell apart due to the heavy earthquake (7.2) in 2013. For lunch we stopped at the Bohol River Cruise which was highly recommended. What we didn’t know was, that there are two companies running this service and of course we caught the wrong one :( Anyway the boat cruise was nice but it took 2hours instead of 1 and was connected with a typical tourist trap. After that, we made our way towards the Chocolate Hills all the way up and trough the “man-made forest”. The drive was really nice as we passed by a lot of little villages, rice fields and country sides. This way we saw how the country is in reality, away from the tourism. In those little villages the animals (chicken, cows and dogs…) they just walk around free which doesn’t always end in a good way. We had to see how a chicken was run over by a tricycle :(

What can we tell you about the Chocolate Hills: These are around 5000 hills which seem to be appearing out of nowhere. Their name, they got from the brown color they normally have between February and August. At the moment they are green but still very amazing. The government did build a sightseeing platform on the two highest chocolate hills which you can reach after 214 (Mikael counted 217) steps.

On the way back, there would be many more interesting things to visit but as the sun was setting down already, we decided to go back to the hotel. This way we will always have a reason to come back to Bohol 😉

Because it was Saturday evening we wanted to go out and so we took a tricycle to Alona Beach. Alona is located on the outlayered island called Panglao which is connected with Bohol trough a bridge. Panglao grew a lot in the last few years and is a big tourism spot, especially for divers. Alona Beach reminded us of Thailand. We never minded the tourism, as it is still a feel-good place and still quite calm. Alona Beach offers a white sandy beach with clear and blue water. Along the beach you will find many little restaurants and bars and of course the possibility to enjoy a massage. In the evenings you add the romantic part to it and then you know what we are talking about :)

The next two days we spent either relaxing at the pool or at the beach. We also needed to do laundry which is a crazy thing to organize. Of course you could get your laundry done at the hotel but as they charge you by piece its quite expensive.

On our last evening, we just stayed at the hotel. We enjoyed the pool, a beautiful sunset and dinner. At dinner we met some lovely people from Sweden and Norway. We will meet them later on our trip again.

Bohol is definitely totally different compared to Cebu. The island is not so touristic as Cebu and it’s more familiar and calm. The people there would like to keep it that way. If you are looking for more action, there are other places like Panglao or Boracay :) On the island there are only a few taxis available which run around the harbor and the airport. Other than that, we used the tricycles that run on the whole island. On Bohol it’s like on all the other island on the Philippines: no stress at all. If not now, then later :) we had to face that fact when we waited over an hour for our free shuttle service provided from the hotel. It never came. Means: we have to be flexible 😀

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