TheLoneRider
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Bohol Revisited June 12, 2017

Bohol Revisited

Location: Bohol (province), Philippines

Bohol on the Radar
Feeling like I've over-extended my stay in Cebu City, it was time to pack-up again and hit the open road. Exploring Bohol excited me more than anywhere else in the country. That's all I needed - the feeling of excitement. That's how my universe talks to me - and it has never been wrong. Bohol it is!

Getting There
Back in Cebu City, Jeanne was so kind to drive me to Pier 1. Otherwise, I would have lugged my 2 bulky and heavy packs on the long walk to the guard house and squeezed myself in narrow jeeps to the chagrin of the other passengers. I arrived early - early enough to be transferred to the 8am boat instead of the 9:20am. Nice I didn't have to wait another 80 minutes.

After 2 hours, I was in Tagbilaran. Everything was painless until I got there. Not knowing how to proceed to Steffi's Place, I took a tricycle to Bohol Museum (P15) then a jeep to some drop-off point (P20 including my backpack), another tricycle to the junction (P20) and another tricycle to Steffi's Place (P25). That exhausted me. Best way was to have bargained P120 for a tricycle ride from the pier all the way to Steffi's.

Steffi's PlaceSteffi's Place
Steffi's Place was the cheapest I could find online at P300/night including breakfast, but it was a good 8kms away from the main hub of Alona Beach. I met the friendly and accommodating Steffi, a lovely half-German half-Pinay mix. The place is fabulous for the price - sea-view even if the water is still a short walk away, wifi, decent breakfast (toast-jam-butter-coffee-fresh fruits), dorm beds were single not bunk, room was clean, spacious and well-vented. On top of that, they offer a free one-way lift to the main drag in Alona Beach. If not for its distance from Alona and the considerable 800m walk to the main road, I could have stayed there for the length of my stay.

Oasis ResortOasis Resort
While roaming around the Alona beach hub, I came upon Oasis Resort. After talking to the managers on how I can help their online campaign, we shook hands on a web-deal. This wonderful paradise became my home.

Oasis Resort is deceptive from the outside. From the street and beach entrance, there was only an inconspicuous narrow access. You could easily miss it. But inside, it opened-up to an expansive luxury setting with a swimming pool, alfresco resto, well-appointed suites and cottages with spacious manicured greenery. It felt like a best-kept secret in Panglao! Indeed, this resort lives up to its name - oasis! When the good folks of Oasis said they'll give me a nice room, they weren't kidding - cathedral-like room big enough to warrant its own zip code, ballroom space in the washroom, fridge, flat screen tv, spacious closet space, safety box, king-size bed, another double bed and in-room wifi! With amenities like these, there is no reason for me to leave the room or the resort - except for my dives. Seriously! I'll have ample time when I check-out to savor whatever Alona Beach offers - in the meantime, I'm simply cocooning.

Come to think of it, that should be the litmus test for any hotel room - if it's so comfortable you don't want to leave anymore.

Bohol Revisited
inside my luxurious room at Oasis Resort - my surgical smile is evident

Bahalina
A pleasant discovery here in Bohol is Bahalina - fermented, decanted and aged coconut sap (tuba). I've heard about this drink on a few occasions, but never could buy one. Here in Bohol, nearly every street convenience store carry one for about P150/gallon - cheap! I purchased a full gallon only to be told by my friends that what I got was tuba instead. Oh well, life doesn't come with guarantees.

Peoplescape
I don't know anyone from Bohol, but already, through friends who introduced me to their Bohol friends (thru social media), my peoplescape is already animated. I have already met two yoginis, Raisa and Geraldine who came to Oasis to share their Ashtanga Primary practice. We finished-off with a sumptuous breakfast and lingered long after for some sharing and chill time. Kins, a Vipassana sis in Tagbilaran invited me for a catch-up. I will soon be meeting cool folks in Loboc who run a river SUP activity. In the days to come, I will be doing freediving with Ben from Oasis and some scuba diving from SeaQuest Dive Center as well.

Ending Thoughts
Despite the bad press Bohol and the Philippines have been getting lately and the ensuing travel advisory, Bohol is very peaceful and quiet now - the troubles of Marawi seem light years away. I feel very safe walking the streets.

Bohol just started and already, the horizon looms broad, colorful and inviting. I'm all smiles as I brace myself for the wonderful things to come.

