Bohol Island, Philippines – Your Next Travel Destination

Some of our links are affiliated, we will earn a commission when you buy a service or product. This will have no extra cost for you. For further info please refer to our Privacy Policy

Never heard about Bohol Island in Philippines? No worries, amazing places are generally kept secret. And lucky you that we discovered this enchanting island and we are delighted to share some unforgettable experiences. Bohol Island in Philippines is a precious destination, if you don’t believe me, just have a look in the video! 

You don’t need to tell me, I know you loved it! And your next holiday will definitely be Bohol Island in the Philippines. I don’t blame you, after two weeks there I’m already dreaming of going back.

And you know why?

Because while many tourists are flocking to Boracay (we visited there too and enjoyed a lot), not that many people go to explore this beautiful island. On the island of Bohol, you can feel the truly Filipino atmosphere!

Bohol island in Philippines alona beach 2.jpg

About Bohol Island Phillipines

The tenth biggest island in the Philippines, Bohol island, is located in the middle of the archipelago (the country has more than 7 000 islands). It is just over 4 000 square kilometers in size and is surrounded by 75 other small islands.

Most people think that the Philippines’ Islands are just about paradisiac beaches, but in actuality, the country has a whole lot more to offer. Bohol Island is the perfect example. There, you can find stunning white sand beaches, lush green forests, symmetric hills, and incredible underwater life. There are also so many amazing things to do in Bohol.

Bottom line: Bohol Island in the Philippines will enchant you!

Are you prepared to follow us around Bohol? I promise I will try to avoid writing as huge a post as I did about Boracay, but it’s hard to keep it small and simple because we loved the Philippines!

Bohol island in Philippines motorbike 2 .jpg

» Our first recommendation: rent a motorbike in Bohol and explore the island at your own pace. There is no better way to see the amazing nature, meet locals, and have fun. Don´t be afraid, Filipino traffic is fine, people drive very slowly and there are signs all over the island.

If you get lost, no worries, everybody speaks English. And being lost is the perfect opportunity to make friends and feel how warm and helpful the people of Bohol are.

We rented our scooter with Island Rentals, and we received great safety tips and advice on what we need to pay attention to when renting a motorbike. We learned so much that I decided to write a small guide: How to Rent  Motorbike in Bohol & Everywhere in the World.

Now that you know the best way to get around Bohol Island in the Philippines, time to show why this wonderland enchanted us!

Bohol island in Philippines alona beach 3.jpg

 Bohol Philippines » Panglao Island

Each of the 75 islands around Bohol is unique and stunning. Panglao, one of the most beautiful and well-known of the Bohol Islands, is connected to Bohol main island by a bridge. The bridge makes commuting between the two islands super easy. Here is what you can’t miss while on Panglao Island:


» Alona Beach

Alona Beach in Panglao Island is the most famous Bohol Island Destinations. The majority of tourists stay there, and I believe that it’s the most beautiful of the Bohol tourist spots. White sand, crystal clear water, giant starfish, and a breathtaking sunset. Do you need any more reasons to stay there?

Bohol island in Philippines alona beach 4 .jpg

Bohol island in Philippines Sunset 5.jpg

Bohol island in Philippines stunning 6.jpg

In Alona Beach, you can find restaurants, bars, and hotels literally on the sand. Sunbathing and eating at the same time! Perfect for beach bums like us! 

From Alona, you can take a boat to Balicasag and Virgin Island. The island-hopping trip is a must. If you go to Bohol and don’t do it, you’re a fool! (Sorry, no offense!)


» Island Hopping Trip to Balicasag & Virgin Island

Negotiate the price of the trip with the fishermen on the beach, and don’t buy from the first seller that approaches you. The price can drop by more than a half, so use your bargaining skills. However, keep in mind that this is their job and the islands are far away. Reach a fair price. 

Bohol island in Philippines dolphin sunrise 7.jpg

Bohol island in Philippines dolphin sunrise 7b.jpg

Balicasag was one of the best snorkeling spots that we have ever visited! Before we reached our destination, the sunrise and the dolphins welcomed us to the sea, what a spectacle! On the island, we swam with big colorful fishes and preserved corals while diving in the deep blue sea.

Balicasag has an underwater cliff, which is what makes the island one of the most perfect spots for diving in Bohol Island and in the Philippines.

