A brief overview of my tour of Bohol! It was really interesting, and an awesome day!
We started with the Tarsiers. Tarsiers are small animals that are endangered. They live only on Bohol, and in a small area of Indonesia. There are several conservatories on the island for them. Tarsiers are nocturnal, so all but two of them were sleeping, but they are so cute! Their story is sad though; their numbers are dwindling quickly. They don’t survive well with humans around. When people get too close, or touch them, they can become depressed and die. One was found on a golf course in Manila last month, and died quickly because of all the human interaction.
Then we drove through the man-made forest. The forest was planted in the mid-1950’s in order to stop the massive landslides that were decimating the towns at the bottom of the hills. Driving through it is rather spooky, because all the trees are the same; it seems like you’re in a scary movie set!
The chocolate hills are what Bohol is most famous for (along with the tarsiers). They are called so because in the summer when the grass dies, they are sorta brown! It’s really interesting though, because the hills are made of limestone and coral, built up when the island was underwater long ago, and nothing but grass can grow on them. There are similarly shaped hills all over the island, but only the hills that have only grass on them are actually the “chocolate hills.”
There is also a butterfly conservatory on the island. The butterfly most common during this season is the “lazy butterfly,” so it was really cool to be surrounded by all the lazy butterflies! Since they are lazy, they live almost twice as long as other butterflies.
THEN! I had lunch on a floating restaurant on the Rio Verde. Noni plants grow in the Rio Verde — Noni is the fibrous plant traditionally used for roofs and mats, and it only grows where fresh water and salt water meet. The river cruise was very relaxing, although I’ve learned that this is the Korean vacation season, and Bohol is apparently the place to go!
Next, we went to the oldest Jesuit church in the Philippines, which was kinda cool. It was built in the mid-1500’s, and got the third organ every in the Philippines, after two metro-Manila churches.
And last, but certainly not least, we went to see the world’s largest captive python. ”Prony” is 28 feet long, and weighs 218 pounds. And you can go into his cage and pet him….. He is pretty :) I was told he eats one 50 kilo pig per month, or two goats. Yup.