Oct 17, 2017
Back Road Ride to Loay
Location: Loay (municipality), Bohol (province), Philippines
Mountain Bike Guide: Jeffrey Huerte
The Back Roads
It was a leisurely ride along the main road towards Sikatuna until we veered off to the mountain back roads of Loboc all the way to the coastal town of Loay. The path was a mix of paved and dirt road with sloping downhills transitioning into moderate climbs. The heavy downpour the night before made for a wet ride which just added flavor to the ride.
An interesting seque was making a detour to pass through the hidden but majestic Balay Silangan, a grand house-turned-resort on the mountain slope overlooking the sea and Loboc River. It had a swimming pool and terrace in a sprawling expanse. If you want to get away from all the madness, this place seem to offer secluded solace.
Loay is a sleepy coastal town at the mouth of the Loboc River. The town presents a compelling alternative to Philippine history - that the blood compact between Sikatuna and Legazpi actually happened in Loay and not the widely accepted version in Tagbilaran. Because of many Spanish artifacts uncovered in Loay, it has become a popular "X marks the spot" for treasure hunters.
From Loay, the ride back to Loboc was through the main highway. I found the ride uncomfortable given that big trucks and buses ply that route, although not as frequent as most cities.
The 5:30am ride is fast becoming a morning routine. What healthy way to start the day....a workout, a veiled discovery and good bonding with Jeffrey and Juan - my Loboc hosts who have been showing me the way. Thank you guys.
Next stop: River Cruise
Loboc, Bohol, Philippines
Bohol FYI / Tips
- the tourist area where most of the hotels, restaurants, ticket offices, tour operators are, is located within the Alona Beach area
- the tourist attractions in Bohol are far apart and spread-out. It would be difficult to visit them all using public mass transit. Better hire a van (P3500/day) if in a big group, or rent a motorcycle (P400/day + gas)
- Bohol relies on its tourism for revenue. As expected, everything they can capitalize on from tourism is extensively used and developed
Tagbilaran Port to PanglaoYou can charter any tricycle from the port all the way to Panglao (~P300), but if you want to do it on the cheap,
- 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)
- 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
- 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
- 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
- SuperCat (2GO) - departs 5:50-11AM, 3:45-5:25-8:15PM, arrives Pier 1 in Cebu
+63 32 233 7000
Things to do, Places to go in Bohol
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
Carlos P. Garcia Island
»» next story: River Cruise on Loboc River
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