Anda: Bohol’s Kept Secret (No More)

Bohol, the 10th largest island of the Philippines, has always been a fascination to both local and foreign travelers. Together with the islands of Palawan and Cebu, this island province has proven to be a major tourism hub. Attraction drawers like the Chocolate Hills, Panglao Island’s exquisite beaches, the Loboc River Cruise, and the very charming primate tarsier have kept the visitors number increasing in this tropical paradise.

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And just like that… all the while we have seen the best of Bohol. It was during my 4th time in this alluring island when I got the chance to visit the north eastern town of Anda.  Being a secluded town, it isn’t that surprising that it has some of Bohol well-kept shorelines. And just like most Philippine beaches, it boasts off pristine, crystal clear waters, fine white sand BUT with a lesser crowd.  Sounds like the perfect spot, at least for me who isn’t into teeming beaches.

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My one-day stay in Anda, hopping from one beach to another, proved that indeed there is more to Bohol. So if you want to go beyond the usual Bohol itinerary, be willing to take on the extra mile by travelling up-north and enjoy this quaint town beaches like the beautiful public beach QuinaleBeach to the more secluded Bitoon Beach, and Bugnaw Beach. 

Also, the town have other attractions worthy of a visit like Can-umantad Waterfalls, Cabugnow Cave Pool, and Limanok Island. Twas quite unfortunate that I wasn’t able to visit these because of a heavy downpour during the rest of my stay. Well, there goes a good reason to go back to Anda.
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How to Get to Anda, Bohol

Anda is approximately 100 kilometers from Tagbilaran and it takes two to three hours to reach by bus or private vehicle. Several buses and V-hire vans available at Dao District also have several scheduled trips to Anda.

Anda Bohol Tourism Contacts

Municipality of Anda
Anda Tourism Office
Poblacion Anda, Bohol
Mobile: 0908-793-6643
Email: lgu@andabohol.gov.ph / toiurism@andabohol.gov.ph
Website: http://www.andabohol.gov.ph/

Lamanoc Island Tours
Operating Hours: 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Tour cost: Php300 pesos (inclusive of entrance, guided tour and boat trip)
Contact Numbers: (038) 510 8094 or 0917 3245917

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Special thanks to a very generous instagram friend of mine, @rey_of_light for allowing me to use some of his Anda photos. Follow him on his Instagram and you’ll be delighted to discover more of Bohol’s wonders.

Don’t be wasted soul, be “juan”derlust. Take it easy everyJuan.

Playa Tropical (Ilocos Norte, PH)

If you are in search for a relaxing beachfront resort in Ilocos, this Balinese-inspired resort in Currimao just might amuse your taste.
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Created in traditional Balinese architecture, Playa Tropical Resort’s picturesque villas, private pools, distinctive garden bathrooms and delicate interiors with Balinese art, is certainly a relaxing abode for you and your family.

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Features:

Playa Tropical resort comes with 5 two-storey Casas. Each casa has a private pool. The smaller (and cheaper ones) called Casitas house standard rooms that are as good and tidy as the Casas. In between the Casas and the Casitas is a pond that adds beauty to the place.

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At the ground floor is the resort’s inhouse restaurant-slash-cafe called Café Amarra. Some of the food they serve include Ilocano delicacies like poque-poque and longganisa. Although they are good, they are quite expensive.

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Near the seashore is the resort’s large Infinity Pool. There is also a playground for kids and a spa at one side.  One can also stroll along the beach area as it is just a stone’s throw away from the poolside. The sand may be grayish to black but it has to be one of the finest beach sand I have set foot on. One can wait til late afternoon as the sundown is really stunning at this side of Ilocos.

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Other amenities include the following: Wifi access, housekeeping service, Room service, car wash. They also have function rooms and game room. You may also ask them to arrange a tour around Ilocos Norte.

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Fo your reference, here are the room rates:

Deluxe Double (2 double beds, cable television, air-conditioning, hot and cold water, toiletry set, standing shower or bathtub combo) – Php 3,800 nett (Regular) good for single/double occupancies with breakfast; PHP 4,180 (Peak)

Deluxe King (1 king-sized bed, cable television, air-conditioning, hot and cold water, toiletry set, standing shower or bathtub combo) – Php 3,800 nett (Regular) good for single/double occupancies with breakfast; PHP 4,180 (Peak)

Premier Room (1 king-sized bed with couch, cable television, air-conditioning, hot and cold water, toiletry set, standing shower or bathtub combo) – Php 4,000 nett (Regular) good for single/double occupancies with breakfast; PHP 4,400 (Peak)

