When people talk about the top tourist destinations in the Philippines, Bohol would surely be included in the discussion.
Beautiful Bohol is located in the Philippines and is very accessible either by water or by air.Â Foreigners have the option to enter the Philippines either through the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila or through the international airport of Cebu.Â The most common route would be to enter the Philippines through Manila and catch a connecting flight to the town of Tagbilaran which takes around an hour and fifteen minutes.Â Some tourists even prefer to spend a few days in Manila to relax in hotels like the Edsa Shangri-La Hotel Manila. This is not the only way to go.Â Budget travelers can take the twenty-five hour boat ride to Bohol. Another possible route is to take the plane ride to Cebu and catch a ferry to Bohol. A lot of visitors choose this route as they get to â€œshoot two birds with one stone,â€ so to speak.
There are a lot of things to do in Bohol and if you manage your time well, you can cover a lot of Boholâ€™s famous attractions in just one day:
EXPLORE THE AMAZING CHOCOLATE HILLS â€“ No trip to Bohol would be complete without visiting the famous Chocolate Hills in Carmen as these would have to be the most famous attraction of Bohol.Â Foreigners find it hard to believe that these hills, a total of 1268 hills, were not man-made. These hills reach a height of about thirty to fifty meters high and are covered with grass that turn chocolate brown during the summer, thus, the name Chocolate Hills.
There are so many local legends as to how these hills came about. The most famous legend is about the story of two giants who were arguing with each other and were in a fit of rage that they ended up throwing stones and fistfuls of dirt at each other and this lasted for a long time. They got tired of their fight and decided to make up and leave the island and the mess that they made.Â But if you would to know about the scientific explanation as to how these hills were formed, then you would have to go up two hundred plus steps to reach the viewing deck of the Chocolate Hills Complex.Â You will find the scientific explanation on the bronze plaque at the observation deck.
Anyone who is interested in exploring the Chocolate Hills can join tours or can arrange for private shuttle vans for the day trip.Â If you prefer to find the way on your own then you can ride the bus to Carmen at the bus terminal in Dao and just ask the bus driver to remember to drop you off at the entrance to the Chocolate Hills viewing complex.Â Make sure that you check the schedule of the last trip from Carmen to Tagbilaran to avoid being stranded in Carmen.
STOP BY THE BOHOL FOREST – The Bohol Forest is also called the man-made Mahogany Forest and is located about twenty kilometres from Tagbilaran City.Â The forest lines the street somewhere in the border of the towns of Bilar and Loboc.Â The entire stretch of Mahogany forest is about two kilometres long.
It’s hard to miss the forest because the place is made eye-catching due to the huge trees that seem to be of the same height.Â They seem to look like soldiers that are standing tall and proud as if guarding the towns. The tree roots also protrude from the soil and they even extend up to the main road.Â We were so fascinated by the forest that we asked our driver to stop for a while so that we can take a souvenir picture.Â Surprisingly, the area of the forest remained cool and breezy even under the blaring heat from the sun.
PLAY AROUND WITH BUTTERFLIES AT THE BUTTERFLY FARM â€“ The Butterfly Farm is another common destination of tourists when in Bohol. It is located in Sagbayan which is about an hour away from Tagbilaran City.
If you would like to see a lot of colourful butterflies then the Butterfly Farm will not disappoint you.Â Aside from being surrounded by lovely butterflies, you can also learn more about these wonderful creatures like the names of the different species, their mating processes, etc.Â You can even have some souvenir photos taken while holding some butterflies.
Still, there are more things to do and see in Bohol other than the Chocolate Hills, Bohol Forest, and the Butterfly Farm.Â In part 2 of this article, I will tell you more about the Loboc River Cruise, Baclayon Church and much more!