Discovering Bohol: Loboc River Cruise

   Popularly known as the most famous river in Bohol, the Loboc River is considered to be one of the major tourist destinations in the island. With such beauty, tourism took its place by promoting the river through various cruises while still preserving the river’s natural habitat and cleanliness.

   After our service tour driver paid for our entrance, each one of us were handed out with our own gate pass to the floating restaurant. The gate pass itself is also a post card which you can keep as a souvenir.

   It took us a while to go inside the boat as the crews were still refilling the food from the buffet table. As we wait, I can’t help myself and asked my brother to have my picture be taken looking as grumpy and hungry as ever while waiting for our turn to  jump into the floating restaurant and eat.

   Since we still have time, I took the opportunity to chill out with the boys.

   As soon as the crews gave us the go signal, we hurriedly climb aboard and from there, we were all welcomed by a  solo guitarist who was entertaining the crowd with its country musics.

   Since its noon time already and we’re all hungry, its time for us to grab something to eat. Here’s me munching my way towards the floating restaurant’s lunch buffet— burp! ^_^ ….

   As the boat traversed its way towards the long river, we came to a halt on a rondalla house wherein we were welcomed by the Loboc River Choir  with a song and dance number. What I liked the most was seeing foreigners enjoying themselves and having the time of their life while dancing along with the locals.

   I’m not really sure how long this cruise was but I guess it’s around 30-45 mins. Several tiny waterfalls marked the end of our river cruise before the boat turned its way back to the port.

   As we were almost near to our final destination, we saw some daring kids climbing their way into a coconut tree while some of them were jumping towards the river through a rope tied into the tree .

   Before docking, I grabbed my camera and took a shot of the long river cruise port.

   Just outside the port’s exit, several souvenir shops and stores lined up.

   Before leaving, we tried out the famous ice cream made by the Bohol Bee Farm — malunggay flavored ice cream on a camote cone. Simply delicious! yum yum yum…^_^

Discovering Bohol: Xzootic Animal Park

   Xzootic Animal Park is a small but well-maintained zoo located at  Agape, Loay. Aside from the usual animals that we see, this park also houses several exotic animals. The place is well-known by its main attraction, the 200 kg Burmese python “Norio” which is a 9 yr old snake. Just beside its cage, another 6-yr old Burmese python by the name of “Nelia” is being displayed as well.

   Before entering Norio’s cage to have my picture be taken, I asked the zookeeper if the snake had already eaten as I don’t want to be bitten by it. Even if it says tamed on the tarpaulin, safety was still my utmost priority at that time. I learned that the snake had just eaten 2 whole chicken — talk about appetite.

Norio and Me

If real, live snakes are not your type, you may opt for this one. ^_^

I must say that my favorite activity here at the zoo was the picture-taking with the iguana. It was my first time to actually experience a live and scaly creature be put on top of my head so the excitement that I felt at that time was really kicking up.

aye aye, sir

Here are some of the animals that you may find here at the park.

On the contrary, I was really surprised to see Barney here. I just couldn’t see how Barney would fit in here and what is its actual relation to the zoo. I can’t seem to find the connection. Nevertheless, my mom did enjoy taking picture with it. ^_^

Say Cheese!

Just a thought on the side, I wonder if the name “Xzootic” came from the combined words of exotic and zoo since both words really describe this place? I don’t know the answer to this as I never did ask any zookeepers about it but it makes sense if it did.

Things You Need To Know:

  1. Entrance fee is Php 20 / person.
  2. Donation boxes can be seen from outside the cages of various animals. Giving money is not mandatory but for those who have extras, feel free to give some. According to one of the zookeepers, they use the money to buy foods for the animal.
  3. Picture taking with the snakes are free. Just bring your own camera. However, donations are very much welcome here.
  4. Picture taking with the iguanas are not free. It costs Php 10 for every 3 shots. Personal cameras will be used.
  5. If in any case you don’t have any camera with you, there are photographers within the area who can help you out with that. However, each picture costs Php 100 and if you want it to be framed, they will charge you for another Php 50.
  6. If you are planning to buy Peanut Kisses as your pasalubong, the best place to buy is here. It will only cost you Php 140 (6 pieces of Peanut Kisses per pack).

Discovering Bohol: Blood Compact

   Considered as one of the most famous historical event in the Philippines, the Blood Compact Shrine is a life-size bronze monument that depicts the Sandugo (Isang Dugo or One Blood) event that happened between Miguel Lopez de Legazpi and Rajah Sikatuna. This event symbolizes the Treaty of Friendship formed between the two parties dated March 16, 1565. As part of a tribal tradition to their friendship,

   Each of the two leaders made a small cut in his arm, drew a few drops of blood from the incision, mixed it with wine, and drank the goblet containing the blood of the other. Thus was the first bond of friendship between Filipinos and Spaniards.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sandugo

   The monument itself is located at Barangay Bool, Tagbilaran City. However, the event didn’t happen at this area. Just a few meters away from the shrine is the actual location of the Sandugo that took place in the island of Bohol.

image courtesy of stoicpassion.com

Just behind the shrine, one can already find a majestic view of the sea.

 a backdrop view of the serene sea

Good thing for us, the weather was really good at that time and only a handful of tourists were in the area. I can say we were in a great timing as we were able to take several souvenir photos together with the statues.

smile and kampay!

Just outside the shrine is a souvenir shop. Lots of great items you can find in this place from wallets, key chains, bags, shirts and so much more. However, it’s too much early for us to buy pasalubongs at this period as this was only our first stop. If in case you’re planning to buy souvenir items with Tarsier motifs, there are street vendors just outside the shrine which sells these items for a much cheaper price as compared to those being sold out in a store. Please keep in mind though that the choices are limited only and the items being sold here are selected.

souvenir shop
trying out the hat