Ever since I was a kid, I remember my family always going somewhere for a short vacation. We’ve been to the North, particularly Baguio, almost on a yearly basis. It has been almost like a tradition for our family to go out for short vacations. Now that airline tickets are more affordable, and there a lot of hotel deals, travel for me and my family has been super easy and fun. Also, the gadgets now are definitely better for storing memories 🙂 My parents are my biggest influence when it comes to traveling. And I’m happy that they have been very supportive. We have been to a lot of places already (saved for another post), and last May, we went local – Cebu and Bohol. 🙂
I’ve been to both provinces a few years back, and I loved both of my experiences. This is the first time I’m actually going with my family so I am more than happy to be the tour guide. 🙂
Back in February, AirPhil had a summer promo and we were able to book 5 tickets to Cebu for around php5000. A few weeks later, we got good hotel deals courtesy of Agoda. Aside from Agoda, I was also looking for deals with Hotels.com but Hotels.com offered fewer hotels for the dates that we need. Anyway, later I’ll share the two hotels that we stayed at.
Our flight left Manila at around 8 in the morning, arrived Cebu an hour later. The plan was to go directly to the port, get to the earliest ferry out of Cebu and arrive Bohol after lunch. Unfortunately, we arrived a few minutes late, as the ferry left at around 10AM and the next trip was at 1PM. It was a good thing that we did not purchase our ferry tickets in advance, or else we would have had big problems rebooking and stuffy. So we bought the 1PM tickets, and went to SM Cebu for lunch.
At the port are many vans or hire so it is not going to be an issue to look for transportation to the hotel and the many tourist spots in Bohol.
Before going to our hotel, we first visited Baclayon Church. It is famous because of the figure on the outside wall of the church (as seen in the picture above). We also dropped by the biggest python, not sure if in Bohol, or the Philippines where my father had his picture taken – brave man! One of the most fun was going to the Hinagdan Cave. Before, you go inside and somebody is there to assist you since it’s too dark and slippery. Now, they have the town’s teenage boys assist you, do a tour, crack up some jokes and even fix your camera’s setting so you can have great pictures!
Last stop before going back to the hotel was the Bohol Bee Farm. My favorite part here was their homemade ice cream and cones. Absolutely loved it.
The hotel we stayed at is called l ‘elephant bleu cottages and rooms. The place looks fairly new, and it is clean. They have free wifi and the rooms are spacious enough. The hotel we got for around php3000 for 2 rooms. If you’re traveling just like us who just need a place for things and to stay for a night, then you might want to consider staying here.
For dinner, we tried the hotel’s restaurant which is just across the street. They mostly serve american food and a bit pricey, but their burgers are good!
The next day, we woke up to the sound of thunder and rain. I thought that we may not be able to go to the spots we were supposed to go, but after about 30 minutes, the rain stopped, and the sun started smiling once more. Btw, the hotel offers freshly-baked bread in the morning, so before checking out, we bought bread to eat on the road.
Favorite stop: Chocolate Hills! The first time I was in Bohol, I was in awe at this natural wonder. I felt so happy to finally see how it looks in real-life, as I only saw them before in textbooks and postcards. The reason for the name is because during the rain season, the hills look like they are really made of cholocate, brown instead of green. When I was young, I have always wanted to go here to ‘taste’ the chocolate, hahaha. I really hope that more kids (like me!) get to see this natural beauty and I hope that the local government does its best in taking care of this treasure.
Our actual first stop was to see the tarsiers. They’re all super cute! According to the guide, the reason for them being endangered is because they seldom give birth and because of their size, the baby sometimes get eaten..
The Hanging Bridge. Scary and fun at the same time. On my first time, there was only 1 bridge. But now, they built another one, so there is more room for everyone! hehehe
Another favorite of mine is Bohol’s Man-Made Forest. They planted those trees 15-20 years ago and it’s great!! I hope a lot of local towns and governments do the same.
We skipped the Loboc River cruise since I found it too expensive, especially for the food that they serve. Or maybe we just cruised with the wrong floating restaurant. Anyway, we had our lunch at a restaurant near the port and was back in Cebu 2 hours later.
Part 2: Cebu