The Philippines has many gorgeous islands, each one trying to outdo the other in terms of beauty, activities, and attractions. Among those, the island of Bohol stands out for sheer elegance, and it’s no wonder many tourists want to find out how they can travel from Manila to Bohol once they land. Before we tell you about traveling to Bohol, here is why it has to be part of your itinerary on your next visit to the Philippines.
Reasons to visit Bohol
For most tourists, Bohol is home to the picturesque Chocolate hills, but it offers so much more. It has pristine white sand beaches, diverse cultures, food, and gorgeous sceneries to get lost in. To be fair, the Chocolate Hills are already so exquisite when you see them in a picture, but not even the best camera in the world could truly capture their magnificence and allure. The hills feel different when you are up close, and you should definitely make a point of seeing them once you are here. The world’s smallest primate—the Philippine Tarsier, is also found here.
They are now endangered, and you can find them among the trees at Bohol’s Tarsier Conservation Area. That is not all for special creatures. People come to Bohol for its whale watching opportunities, but you can also see dolphins, a variety of species of turtles, and plenty of butterflies. You can swim with sea creatures at Balicasag Island Marine Sanctuary or be wowed by butterflies and bees at the Butterfly Garden in Bilar.
Bohol also has great cuisines and some delicacies that are unique to this region. Seafood is a staple, but you cannot miss the Asian and Spanish fusion in their cooking. When it’s time to relax, you can opt for the white sand beaches of Bohol’s Panglao Island, where you can snorkel or dive off some world-class sports to see some Asian achingly beautiful coral reefs. In Bohol, you can also paddleboard, windsurf, zip-line, AY+TV, and even rock climb. Bohol is a laid-back place with lots of friendly people, which makes its significance in Philippine history more surreal. You can see the Blood Compact Site of Bohol, and across you can explore historic churches, carvings, and Frescoes that show a timeline of Philippines history.
Bohol is around 644km (400 Miles) from Manila, and in between, it is separated by the seas, islands, and straits. That said, you can get to Bohol by Air thanks to the Bohol-Panglao Airport in the region, by bus or by car, and by sea thanks to existing waterways between the two places.
Manila to Bohol by Ferry
The cheapest way to get from Manila to Bohol depends on the means of travel you have chosen and the time of the year. The ferry is constantly the cheapest way to traverse this vast territory, but most of the time, there isn’t much of a difference between airfare and bus fare. That said, in peak tourism season, taking the ferry is way cheaper than taking the bus or taking a Manila to Bohol flight. You might say you want to bring your car to the ferry, but that would cost you extra. If you were to board the ferry on foot, it would cost you around $41 to get from the North Harbor in Manila to Cebu and take you three and a half hours to complete the journey. In a week, it is expected that one ferry will make 50 such trips, so you won’t have to worry about missing one. From Cebu, you have to take a second ferry to Tubigon—the terminal and the journey costs around $8 and takes one hour to complete. The best ferry from Cebu to Bohol is operated by the 2Go Travel company, but other independent operators are equally as reliable. From the Seaport at Tubigon, you can then take a cab or Jeepney bus to your residence.
Manila to Bohol by Air
Traveling from Manila to Bohol is obviously the fastest way to connect the two places. Before 2018, most flights to Bohol came through Tagbilaran Airport, but it was relieved of heavy traffic once the larger Bohol-Panglao Airport came into service. The Bohol-Panglao Airport serves both domestic and international traffic; hence you could realistically fly back home from here once your itinerary is complete. There are over 60 direct flights from the Philippines’ main international airport– Ninoy Aquino International Airport to Bohol each week, plus dedicated airlines that fly the route. A Manila to Bohol flight will take approximately an hour and cost around $55, but you can find deals for as low as $30 depending on the airline and the season.
Manila to Bohol by Road
To travel from Manila to Bohol by land means you have to take the Manila to Bohol bus. If you go the bus route, you will have to change buses several times because there is no direct manila to Bohol bus, and you also have to jump several ferries. This brings the total journey time to around 23hours on the trot. You begin the journey by taking a Jeepney at the intersection of Quezon Boulevard and Claro M. Recto Avenue. This will cost you around $1, and the total journey time will be close to 1 hour. After alighting, you will take the 6-minute walk from the terminal to Silver Star Bus Terminal in Cubao and board a bus to Carmen. The most reliable bus for this route is the Silver Star Liner—it departs only once a day, so you have to be careful not to miss it. This bus ride will take close to 22 hours, boarding several ferries in between. People who treat the bus ride as a road trip will get to see the authentic Philippines up close and see most of the attractions along the way.
Other factors like the weather may affect your travels. Most Filipinos will opt to travel in the monsoon season stretching from November to May to avoid the scorching sun of the dry season. However, if the heat doesn’t faze you, the hot season will be the time to score massive deals on travel.