Bohol Island is one of the premier island destinations in the Philippines that draw in thousands of tourists and visitors. Good thing that you can choose to fly from Manila directly to Bohol or fly to Cebu and take the fast craft to Bohol and spend only two hours of sea travel. Once there you can contact many travel tour operators and pay only an average of 60 dollars for a one day Bohol countryside tour covering the usual tourist favorites and then spend the other days lounging in a tropical haven, get a tan, get pampered with a spa and enjoy the ultimate vacation.
This little island in the middle of Visayas is famous all over the world for its geologic natural wonder, the Chocolate Hills of Bohol and is also home to the world’s smallest primate the Tarsier and offers great spots for diving and snorkeling.
There are approximately 1200+ little hills that dot the Bohol countryside in the town of Carmen. These hills are very lush and covered with vegetation during the rainy season which dries up during the summer leaving behind brownish hill mounts that look like little chocolate kisses, hence the source of the name for Chocolate Hills. This amazing natural wonder can best be viewed in the Chocolate Hills complex where you have to climb 214 steps to the top for an expansive view of the almost uniform hills.
The very famous Tarsiers which is said to be George Lucas’s inspiration for the character of Master Yoda in his Star Wars series can also be found in Bohol. These nocturnal animals are considered as the smallest primate in the world. You do not have to seek them in their natural habitat in the jungles and mountains of Bohol because you can see some of these tarsiers in RioVerde Tarsier Place and you can also take pictures of these very cute animals provided that you don’t use any flashes with your camera and you keep quiet as you explore the place for they are easily disturb and might be agitated. Entrance to the Rioverde center is free.
Another tourism draw to Bohol is its pristine white sand beaches in Panglao. There are two beach strips that travel vacationers frequent, Alona beach and Dumaluan beach. The beach strip in Alona is more alive compared to Dumaluan and highly recommended for those who want to party the night away with the presence of hotels and restaurants that offers buffet dinner for only about 11 dollars per person, these restaurants are beside the shoreline so you can hear and see the waves as you enjoy your meal and also listen to the live acoustic singers or bands that the restaurants throw in as an added attraction for guests. However, Dumaluan beach strip is longer than that of Alona and if you want relaxation and prefer to be away from the throngs of tourists then you will undoubtedly like Dumaluan more. When it comes to hotels to stay in no worries as there are lots of hotels in Panglao whether in Alona or Dumaluan but you really have to have prior reservation as Panglao Island in Bohol is also a favorite destination of locals.
Island hopping is also a favorite activity of Bohol visitors. For just about 60 dollars you can go on an island hopping tour and have the chance to see dolphins frolicking in the clear waters of Panglao. You can arrange your island hopping tour through your hotel or with the many travel tour shops you can find near the beaches. The tour will usually bring you to the best spot to snorkel or dive in the small islet of Pamilacan, Cabilao and Balicasag. It’s really a definite underwater paradise and one you should not miss when in Bohol.
Bohol’s other charm is it’s slow pace life and still rural vibe. If you come from big cities then you would love the uniqueness of this little island province.
** For a more personal account of my travels to Bohol with detailed travel tips and pictures, kindly check my other Bohol posts . This post is meant to promote Bohol to everyone reading Ezine. Thanks**