Our final stop in the Philippines was Cebu City – chosen for its close proximity to Bohol Island, which we really wanted to visit.
One thing cities in the Philippines are famous for is Jeepneys. These were originally old jeeps left over from World War II , which have been converted to be the main city transport. They are also very fun and pretty!
As well as admiring the many Jeepneys, we made a trip out to view what is considered to be the oldest house in the Philippines called Yap Sandiego. This house is a 400+ year old wooden ancestral house owned by a Chinese / Spanish family. The family still stay there at weekends!
We spent one day visiting Bohol Island – the main reason for our stay. Having finally managed to work out how to buy tickets and board the ferry we were on way, arriving about 2 hours later to join an island tour.
Our first stop was visiting a Tarsier conversation area. Tarsiers are very tiny primates (about the size of your thumb when born and grow to the size of a large hamster). We had to creep around the conversation area because they are nocturnal, timid and easily scared! Very sweet though!
We then had lunch on board a floating restaurant in the village of Loboc. Beautiful scenery and tasty food. We were even sat next to a couple who live 5 minutes down the road from us in Bethnal Green, London!
The final stop was for a viewing of the famous Chocolate Hills – so called because of their similarity – in dry season, when the grass is brown – to Hersey’s Chocolate Kisses (apparently). As we were there just after the wet season they were beautiful and green and really quite breath taking!
There many legends about the hills (mainly involving giants!) but it is generally considered that they were created by tidal currents and whirlpools when the entire island was underwater.
The next day it was time to say farewell to the Philippines and continue onto the next leg of our trip – Taiwan!