Bohol Travel Advisory

Bohol Travel Advisory

Bohol, the most beautiful province in the Philippines according to my list, recently had an earthquake. It’s heartbreaking to see heritage churches and houses crumble and people displaced.

But that was last week.

It’s also heartwarming to read the development of how many people reached out.. its obvious that many people love Bohol. I do hope other provinces stricken by typhoon and other casualties received the same treatment.

As of to date, tourism specially in Panglao is operational and travelers are very much welcome. And I quote this from an active newscaster in Bohol Michael Ortega Ligalig:

“PHILIPPINE TRAVEL ADVISORY from an earthquake analyst from Sweden: “I don’t understand why tourists are cancelling their trips to Bohol. Bohol is one of the safest places on earth right now. If you want to avoid earthquakes, you go to Bohol. Another earthquake of similar magnitude which hit Bohol on Oct. 15, 2013 is not likely to happen again here in 50 or 100 years. Not during my lifetime.” Excerpts from my Oct. 24 conversation with Gabriel Wallgreen, a Swedish proprietor of Sofia Pizzeria located at City Square in Tagbilaran City. After the earthquake, I find unadulterated solace and solitude at Sofia Pizzeria (which serves excellent Italian Pizza and opens 24 hours) where I write my newspaper articles and do my research on earthquake-related topics. ”

 

 

 

This is a decent picture of me last 2008 in the crystal clear waters of Bohol.. All my recent pictures in Bohol has been crap xD

I was not there during the times of calamity but I was actively online, I felt helpless at some point but it’s also a breather to not be on the front line.. so I can observe the bayanihan unfolding..  warms my heart really.

For those still wanting to help out, please have a peep at grasya.org to look for individuals or groups to connect with.

Cafe Lawis: Coffee Shop in Bohol

Cafe Lawis: Coffee Shop in Bohol

 

You can check this out on what to do in Bohol other than the beach, chocolate hills, and tarsier.

This traditionally looking posh coffee shop offers free WIFI and delicious breakfast combo worth less than a hundred pesos every sunday.

So after you go to church at Our Lady of Assumption Church in Dauis, you may want to have your tummy filled and caffeine fix here ^_^

It’s one of the nicest coffee shops I’ve been in Bohol without breaking much of my budget so it deserves to be on the spotlight. Plus the ambiance is very nice too.. its an old building so you’ll get a feel of age-old structures without the moo moo :P

How to get to Cafe Lawis? From Tagbilaran, ride a habal habal or tricycle and tell the driver to drop you off at Cafe Lawis beside the church in Dauis. Fare is around 20 pesos.Here’s sample of their menu:

Espresso: 45 pesos

Americano: 45 pesos

Latte: 65 pesos

Cappuccino: 65 pesos

If Bohol is a Famous Paradise, Antique is a Hidden Gem

If Bohol is a Famous Paradise, Antique is a Hidden Gem

Since I came back to the Philippines, I’ve been spending more time in these 2 provinces. I dont just travel but I stay longer to know a place and its culture before saying that I’ve truly been there.

I just cant help but wonder why both are located in Visayas yet one has more tourists than the other. I haven’t explored the whole of Antique yet but my research online got me really giddy to discover more of this hidden gem.

Both have beautiful mini islands that have white sands. Bohol has Virgin Island, Pamilacan Island, Balicasag and Panglao… Virgin Island is one of my favorite:


 

Antique, on the other hand, has Sibato Island in Caluya.. and I’m sure there are other prettier smaller islands in the area, I just have to explore and see them for myself.


**photo credit to Emie Princess Malutao

Both islands showcase waters like a flowing river. Here’s me in a river somewhere in Bohol with handsome Greek, German and Pinoy Beckies :))


**photo credit goes to Jude Dionela Sanchez

While Pandan, Antique has got the country’s cleanest river which is called Bugang River.

