July marks the celebration of the Sandugo or blood compact held in Bohol to signify the treaty of friendship between the locals and Spaniards. The site of this historic event in Tagbilaran City is a popular stop for tourists. Other attractions that draw travelers to Bohol include the tarsier, the smallest mammal in the world, and the Chocolate Hills, which are part of the UNESCO World Heritage List.
In addition to these well-known sites, several other localities in Bohol also offer one-of-a-kind sights and experiences that give visitors the whole range of what Bohol has to offer. Whether you’re a Bohol virgin or a returning vacationer, here are 10 destinations to discover, and where to stay in each locale.
Also known as The City of Friendship, Tagbilaran City is the gateway to the scenic island of Bohol. The city is busiest this month, as most of the activities for the Sandugo Festival will be held in the city proper. Tourists and locals visit the commemorative shrine in Brgy. Bool to pay homage to this historic event. If you want to be close to the festivities, malls, and stores, Tagbilaran is the place to stay; try Bohol Tropics Resort, The Metrocentre Hotel & Convention Center, or Vest Pension House.
See Bohol Tropics Resort
or The Metrocentre Hotel & Convention Center's
Panglao is home to world class dive spots and beautiful beaches. Alona Beach attracts tourists and dive enthusiasts with its crystal clear waters and expansive coral floors perfect for snorkeling and diving. If you’re en route to Panglao, try Panglao Island Nature Resort and Spa, Bohol Beach Club, or Alona Kew White Beach Resort. A unique attraction to visit is the Bohol Bee Farm, a quaint resort with extensive facilities for cultivating bees.
See Panglao Island Nature Resort
, Bohol Beach Club
, or Alona Kew White Beach Resort's
Tours to Bohol often include a trip down the famous Loboc River. Lazily drifting on the surface of the placid river are floating restaurants ready to welcome diners onboard for a lunch or dinner cruise. Each vessel can take on around 50 passengers, including an in-house band that serenades guests while they dine alfresco on the river. Visitors based in Loboc can stay at Loboc River Resort and Nipa Hut Village.
The largest river in Bohol can be found in the town of Inabanga, about 71 kilometers from Tagbilaran City. The riverbanks hold the entrance to the Macaban Cave, an underwater cave with an astounding view that is said to be the dwelling place of supernatural beings or engkantos. The Inabanga Nature Park and Fishing Village has a popular restaurant that serves fresh seafood and native delicacies to both tourists and local patrons.
Carmen is best known for the landmark Chocolate Hills, which stretch from here to the towns of Batuan and Sagbayan. The unique land formation has become a must-visit stopover for those visiting Bohol for the first time. Sagbayan Peak, a mini-park with an in-house restaurant, offers a panoramic view of the hills from an elevated ridge. Should you decide to spend the night near these natural wonders, you can try either Banlasan Lodge or Villa Luisa Bed and Breakfast.
See Banlasan Lodge
or Villa Luisa Bed and Breakfast
's directory listing.
Danao’s main attraction is the the Danao Adventure Park, which boasts the longest and tallest zipline in the country. Other activities that add to Danao’s appeal as an adventure destination include wall climbing, sky riding, river trekking, and rock climbing. The park also offers reasonably priced accommodations.
The rural town of Corella, about 10 kilometers north of Tagbilaran City, is best known as home to the endemic Philippine Tarsier. The Philippine Tarsier Sanctuary, located in the lush forest bordering the towns of Corella and Sikatuna, is well maintained by the government in an effort to preserve the natural habitat of the territorial mammals that thrive in peaceful environments.
Pamilican Island is an isolated island in the heart of the Bohol Sea, within in the municipality of Baclayon. Aside from the usual beach and water activities vacationers, dolphin and whale watching are the main attractions here. The biodiverse environment invites divers to explore the local coral and marine life. Casa Villa Tourist Inn and HTS Lodge are located on the island itself.
Tourists can have a panoramic view of extensive mangrove plantations sprawled around the moist slopes and placid waters of the island in the city of Banacon. Intertwined bacauans that serve as home to small fish are cultivated in the Banacon Island Mangrove Forest. Aside from being a stunning site, the plantation also plays an important part in the ecosystem by serving as a filtration device that purifies the water.