Bohol is small island province in the Central Visayas region, but it offers multiple natural attractions to visit. Bohol is blessed with tourist spots such as immaculate beaches, world-class dive sites, one-of-a-kind landscapes, being home to the smallest primate in the world, century-old churches, and adventure parks.
While being known as the home of the popular geological formations called Chocolate Hills, Bohol offers more than just this top attraction. Lush forests hold secret waterfalls and pristine rivers, while its surrounding waters are home to sea turtles and dolphins. It's one of the most-visited destinations in the Philippines, and yet the province has still maintained its laid-back and tranquil feel.
Bohol is also rich in historical and religious significance, being key to the spread of Christianization in the country. This is evident in the glorious cathedrals and stone churches scattered throughout the island, some destroyed by an earthquake in 2013, while the rest are still standing in their might and beauty.
Bohol should easily be on your list of places to visit in the Philippines. If you're planning a trip here, we have rounded up a list of top tours and activities that must be included in your Bohol itinerary.
Bohol Bee Farm is a buzzing destination not just for the stinging creatures, but also for its sumptuous food. Nestled on a cliff surrounded by lush greens with a sweeping view of the sea, the organic farm is a gastronomic hotspot known for its healthy and light meals. This includes farm-fresh salads (with edible flowers!), hot soups, and fresh seafood dishes. Their signature squash bread appetizer with spreads is a hit.
Bohol Bee Farm is usually part of day tours to Panglao Island. Head outside of the restaurant and finish off your meal with their Buzzz Ice Cream, which comes in interesting flavors such as tomato and spicy ginger.
While the farm’s highlight is their food, don’t forget about the bees. Grab a bottle or two of their honey and other organic food products in their shop.
Marvel in the rich history and religious heritage of Bohol by visiting its many historical sites. Being one of the oldest provinces in the country and one of the first to embrace Christianity, Bohol is has many centuries-old churches.
Many have stood the test of time, but others have been heavily damaged by a strong earthquake that rocked the island some years ago. But with the locals’ deep faith and combined efforts, rebuilding these important religious structures have been done.
Visit Baclayon Church, originally built in 1596 and regarded as the oldest church in Asia. It is also known for miraculous images appearing in its walls. Another fun fact: it is made of harvested ancient coral stones glued together with egg whites.
Go inside the Church of San Pedro, or locally known as Loboc Church, and be in awe of its ceiling adorned with a heavenly scene painting. Other churches that are worth visiting include Dauis Church, Panglao Church, and Cathedral de San Jose.
One of the stops in a Bohol Countryside Tour is the Blood Compact Shrine, also known as Sandugo Shrine. It was built to commemorate the kinship between Spaniards and Filipinos, led by Miguel Lopez de Legazpi and Datu Sikatuna, which involved putting a few drops of their blood on a wine-filled cup and then drinking it after.
Abatan River is home to as many as 32 mangrove species. The real stars of the place are fireflies. See these magical creatures sparkle and shine on firefly-watching tours in Bohol, a great way to spend your evening on the island after a day of exploring its many other natural wonders.
The tour cruises along the waterways of Abatan River, which is about 20 kilometers long in total, and drifts near the centuries-old mangroves. In no time, the fireflies appear from the trees and vegetation along the riverbank, offering a magical sight and fantastical experience. Guests are advised to minimize talking and making loud noises to avoid scaring away these tiny, sparkling creatures.
For the thrill-seekers and adventurous spirits, the Danao Adventure Park is a must-visit when in Bohol. Adrenaline-pumping activities such as zipline, wall climbing, rappelling, ATV rides, and skybike await here, with sweeping mountain views and scenic landscapes as the backdrop while you participate in all the action and adventure.
Danao Adventure Park’s claim to fame is its signature The Plunge bungee jump, one of the world’s highest canyon swings where you will be released from a cliff-side platform (with all safety gears, of course) situated 200m above the canyon floor.
Located at Brgy. Matangtang, which is about 72km from Tagbilaran City, Danao Adventure Park is managed by the local government to boost the island’s eco-tourism endeavors. You may want to head up here very early in the morning, as the area is popular for its hilltops smothered in a rolling sea of clouds during sunrise.
Bask under the sun and dip your toes in the fine sands of Anda’s expansive beach. This little town is fast becoming a favorite among locals and international travelers alike for its laid-back vibe and sheer beauty. Anda Beach, which stretches 1.5 kilometers long, may rival some of the country’s most popular beaches.
Anda tours also include a visit to its natural cave pools. One of which is Cabagnow Cave Pool, which offers visitors crystal-clear waters from its opening. Adventure seekers favor this spot for cliff-jumping, as its waters run around 20 feet deep.
The other famous cave pool here is called Combento, which means “convent” in English, named such because of the cave’s rock formations that resemble a chandelier. Although the pool here is much more shallow than Cabagnow at only 5-feet deep, Combento’s mystical charm is worth visiting.
