“Take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but footprints,
kill nothing but time.” – John Kay
Wee! i can’t still believe that our 3days/2nights Bohol escapade is now over, and i’m back in my working-mode again (as if! lol) :p
The day before our trip was a mess! We booked this promo Zest Air fare wherein our roundtrip ticket only costs us Php978.40/each (MNL-TAG-MNL), but we’re only allowed to bring one hand-carry luggage up to 7kilos. That’s why we were opted to avail their promo for the additional check-in baggage for Php168.00/per way (15 kilos), not bad actually.
Unfortunately, we found out about it just a few days before our flight and we were not able to send the authorization form back to them on time, because both of us were too busy at work. We were then advised that it is still possible to avail the extra luggage promo as long as we arrive at the airport 5 hours before our departure time (that would be 02:45 am), which is really impossible since me and my friend were both working late at the office. We then decided to just leave everything as it is and we will just pay for whatever extra kilo we have on our check-in luggage (take note, its Php100.00/per kilo).
On the day of our flight, I came in early (atleast more than 2hours before our flight) and I told my friend/officemate (Roscielle Mahigab) that I will go straight to the airline ticketing office just across the MIAA Terminal 4 for the baggage allowance for our flight back to Manila. And to my surprise, i was advised by the guy at the ticketing office that he will accept our 15kilos baggage allowance request for our roundtrip ticket eventhough we’re 2 hours beyond their cut-off time already. *BIG SMILE :).
And after that, everything went as smooth as we we’re hoping this trip would be.
Our flight left Manila on time at 07:55am and our estimated time of arrival at Tagbilaran Airport is 09:15am (1hour and 10minutes), but our actual flight only lasted for about 45minutes.
We don’t have a hotel nor a tour package booked. We were advised by a friend who’s been to Bohol that those packages won’t be necessary since we can find better deals with the local tour guides in Bohol, and there’s a lot of cheap hotels/inns to choose from.
As soon as we exited the TAG Airport, we saw lots of hotel vans and their tour guides waiting for their guests. Their are also vans for hire outside the airport that you can rent for a whole day tour for Php2000 good for 10 Best of Bohol Spots, which is actually good if you’re traveling with a big group. Me and my friend crossed the street and saw the line of taxi-tricycles that you can hire for a whole day tour, their drivers will also serve as the tour guide. There we met Kuya Ramil who owned one of the cutest tricycle i’ve seen, ’cause its PINK and with a built-in stereo blasting some good music (hahahaha ***) We both agreed for Php1000 fee, to see the Top 10 Best Spots in Bohol. We left the airport vicinity around 09:00am, and that’s when our escapade begun :
09:25am – 0927am ~~~ Blood Compact *i think this is always the 1st stop since its the nearest landmark from the airport.*
09:30am – 10:02am ~~~ Baclayon Church *where you can see “Jesus Image” on the wall outside the church. As per Kuya Ramil, the said image came out around the 90’s after a heavy rain pour the city.
10:10am – 10:22am ~~~ Bohol Python & Wildlife Park (Php 25.00 Entrance Fee) *if you wish to go inside the cage to have some picture taken with the Python. You will be accompanied by the owner and she will be the one to take your photographs, although you have to lend a separate donation if you wish to go inside. And by the way, the Python’s name is PRONY 🙂
10:42am – 10:57am ~~~ Butterfly (Php 35.00 Entrance Fee w/ tour guide) *how i wished i bought a pen and paper when we went here, because our tour guide really did a good job and shared lots of information about butterflies.
11:06am – 12:37 pm ~~~ Loboc River Cruise w/ Lunch (Php 450.00/per pax) *we left Kuya Ramil at the entrance together with our luggage on his tricycle. Im sharing this for you to know that as per our own experience, it is really safe to leave your belongings to your local tour guides without worries of them sneaking on it while you’re gone.*
01:06pm – 01:23pm ~~~ Tarsier (Php 60.00 Entrance Fee) *this little creatures are really cute!!! they look sooo small and contented with their own world. As per the tour guides inside the sanctuary, tarsiers don’t eat insects but plants. They also shared that tarsiers stayed to only one place – they will try walking at night, but go back to the same spot using their sense of small (urine) as their guide.
01:30pm – 01:51pm ~~~ Mahogany Man-Made Forest *As usual, the main reason why local Boholanos started planting Mahogany trees is to prevent floods in Tagbiliran City, without any hint that this line of trees will be one of their best future asset. You will appreciate this place more in the afternoon when the sun is starting to go down *breathtaking indeed!* 🙂
02:20pm – 02:55pm ~~~ ShipHaus (Php 30.00 Entrance Fee w/ tour guide in complete marine costume 🙂 *this place is really nice. they are also renting the rooms for a very cheap price. It took as awhile to stay here since i charged my digicam first FOR FREE 🙂
03:00pm – 03:45pm ~~~ Chocolate Hills (Php 50.00 Entrance Fee) just simply breathtaking!!! you’ll feel the peace just by looking at this magnificent well curved hills *sigh*
03:45pm – 04:05pm ~~~ *downtime* Flat Tire issue hehehe :p (was able to charge my “again” low batt. digi cam in one of the souvenir store in the area for 20pesos).