Royal Suite with Bathtub (1 canopy bed, cable television, air-conditioning, hot and cold water, toiletry set, bathtub) –  Php 5,800 nett (Regular) good for single/double occupancies with breakfast; PHP 6,380 (Peak)

Royal Suite with Jacuzzi (1 canopy bed, cable television, air-conditioning, hot and cold water, toiletry set, Jacuzzi) – Php 6,500 nett (Regular) good for single/double occupancies with breakfast; PHP 7,150 (Peak)

Casa Room (1 queen Sized bed and 3 single beds, 18 sqm private pool,cable television, mini-fridge, in-room safe, individually controlled air-conditioning, hot and cold water, separate toilet and bath) – Php 12,500 nett (Regular) good for single/double occupancies with breakfast; PHP 13,750 (Peak)

Please take note that prices maybe subject to change without prior notice. Also, rooms that are single or twin sharing have complementary breakfast.

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*Maximum of four adults in a room, 2 excess adults without breakfast

*Extra person: PhP 600 per person per night, PhP 800 (for Casa Room)

*Children 8 years old and below sharing bed with their parents are considered free of charge but without breakfast. 9 years old and above are considered adult with full charge rate.

*Check in time: 2 pm; Check out time: 12 noon. Early check in and late check out is subject to room availability on the day itself.

**If one opts for a day tour, the entrance and pool use is at 200Php/ person.

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Playa Tropical Resort Hotel, Barangay Victoria, Currimao, Ilocos Norte, Philippines

Contact us through (+63) 917 570 0223 or (+63) 670 1211 or email us at stay@playatropical.com.ph

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So the next time you are feeling tired and you want an escape some where north, stay at Playa Tropical Resort. Don’t be a wasted soul, be “juan”derlust.

Thunderbird Resort (San Fernando, La Union, PH)

Be an explorer. The universe is filled with wonder and magical things.
— Flavia

Greece is definitely an ideal place to be lost if I were to venture into that side of the world. But that seems to be a far-fetched reality for now. Good thing, my mom’s province offers a piece of the Greek vibe in La Union.

Radically situated in a prosaic cliff of Poro Point Freeport Zone and overlooking the West Philippine Sea, Thunderbird Resort is more than a lavish relaxation facility.  The Mediterranean-inspired architecture evident from its facade to its interior, the hotel services and amenities are definitely at same level with international standards. This 65-hectare property also offers a stylish and ambient atmosphere of an international casino, a golf course and the tranquillity of an exquisite seaside.

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Momentous events like a quixotic wedding to a company team building or maybe just a family outing, this resort would be more than perfect. Indeed, this place is an ideal venue for an invigorating and exciting break away.

So why do I consider Thunderbird a staycation delight? Because of their large rooms with very comfortable beds, spacious bathroom, a veranda with an awesome view, a restaurant that offers delectable food and my favourite? Very scenic sunset!

***Olives Restaurant is the only restaurant in the main resort. It is strategically located with a view of the sea, the verdant grassy landscape of the hotel (and the sunset). The ambiance of which is really relaxing. They offer a wide variety of food from Mediterranean cuisine to Ilocano dishes.

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Features of Thunderbird Resorts – Poro Point

Facilities
24-hour front desk 24-hour room service bar
business center car park casino
coffee shop concierge facilities for disabled guests
family room laundry service newspapers
restaurant room service safety deposit boxes
Sports and Recreation
garden golf course (on site) kids club
massage outdoor pool pool (kids)
private beach
Internet
free Wi-Fi in all rooms
Parking
car park

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If you opt to do a day tour, rate is at Php 1,000.

Inclusions:

  1. From the Php 1,000 fee, the Php 750 is consumable. You can use it on the Bar or the restaurant.
  2. Use of Facilities – Air-conditioned locker rooms, shower, lockers, towels, use of the pool and the kiddie Pool, swimming at the beach.

How to Get to Thunderbird Resorts Poro Point

  1. By Car (5-6 hour drive via NLEX, TPLEX and SCTEX)
  2. Bus: Hop on any bus bound for La Union or Ilocos and drop by the city of San Fernando (7-8 hours due to stop-over)

Thunderbird Resorts Poro Point – La Union
Poro Point Freeport Zone, San Fernando City, La Union
(63-72) 888-7777 (La Union)
(63-2) 886-5555 (Makati Office)
http://www.thunderbird-asia.com/poro.php