Sorry for the super delayed post! >_<
May 29, 2012, marked the beginning of our 4days/3nights escapade in Bohol. 😀 We left the Cebu Betania Retreat House at 1:30PM to catch up with our 3:00PM trip to Bohol. About (2) two hours sea trip from Cebu, it was already past 6:00PM when we arrived at Tagbilaran port. We were picked up by a free shuttle service from the pension house that we stayed in. 😀
We stayed at Vest Pension House located at Tamblot St., Tagbilaran Bohol. The place was overly cool since it was just a few minutes away from downtown area and sea port. The mode of transportation around Tagbilaran are tricycles with a minimum fare of Php 8.00. 🙂
Heading back to our accommodation, located at RM 301, we had the deluxe twin room (good for 2 persons) but apparently it was occupied by 5 persons :D. Anyways, the room was very spacious for us five and we get to pay only a minimal amount for the excess persons which also includes the breakfast. 🙂
If you happen to visit Bohol, you might want to check out Vest Pension House. It has a lot of spacious rooms with very affordable rates. Rates per person comes with a free breakfast. And they have very accommodating staffs! 😀
Bohol Tour – Day 1
We were lucky enough to enjoy the day 1 tour with a free van courtesy of Raphaela’s family!
Our first stop was at Dauis Church. I’m always hoping and longing to visit the old churches in the Philippines and finally, I was able to set foot on one of its historical churches. But then, I had to wear a skirt-like-cloth to cover my lower body since I was wearing shorts on that day. All of their churches strictly implements the proper dress code when inside the church. And so I was able to enter the church! 😀 One thing that really fascinated me inside were the painted ceilings. It’s as if I was brought to the old Spanish times — so kewl :). Hmm.. There was also a well at the center near the altar where it was believed to be miraculous. Today, it is being packaged into a bottled water for the people. You may get it free or you may want to give some amount in exchange of it. 🙂
FYI: The church was one of the settings of the movie “Bulong” starred by Vhong Navarro and Angelica Panganiban. It’s a horror-movie where the two stars have to get some water from the Dauis Church’es well in order to drive away evil spirits. 🙂
The second stop was at the Blood Compact Site. One of the unforgettable events in history, and if you’re familiar with Miguel Lopez de Legazpi, this was the place where the first treaty of friendship between two different races took place. The site was just along the highway and so there’s no entrance fee. 😀 You can take a lot of pictures too like what we had down there. 😀
Third stop was the Baclayon Church, considered to be one of the oldest in the Philippines. This was the first church I’ve seen to have a bamboo organ. Although it’s not functional anymore, the community was still able to preserve its structure. The church also had a very big and well-preserved altar. Outside the church, you can light some candles according to your needs.. (the pink candle denotes love I guess.. but it’s not mine! hahahaha!) And if you’re a bit observant, you can see the face of a priest in the church building too.. 😀
As for our fourth stop, we went to Prony’s at the Python Sanctuary. This overly huge python has always been featured in the television (I’m telling you, she’s living like a celebrity). I was able to take a friendly photo along with her but despite of my cheery smile, I was not able to breathe well, thinking that she might move an inch closer to me.. Hahahahaha! Aside from her, there were other animals in the sanctuary such as the raven, eagle, lizards.. BIG lizards. And also a monkey (I chose to post the monkey’s face because he’s so cute.. He opt to reach Eric’s backpack yet he wasn’t able to do so.. thus, his face turned out that way).
Fifth stop at Loboc Church, the second oldest church in Bohol. The bamboo organ in this church was much bigger and much well-maintained by the community (though i don’t know if it’s still working). There were two unusual things that I have observed in this church: One, the bell tower was a few meters away from the church (it’s at the other side of the road) and Two, there’s an unfinished bridge at the other side facing the church (which was made into a mini park). It said to be a construction from long time ago, the in-charge of the bridge project miscalculated the distance. Thus, if it was really constructed, the church will be destroyed. Thankfully, the community didn’t allow such thing to happen. 🙂
And since it was still too early for lunch, we were not able to try the lunch buffet at loboc river cruise. Instead, we had our lunch on our sixth stop which was at Forest Camp. It’s a cool exclusive resort with a mini zoo + mini zipline + butterfly sanctuary owned by jude’s (the one in pink stripe shirt) relatives.
Seventh stop at Tarsier Sanctuary. It was raining heavily when we arrived in the area. We had to wait until the rain had stopped before we could enter the sanctuary. The entrance fee was about Php 50-60, but then again we were able to enter without paying the fee because one of the caretakers was a relative of Jude. So lucky us! 😀 One thing that you have to remember when inside the sanctuary — OBSERVE SILENCE ! 🙂
If you don’t want the heat and the feel of the sun, then, our eight stop would be perfect for you. The majestic Man-made forest is a two-kilometer road of tall mahogany trees between the towns of Loboc and Bilar. The sun could hardly touch the ground because of the tall trees. I was really amazed with the trees (like I thought I was in the set of a movie). I never thought that such a place existed in the Philippines. According to the people, these trees were planted around 20 years ago. The day would be the perfect time to witness these breath-taking trees, but Night? Forget it, I guess it’s creepy.. There’s no street lights at night. >_<
Lots of butterflies.. that’s what we had witnessed when we arrived at our ninth stop at the Butterfly Sanctuary. It was probably the funniest tour we had. We had a guide during our tour here and he was soooooo funny. But, we learned a lot from him.. from butterfly eggs, caterpillars, pupa, male, female and gay butterflies (imagine, there’s a gay butterfly too.. that’s what he said to us.. it’s a type of butterfly where it has a small (left) and big (right) wings). 🙂
Finally reached Chocolate Hills at our tenth stop. But before reaching the observation area, we had to climb the 214 steps. It was very tiring yet it was worth the effort when we reached the area and saw lots of chocolate hills. 🙂 At the observation area lies a wishing bell-well. All you have to do is to think of a wish, throw a coin in the well and ring the bell once.. and your wish will come true! But I tell, not all people can ring the bell.. It’s too heavy for some.. 🙂
We had our eleventh stop at the Sagbayan Peak. You can view the Chocolate Hills in this park too. Aside from the view, it has a kid’s park where you can see a lot of mini structures of houses and restaurants. It also has a castle where you can enter and feel like a princess. 🙂 And BTW, the pine trees will guide you along the way to Kids town.
And we thought Sagbayan Peak would be our last stop for our Bohol Tour Day 1 ..
Mommy Jean (Jude’s mom) took us to Panglao Island. And again, we had our free dinner courtesy of Jude’s relatives again at Makoto Inn.. 😀 Before leaving the island, we strolled for a bit along the beach shorelines. The resorts were just along the way and so it was more of a beach hopping along the shorelines. :)) One of the famous resorts here is the Alona Kew, and we used it as our entrance to reach the shorelines. 😀 We also went to the ever famous Bohol Divers Resort. Apparently, its owner is again a relative of Jude. 😀
Panglao Island is an alternative destination for Boracay.. white beaches, crystal clear water, resto and bars along the way.. except that it’s way cheaper than Boracay. 😀 Hopefully, we’ll be able to go back here to fully explore its beauty. 🙂
We went back in the pension by almost 10 in the evening. It was a very tiring tour we had but very awesome! Special thanks to Jude’s family for hosting our Day 1 Bohol Tour. Up next, the Day 2 Bohol Tour: Panglao Island’s vicinity. Stay tune! 🙂