20 days in the Philippines - ITINERARY & TIPS

20 days of dreams in the Philippines
Ahhh Philippines, what beautiful country ! Consisting of more than 7000 islands and islets (7197 to be precise), this country located in Asia will charm you if you are fans of nature, paradisiac beaches and turquoise waters. Two members of the Voopies team had the chance to go on vacation about twenty days in February 2020! Often presented as one of Asian's favorite destinations for about 5 years, here is our route and our opinion on this beautiful country:


Air ticket prices: 420 € / person with British Airways
Route: Nice -> London -> Kuala Lumpur -> Manila


Day 1: Manila - Cebu

We arrived in Manila at the end of the day and took a flight directly to Cebu Island. There are 7 hours of time offset with France so fatigue was felt, we dinner then return to the hotel.
Hotel: Reddorz Junquera - Perfect for a night of "transit" not far from the harbor where there is the ferry for Bohol.



Day 2: Cebu - Bohol

We arrived in Manila at the end of the day and took a flight directly to Cebu Island. There are 7 hours of time offset with France so fatigue was felt, we dinner then return to the hotel.
 
The morning we wandered in Cebu-City and visited the various centers of interests of the city: Basilica del Santo Nino,Metropolitan Cathedral,Heritage Monument,Plaza Independencia.
Some nice monuments but honestly nothing incredible to do in this city.
We took the opportunity to book the ferry to Bohol Island, which is 2 hours from Cebu City, with the company Oceanjet. There are about 10 departures a day from Cebu City, you can book online if you wish on the site:https://www.bookaway.com/
The crossing went very well, we chose the outside tickets and were so on the floor of the boat in the open air on numbered places. There are also interior tickets, so you are in the boat in an air-conditioned room.
In Bohol you can stay in multiple places because the island is very big but most travelers choose to stay towards Alona Beach, one side of the very nice island near the sea where you will find restaurants, bars on the beach, And many starts (visits from the island, boat day, snorkeling, etc.).
Hotel: PANGLAO REGENT PARK RESORT. Great location at 7min walk from the main beach, very comfortable and a beautiful pool in the hotel for a cost of about 25 € per night for a double room.



Day 3 : Bohol tour

We made a day tour in Bohol in the land! Count about 500 to 700 pesos (about 8 to 10 €) for a day discovery of the island (do not hesitate to compare the prices of the different sellers and to negotiate). The Van gets you to your hotel (and also recovers other travelers on the way), and go for the exploration of the island. In the program:
- Garden of butterflies (+ meeting with immense parrots and pyton that you can touch, wear without worries).
- Chocolate Hills (the best time of the day - Incredible view from a point of view on these unique hills in the world). You can also do Quad down the hills before climbing to the point of view but it is optional.
- Man-Made Forest (Forest creates by man with Canadian forests)
- Cruise and meals on the Loboc River for 1h30 (really nice: it's extra to 600 pesos / person, about 11 €)
- Meeting with the Tarsiers (impressive to discover the smallest monkey in the world)
- visit of a church (optional)
We then enjoy the sunset in Alona Beach by having a drink with the Aliahailey Reggae Bar.There are dozens of bar along the beach and offers cocktails, beers and happy hour!
 

Day 4 : Day by boat & snorkeling in the neighboring islands

We chose the Haf Day Tour (half day) by boat and paid 700 pesos per person (about 12 €), it comes back to 400 pesos without snorkeling but honestly worth it! It's a great experience with beautiful destinations, except when it's raining (cuckoo tropical storm).
In the program :
- Crossing by boat until the island of Balicasag (possibility to see dolphins on the way if you are lucky) + snorkeling spot with thousands of fish, corals and turtles. The spot is really amazing, it's one of the most beautiful snorkeling we have done in the Philippines, we recommend miles times!
- Crossing boat to Virgin Island Sand Bench. Perso we have not seen much from this place, it was the storm and it was raining in torrent, despite all we could see the different colors of the water and it looks really beautiful if you come for a day sunny.
Then return to Bohol around 13h, which leaves you time to enjoy the afternoon and take a nap on the beach to give you back to 5am!
Good Plan Sunset and Apero: We went to the hotel Henann Resort Which is a beautiful 5 * huge hotel with several bars and restaurants. The beach bar offers Happy Hour (1 glass bought, 1 offered), with this offer the beers or cocktails come back cheaper in the beach Lambda bars, for a really luxurious and idyllic setting.



