Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Loboc river- BOHOL

When presented with a long weekend holiday, what do people of this country do? They go to the beach!!!
Living in an island country has a lot of benefits. I honestly can say I haven't travelled around every part of this country and visited all the possible areas we can visit. (we have 7100 islands you know)

So, when the government announced a 4 day weekend, me and my friend planned a quick trip for our families (talk about itchy feet!). It was hard to book the other more popular destinations as the flights were booked quite fast. We finally decided on BOHOL. It is an area on the lower part of the Philippines- namely located in the group of Visayan islands. The main city is Tagbilaran (you take a 1 hour domestic flight from Manila) but we were housed on the Panglao island (where most of the resorts are located)-- it is a quick bridge ride away from the airport. There is a more remote island also called Balicasag- (where you need to take a boat)
view from the plane..

The first day of the trip, we arrived mid afternoon and decided to check in to our house rental (owned by a friend) Aside from touring a local church, we decided to go on the LOBOC RIVER NIGHT CRUISE that night. The area where the river cruise was located was very well maintained. It also had WIFI access (yes, really). They had souvenir shops and a local cafe.  (wow, this country is getting somewhere)

view from the dock. courtesy of my friend

As with all night cruises, they had dinner included and some form of entertainment. The dinner was buffet style with some local seafood. The dinner was ok but I guess there were a lot of people coming to the river cruise and the food ran out. (we were early and got our share first) One thing to remember though when travelling at night on a river is to bring INSECT REPELLENT. My friends were great fodder for the mosquitos. (hahahaha). There was also a "soloist" on the boat. (he was actually not that good and sang with a distinctive local accent)

fried crablet.. very tasty!
I was really impressed  the way the local government provided lighting throughout the river so you can see a little of the surroundings as the boat travelled. Near the end, there is  a dock where the locals set up a show. They play the guitars and the others dance. It is set up like a cultural show and you can get down and take pictures with them. At the end of the show, you can opt to drop donations for the community on the provided "drop box".

everyone had a guitar

the kids danced really good

this guy really went into the dancing!

the man with the biggest guitar I have ever seen

I don't have nice pictures of the river as It was too dark to take any good ones. However, I am looking forward to writing about our adventures the following day... where we got to see most of the sights in BOHOL. Here is a good video someone else took of the DAYTIME loboc river cruise



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