This is a “semi-spontaneous” long weekend trip to Anda and Panglao in Bohol in celebration the Philippines’ Independence Day. Our plan was just to have fun and our itinery is basically just “come-what-may”.
From Cebu we took off at Pier 1 via Supercat/2Go. Very conspicous was how Pier 1 has improved alot since it has been renovated. It’s probably one of the best in the country today, it is even better than some country’s small airports.
After an almost 2-hour ride on board the Supercat we reached Tagbilaran City. The construction of their new port is still on-going as their old port was destroyed by the October 2013 earthquake that rocked the whole island. We docked at the makeshift port and proceeded to hail a tricycle that will take us to Dao Terminal where we can ride a bus going to Anda. However, while we were haggling for the fare we saw a good number of taxi cab queing and we thought of hiring one instead to take us to the terminal to avoid the oppresive sun. Since there are 3 of us, the fare is relatively the same. Again, because this is a come-what-may travel, we accepted to the offer of the taxi cab driver to take is directly to La Petra Resort in Anda for P2,000.00 instead of just in Dao Terminal. The driver also kindly suggested that we take a stop over to one of the places frequented by tourists and he will just wait for us. That was pretty good offer, of course we took it.
We were not really hungry when we arrived at Loay River Rio Verde Floating Restaurant but still we availed of their lunch buffet. There were si many costumers, were glad we somehow came ahead of them. We got the regular buffet for P399.00.
The menu includes: In the salad bar, Manga with Bagoong (Green Mango w/ Shrimp Paste) Atsal/Puso salad (Banana Bud Salad) Guso salad ( Seaweed Salad). Main courses were Buttered Chicken, Pork Barbeque, Pancit Special, Fish fillet in sweet and sour sauce, adobong buko-buko (a cetain kind of squid) Adobong Kangkong (Water Spinach Cooked Adobo Style) Ginataang Langka (Jackfruit in Coconut Milk) and Shrimps. Desserts are some of filipino favorites like puto cheese and puto kutchina together with some tropical fruits. It was ordinary but really good tasting.
Loay River cruise is a 45 minute tour in the beautul river with ine stop over at the Tribe Ali. Compared to the more popular Loboc River, Loay is cleaner and more untouched.
Anda is 1 hour and 30 minutes away from Loay. When we arrived at the hotel, we were served with welcome drinks and assigned to a native hut with an ocean view. After a short nap in our room we asked to be transferred because the AC seems not working. We were given a bigger room near the pool. It was better!
Anda is still untouched, maybe because it is secluded. Anda has a long stretch of white sand beach. It would have been perfect if only the beach floor directly fronting our hotel is not “muddy”. The beach at Poblacion, Anda were better. We enjoyed the beach alot since it just us, we have the sea all for ouselves. Here are some of our beach photos.
Dinner was happiness. I didn’t realize happiness could be that cheap too, a seafood platter of crabs, shrimps, clams and fish for only P400.00. La Petra food is really good and their serving is generous. We almost couldn’t finish it.
Complimemtary breakfast which comes along with our accommodation was served at the restaurant of La Petra. iur hearty breakfast meal imcludes bacon, egg, sandwich, salad, ampalaya with rice, juice, coffee and milo. We felt the effort the staff had put in the give us a pleasant stay in their hotel. We really appreciate it, and even more when they offered us to drive us to Guindulman where we can hire a bus to Tagbilaran City on the wat to Panglao.
The bus ride was comfortable except for the bumpy parts if the road in Tagbilaran. The 105 peso fare was worth it, it was a long 2 hour ride.
We got ourseleves a month minibus to Panglao. We were booked at Cherry’s Home Too since it was the cheapest with a high rating of 7.7 in Panglao. After we were settled in our room, we rested from 3:00 PM to 4:00 PM and proceeded to our late snacks at Tarsier Botanika.
A free shuttle at the Tarsier Botanika in Alona Beach will take you the main branch, around 2 kilometers from where we stayed.
Tarsier Botanika has been operating for almost two years already but it was only now, after they renovated, when people discovered its charm. Unfortunately, only its restaurant is open, their park and villas are still under construction.
This is a welcome addition to Bohol’s attraction. It’s awesomeness can only be described in photos.
We were so full when we went back to the hotel. We decided to take our time and rest before we shall check out Panglao’s night party scene.
A walk in the beach leads me to a massage area where massuers will massage their clients by the beach. Of course, I have to avail it. Massage is one pleasure I couldn’t resist.
We partied at the by the beach chill out area of Bugsy’s. I got so tipsy that recovery food is imperative. We look for a Bulalo place and found, Abotanan. They served barbecue, bulalo and batchoy. Food was okay, at least they are open 24 hours.
We wrapped up Day 2 at 12:00 midnight as we need to park early for our 5:30 AM call time the next day.
Upon our arrival on Day 2 at Cherry’s Home Too, we saw an ad about an island hopping tour for 1,500.00. We inquired further details about the tour and booked ourselves the next day (Day 3)
The call time is quite early at 5:30 in the morning in order to catch the playful dolphins of Panglao. We went down from our room at exactly 5:30 AM. We are greeted by our boatman who guide us to the boat at the shore of Alona Beach.
There will be three stopovers: Dolphin Watching, Balincasag Island, and Virgin Island a.k.a. Isole de Francesco.
20 minutes from where we took off, we were already playing hide and seek with the dolphins. The boatman must be quick should possess some good intuition based on the patterns of the dolphins. We saw around 30 dolphins.
Balincasag Island is a marine sanctuary, we paid P150 per person upon entry. We alighted from our banca and was transfered to a smaller paddle boat. A guide will be assigned to you for P150.00. We snorkled and surveyed the fishes and corals around 10 meters from the beach. There were big and small fishes but the corals are not as colorful as I expected, althought, they are still alive.
After an hour of snorkeling we went to the beach in front of Balincasag Island Dive Resort, the water on that area is very clear and tempting. You can’t say no.
We asked the local abour our next stop, the Virgin Island. They adviced that we should go there at low tide so that we can see the whole white sand bar while it is not submerged. They said low tide will be around noon, probably 1PM. Unfortunately, we were running out of time we booked ourselves to Henann Resort’s Buffet for lunch. We decided to leave Balincasag for the Virgin Island around 10AM.
We left from the island at around 11 AM, so ready for the lunch buffet and if we still have time for some foot massage before we shall leave Panglao at 3:30PM to catch our fastcraft leaving Bohol at 5:25PM.