Day 5 : Bohol - Siquijor

We took the boat at 10:30 for a crossing of 2 hours to Siquijor Island. An island a lot less tourist but so beautiful, to do absolutely if you have time and want to find yourself in peace far from the mass of tourists with your / your traveling companions. Note There are only two boats a day doing the Bohol-Siquijor crossing!

Travel-Voopies-Philippines-Siquijor Blog
 Hotel Coup de coeur: Blue Wave Inn.
It is a sublime hotel on the beach with overflow swimming pool sea view, for 25 € per night with two breakfast included. The staff is adorable, help us to rent scooters and advisers on the best places to visit.


Day 6 : Siquijor visit

Discarded Day of Siquijor Island in Scooter (Rental of Scooter 400 Pesos + 80 Pesos of Gasoline). The roads are superb to scooter, nothing dangerous, it's one of our most beautiful days in the Philippines. Real favorite for this sublime island where you can find deserted beaches with turquoise waters, beautiful waterfalls lined with palm trees. It is paradisiac and at the same time very wild:
In the program:
- Swimming on the beach in San Juan in turquoise water
- Swimming in the pools of Lugonason Falls (only in the world!)
- stop at Century Old Coulte Tree, with a pool containing fish that eats the skin's skins (10 pesos / person for entrance + 5 pesos parking)
- Swimming in Momalulalan Beach, we stopped by chance and we have not been disappointed, deserted beach and beautiful turquoise water
- Lunch on the road in Maria, Chef Joe's Cuisine, which offers a simple but delicious kitchen (210 pesos the dish, 10 pesos dessert type muffin banana)
- Stop in Kagusua Beach where the entrance is paying (30p per person + 20p per scooter). We do not advise you to go because there are many people and it is clearly not the most beautiful beach.
In the evening we went to see the sunset in San Juan, a spot quite "popular" tourists with no maize hotels and bars / restaurants. We ate at the Monkey Business in San Juan, best vegetarian curry coconut stay (300p).
Travel-Voopies-Philippines-Siquijor Blog


DAY 7 : SIQUIJOR - CEBU

We took a ferry to Bohol Siquijor and Bohol to Cebu. Please note there are only 2 departures per day to Bohol, so it must be organized in advance.
We took advantage of this day to rest at a hotel near the airport for not face the terrible traffic jams downtown Cebu.


DAY 8 : CEBU - BORACAY

Flight Cebu - Boracay very fast in a small plane.
Program for the day:
- Afternoon swimming and tanning at the beach Puka Beach (we could even see monkeys along the road to the beach)
- Sunset in the city in White Beach: The most famous beach of the island. The sunset is just beautiful!
The evening we have Dinnes at Henann hotel, the same hotel chain as Bohol. We feasted on a buffet with very hearty desire and quality and unlimited drinks (wine, beer, soft drinks) for less than 18 € per person with a live show. We recommend it for a special occasion or to treat yourself!
Hotel:Oasis Resort and Spa. The hotel is very nice, protected from the crowd. They offer 1 hour massage and breakfast is inclus.Il is 15/20 minutes from downtown by car and 5min drive from the beach Puka Beach. Point positive they have a free shuttle to the center.


