Bohol is a province rich in natural and cultural resources. To make the most out of a short trip, try to stay for at least four days. You can use the first and last days to enjoy the resort where you’re staying and lounge around. The other two days can spent exploring.
For our first full day in Bohol, we booked a Bohol Countryside Tour with Bohol Package Tours. For Php 1600 per person, we were able to drive by the view the Chocolate Hills, tour the (really weird) Ship Haus, walk through a butterfly garden, meet the tarsiers, cruise down the Loboc River and have lunch at a floating restaurant, pray at the Bacayon church, and take pictures at the Blood Compact Shrine. We also visited some kind of zoo with snakes and ostriches but it was so depressing we just stayed 5 minutes. The fee includes all the entrance fees, lunch, use of a car, and the services of a driver. It was particularly nice because the car is small and is good for couples. Don’t expect a tour guide who will provide you with interesting info on your stops. You wont get one. But that’s alright, you can always read On your own 🙂 We left at around 8am and we’re back at the resort by 3pm.
For the third day, we booked the island hopping and dolphin watching tour with Bohol Package Tours for Php 2100 per person. The tour starts at 530 am so you could catch the dolphins. Dolphin watching is sad. You wait in the boat with a bunch of other tourists on their own boats (we were alone in our banca) and when somebody spots a school of dolphins, you all race to that spot. I felt as though we were harassing the dolphins and I could have easily skipped this. We didn’t even come close enough to see them properly… We just saw their backs occasionally breaking the water.
The first island we went to was Balicasag where we went snorkeling. It was a lot of fun and the corals and fish were beautiful. Best of all, we saw a sea turtle! He was hanging out at the edge of the reef, right where the deeper water starts. It was amazing seeing this regal creature less than 20 feet away. We had lunch there too (came with the package) and it was a yummy home cooked meal prepared by one of the ladies living on the island.
The next (and last) stop was Virgin Island, a crescent shaped bar of white sand surrounded by thick sea grass. I’ve never seen anything like it in my life… It looked like something from a Hollywood movie. It was too bad there were jellyfish in the water so we couldn’t swim. The view was breath-taking though.
There is so much to do in Bohol, and one short trip really isn’t enough. I will definitely be back for more adventures 🙂