Sunday, September 20, 2009

The Chocolate Hills of Bohol

When I wrote about the Chocolate Hills landing in the Forbes list of most astonishing landscapes, I was so eager to book a trip to Bohol. One day, while I was in Cebu, we spontaneously decided to spend a night in Bohol. We travelled via ferry at noontime, hoping to see the hills by 4PM. From the Tagbilaran port, we hired a van for P2,000 to take us around Bohol in the little time we had left.


The Chocolate Hills were our priority so we drove there instantly. It was also the furthest of the well known attractions in Bohol. We passed by the Baclayon Church, the Loboc River and the Tarsier sanctuary. We didn't stop though, and decided to just try our luck on our way back. We did stop to take a snapshot of the picturesque man-made forest (pic above).


I didn't expect anything great from the hills, because I knew the photo I saw in the Forbes list was enhanced already. I was in for a surprise. As soon as the first hills rolled out into the horizon, my eyes opened wide. The landscape reminded me of the karst hills of Guilin in China. Rice fields set against a backdrop of teardrop hills.


We arrived at the park entrance, where we paid a fee (I forgot how much, sorry). We raced up the steep steps to the viewpoint. The view was pleasant, as the plain fields were all bright green. The air got cooler, and slowly, the Chocolate Hills revealed its magnificence.


It had just rained, so there was a misty blanket enshrouding the tips of the hills. It was indeed an astonishing sight, thousands of uniform-sized brown hills, that stretches onto the horizon. I then realized the photo I saw in Forbes was not fake. One could really take a shot like that, probably during sunrise.


The Chocolate Hills of Bohol is indeed a wonder of nature, and for me, it should be listed as one of the best landscapes in the world. I was awed by the grandeur of the seemingly small hills. The Chocolate Hills of Bohol is a must-visit for all travellers from all around the world.

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