Bohol is an island province southeast of Cebu and you can get there via a short ferry ride from the Cebu City. The island is connected by bridge to neighboring Panglao Island which is well known for its diving opportunities. Both Pang islands are quite large, but if you rent a motorbike you’ll be able to explore both of them relatively easy in one day. Once you are here, you can enjoy a bit of a beach- and nightlife around Alona Beach, as well as two main attractions in Bohol, namely the Chocolate Hills and the distinctive wildlife in the form of cute tarsiers.
The most publicized attraction in Bohol, located on the main island, is the Chocolate Hills, and you should come here if you want to take in a bit of the natural beauty of the Philippines. Spanning more than 50 square kilometers, the area is covered with over 1,000 small hills that turn brown in dry season giving them their name. Sadly, there is no chocolate here, so if you have a sweet tooth you are likely to be disappointed.
The Tarsiers Sanctuary
Another draw in mainland Bohol has to be the Tarsiers Sanctuary which is located between Tagbileran and Loboc, where you can see these bug-eyed little creatures. The primates are unique to Southeast Asia and especially the Philippines, and it is well worth making an effort to visit them in their natural habitat, where you will be rewarded with their gigantic eyes.
Many travelers to Bohol are scuba divers who come over from diving in Cebu, and this tells you all your need to know about the main attraction on offer here. Due to Panglao’s size, bike travel is a good choice for exploring and will let you roam around at your leisure. Alona Beach is the primary beach on Panglao and offers food and accommodation choices as well as all the dive schools. The rest of the beaches on Pangloa island are quiet small and mostly only for people staying in a resort. Few times you’ll be able to get in and when you do you often have to pay an entrance fee. Alona beach has a good backpackers vibe and is busy with a lot of boats that cater for the tourists as you can expect. So if you’re short on time and not looking to dive, Panglao can be skipped since mainland Bohol offers the highlights of this island.
Bohol is not a stop made by everyone traveling the Philippines, but the island definitely offers some cool activities in nature to keep you engaged. Don’t be fooled expecting that Bohol is your perfect all inclusive beach holiday, for that you can better head to Boracay. Nevertheless Bohol is an island where you come to chill and is a very welcome change compared to the rest of the Philippines. Especially if you are flying in or out of Cebu then Bohol is an attractive option to spend some time on since getting around will be easy and a couple days are all you need.
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If you decide to travel Bohol, we definitely recommend you to get yourself a motorbike. Most guesthouses and hotels offer motorbike for a reasonable day price and you’ll be able to see everything in one day. First go to the Chocolate Hills as it is the furthest away plus getting there before the crowds will definitely be a nicer experience. After that you can visit the Tarsiers Sanctuary and stop by the Man Made Forest to enjoy the serenity and the cooler weather. There are a lot of other stops on the tourist map such as a little waterfall and a hanging bridge. If you feel like seeing even more, it is also possible to explore Panglao island on the same day.
Grab lunch at the Bee Farm, as they serve delicious and healthy meals with a stunning view.