Archive for January, 2012

A quick stop before the infamous Chocolate Hills in Carmen is the town of Bilar known for its own Bilar Manmade Forest.  It is said that the manmade forest is planted by Boy Scouts as part of their activities several decades ago.  Today, one can have a feel of an actual rainforest while passing through the trail of dense tropical foliage.

The thick trees amazingly look to be of the same height and the canopy of mahogany trees almost completely blocking the sun is creating a murky and cool sensation in this two-kilometer stretch of thick towering trees.

Tourists can take photos posing at the middle of the road but don’t get too excited.  It’s still a main road and speeding vehicles pass by.  There is no parking space so vehicle owners should be mindful in parking so as not to block part of the road and cause accident.

Since the site has achieved a more natural feature, the wildlife has also returned.  Nowadays, there are reported sightings of species of birds and if you’re lucky enough, you may catch sight of a bird or two from some rare breed.

Read Full Post »

I have been to Valencia many times before for several years.  But only two years ago, I was able to visit Casaroro Falls.  Ten kilometers west of Dumaguete City (Negros Oriental, Philippines), lies the magnificent Casaroro Falls considered being the most photographed waterfall in Negros province.  Despite steep trails, still many people dare to go and behold the incredible Casaroro crowned jewel.  The Casaroro Falls is a 30-minute ride from the “The City of Gentle People”, Dumaguete.  Getting there is a ride worth of excitement, quest and remarkable nature expedition.

We took a private van.  Another option would be to take a multi cab or jeep from Dumaguete City for less than 20Php then ask the driver to be dropped in central Valencia.  From there, take another 20-minute ride by means of “habal-habal”, a motorcycle turned public transport, along the mountain.  Then, begin the hike.

The Casaroro Falls is a natural attraction hidden in the town of Valencia in Negros Oriental, Philippines.  It is considered to be the most photographed waterfalls in the entire Negros Province.  Casaroro Falls is lodged deep into the rock crevices of the rugged Valencia mountains.  This falls has a narrow opening cascade with an astounding height of 100 feet.

Casaroro’s pristine waters plunge straight into a deep cold basin before it falls down to a stream.  This makes the waters drop heavily and causes a massive growl to resonate all over the place. The roaring sound that the water makes as it thrusts sounds like nature’s therapy creates a surreal sentiment to every sightseer’s soul.  Around the basin are enormous boulders enough to rest one’s tired feet.

Tourists and adventure-seekers that dare see this wonder must trek a 300-something step concrete stairs that lazes in a steep gorge.  And can you imagine? I did took the challenge!  It was very exhausting.  I feel like I lost a few pounds.  But when you reach the bottom, you’ll surely find zen and serenity.  Nature lovers who wish to seek tranquil moments would definitely enjoy the surrounding highlights. All of the efforts and back pains in getting through the relentless terrain of rocky heap has truly paid off.

Read Full Post »

Few kilometers from Loboc is the town of Sevilla (Bohol, Philippines) where tourists can experience The Hanging Bridge.  The original structure of this bridge is made of intertwined bamboo slats and rope (no steel cables yet).  Locals used to cross this bridge to get to the other side as an everyday means of access.  Today, another bridge is constructed so you cross on one and back on the other.

Furthermore, the rope is now replaced with steel cables to make sure tourists are safe.  In the early days, there is only one very old interwoven bridge (one on the right) that even motorcycles get through as an everyday route.  The old bridge is the only bridge to get to and from the other side but since it has become one of the tourist attraction, they made another bridge to get back to the main road.

Ten pesos entrance fee is charge to cross the bridge.  People are shoving around to line up to ramble the bridge. The bridge extends around 40 meters and has a magnificent view of the river below.

On the other side of the bridge you will find a small shop selling souvenirs and goodies.  You can also come across “Buko King” who is featured in the country’s local TV station.  He can shred a coconut (buko) with his bare teeth.  The fresh buko juice is sold for 25Php.

Walking all the way through the bridge is a little daunting at first as the bamboo deck sways up & down and slightly contracts under your feet.  It makes you sense a little scratchy as it bends and swings further more than usual but that’s the entire point.  It is part of the Bohol experience.

