Saturday, December 29, 2012

Bohol's Jungle

We set off into Bohol's jungle filled center with little expectation. I'd heard mixed reviews about the famous Chocolate Hills and wasn't expecting anything great. But before the Chocolate Hills, first we went to see the tarsiers.

Tarsiers are tiny, nocturnal primates that live on the island. They are endangered so we went to the Philippine Tarsier Foundation to see some. Apparently, there are some people who just catch them and then let tourists hold them and take pictures with them on their shoulder. This is illegal and those tarsiers die quickly. Not good for an endangered species, so don't do that, everybody!

At the Foundation, there is a small area with information about tarsiers, a video about them and the Foundation's efforts (which we didn't watch), and then a guide will take you out in the nearby jungle to see the little creatures. It was a pretty quick trip since we didn't watch the video and just went out to see them.

Then we got on the pretty bus pictured below and went to the Chocolate Hills.

Once we got to the Chocolate Hills we had two options, hire an overpriced tricycle to take us to the top or walk up. Even though we had our bags strapped on us, the walk wasn't bad at all. Actually, some of the best views we got were from the road...but that might have just been because we had to share the viewing platform with a Chinese tour group, who pulled up right as we reached the top.

The Chocolate Hills were pretty but the ride to get there was the real delight of the trip. The views from the bus were phenomenal. It was like a tropical dream.

All in all, I was underwhelmed with the touristy things to do on the island but loved the everyday aspects of it and the people were all super friendly so it was great. Sometimes, it really is just about the journey and not the destination.

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