 

 

And you think Antique or Siquijor only have this so called witchcraft activities? You havent explored La Manok Island in Bohol yet :D

 

 

In both places, you can eat exotic foods. This is expensive in other parts of the world but just befriend fishermen in Panglao, and you can have your sea urchin overload ;)


If you are in Antique, try to eat frogs.. my niece looked at me like weird and asked- “you havent tried frogs before?” I look at her and flashed that weird look back.. and asked- “you eat frogs like chicken here?”


Both places have exotic animals. If Bohol has the smallest monkey called tarsier, Antique has this monitor lizard:


Photo credit to C.M. Gaulke
well… its not supposed to bring you amusement :))) but I just want you to know it’s an endangered specie.. and it’s vegetarian.. if that will make you less scared ;)

Ok, if you want amusement, I have found white carabaos in the mountains of Antique as equally cute too! :))

Antique is home to many endangered species like the spotted deer, writhed-billed hornbill. I haven’t seen these species yet but will make the effort to see them before they become extinct! More details here.

And lastly, if Bohol is widely known for the Chocolate Hills..


Antique’s mountains is home to the world’s largest flower called Rafflesia.


**photo credit to Bianca Ramos

and of course, I cant wait to go back to the hotspring beside the sea in Anini-y:


In the end, I think both cannot be compared because both province showcase different beauties. Bohol is a famous paradise and Antique is a hidden gem. Now you as a traveler, it is really up to you to take your pick ^_^

As for me, I’ll be staying in Antique for a bit longer to explore more of the hidden gems the province has to offer. Feel free to message me if you want to go to this province.

Thank you to all the photos shared by Antikenyo Takun and It’s More fun in Antique Page ^_^

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This is my 3rd entry to the Pinoy Travel Blogger’s Carnival entitled “Visayas Roundup” hosted by Ding Fuellos of the Pinoy Explorer


The Pinoy Explorer - The Visayas Roundup


Pinoy Travel Bloggers Blog Carnival

 

Fiesta and Street Dance Parade in Panglao, Bohol

Once a year, communities in the Philippines celebrates Fiesta. This is also a great opportunity to visit houses of strangers and eat for free :D..

I was staying in a rural community in Panglao, Bohol for more than a month, and luckily had the chance to experience fiesta. Here’s me visiting my neighbor’s house for fiesta:

That is Dhora saying dont film her yet coz she needs to put make up first xD

Best part is almost all of my neighbors fed me for fiesta! I’m like house hopping for every meal! ^_^ The community where i’m staying in is not rich in terms of money, but they grew animals like chickens, goats, etc for consumption and since its a fishing community, the sea provides them generously. So you know, its not always about the money :P

The worrying part however, is that communities go on diet again afterwards.. Its like they save the whole year just for occasions like fiesta and christmas.

And here’s the most awesome part, the streetdance! I had goosebumps when I was taking the video:

I love the community where I stayed at.. I love Panglao Island..

And how I wish that everyday is a fiesta day! ^_^

Where can you go in the Philippines for P1000 pesos?

Where can you go in the Philippines for P1000 pesos?

I’m a backpacker and cheapskate by heart. If you notice I’ve dedicated a section for my budget travel tips and have been interviewing other travelers on how they have done it.. most of them are non bloggers so you can see how sincere and authentic my goal is to promote budget travel.

So since the Blog Carnival promotes Philippine tourism only, I’ll be limited to highlight some trips locally where I’ve spent more or less 1000 pesos.

Honestly, most of my trips in the country were possible because of my large family clan that is scattered from Zamboanga to Baguio.. From 1st cousins to 3rd cousins, I’ve visited them all! ^_^

But for those who have chosen their lives to be in solitude (actually, I’m seeing my future like that :P).. you can still travel around on a budget, even when you are alone.

Here are 2 recommended, tried and tested destinations where I spent around P1000 per trip:

Tagaytay. Please don’t be intimidated because it looks like a posh place. I actually stayed there for 6 months a few years ago, and I keep coming back because I’ve learned the secrets of going around the beautiful place without so much dent in your funds.. plus I’ve made lifetime friends there.. so there’s no reason not to come back. Of course there’s always more to explore, and I can’t wait to be back to Tagaytay again to rediscover the place and blog new discoveries.