DAY 9 : BORACAY

We spent the morning in White Beach, the water is amazing what is most beautiful beaches of the Philippines. It is certainly tourism but we understand why when you see the translucent water. We hesitated to come to Boracay because the island was known for its mass tourism but we do not regret, they take many measures to limit pollution and the island is gorgeous. Having burnt on this beach paradise we make a turn to the D-Mall! shopping area that borders the beach where you find all kinds of souvenir shops.
We then had lunch at the hotel (the food is good and the prices very reasonable), then took advantage of two hours of massage offered by the hotel.
In the late afternoon we visited the ilin-ilang beach 5min walk from the hotel and the ^ evening we returned to observe the sunset on the beach of White Beach.
For dinner we opted for the local restaurant Jasper's Capsilog. Great Restaurant good and among the cheapest on the island (120 pesos chicken fried rice for 2).
Travel-Voopies-Philippines-Boracay Blog


DAY 10 : BORACAY

chillau Day program: Lazing on the Beach and White Beach in the morning, and Ilig ylang beach in the afternoon. So fans of the island sunset we returned one last time to observe the sunset in town in White Beach. We have dinner again at Jasper's Capsilog.


DAY 11 : BORACAY - CEBU

Last little dej at the hotel before flying to Boracay Cebu.
We ballads in the afternoon and in the evening we went to the Blue Elephant rooftop (19th floor) for a drink. The view of the city is very beautiful and very classy place. Then we were eating in a mall nearby.
Hotel: Oyo which is located in the center of town near several malls.


DAY 12 : CEBU - PUERTO PRINCESA - EL NIDO

We took a flight Cebu - Puerto Princesa, and then a transfer van Puerto Princesa to El Nido, 5:30 time (600p per person).
When we finally arrived in El Nido (the trip was long), we dined at the very good restaurant on the beach Happy Home El Nido Beach. We recommend as it is a cheaper and it was plentiful.


DAY 13 EL NIDO

We have breakfast in a local bakery and then we made a tour in the city center and the beach of the center, we can not swim it because it is from here that all the excursions boats leave.
So we took a Tuktuk to Vanilla Beach / Las Cabanas Beach where we spent the morning (300p back). Beautiful beaches that look like Thailand, but Zero visibility in the water.
In the afternoon was tranquil, between nap and ballad in the city center. Then we went around local travel agencies to book a day tour boat.
For the snack, we took "pan of coconut" incredibly tasty to the bakery located on the main avenue. You can not miss it this is the only one and there is often the tail.


Day 14 : Day boat in the Palawan Islands

Let's go for the day tour a boat (1200p + 400p of taxes per person), here is the program:
- Big Lagoon kayak (very beautiful but many people)
- Secret Lagoon
- Lunch on the boat behind the cliffs to shelter the wind, too beautiful table and best meal in the Philippines!
- Seven Commando Beach, very beautiful beach but a lot of wind.
We liked this day tour but most of the spots were armored ones, we preferred the Day Tour of Coron so if you are pressed by time or if you want to make several privilege Coron :)
Travel-Voopies-Philippines-Elnido Blog


Day 15 : El Nido - Coron

We were warned but we did not expect this: the boat boat crossing El Nido in Coron is horrible! The journey lasts 5:30 and we are all locked up in a cabin with no fresh air, the boat moves a lot and also half of the passengers have vomited!
Arrival in Coron, we joined our Ken's Homestay hostel, which we do not necessarily recommend because the comfort was very summary we wanted to save on these nights.
We have lunch at Island Boy Grill who offers very good and really cheap dishes for lunch (this is more expensive at dinner).
Then we rose at the top of Mount Tapyas and stayed until Sunset, what we recommend that you do because even if the climb is rough it's worth it.


Day 16 : Boat day in the islands near Coron

Another day tour boat for this 16th day, here is the program:
- KAYANGAN LAKE
- Green Lagoon, truly amazing water and not many people
- Lunch on Sunset Beach, beautiful water and snorkeling with some beautiful fish
- Cyc Beach, the water is beautiful and this beach remains in our top 3 in the Philippines
The Day Tour was really top and it was surely our most beautiful day of this trip. Apart Lake The spots visited were not too crowded in the world and the water was beautiful wherever we went!
Travel-Voopies-Philippines-Coron Blog


Day 17 & 18 : Back to Manila, the capital

We spent the last two days back on Manila, where we were mostly rested and took advantage of these last days off before returning to France.
We hope you liked this article and made you want to discover this beautiful country!

Do not hesitate if you have any questions and if you have been there tell us your favorite place in comments :)

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