05:50pm – 05:30pm ~~~ Hanging Bridge (Php 20.00 Entrance Fee) *There’s two line of hanging bridge actually, its made of bamboo i think? though you have to be careful on where you step ’cause some parts aren’t that good anymore, but still safe though. We bought souvenirs here since we were advised that this is the place where you can buy cheap “pasalubong”. T-shirts costs from Php120 for kids and Php160 for adults, but i got mine for Php150 since i bought 5 shirts for my family. And their key chains is like Php100 for 5 pieces already*.
The travel time from one place to another destination is really long, but we don’t mind because of the fresh air and the local old houses we saw on the road, as well as the big mansions standing in the middle of nowhere.
07:00pm ~~~ arrived at the Alona Beach area. Checked-in at a pension house named Villa Almedilla for Php1500.00/per night/good for 2 guests already.You have alot of choices on where area to stay, but it’s mostly between Alona Beach or Dumaluan Beach. We chose Alona, because we were advised that this is somehow looks like Boracay strip, but if you want a more peaceful surroundings, I think you will enjoy the beach more if you’ll stay in the Dumaluan area.
We rested for awhile before hitting the road to find some place to eat. Unlike Boracay, where the level of foreign and local guests are the same, I think with Bohol, the place is mostly invaded by foreigners. You can only see few local tourists on the area. That’s why even the tinderas/tinderos, tricycle drivers, and the local tour guides speaks good English *with some cute accent*, because they’re already used to dealing with foreigners.
Me and Che both agreed to try a local karinderya and ordered grilled squid and some drinks. We go back to the hotel right after our dinner since we’re both tired from our whole day tour. I advise you to bring some small flashlights, because some parts of the area is really dark (but safe).
We woke up around 7am and had some breakfast. I forgot to mention that we agreed for a 2nd day city tour with Kuya Ramil for only Php 500.00, for additional 5 Best Spots in Bohol:
09:25am ~~~ Left the hotel
09:35am – 09:55am ~~~ St. Agustin Church w/ Watch Tower *this is a very nice old church, especially the images on the ceiling at the altar.*
10:00am – 10:35am ~~~ Muro-Ami Beach Side *where the Muro-Ami Film of Cesar Montano was held. We also saw the newest hotel in Bohol, the Bellevue Hotel – awesome! 🙂
10:55am – 11:30am ~~~ Hinagdanan Cave (Php 30.00 Entrance Fee w/ tour guide) *this is definitely a must see place! once we were inside the cave, our tour guide asked for our our camera so that he will be the one to take our pictures. And not only that, all of them were trained to change the settings of all cameras so that it can adjust to the darkness inside the cave, which will surely give you some amazing shots! Just like the famous Underground River of Puerto-Prinsesa Palawan, you can also find amazing rocks formation inside the Hinagdanan Cave and you can even swim in the lagoon 🙂 a breath-taking place indeed! Another thing, souvenirs outside the Hinagdanan Cave is actually much cheaper than the one in Hanging Bridge. You can get t-shirts for only 99.00pesos, and can get 7pieces of key chains for only 100pesos.
12:00nn – 02:00pm ~~~ Bohol Bee Farm (we availed the Php 1200.00 dish-of-the-day meal for Lunch… which they said is good for 3pax, but it can actually accommodate 5 stomachs! hahaha! *burppp! Aside from the fresh vegetables, you can also enjoy their very own “organic” ice-cream for only 80.00pesos. Aside from enjoying the food, you will also enjoy the amazing view of the ocean. There’s actually a stair in the corner of the restaurant going down to a big balcony facing the ocean where you can take some great pictures 🙂
03:30pm ~~~ Arrived at the hotel.
After some rest, we decided to hit the Alone Beach around 4:00pm (high-tide with some drizzle that lasted for about 10minutes). Alona Beach actually looks like a version of Boracay strip, though i must say that the beach in Boracay is still way way better. As per Kuya Ramil (our driver/tour guide), the water in Dumaluan Beach is better than the one in Alona Beach. Alona beach is just better in sight because of its fine powdery white sand.
After some picture taking, we had dinner along the beach side that the water even touches our feet 🙂 After a little walk on the beach, we decided to go back to our hotel since we need to wake up early for the following day to atleast see the Alona Beach in low-tide (a much better sight), before we headed home.
Me and Che woke up around 4am, and hit the beach around 5o’clock eventhough its still dark. We already saw lots of bangkeros on the area getting ready for the island hopping and dolphin watching. Something that we were not able to do because we focused more on the Bohol City Tour. Island Hopping usually costs from 1500-2000/per boat. If you just like to see the “Virgin Island”, you can rent a boat for only 1000pesos.
We left the hotel by 06:30am and arrived at the TAG Airport around 07:20am. The ride will only take you 30minutes from Panglao Island since traffic is not usual in the area.
All in all, our 3d/2n BOHOL ESCAPADE was a blast, but a little bitin. We’re actually already planning to visit Cebu this year and hop to Bohol again using the ferry just to try their island hopping and dolphin watching. and if we can, we will definitely stay somewhere in Dumaluan Beach this time 🙂
Hoping for more travels this year! ♥♥♥
(P.S: Kuya Ramil’s contact number is 09213732462 – the owner of the PINK tricycle. He’s the guy in the picture eating with us, during our lunch in the Bohol Bee Farm 🙂