A Travellerspoint blog

Cebu & Bohol, The Philippines

The Philippines


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Jacky and I travelled together to Bohol on the boat. We had a local come and sit next to us with a load of roosters in bags. They crowed throughout the whole journey, it was funny at first but got a bit annoying. It was weird looking at their little heads and tail poking out the sides of the wicker bags. We were tempted to release the birds when the man walked away as we knew he was going to subject them to Cock Fighting - a local sport where the cockerels often with blades taped to their feet fight each other to the death. What a horrible thing to subject an animal to! Imagine the mayhem on the boat if we released them haha!

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We passed some beautiful sites on the way to Bohol. We saw these hills with a cross in the middle covered with a rainbow. It looked like the whole island was a rainbow coloured holy ground! Incredible.

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We soon arrived in Bohol and we had to get on a bus to get to our hostel.
One thing that did struck me was the poverty. Lots of children begging for money, dressed in dirty rags that were too big for them, local people offering to lift your backpack on top of the bus for cash. It was really sad to see.

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It took us about an hour to get on a bus with enough room for the both of us and our luggage. You really had to squish on and if you didn't actually have space for your bum to sit down, that was too bad. People piled into them, clung to the back outside the vehicle and were still expected to pay. It was mad.

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We stayed at this quaint hotel in Bohol that overlooked the river. The owners were so friendly and accommodating but the mosquitoes were a bit of a nightmare. We booked a tour to go to the Chocolate Hills and Tarsier Sanctuary for the next day.

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The tuk tuk driver took us through the Man Made Forest to Carmen to see the, well, not so chocolatey hills. Apparently they had a lot of rain this year so the hills were very green but beautiful never-the-less. We had to walk up this big hill to get to the lookout point as the tuk tuk was quite old, it wouldn't be able to get up there. It was so serene looking over the rolling chocolate hills of Carmen.

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After we stopped by the Tarsier Sanctuary to see the tiny little monkeys with oversized weird frog like hands. Their little eyes were so big for their tiny bodies. They were like the little fingerlings toys that kids have. I thought they looked a bit sad. It must be frustrating having all these cameras taking pictures of you all day every day while you're trying to nap. They were so adroable!!

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We also went to explore the town. We stuck out like a sore thumb being two blondes walking around and got a lot of unwanted attention. We managed to find a pub to get some drinks.

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We got the bus to Cebu the next day to swim with the whale sharks. We didn't have a seat for like 2 hours of the 5 hour bus trip. We joked around about paying less and the locals thought we were being really funny. They were watching some strange Chinese show on a small TV at the front of the bus which was a bit like Tekeshi's Castle but worse. Every time we stopped local people would get on the bus trying to sell food and all sorts to the other passengers. They would get off at the next stop and then another vendor would get on and do the same thing, what a way to make a living! The driver was really harsh on the breaks and everyone went flying whenever he slowed to go round a bend or stop. It was a long but interesting journey and it was great to see lots of the country. One thing that struck me as being so different was the cemeteries. They had lines and lines of caskets in drawers surrounded by candles. It was a bit eerie and nothing like what we have at home.

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When we finally arrived in Oslob Cebu, we told the driver the name of our hotel. Everyone on our bus became Christopher Columbus and tried to help us locate it. But when we got off the bus we were lost. We walked up and down the street and accidently into someone's garden trying to follow Google Maps. They were having a family meal in their garden and their dogs were going garrety. They were super helpful and used their phones to help us locate the hotel. The guy who owned the house got in his tuk tuk and drove us there! Bless him.

I loved The Oslob Garden Stay Beach Resort where we stayed. The staff were so friendly, offered us food and drinks at stupid o'clock when we arrived and even provided massages overlooking the sea in the garden. There was a beautiful door in the garden that led to steps that went straight down into the sea. It was truly paradise!

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The next day we went to swim with the whale sharks! There was a talk before we went out on the boat informing us about the whale sharks, what to look out for, told to stay away at least 5 meters from them and to watch the tail! You weren't allowed to wear sun cream because the chemicals are dangerous to them. We locked our stuff away in lockers and got into life jackets and went out on the boat to the sea. It was a bit stormy and the sea was a bit rough at times. I leaned over to look for the whale sharks and my prescription sunglasses slipped off my face and into the sea. I was so gutted I didn't catch them in time, it was like slow motion watching them sink down but the water was too rough to get in at that point. I didn't want to get hit by the boat in the waves. I could just picture the whale sharks trying them on at the bottom of the sea lol.

When the sea calmed a bit and the tour guides chucked food into the sea, whale sharks soon put in an appearance. They were magnificent creatures! Huge, spotty and majestic! They didn't have teeth and their mouths were massive and gummy lol.
Jacky and I took our life jackets off as we were confident swimmers and swam next to the whales. It was truly the best experience of my life!

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The next day we travelled back to Cebu city and spent our last night together there before I went to the airport to fly back to Manila the next day for 2 nights before flying on to Japan. I was gutted to leave Jacky, she was such a babe and my partner in crime.

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Posted by Travel__Tease 01:29 Archived in Philippines Tagged boats beach philippines cebu bohol tarsiers whale_sharks Comments (0)

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