The name Hinagdanan is derived from the Cebuano word that means “laddered”, as it is said to have been discovered by a farmer who built a ladder to enter the cave. Hinagdanan Cave features a sparkling natural pool at the bottom, where visitors can take a dip and swim into under stalactites and other surrounding interesting rock formations.
On a beautiful day with sunny weather, natural light passes through the cave entrance and hits the pool, offering an ethereal glow to the crystal-clear waters. Hinagdanan Cave tours can be done after your visit to the Chocolate Hills and other top Bohol attractions.
Bohol is a beach-lover’s paradise, with bountiful coastlines and gorgeous beaches all over the province. Perhaps the most popular among them all is Alona Beach in Panglao Island, which features a long stretch of white sand beach lined with opulent Bohol resorts, dining establishments, and entertainment bars.
An alternative is the more laidback Dumaluan Beach. It usually has fewer visitors and there are lesser establishments around. The sunset is not to be missed here!
For a more quiet and secluded beach time, head to Bagobo Beach and Momo Beach. Both offer beautiful and palm-fringed white-sand shores with small crowds. The former is a favorite spot for snorkelers and divers because of its bountiful waters teeming with marine life.
The Bilar Man-Made Forest features towering white and red mahogany trees that make up a 2-kilometer forest from both sides of the road. The man-made forest is part of a reforestation project to protect the Loboc watershed.
The trees’ branches and leaves form an overhanging carpet, almost entirely blocking the sun’s heat and providing a much cooler breeze the entire day. This area has become a favorite stop for travelers doing the Bohol Countryside tours, posing in the middle of the road with the forest as the background.
Be careful of speeding cars as this is still a highway. There is no designated parking area here as well, so you will just park by the roadside and marvel at this winning man-made landscape.
Book or join an island hopping tour around Bohol and explore the marine life beneath the islands' glass-like waters. Bohol features numerous prime and world-class snorkeling and diving sites.
Balicasag Island features expansive coral reefs and a wide variety of tropical fishes. You might event spot or swim along with majestic green sea turtles. Meanwhile, dolphins and whales call Pamilacan Island home, and you may get a chance to see them in action when booking a dolphin-watching activity here. For those wishing to just lounge around and frolic on the sand, Virgin Island is the perfect spot to do such, with its moon-shaped sandbar that is surrounded by turquoise waters.
Cute is probably an understatement when talking about tarsiers. These nocturnal creatures have big eyes, yet they hold the title of being the smallest primates in the world. No trip to Bohol is complete without taking the chance to see tarsiers up close and personal in their natural habitat, which is usually included in a Bohol countryside tour.
The town of Loboc is home to the Tarsier Conservation Area, while Corella has the Tarsier Sanctuary. Both places offer travelers the opportunity to see these small creatures and be educated about them. Tour guides will help you spot them, as they are peacefully sleeping during the day, hiding on tree branches and behind lush foliage.
Noise should be avoided, as well as taking pictures with flash, to prevent them from getting disturbed. More importantly, touching the tarsiers is strictly prohibited as it may cause them stress.
Loboc River is one of Bohol’s most recognizable tourist spots and wondrous natural attractions. It features blue-green waters surrounded by lush trees and palms from both sides.
This destination is best enjoyed and appreciated by joining Loboc River Cruise tours, where visitors board on a floating restaurant and enjoy a bountiful buffet feast to the fun and mesmerizing singing of a local folk band. They may also perform traditional dances to the delight of everyone on board. The mesmerizing Busay Falls, albeit small, will mark the end of the cruise.
You might also spot local kids hanging on to palm trees and plunging straight into the waters, and adults swimming or working by the river.
No other attraction is as synonymous with Bohol as the Chocolate Hills. This geological formation is the island province’s crowning jewel and showstopper, with more than 1000 cone-shaped karst hills that turn into chocolate brown color during the dry season, thus the name. During the rainy season, they then become covered with emerald green vegetation, which is also an equally wonderful sight.
The Chocolate Hills has been awarded the Philippines’ 3rd National Geological Monument, and others swear by it being an Eighth Wonder of the World.
Head over to the Chocolate Hills Complex in the town of Carmen and climb 200 steps up the observation deck for a jaw-dropping, 360-degree view of this natural magic.
To elevate your Chocolate Hills experience, make your way to the Chocolate Hills Adventure Park where you can ride a bike midair or surf on a zipline, with no less than the majestic earth mounds as your view from every angle.
Start Planning Your Bohol Trip
There is no shortage of scenic sights and marvelous attractions one can see and experience in Bohol. Suspend midair or dive down below, chase waterfalls or plunge into cave pools, dip your toes in white sand or learn about its rich history.
Bookmark this list of top Bohol tours and activities and start planning your Bohol itinerary.