Home to one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the famous Chocolate Hills, Bohol is one of the best islands of the Philippines' 7,000++ islands to visit.
Whether you're a Filipino looking for more fun in the Philippines or a tourist from abroad, there are plenty of fun and exciting things to do in Bohol.
Hiking the 214 steps to the top of the observation hill for an overlooking and breathtaking view of the wondrous Chocolate Hills is one, of course. Here are 11 more things to do in Bohol if you want a memorable trip:
1. Watch the mesmerizing sunrise in Alona Beach
Not an early riser? It's time to get up from bed anyway, sleepy head. You're in Bohol to have fun and not sleep, remember? So rise and shine, go to the beach and start your day right with a sunrise view in Alona Beach, Panglao Island.
Other than good coffee and maybe some early morning hot sex, nothing starts a day right than a beautiful sunrise. Trust me.
2. Dolphin watching as God intended
Why go to Sea World when you can enjoy dolphin watching as God intended right in beautiful Bohol? You probably won't get as close to the dolphins. You'll definitely never be able to touch them. But that's okay. Dolphins are meant to swim wild and free in the vastness of the ocean, not as poor captives in some theme park.
Pro Tip! If you want a memorable dolphin watching experience, make sure you go out with your "bangkero" early. Right after the sunrise watching is ideal. Dolphins in Panglao are early risers too. You'll see more dolphins between 6:30AM to 8AM, at least according to my experience.
3. ATV ride in Chocolate Hills
Want to get up close and personal with the chocolate hills? Then you'll want to sign up for the ATV Eco-Adventure Tour. It will cost you as opposed to the free hike to the observation hill but it's also going to be hella fun. You'll be riding through mud and you get to take close-up pictures of some of the 1260+ hills including the Three Sisters Hill and the Eight Sisters Hill.
Rates are as follow:
- ATV: Php 450 – 30 minutes; Php 850 – 1 hour
- Buggy: Php 850 – 30 minutes; Php 1500 – 1 hour
- ATV Back Ride: Php 250/per head
4. Massage by the beach or at Chocolate Hills
Tired after the eco-tour or the hike to the top of observation hill? No problem. There are blind masseurs in the area. You can enjoy a good back massage for only Php 50. You also get to help them earn their keep for the day.
If you'd rather want a full body massage where you're lying down while listening to the therapeutic beach waves, a beach massage at a fair price of Php 350 in Alona Beach is what you need.
5. Swimming in Hinagdanan Cave
If you booked a tour, one of the things to do in Bohol as part of your itinerary is a visit to the Hinagdanan Cave, a naturally lighted cave with an underground lake. It's a short tour where you get to see stalactites and stalagmites as well as some ancient writing on the wall. But that's about it. If you want a little more fun, I'd recommend a short swim on the underground lake. Entrance fee is Php 50 inclusive of the swimming.
Just a word of caution: The lake may have high levels of pollutants because of ground runoff. Ask your tour guide if it's safe to swim.
6. Run through the Bamboo Hanging Bridge
Why walk when you can run? So long as you're not scaring other people walking through the hanging bridge, have a little more fun by running your way from one end to the other.
7. Loboc river cruise
I'm not a big fan of their food. Buffet set-up, adequate food but nothing special. In any case, I'd still recommend the Loboc river cruise if only for the experience of dining while cruising a calm emerald river. You'll have some live music while you dine. You can and you should sing along with the singer for a little more fun.
More fun awaits once you get to the Aeta village. You get to see and touch exotic animals (like some did), play the drums (like what my friend did) with one of the aetas if you're up to it, try the bow and arrow (like a couple of people did) or just take pictures or videos (like what I did).
8. Try Bee Farm's famous malunggay ice cream
Love ice cream but you've been trying to cut down because it's not really healthy? Screw that! Bee Farm's famous malunggay ice cream is a must try. Considering there's malunggay in there, it should be healthy, right? The ginger-flavored ice cream is a winner too. The ginger taste is distinct and a little strong but I, for one, love the extra spicy kick.
9. Snorkeling in Balicasag Island
I'm no expert snorklist (is that a word?). Or maybe it's snorkeler? Aah, who cares?! But one thing I can tell you, Balicasag Island is a beautiful island to snorkel. It's probably one of the best islands for snorkeling in the Philippines if I say so myself. There are plenty of fishes and what else to see below. You could spend hours exploring and you may never get enough. If you're lucky, you may see a sea turtle swimming around.
10. Tricycle ride but on the roof
One of the most fun things to do in Bohol, at least for me, is to ride a tricycle but on the top. As in, sit on the roof of the tricycle. Top ride is what the tricycle driver called it. We paid Php 200 for the one-way trip to Doljo, Panglao Island where the sunset view is unobstructed. It was so much fun, I tell you. Not as exhilarating or death-defying as bungee jumping or sky diving, but fun nonetheless.
11. Sunset in Doljo, Panglao
If I have to pick between sunrises and sunsets, I wouldn't be able to. But If I really have to pick one, sunset it is. I'm rarely an early-riser so I see more sunsets than sunrises. The one that we saw at Doljo, Panglao Island was a nice way to cap off a good day. The extra tricycle ride and the long Muro-Ami beach walk to the far end side of Doljo was worth it.
I went to Bohol with some friends around February 2016. The area in Doljo where you get to see the sunset in all its glory wasn't developed yet. According to the guards in charge, some hotel or private development of sorts will erect there by May of the same year. You probably won't be able to go all the way to end of the island anymore. Sorry about that.
3 Bonus Things to Do in Bohol:
- Other than the usual Peanut Kisses, you can buy Cay Cay from Jojie's for pasalubong.
- If you want cheap souvenirs, beside the Blood Compact Shrine is where to shop.
- Did you know that you can enjoy a sunset view in Chocolate Hills? If you love sunsets as much as I do, you can arrange it with your tour guide and add it to your list of fun things to do in Bohol.