Why did I come to Bohol? I could have gone to Boracay for the white sandy beaches, or Palawan for the unspoilt nature. However, we chose Bohol, because I wanted to meet the smallest primate in the world and Will wanted a piece of the Chocolate Hills.
We stayed in the main city (town) Taglibaran for the first two days, an easier gateway to the attractions of the island and convenient for dining options. We stayed in Darunday Manor, a small budget accommodation right in the city centre, and hired a tricycle to take us around.
Remember that Jeepneys ruled the road of Cebu? Well, tricycles rule the roads of Bohol. These efficient little machines may not run fast, but are a cheap way to get around. Poor thing struggled to take us up the many hills in Bohol though!
Taglibaran is nothing special. When I say this I mean that the average tourist would find it rather boring. There are no extravagant monuments, no extra-special landmarks, and no major historical significance. It does however, have its friendly residents, tricycles with spirits of adventure and a local fishing community that sells at the morning harbourside market everyday.
But I am here for the Tasiers. These are the smallest primate in the world, and are only about the size of an adult’s fist. Don’t be fooled with its big puss-in-boots eyes and the small furry body, at night, they are vicious hunters of bugs and can leap from tree to tree in matters of seconds during its hunt.
Currently endangered, the privately owned Sanctuary give visitors a chance to view them up close while they are less active during the day.
A couple more kilometers up the road from the Tasiers Sanctuary is the viewing point for the Chocolate Hills. So called because when the grass on the hills turn brown during autumn, they look like piles of chocolate buttons. These hills are made up of seabed deposits before Bohol was even an island, and have since been the poster shot, along with the Tasiers, for Bohol tourism.
Our second half of our Bohol journey we decided to stay in a small resort in the equally small town of Dimiao, a little under an hour’s drive from Taglibaran. Kaylaa’s Resort has a heart warming story which will come in a later post, but it was our chance to unwind and relax by the seaside, while still being able to head into Dimiao for some market food during the day.
This area of Bohol is breathtakingly stunning. While it may not have the white sandy beaches that tourists crave, it has the rustic country charm with equally friendly personalities. It is where farmers bend double in the rice fields surrounded by coconut palms, small shop owners sit at their doorstep greeting passers by and the central markets are filled with bargaining activities. There are no big resorts with an air of pretense nor the greedy tricksters of the big cities.
Bohol had been the highlight of our trip, and is especially in need of assistance since the earthquake of October 2013. Evidence of damage are seen everywhere, but do visit. It is worth your while.