Wednesday, August 3, 2011


My sister En and I are too close that we call ourselves as, most sisters do, "Wicked Sisters"... We almost have the same adventures in life and one of which was the 3-day trip in Bohol.

This was En's very first time to set foot in Bohol Island and so I decided to make it more memorable for her especially that her husband is left at home; Bohol should make her forget her husband for those days, so I thought.

As soon as we reached the hotel that morning, we requested our car driver and tour guide, at the same time, Kevin to bring us to Panglao Island, from Hinagdanan Cave to Bee Farm to Alona Kew beach front to Dauis Church. See photos above for more details.

The first leg of the tour started out at the Hinagdanan Cave. We were ushered by a local guide, who has in fact a cleft palate. It was challenging to comprehend his nasal-sounded intros, trivias or even punchlines, which he attempted several times. If it's your first time to deal with such infirm, you would be lost and oblivious. Luckily, En and I both have adequate backgrounds with these type of persons and so it was easy for us to  understand our dialogues. But still I have to repeat his sentences just to clarify, most especially the punchlines just to emphasize and accord the necessary laughs.

Bee Farm was next in line. I intended to give En the tour of a farm resort but we were stuck at the souvenir and grocery store within the farm licking the home-made ice cream; mine the durian, en's the avocado. As soon as our mouth emptied the cone made of cassava flour (in our hometown we call it "salbaro"), we signaled the driver to drive us to the next destination, actually the last destination of the day --- the Alona Kew Beach. This was my first time to reach the spot that everyone called the "little boracay". Maybe because of the prestine white, though just a short stretch, sand beach. Maybe due to assorted diners and/or bars arranged side by side along the shoreline, which I guess will really make you feel like you're in boracay when night fall.

Two-day tour is so full that we ended each day so exhausted. Well, before landing to our bed, En particularly enjoyed the chicken and pork barbeques (char-grilled) in Burgos Street, where we ate all our dinners.

On our second day, we did the Chocolate Hills tour which included the Tarsier Conservatory Farm, the Ship House, the Carmen Chocolate Hills, the Butterfly Farm, lunch at Loboc Floating Resto, Baclayon Church and Blood Compact. See more photos below for details.

The morning get-together with the tarsiers was the first activity. This was my first time to do tarsier-watching in the new conservatory where all privately owned tarsiers were confiscated, regulated and relocated to one area, now a tourist destination, in Loboc. Actually this one is better that the Corella sanctuary, firstly because the sleeping primates are easier to locate and the area is not much of a jungle for a hide and seek.

Man-made forest in Bilar was the second stop. This is the point in Bohol that I love most among others because it's cool in there and the community power of reforestation is very evident. Aside from that, given that we two are avid fans of Twilight saga (both the books and the movies), the place made us feel like we are one of the real-life twilight movie actors.

The stop at the Ship house was initially not part of the itinerary. However, since it is situated along the highway on our way up the Chocolate Hills, and that we heard and watched about it in tv, at Korina Sanchez's Rated K particularly, so we decided to take a peek. In there, we saw with our naked eyes the wonder of that house so reflective of the life and love and heart and profession of the owner. We climbed up the upper deck, the cabins, the captain's bar and suites and more...

But the greatest of them all was the amazing Chocolate Hills! It still and will always amaze me no matter how many times I laid my eyes on it, I mean them --- the almost uniformly sized hills resembling an inverted cones of smooth green-colored grasses (which turn brown during sunny days). En remarked "I finally am in the postcard!"

So I let En pose in any manner she can, funny or serious, to holler her amazement or wonderment or enjoyment she experienced upon setting her foot on the top of one hill surrounded by the picture-perfect array of thousand more hills. The beauteous site made us feel hungry, hungry for more, hungry for its counterpart "chocolate kisses" and of course hungry for food since it was near lunchtime.

We then drive down to Loboc to dine at the Loboc River cruise, the place where Cesar Montano's movie entitled Panaghoy sa Suba was filmed. We have a final stop at the Butterfly farm though before taking the buffet lunch at one of the floating restaurants. The butterfly farm stop was not much of an entertainment.

As we concluded our second day tour, we cannot afford to miss the Baclayon Church (but we forewent the museum) and the Blood Compact. En covered here shoulders with scarf as it is tabooed inside the church the wearing of provocative dresses, such as shorty shorts, sleeveless dresses; she then wore the sleeveless bangkok-made dress.

Our dinner that second nights was supposedly in Manga market to have some turo-turo (where you buy seafoods from the nearby wet market and have it cooked at the adjacent carenderia with recipes at your discretion) experience, but since we loved the barbeque along Burgos Street so we went back there for the second dinnertime.

All in all, our bohol trip may be expensive but it was worth it, I tell you.

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