Bohol island in Philippines diving 8 .jpg

Bohol island in Philippines diving 8a.jpg

After some hours of snorkeling, we were hit by a big storm. No problem, even freezing on the boat our captain took us to the Virgin Island and we sailed safe and sound back to Alona’s shore. The only downside is that our pictures are not stunning, but they are quite fun! 

Bohol island in Philippines rain 9.jpg

Bohol island in Philippines rain 9a.jpg

Panglao Island also has other interesting places to visit like caves, untouched beaches, and fishermen villages. For us, the three days we spent there were enough to see and enjoy the island, but if you can stay for longer, do it! 


Bohol Philippines » Bohol Island Mainland

The mainland of Bohol Island was a great surprise for us! With our scooter, we had the opportunity to go to small villages, where we didn’t see other tourists. There is nothing more rewarding them visit a place that makes you feel comfortable, happy, and a part of it. That´s how I felt in Loay, our second address in Bohol Island.


I´m sure the people of Bohol are the biggest reason why I want to go back there. One afternoon we went for a jog. After my 5km, I stopped on the beach to do some stretching while Rob was finishing his run. In less than 2 minutes I was surrounded by 6 or 7 kids, all of them doing the same exercises as me.

We stayed there playing for almost half an hour, counting in English and Boholano (they tried to teach me their dialect – I love trying to learn new languages while traveling) until the beautiful sunset put an end to our fun.

Bohol island in Philippines Sunset Loya 10.jpg

I don’t have pictures of the awesome moment with the kids. I never expected that could happen. However, that day will stay forever in my memories and in my heart. Because it doesn´t matter where you came from, or which language you speak, friendship and smiles are universal and the Filipino kids know this!

After making friends, it was time to explore a bit more of Bohol Island in the Philippines, and you will be amazed by the beautiful nature we found there.


» Try out SUP on the Loboc River

Loboc river berth is in the middle of the island, but it´s near the Loboc Village that all the action starts. Many people choose to go on the restaurant boat to see the river, but we found it too boring for us!

That´s why we decided to meet Frederic from SUP Tour Philippines. If you read our post about Boracay you already know that stand up paddle is my new affair, so practicing SUP on the Loboc river sounded like a perfect plan to me!

Bohol island in Philippines SUP 11.jpg

Bohol island in Philippines SUP 11a.jpg

Nature and the river are fantastic. The water is so clean and all the green around is a real tropical paradise. We did just the SUP tour on Loboc river, but the company also offers mountain bike tours and yoga activities. It’s worth checking the schedule and joining the groups.


» Visit the Chocolate Hills

Can you imagine 1 700 symmetrical hills, all of them side by side with the same shape and size?

Incredible isn’t it? And it´s true!

Bohol island in Philippines chocolate hills 12.jpg

Bohol island in Philippines chocolate hills 12a.jpg

In the heart of Bohol Island, you can find the Chocolate Hills. They are spread across an area of 50 square km and during the dry season the green grass of the hills changes to brown, which is why they are called Chocolate Hills.

No doubt this is the most delicious attraction in Bohol!

The Chocolate Hills are definitely a place you have to go to by motorbike. There are daily bus tours going to the viewpoint, but you will just get a small taste of it. The best part is to explore the area around the Chocolate Hills, drive between them in tiny muddy streets and be enchanted by the perfection of nature.


» Explore the Man-Made Forest

The Bilar Man-Made Forest is, for me, one of the most powerful attractions on Bohol Island in the Philippines. The beautiful forest is proof that men and nature can work together. While driving in the forest we stop several times just to contemplate the beauty.

Bohol island in Philippines man made forest 13 .jpg

The dense forest stretches up to 2 kilometers between the Loboc and Bilar towns. In 1947 the government started a project of reforestation. Together with the community, red and white mahogany trees were planted in 19,410 hectares of land, putting an end to the deforestation process that was happening in the Loboc watershed.


» Find a Tarsier

In the middle of such unique nature, a tiny cute animal spends all day sleeping on the trees. It’s easy to find a Tarsier, but when you see one, the first impulse is to scream, hug, squeeze, and play with them. But please don’t do that. Never, ever…

Bohol island in Philippines Tarsier 14.jpg

The Tarsier is one of the smallest primates in the world, measuring less than a human hand (85 to 160 millimeters). They are really shy animals with nocturnal habits, spending most of the day sleeping in hidden places.