--- TheLoneRider



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Google Map Bohol, Philippines

tourist attractions in Bohol tourist attractions
  • Danao Adventure Park in Bohol Danao Adventure Park - zip lining, cable car ride, caving, river rides/trekking, off-road buggy ride, root climbing, rappelling and ultra-glide rides
  • Alona Beach in Bohol Alona Beach - hub for tourists with hotels, resorts, restos, bars and dive shops
  • Chocolate Hills in Bohol Chocolate Hills - hills side-by-side shaped like giant Kisses chocolate
  • Tarsier in Bohol Tarsier - pocket-sized marsupia looking like a monkey
  • Balicasag Island in Bohol Balicasag Island - one of the best dive spots in the Philippines
  • Loboc River in Bohol Loboc River - river cruise on a boat
  • Anda Beach in Bohol Anda Beach - fine white sand beach with resorts, restos and cottages, 3 hours by bus from Tagbilaran
  • Cabagnow Cave Pool in Anda, Bohol Cabagnow Cave Pool - brackish water pool about 5ft deep inside a limestone opening on the ground, 8 feet deep, P50
  • Lamanok Island in Anda, Bohol Lamanok Island - walk on a 100m bamboo bridge on stilts to a resto area to take a boat tour to caves and nearly attractions, P300
  • Combento Cave Pool in Bohol Combento Cave Pool - cave pool with underwater cave system, P20
  • Can-umantad Falls in Candijay, Bohol Can-umantad Falls - long narrow drop until it hits a bulbous mound spreading it into a a curtain-like water canopy and down into a splash pool
  • Canawa Cold Spring in Candijay, Bohol Canawa Cold Spring - deep refreshing cold spring with developed pool area
  • Firefly Tour in Candijay, Bohol Firefly Tour - evening boat ride into the river to watch fireflies
hotels in Bohol hotel
  • Bohol Tropics Resort Bohol Tropics Resort - seafront location, manicured surroundings, swimming pool, resto/bar
    0133 Graham Avenue, Brgy. Cogon, Tagbilaran, Bohol 6300
  • Oasis Resort - Alona Beach location, dive center, resto / bar
    Alona Beach, Panglao, Bohol
yoga in Bohol yoga
  • Jing Yoga - health & well being through yoga
    Jing Yoga The Courtyard - Airport Road fronting the church
    Jing Yoga Bohol Meditation and Yoga Center - 2nd Floor Lim Magtajas Bldg. CPG Avenue

Bohol FYI / Tips

Tagbilaran Port to Panglao

You can charter any tricycle from the port all the way to Panglao (~P300), but if you want to do it on the cheap,
  1. don't take the tricycles lined-up inside the port. Walk past the port gate and immediately outside, you'll see many tricycles. Take one to the bus terminal in Dao (~P15)
  2. in Dao, take the jeep that plies the Panglao route (~P20)

Tagbilaran (Bohol) to Cebu City by boat

** schedules and rates keep changing, call for latest schedule
  1. Weesam Express - departs 6:15 AM, 11:30 AM, 4:00 PM
    one way: Economy (aircon) P500.00, Economy (non-aircon) P400.00, First Class P600.00
    round trip promo (at least 2 days advance booking): Economy (aircon) P600, Economy(non-aircon) P500, First Class P1200
    round trip promo (1 day or on the day booking): Economy (aircon) P800, Economy (non-aircon) P700, First Class P1200
  2. Ocean Jet - departs 6-7:05-8:20-9:20-11:40AM, 1-2-3:30-4:20-5:30-6:30PM, 2 hours, arrives Pier 1 in Cebu
    Open Air / Tourist Class P800, Business Class P1000
    +63(32)255 7560 / +63 (32) 255 0115 / 0917 638 0000
  3. SuperCat (2GO) - departs 5:50-11AM, 3:45-5:25-8:15PM, arrives Pier 1 in Cebu
    P 500.00
    +63 32 233 7000

Things to do, Places to go in Bohol

  1. Chocolate Hills - this is a clustering of more than 1200 hills within a 50km2 area. They range in height from 30-50 meters. What's unusual is their near-perfect conical shape resembling an individual chocolate chip. No one knows how they were formed. Entrance is P50/pax.
  2. Tarsier Conservation Area - located Upper Bonbon, Loboc. The tarsiers are no longer being played at by tourists as circus props, but instead, visitors now view them in cordoned-off areas in their natural 6ha habitat. As they are territorial and nocturnal, they are predictable on where they can be viewed. P50/pax.
  3. Alona Beach (Panglao) - Alona Beach is the tourist hub of Bohol. It has 1.5 kms of white sand beach lined-up by bars, hotels and restos. Alona is also the jump-off point for Balicasag Island, a world class dive destination.
  4. Danao Adventure Park - located in Barangay Magtangtang, 72 kms (2 hours ride) from Tagbilaran. Adventure activities include river trekking, tyrolean traverse, rappelling, bouldering, rock climbing and ziplining.