Things to do in Tagaytay on a P1000 budget day trip:

1. Convent and church hopping. If Thailand is famous for its buddhist temples where you see them in every corner.. in Tagaytay, you’ll find numerous convents and seminaries… name it, sisters in pink, blue, white, etc.. there is no fee to visit. Any kind of donations are accepted but its not even required ;).. If you are non-catholic, its okay to visit.. I’m not a Buddhist either but I still marveled at the Buddhist temples. ^_^ Cost: Nada unless you’re giving a donation

2. People’s park. There’s a small fee that you pay but it’s worth walking to the top for a picnic or just lazing around after the walk. Once in Tagaytay, just ride the jeep to people’s park and you’re there. Cost: 15 pesos entrance + the worth of your picnic baon

3. Hike (or walk) to explore hidden parts of Tagaytay. Tagaytay temperature remains cold irregardless of the temperature in Manila. It’s a nice experience to walk in the cool temperature of Tagaytay and explore hidden hills, pineapple plantations, flower gardens that you will never know unless you go off the beaten path. Don’t be afraid to get lost, people there are friendly. ^_^ Cost: Depends on the deal with the tricycle driver on where you want to explore. If you try to find where Terra Moi is, it will cost you more or less P100 ^_^

4. Stare at Taal and let the poet awaken in you.. When I stayed in Tagaytay for a few months, I’ve created poems that sounds….. poetic :)) Cost: Nada except your time

The rest of the budget can then be spent on pasalubong to family and friends so you can give happiness to others too ^_^..

Now this does not include the fare going to Tagaytay because they vary depending on where you are coming from. More details at my original post here

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Bohol. I’m currently in Bohol for more or less 6 months. I’ve met many travelers who tells me Bohol is expensive.. so they skip it and head to Dumaguete instead where Harold’s Mansion costs only P250 which includes free breakfast, free WIFI, free bike, free aircon at night. If I dont have relatives here in Bohol, I’ll choose Dumaguete too :))

 


i love you Bohol


But… since its nice to share secrets, here’s what I suggest things to do in Bohol for around P1000 a day.

1. If you dont have relatives or friends in Bohol and no one is saving you on couchsurfing.. you can still save on accommodation by sleeping in the beach.. or you can bring your own tent and camp out too. Best scenery to do this is in Alona beach amidst posh hotels, this advice is tried and tested with a French couchsurfer harhar. Click here on how to go to Alona Beach Transpo Cost: P20 Accommodation Cost: P0

2. Save on fare if you rent your own bike or motorbike. You can have the freedom to roam around the province at your own pace and you need not worry on bus schedules. Dont know how to ride a motorbike or bicycle? Befriend someone who knows how… or learn :D. Cost: P400-500 per day

3. Eat out at carinderias so you can save on food prices.You can also get to taste local foods without so much dent in your budget. And from my most recent discovery, there is a posh place that offers 50 pesos only for breakfast. Posh place for a budget meal! Isn’t that awesome?

That’s in Cafe Lawis near Dauis Church but the 50 pesos meal is available only on Sunday from 7am-10am.
Cost: P30-50 per meal, P90-150 per day.

The rest of the budget can then go to your miscellaneous expenses like pasalubong so you can give happiness to people around you too. ^_^

Again, I did not include the fare to get to Bohol because it depends on where are you coming from and what mode of transportation you’ll be taking.. of course I’ll always recommend to get the discounted fare ^_^

As I’ve said, i’ve dedicated a section here exclusively for budget tips. You can also ask me what info you need in these places and I’ll try my best to answer them.. if not, I’ll ask someone to answer them :D… just to pursue the goal that travel need not be expensive. ^_^


This is my 2nd entry for Pinoy Travel Bloggers’ Blog Carnival
for the month of August.
The theme for this month is ‘Where Would You Travel Given a P1,000 Budget
hosted by Cris Reyes a.k.a. PinayThrillseeker.