Because the Tarsier is shy and nervous, touching, hugging, and camera flashes can really stress the animal. The stress leads to the Tarsier committing suicide by hitting its head against objects. 

To see a Tarsier in nature we went to the Philippine Tarsier Foundation, where we could find all the information about this strange and cute animal. And please, NEVER visit the Tarsiers kept in cages along Loboc river, they are kept illegally and most of the time they don’t survive for long.

Remember: We have to be responsible tourists.


Bohol Island Philipines » Tagbilaran

Tagbilaran or simply Tag is the capital of Bohol Island in the Philippines. The port and the airport are located there, along with the shopping centers, big restaurant chains, and street food markets. From Tag, you can reach all the small villages in Bohol and Panglao island.


» Bohol Festivals

Walking around Tag you can visit many churches and witness how strong the Catholic Religion is in the Philippines. During the year there are many festivities and parades happening there. We were super lucky – while exploring the island we found a nice party going on. Kids were all dressed up in costumes and big performances were happening beside the church.

Again, we were the only foreigners there, but that wasn´t a problem. In 2 minutes, we were already talking with people, dancing and taking pictures together.

Bohol island in Philippines people 16.jpg

» Antequera and Mag-Aso Falls

Get your motorbike and drive from Tag to Antequera. The road is really scenic and only 20 kilometers from the town, you will find a cute village in the mountains and a beautiful waterfall.

Mag-Aso Falls was an 8 meters twin waterfall with crystal clear water, and one of the top attractions in Bohol.  After the 7.2 magnitude earthquake in 2013 and the subsequent typhoons, the waterfall has changed a lot but is still beautiful.

Bohol island in philippines waterfalls 17.jpg

The natural disasters affected Bohol Island in the Philippines a lot. Not only were the waterfalls damaged, but other attractions like bridges, churches, and many houses were destroyed. Driving around the island you can see the scars on nature and on the urban areas.

Although, even after so many problems (earthquakes and typhoons) the island is still strong. Everything has been rebuilt and the people there are so proud of their homeland.

My respect to all the Boholanos for such persistence, and I really admire how they talk with passion about their island and country. If you have a chance, talk to them about their history. You will be amazed. 


Where to Stay in Bohol Island?

As I’ve said, Bohol has so many things to do and see that we decided to split our stay into two different areas of the island. That way we could enjoy different vibes and reach all the Bohol attractions within a small driving distance. If you want to explore the whole Bohol Island [which we strongly recommend] just follow our tips to book the best hotel for you.

» Panglao

To enjoy the white sand beach, book your accommodation on Panglao Island. The busiest beach is Alona, where you can find luxury resorts to middle range hotel. Just be aware that most of the cheapest hotels in Bohol offer only a fan and cold shower.

Hotels in Panglao:

Henann Tawala Resort Bohol – Rates start from USD 51

Casa Manni – Rates start from USD 90

Amorita Resort – Rates start from USD 190

» Loboc River

Loboc River is the perfect spot to relax and be in contact with nature. From there, you can easily reach the Chocolate Hills, Man-Made Forest, and Tarsier Foundation. My recommendation is to book your accommodation at the beautiful Fox & Firefly Cottages.

The place is carefully designed. You can stay in a traditional Filipino hut, in the middle of the greenery with all the comfort and amenities you need.

The best part: Loboc River is your neighbor!


» Tag, Loay & Anda

These three areas are great spots to find a cheap hotel on Bohol Island. They have different types of accommodation from hostels to luxury resorts. Tagbilaran is the center of Bohol, we stayed there just one night, the day before our flight. As we were leaving the island early in the morning we thought would be smart and stay near to the airport in order to avoid traffic. Bear in mind that since 2018 the Bohol has a new airport located on Panglao Island.  Staying in Tagbilaran could be handy for those arriving or departing by ferry.

Hotels in Tagbilaran:

Ocean Suites Boutique Hotel Bohol – Rates start from USD 40 

Kasagpan – Rates start from USD 57

Darunday Manor – Rates start from USD 20

Loay was the village we stayed in during the time we explored the mainland of Bohol. The tiny fisherman beaches are super interesting and you can form a real connection with the local people. Loay is one of the best places to eat fresh fish and from there you can reach all the other parts of the island. Villa Limpia is a simple guest house with great staff.

