We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Bohol info for first timers

Paranaque...
Level Contributor
763 posts
53 reviews
Save Topic
Bohol info for first timers

Unlike the more popular Boracay, there isn't as much info available online about Bohol. Here's what I learned in the course of planning my trip. Hope this helps you plan yours.

You will land in the Tagbilaran airport, however the beaches are in Panglao Island which is around 20-30 minutes from Tagbilaran. No ferries needed -- the islands are connected by a bridge. We had a car pick us up from the airport to go on a tour of the countryside, but for those who want to go straight to their resort, the rate is usually P 400/car from the Tagbilaran airport to Panglao.

ACCOMMODATIONS:

There are 2 popular areas in Panglao to stay -- Alona Beach and Dumaluan Beach. These 2 areas are about 15 minutes away from each other by car. Of course there are resorts on other beaches, but know that they are a bit isolated from other establishments. If you are the type that doesn't mind having all their meals at the resort, then Anda, Doljo, Dauis and other areas would be suitable too.

On Dumaluan Beach you have Bohol Beach Club & Dumaluan Beach Resort. I believe these 2 properties are separated by a public beach. We spent a day at Bohol Beach Club which is a huge resort with a long stretch of beach. The sand is fine, water is very clear & shallow even when you're meters away from the shore. However the whole time we were there, the waves were pretty strong and there was a lot of debris in the water. Stuff like twigs, leaves, even a banana tree trunk (I kid you not!). Maybe the debris was becuase it rained pretty hard in the morning, but whatever the reason, it wasn't much fun picking leaves and other non-marine vegetation out of the water while trying to swim.

We didn't see the rooms, but they have villa-type accommodations facing the beach which looked nice. They have big gardens and a pool so if you have kids, there's lots of space to run and play. If you end up staying in BBC, make sure to ask to stay in the new wing (I heard the rooms in the old wing are quite tired). Also, ask for the rooms that aren't near the public beach unless you want to hear really bad videoke singing 24/7 (we could hear it from the restaurant). The food was ok, and if you stay here, you will pretty much have all your meals at the resort as there is no other place to eat, aside from the nearby Dumaluan Beach Resort.

We stayed in Alona Tropical Beach Resort which is on Alona Beach. Alona Beach's shoreline is lined with many resorts, however we walked its whole length and found that only our resort and Alona Palm (most expensive place on the beach) beside it had a nice, wide, clean beach. The beach in front of the other places was too narrow (establishments built too close to the shore) and during hightide, their beach practically disappears. The sand was not clean and well maintained -- I wouldn't want to walk barefoot there! Also, the boats were right near the shore which didnt leave much room for swimming. Now I understood why, during my research, all these other places were vague whenever I asked about the quality of the beach in front of their property.

Thankfully, boats don't dock close to the shore in front of where we stayed, so there's always lots of space to swim. The water in Alona Beach is clear and the sand is fine as well. The water was just as shallow as BBC but calmer, and there seemed to be a bit more marine life.

The accommodations in Alona Tropical have either fan or a/c but both are very native in style -- ours had a/c but no fridge, no phone, no tv (but the suites and family rooms are better furnished). The regular rooms don't have running hot water, however, the suites do (they are newly renovated). The place has a pool with jacuzzi and the food they served us was very good.

COUNTRYSIDE TOUR:

On the day we arrived, we took a countryside day tour. Rather than be part of a larger group, we chose to hire a driver to take us around. He had an itinerary of the popular sights -- tarsier encounter, Chocolate Hills, manmade forest, lunch on a boat while cruising Loboc River, old churches, etc., but he was very flexible in case there were things we did/didnt want to do or see. Our tour lasted from around 8:30am to 6:00pm -- it's usually shorter, but there were many places (not on his itinerary) that we wanted to see. His rate was P1,800.00 all in.

Most of the places we visited didnt have entrance fees, although there was usually a box for donations. For those that had entry fees, it was never more than P 25/head. The Loboc River cruise charged P 250/head inclusive of buffet lunch and drinks. Except for the grilled fish, the lunch on this cruise was really bad, however there is more than one company that does these cruises, so maybe the other meals are better than the one we had.

DOLPHIN WATCHING/SNORKELING:

We were also supposed to go dolphin watching and snorkeling in Balicasag Island, but we cancelled because of the weather. The rate for this was P 1,500.00 and you have to get up at 5 or 6am to get any chance of seeing the dolphins. There seemed to be a steady stream of divers coming and going, but as I'm not a diver, I can't give any info on dive sites, etc.

PUBLIC TRANSPORT:

Public transport isn't plentiful on Panglao Island which is why there are many cars for hire. You can also ask the resort security guard to call a tricycle for you, which is what we did when we wanted to go to BBC (the rate was P 400 for drop off and pick up, a car would charge P500-600).

OTHERS:

- There are no ATMs on Panglao Island, so make sure to bring cash or stop by an ATM while on Tagbilaran.

- The tap water in most, if not all establishments on Alona Beach is a bit salty, which makes your soap & shampoo lather less, and your hair sticky. We solved this by buying lots of mineral water.