Bohol

    Anda
  1. Exploring Combento Cave Pool June 29, 2017
  2. Visiting Cabagnow Cave Pool of Anda Jun 28, 2017
  3. Exploring Anda, Bohol June 25-30, 2017

  4. Dauis
  5. Freediving at Molave Point, Dauis Nov 6, 2017
  6. The Return to Hinagdanan Cave Nov 5, 2017
  7. Exploring Hinagdanan Cave Oct 24, 2017

  8. Candijay
  9. Roadtrip from Candijay to Ubay July 1, 2017
  10. Firefly Tour in Candijay, Bohol June 30, 2017
  11. Freediving Canawa Cold Spring of Candijay, Bohol June 30, 2017
  12. Splashing at Can-umantad Falls, Candijay, Bohol June 30, 2017

  13. Corella
  14. Cycling to the Tarsiers of Corella Oct 26, 2017

  15. Loay
  16. The Ride to Morning Hill Oct 22, 2017
  17. The Ride to the Old Spanish Tower Oct 21, 2017

  18. Loboc
  19. 37 Days in Loboc - Thank You and Goodbye Oct 8-Nov 14, 2017
  20. Exploring Busay Falls, Lobtob Spring and Jimili-an Spring...on Foot Nov 11, 2017
  21. Stand-Up Paddle Yoga with Joan Christine Nov 3, 2017
  22. Loboc River Cruise on a Stand-Up Paddle Oct 29, 2017
  23. Exploring Guimba and Sog-ong Caves of Loboc Oct 22, 2017
  24. Ziplining and Cable Car Ride at Eco-Tourism Adventure Park Oct 22, 2017
  25. Savouring Villagio Pizza Oct 19, 2017
  26. Wet and Wild Bonbon-Alegria Downhill Ride Oct 18, 2017
  27. River Cruise on Loboc River Oct 17, 2017
  28. Back Road Ride from Loboc to Loay Oct 17, 2017
  29. Leisurely Ride to Loktob Spring Oct 14, 2017
  30. Sweet Ride to Busay Falls Oct 13, 2017
  31. Bike Climb to the Virgen de Guadalupe Oct 12, 2017
  32. The Ride to Cruz Daku (Big Cross) Oct 11, 2017
  33. Exploring Loboc, Bohol Oct 8, 2017

  34. Panglao
  35. Coastal Cleanup with Plastic Free Bohol Sept 16, 2017
  36. Exploring Panglao June 12-18, 2017
  37. Yoga with Ging and Rai at Oasis Resort June 18, 2017
  38. Freediving with Ben Meerhaeghe at SeaQuest Dive Center June 16, 2017
  39. Scuba Diving Balicasag Island with SeaQuest Dive Center June 15, 2017
  40. Bohol Revisited June 12, 2017
  41. Exploring Bohol Nov 28-30, 2015

  42. Sevilla
  43. Killer MTB Ride from Sevilla Oct 30, 2017

  44. Sikatuna
  45. Solo Ride to the Sikatuna Tree Park Nov 2, 2017

  46. Tagbilaran
  47. 30 days in Tagbilaran, Thank You! Oct 8, 2017
  48. Breakfast Talk with Tagbilaran's Finest Oct 8, 2017
  49. Exploring the Cafe Scene of Tagbilaran Oct 7, 2017
  50. Yoga for 60+ Students at the University of Bohol Oct 4, 2017
  51. Chocolate Overload at Dalareich Chocolate House October 2, 2017
  52. Talk on Philosophy and Spirituality to 12-Graders at the University of Bohol Sep 27, 2017
  53. Celebrating the International Day of Peace Sep 23, 2017
  54. Judging a Student Debate at the University of Bohol Sept 15, 2017
  55. Fitness Workout with Chie at Bohol Tropics Resort Sept 13, 2017
  56. Modified Ashtanga Primary Series by Jing Yoga, Tagbilaran Sept 12, 2017
  57. Tagbilaran Revisited Sep 7-12, 2017
  58. Hello Tagbilaran! June 19-25, 2017

  59. Ubay
  60. Visiting Ubay Green Park Nov 18, 2017
  61. The Ride to Sinandigan Boardwalk and the Yamashita Treasure Hunt Nov 18, 2017
  62. Ubay in a Nutshell Nov 17, 2017
  63. In Search of the Next Destination Nov 14, 2017
  64. 2 Days in Ubay July 1-3, 2017
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