Another great Bohol tourist attraction is Anda Beach. A little bit far from Tagbilaran, this beach is famous amongst divers. Hotels and resorts are laying on the beach waiting for travelers and sea lovers.

Hotels in Anda Beach, Bohol:

Amun Ini Beach Resort & Spa – Rates start from USD 290

J&R Residence – Rates start from USD 105

Blue Star Dive & Resort – Rates start from USD 55


How to get to Bohol Island in The Philippines?

Bohol Island is located in the middle of the Philippines archipelago, just beside Cebu Island. The Bohol-Panglao International Airport (TAG) is the new airport replacing the old one in Tagbilaran.  AirAsia, ANA, Philippines Airlines, and Cebu Pacific are some of the airlines serving Bohol-Panglao International Airport.

Alternatively, you can get to Bohol Island by boat. Ferries depart every day from Cebu Port. There are some other lines operating from small islands around Bohol, but they are not frequent. From Cebu to Bohol we chose the SuperCat ferry and they offered a reasonable price and good service. 

Bookaway is a great website where you can search and book your transportation in The Philippines.

You can check the rates and ferry timetables here:

Powered by 12Go system

If you have some extra days in Cebu you must visit Oslob and get close to the giant and majestic whale sharks. Check here how to get to Oslob and add this adventure to your travel itinerary.

Bohol island in Philippines ferry 21.jpg

Local Bohol Food » The Travellers` Big Issue

Food is a tricky subject when we talk about traveling to the Philippines. I have heard so many different opinions:

“I liked it, they have great fried chicken!”

“Ohh, I hate it. Everything is deep-fried!!”

It´s impossible to please everybody, and also we can´t generalize that a country’s cuisine is bad or good. However, as a food lover and also an enthusiast of the Philippines, I think I have the right to express my opinion and say that my stomach was really happy while we were traveling through Bohol Island in the Philippines.

Bohol island in philippines bee farm 22.jpg

True: They have lots of fried chicken, fried pork, fried sausages, and most of the drinks come really sweet.

False: The local dishes aren’t delicious.

First, you have to leave your prejudice outside of the restaurant and then you will be amazed by the different and unique flavors. In Bohol, we tried a delicious savory soup made of coconut milk,  jackfruit, and ginger. Sounds like a strange combination, but it was yummy!! Rob elected it as one of his favorite Asian dishes.

I loved the Malunggay and young coconut meat soup, the ginger ice-cream, the fresh salad with flowers… OMG!! Better stop now, I’m getting hungry!

My point is: be open and try new things. Most of the time we ate in small eateries, sharing the table with students and workers, learning about local veggies, and tasting delicious recipes. Different from Boracay (which is busy and more touristically developed), Bohol Island is the perfect place to forget the big restaurants,  avoid fast food, and just immerse yourself in the local culture.

Bohol island in philippines local food 23.jpg

Final Words

I guess I wrote too much again… But if you kept reading till this point it means that Bohol Island in the Philippines enchanted you too! Welcome to the club!

Our trip through the Philippines ended in Bohol and I have to say that I regret not having more time to explore this magnificent country. The list of cities and islands in the Philippines that we want to visit keeps growing, and every time I talk to a Filipino they point me toward a new unmissable destination.

Now it´s time for you to organize your trip to Bohol Island in the Philippines, and we’ll be here dreaming and planning our return. Because the Philippines is still on the top of your bucket list!

Did you know Bohol Island in the Philippines? Have you thought about traveling there? Your comments and thoughts are more than welcome!

63 thoughts on “Bohol Island, Philippines – Your Next Travel Destination”

  1. Visit Albay, Bicol next when you come back. You will not regret it! 🙂 Great post! I also read your Boracay blog. You two are amazing!

  2. First off, that first sunset photo is so beautiful! Secondly, when can I go?! Haha. I’ve never thought much about visiting the Philippines but now I’m considering it. It just looks so, so beautiful!