- There are internet cafes on Alona Beach

- If a resort along Alona Beach other than Alona Palm or Alona Tropical tells you they have a nice, wide beach, don't believe them!

quezon city
11 posts
Save Reply
1. Re: Bohol info for first timers

hi vanillabean!!!!!

i was waiting for your reviews on your bohol trip and it seems you gave a very detailed account on your stay.it would really help me and hubby when we visit bohol this february.

i was just wondering, if by chance you saw isis bungalows kasi thats where we will be staying for our trip.any comments?is it near alona tropical?are there any restaurants along alona beach if we wouldnt want to eat at our resort?and if the beachfront of isis is bad is it ok if we swim at alona tropiccal or its for their guests only?

regarding the dolphin watching,i know you cancelled but you might know,how many hours it is and if it comes with lunch kasi i've heard besides the dolphin watching there's island hoping i think?

hopw you could answer my questions it would be a great help.

kimpot

Paranaque...
Level Contributor
763 posts
53 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Bohol info for first timers

Hi! Yes, we saw Isis Bungalows, it's a small property (it seems bigger on the website), but it looks like one of the newer resorts on the beach. Alona Beach is just a short stretch (a lot shorter than Boracay's White Beach), so all the establishments aren't more than a 5-10 minute walk away from each other. Yes, non-guests are allowed to swim in front of the Alona Tropical & Alona Palm area -- I guess you will just not be able to use the lounge chairs.

There are many places to eat on Alona Beach. There was a restaurant near Isis called Trudis Place which seemed to be popular (I think because of the low prices), however we only had fruit shakes (which were quite good) there. We also had delicious pizza at a restaurant called Hayahay, but we really enjoyed the food at Alona Tropical, so we most of our meals there (there were many non-guests dining there as well).

I think the dolphin watching/island hopping runs until lunchtime, or as late as 3pm. Lunch wasn't included in the rate I was given, however I was told that you can ask your resort to prepare a packed lunch for you, or have lunch at the resort on Balicasag Island.

quezon city
11 posts
Save Reply
3. Re: Bohol info for first timers

hi vanilla bean!!!

thanks for answering my questions. i will defintely try the restaurants you told me about.

hope our trip would be as fun as yours was.

btw,could you give me da prices of alona tropical for its accomodations? would it be possible kaya to use their pool even if we didnt check in their resort kahit na magbayad kami?

and did you guys go pasalubong shopping?any recommendaions on where we could get good deals for paslubong shopping?

thanks again

kimpot

4. Re: Bohol info for first timers

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

TripAdvisor staff removed this post either because the author requested it, or because it did not meet TripAdvisor's forum guidelines.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 27 January 2007, 00:42
Taiwan
1 post
Save Reply
5. Re: Bohol info for first timers

thanks, vanilla bean. your tips will be quite helpful for us. my hubby and i plan to visit Bohol for few days. we're thinking of staying at the city side- Tagbilaran, then go by tricycles on day trips to Chocolate Hills, Loboc River, dolphin watch? do u think it will be convenient this way? or u have any suggestions? have u heard of Nuts Huts? wonder if it's a clean& safe place to stay?

Paranaque...
Level Contributor
763 posts
53 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Bohol info for first timers

Hi Sun,

While there are some attractions in Bohol that are close together, some are quite isolated, so I don't think I would recommend taking a tricycle on day trips. As mentioned, we hired a car, and even with no traffic, it took us the whole day to tour. Having said that, maybe someone from Bohol or someone who has done a tour in a tricycle can give more info.

I have heard of Nuts Huts, which is by the Loboc River, but since I didn't see the place, I can't give any opinions. I believe there's a review on this site which may help you. Where to stay really depends on what kind of environment you want to be in and what you want to do during your visit.

qc
Level Contributor
23 posts
19 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Bohol info for first timers

hi vanilla. were planning to visit bohol my friends wanted at panglao island but as ive read ur review i think of booking for dumaluan instead..i have my 14 months old baby and my hsbands friends will come with us so i am looking for a comfortable yet affordable resort for us..do u think at dumaluan beach is really ok? i fear my friends wont like the beach but as ive surf the site, for me its really inviting...and the tour, one posted cel # here in the forum i called and its more cheap than the hotel package rate,he doesnt sound lyk colorum..:) pls advise..i dont wna make r stay a disaster! thanks! Godbless!

Paranaque...
Level Contributor
763 posts
53 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Bohol info for first timers

Hi Greyzie,

I don't know if you mean that your friends want to stay at Panglao Island Nature Resort or Panglao Island in general. In case you meant the latter, I just want to clarify that Dumaluan is on Panglao Island.

The only resort I saw on Dumaluan beach was Bohol Beach Club -- we only visited for the day, so I can't give any info on accommodations. If I were to compare Alona & Dumaluan beach, I would say that Dumaluan is wider (esp. if you're staying at BBC) and has more "swimmable" areas than Alona beach. We were just lucky that the resort we stayed in at Alona had a great beach in front of it.

As for the tour, it's normal for hotels to charge more than if you approach someone directly. We didn't want to go through any 3rd party in booking our tours and accommodations because you end up paying more. These independent agents usually mark up the price, plus they get a commission from the resort. Sometimes you don't know if the resorts they are recommending are really the ones you want, or just the ones that will give them a good commission. I guess it's ok if you don't have the time to do the research, but I'd rather deal with everyone directly. I'm happy to share my contacts for the tours if you give me your email address.

Bolton, UK
Level Contributor
2,140 posts
97 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Bohol info for first timers

Hi Sun,

Here is my review of the Nuts Huts:

tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g294259-d616… .

Any further info, just ask

qc
Level Contributor
23 posts
19 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Bohol info for first timers

hi tnx for ur time...u can email me at greyzie25@yahoo.com or u can also add me up ym greyzie25...were already cnfirmed at alona kew..i hope my friends wil like staying there.i'll just wait for your email..thanks!