Read Full Post »

Sometime last year, my family went to the newly opened Bohol Rally Go Kart at Tipolo, Bolod, Panglao.  It is on the east side of Panglao Island in the province of Bohol.  One can take a private car or van to get to it.  They have a 400-meter dirt track that you can race with your family and friends.  Owned by Mr. Chan, Bohol Rally Go Kart has been fully operational for a year now.  You can then experience the newest exhilarating ride with the off-road rally go karts in Bohol from Monday to Sunday 9am to 5pm.  They can be reached through mobile phone number 09177000821 for group bookings and reservations.

Today, I believe they are planning to have night go-kart race so adventurers will not be burnt by the scorching heat of the sun (You know, installing some lamp posts).  My family went there at noon time and it was a torment. I got sunburns.  I recommend that you apply some sun block to protect your skin and eyes. Nonetheless, we enjoy the race.  I just a tough time maneuvering the kart because it was too big for me (coz I’m petite).

And look! We brought Stick-O!  It’s a chocolate snack.  I feel like we’re endorsing the product (we’re not).  My brother always brings a snack whenever we go for a trip.

The helmet is a little big for my head that it covers my eyes every time I bash from the ride.

Capturing the action during the race.  You can see our competitive sly faces.

My sister is a natural.

My dad looks funny in a small go-kart with a competitive face. 🙂 

This year, I haven’t visited the place yet but I’ve heard they made some improvements to boost the safety of the tourists and enhance the attraction for the visitors to feel the perfect Bohol experience.

Read Full Post »

Loboc, Bohol in the Philippines
The Floating Restaurant and River Cruise

The Loboc Church

The Bell Tower

The Loboc Museum

Loboc Children’s Choir (Shanghai)

website: http://www.lobocchildrenschoir.net/

The Loboc Children’s Choir is a group of local kids who sang beautifully in many different countries across the globe.  Once these kids grew to become teenagers and adults, they audition and train another set of local children to represent the choir.

The infamous smallest primate endemic in Bohol (Philippines), Tarsier

Horseback Riding in Gotozan, Loboc

The Horseback Riding at Gotozan, Loboc is a new tourist activity.  Trails have been established thru verdant rolling terrain, up steep slopes and under mango orchards, among others. It is an exhilarating activity and more thrilling when done at night.

source: http://www.bohol-philippines.com/loboc-tourist-attractions.html

Zoocolate Thrills

source: http://www.discoverbohol.com/bsp/2011/0529-11/ZooColate-0529-11.htm

Loboc Eco-Adventure Park

For more info

Read Full Post »

Coconut bulb

During New Year’s Eve, we never failed to prepare for the Noche Buena.  One of the dishes we prepare is “biko”.  It is a traditional Filipino rice cake with caramel toppings. Coconut milk is one of the ingredients to cook “biko”.  So we opened the hard shell husk.  I was amazed to see the old coconut with a huge bulb inside.  We call it “botbot” in Bohol.  This means that the coconut is in the process of growing into a new plant.  I often see coconuts with tiny bulbs but this.  We used to eat botbot when I was young.  Biko’s recipe.

Read Full Post »


Twenty five kilometers from the capital city of Tagbilaran (Bohol, Philippines) is a little town named Loboc where the Loboc River and the Floating Restaurant is famous of it.  In Loboc, there are tons of activities that you can do.  You can listen to the Loboc Children’s Choir, encounter the tarsiers and priceless artifacts at The Loboc Museum, try the zipline and cable car at Loboc Eco Adventure Park and get to meet animals in Zoocolate Thrills in which I will feature one by one in my blog soon.

Tourists enjoy the all-you-can-eat buffet meal in the floating restaurant that goes upstream while local singers are serenading live. (The floating restaurant is 400Php including the municipal government tax) You can also stop and watch li’l kids and adults sing and dance to the tune of Filipino folk dances by the riverbank.  And be amazed how kids leap from tall coconut trees to plunge into the water.

While feasting and enjoying the surreal green landscape, it travels upstream and ends at Busay Falls, a small waterfall then make its way back to the dock.  Some tourists take a dip here (that is if they will take the motorized banca).

The town also offers Night River Cruise as they install lightings all over the place.

Read Full Post »