  3. After reading this, I am hands down convinced that I need to add this to my 2016 itinerary! From renting a motorbike, to explore caves, and the crystal clear beaches, I am breathless at this island’s beauty! How did you start conversations with the locals at the church? Were they automatically very friendly etc? What were they celebrating? Great post! 😀

    • Hi Andrea,
      So, maybe we’ll meet there 😉
      They were celebrating St Nino, Filipinos are really religious. Actually, they asked to take pictures with us, so we started the conversation.

  4. Thank you so much for such a great post on Bohol. My husband, Daughter and I are starting our full time, round the world, life starting this summer and because we’re Filipino Americans who haven’t spent much time in the Philippines, we are going to stay in the country for an extended time. Bohol looks like a perfect island to stay after Boracay. I can’t wait to follow your footsteps!

  5. Wow – looks simply stunning! I’ve said this is the year I finally make it to the Philippines, and I need to make sure that happens. This looks like a fantastic spot for me to visit as part of that trip, so I’m bookmarking it to look at again later. Thank you! 🙂

  6. Wow, that beach is really breathtaking…I never expected it to be one from the Philippines. I love it when someone writes about their experiences from somewhere and you can really read their excitement and their fun experiences thru their words. That makes that place so inviting. And I can see from the pictures that you had such a wonderful time. I think I should plan my trip there soon.

  7. Lovely post about the sights of Bohol Island! I’ve not yet been to the Philippines, but your photos are so stunning, it’s just moved up on my list. I’ll definitely have to check out those Chocolate Hills! 🙂

  8. Too many people turn their noses up at the delicious food in Asia!

    All that means I guess, is there’s more for all of us! 😉

    Those islands and again the underwater shots look stunning

  9. New up n coming island everybody’s raving about is the Siargao island on the east in the Philippines. Also Malapascua in North of Cebu. There’s Siquijor close to Bohol. And of course El Nido n Coron both in Palawan. Backpacking crowd also raving about the ancient rice terraces in Batad and Pinatubo crater lake climb on the north. I’ve only been to Bohol and Manila. Can’t wait to explore for more! I agree about the lovely people!

    • Hey May!
      Siargao island was in our plans, but we enjoyed so much Bohol that we decided to stay there longer. But deffinetly we are going back to Philippines. Siargao, Palawan and El Nido were already in our future plans now you give us more amazing destinations to see… I think we´ll need at least 3 months to see and enjoy this beautiful country!
      Nat 😀

    • Hey Tracie!
      I´m glad you liked the video, we just started doing videos, so it´s good to have some feedback!
      The hills are impressive to look at and it´s a good alternative if you get tired of beautiful beaches!

      Happy travels,

  10. The pictures look amazing! I have heard such great things about Bohol. Sadly I did not get there! I loved El Nido and Boracay! I did not love the food but I did not think it was as awful as people were making out!

    • Ohh Sally, you went to El Nido (I’m envy now). We had an amazing time in Bohol and definitely we need to come back to visit Palawan and other islands.. Thanks for stopping by!
      Safe and happy Travel,
      Nat 🙂

  11. Breathtaking photos, guys. My hunger for travel just got more intense after finishing college and reading your posts. Gotta make money and save big time starting now and follow your path! Haha. Traveling is really my life goal and really wonderful travel tips you got here in your blog. And thank you for loving Philippines. Cheers! 🙂

    • Hi Reynan!! Thanks!
      If travel is your life dream and goal, go for it!!! Never give up! Travel is one of the most rewarding things we can do in life. Has been almost an year that we gave up of our “normal” life to travel and until now no regrets!
      Thanks for liking our blog and follow us! If you need and tips about travels and how to save money for travel check out out other posts, and if you need any specific information just write to us!
      All the best, cheers
      Nat 😀

  12. Try to visit Cagayan de Oro, Philippines too! With side trip in Camiguin Island and Bukidnon you will love it!

    I love your blog! 🙂

    • I agree with Chris. You also need to go visit Camiguin Island. It has lots of stuff like waterfalls, crystal clear beaches, hot springs, soda waters, cold spring, and cool forests!

      Somewhere in the south, the Island Garden City of Samal is a must-see paradise, too!

