Whirlwind Travelogue to Mactan, Cebu and Bohol

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For the romantically inclined is the tale of Arogo, a young and very strong giant who fell in love with an ordinary mortal girl called Aloya. After she died, the giant Arogo bitterly cried and his tears then turned into hills as a lasting proof of his grief.

Up to this day, even geologists have not reached a consensus on how they were formed. The most commonly accepted theory is that the hills are weathered formations of a kind of marine limestone on top of a impermeable layer of clay.

Bohol has other attractions to offer foreign tourists and local visitors who come daily by air and sea to this island in Central Visayas. Animal lovers flock to Bohol to see the Philippine tarsier, one of the smallest known primates, no larger than an adult man’s hand.

A nocturnal creature, it lives on a diet of insects. One most distinguishing feature of the tarsier is its enormous eyes. Other than Bohol, the Philippine tarsier can also be found in the islands of Samar, Leyte and Mindanao. Although it is a protected species, the tarsier is threatened by the destruction of its natural forest habitat caused by legal and illegal logging.

The Philippine Tarsier Foundation at Km. 14 in Canapnapan in the town of Corella is the best place to go and see the tarsier in its natural habitat. The Foundation advises tarsier lovers to avoid visiting tarsiers in cages along the Loboc River because these shy animals live a miserable life there and normally don’t live long.

Bohol, a first class province made up of 47 towns, is not just Chocolate Hills and tarsiers. Those who have visited this oval-shape island and caught off-guard by the province’s mystery and charm called Bohol “God’s Little Paradise.” The island province is endowed with unpolluted waters and shorelines of powdery white sand beaches.

Scuba divers can explore the depths of Bohol’s waters which are rated among the best diving havens in the world.  The world’s rarest shells such as the Gloria Maris and the Golden Cowry can be found in the shores of Bohol. For the adventurous, they can go dolphin and whale-watching off the shores of Bohol on a motorized banca..

Other attractions that await tourists to Bohol are its many waterfalls amidst verdant forests, caves with stalagmites and stalactites, natural parks, exotic wild life, centuries-old churches dating back to the 16th century, and many historical landmarks. Boholanos are noted for their native delicacies like the sticky concoction in a coconut shell called calamay, mouth-watering peanut kisses, hojaldres, and kinatloan.

Bohol has its share of historic events in the Philippines resistance movement against Spain which ruled the country for over 300 years. A native priest or babaylan named Tamblot called upon the people to return to the faith of their forefathers and rebel against the Spanish oppressors. To quell the revolt, alcalde mayor Don Juan de Alcarazo led an army of 50 Spaniards on New Year’s Day, 1622, and in the ensuing running battle in Malabago, Cortes and Bohol,  the Spaniards were forced to retreat when the alcalde mayor was wounded.

Six months later, Tamblot and his warriors were victorious again in a second attempt to repulse the Spaniards but then some Spanish priests from Loboc were able to enter the camp of Tamblot and assassinated him.

Another Bohol native who fought against the oppressive methods of the Jesuits in propagating Christianity in Bohol was Francisco Sendrijas better known as Francisco Dagohoy. Dagohoy led the longest rebellion in Philippine history against the Spanish colonizers lasting for 85 years.

The revolt started in 1744 was ignited by the refusal of the Jesuit curate of Inabanga to give Dagohoy’s brother, a constable, a Christian burial after he was killed on a mission to capture a fugitive from the Christian religion. The rebellion started by Dagohoy swept all over the island. Even after his death, the revolt continued until August 31, 1829 when the rebellion was finally ended.





Waterfalls like the one in photo abound along the Loboc River contributing to its deep waters.

One of the floating restaurants plying up and down Loboc River serving Filipino dishes.


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Text Box:         Kumusta! ONLINE  <> www.e-kumusta.com  ■  March-April 2006 Issue

Kumusta! Internet Edition—March-April 2006 Issue

Published bimonthly by the Labrador Creative Group of Van Nuys, California, USA






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Whirlwind Travelogue to Mactan, Cebu and Bohol