      • I agree with Chris and you! 😀
        We definitely need to go back and explore more cities and islands… The problem was that we only had three weeks to stay there 🙁
        Next time we´ll have to plan at least three months of travels, do you think it will be enough?
        Happy Travels,

    • Hey Spencer!
      We just stopped at the Airport in Cebu and got the boat to Bohol from there. We didn’t have time to enjoy the city. 🙁
      But that´s why we need to go back, some many places to explore!
      All the best!
      Nat 🙂

  13. So happy to hear that you are enjoying the food Katie…
    Most of the travellers I talked with hated it, but I think most of the time it´s because they were afraid to try different stuff…

    Gald that you are enjoying your time in Bohol!

    Happy and Safe Travels.

  14. Bohol is a unique place, I´m sure you will love it!
    Especially the people, they are amazing. Don´t stay too long in Panglao, head to the tiny villages and you will be amazed!
    Happy Travels,


  15. Hi, Oh! You haven’t been to Verde island Passage, they say (They, means the Scientists who’re exploring the area since 2011 for new species) its the center of the center of marine bio-diversity in the world. It is between the Island of Puerto Galera and Batangas (Luzon Island). Siquijor, Urban legend is that it is where the witches congregate. Filipinos avoided it but in recent years, more are braving the odds. Surigao (Caraga Region), ancestral gold were discovered in these parts. Kingdom of Butuan is located here (Pre-Spanish era). some of the treasures that was saved are being displayed in Ayala Museum (Greenbelt) in Manila. Next Davao City (Davao Region) is home to the Philippine Eagle and you will witness nature’s abundance here. I know this is in the Island of Mindanao. Off-limits but oh! There’s more!

    • Thanks for such amazing tips!!
      Philippines is a stunning country with many natural wonders. Wish we could have time [and money] to visit them all!!
      But I will keep in mind this list you gave us!
      All the best!

      • Yeah. I myself have not been to so many places here. Though, I know most of Mindanao, and some of Bohol where all my forefathers are from. My uncles and grandparents would often ask when I would go home to Bohol, but my dad would say, I am a davaoeno (person from Davao) not a Boholano. A Boholano may have traveled the whole World but he will always come home to Bohol. Been there twice but I never visited The chocolate Hills though i know it existed since I was a child. My aunt would tell me as a child that it’s a land full of chocolates. That you can only dip your fingers here and there and walah! Yummy!. I grew up thinking it’s my oh la la place. Silly me. This is the Island where the humblest, happiest and funniest of Filipinos are from. They like to tell jokes and stories. Now, I’m in Manila. I know it’s an chaotic here but, it has something that i crave, aside from my work of course, arts and culture, museums, intramuros, cuisine. Filipino contemporary arts are good. You,d be surprised.

        • Loved the description of the Chocolate Hills, is not silly at all. It´s delicious, and makes all sense your aunt tell this story.
          And definitely the Boholano are humble and happy people, met a few of them and all them were great character.
          Enjoy Manila, didn’t have time to explore the capital yet, but know that it´s crazy with bad and good things!
          All the best,


  16. Stunning pictures! Thanks for sharing this – I’m going to Bohol next month, and this will prove very useful. Was definitely looking forward to the chocolate hills and the tarsiers, but you got me stoked about plenty of other stuff as well now. And great tips on the food as well, which is something I was a little concerned about…Thanks again!

    • Hi Joe!!
      You are welcome!!! The chocolate hills and tarsiers are beautiful, but don´t forget to explore the whole island and enjoy the Loboc river… We loved Bohol so much that we considering go back on our next trip to Philippines!!
      Enjoy your travels!

  17. Wow you’re making me a lot prouder of my home town.. thanks for this blog guys. Everything you say here really speaks of Bohol. I was once a volunteer at the tarsier sanctuary. Much love!

  18. Hi Nat and Rob,

    Wow! This is probably one of the most in-depth, detailed travel guide/article about Bohol. You must really have explored Bohol well. 🙂

    I’ve been to Bohol a few months back and I enjoyed every minute of it, went to Chocolate Hills, Panglao, Balicasag Island and more. It is such a joy reading this article. I’m glad that you enjoyed your stay in the Philippines! 🙂


  19. Bohol is a must-visit for any traveler. The beaches are beautiful! The island has a lot to offer for every traveler out there.

  20. I agree with all the people commented on the pictures you posted . That Bohol is really beautiful island .


Leave a Comment