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We spent 6 weeks on our travels in The Philippines and we did so many things whilst we were there it was hard to figure out our absolute must dos. But because we're your best mates we thought we'd list our FAVOURITE things to do so you don't have to mess about and waste all of your money doing all the shit ones. 

10. Helmet Diving in Boracay

 Helmet Diving, Borocay

Helmet Diving, Borocay

Where?
Boracay - just off White Beach. Walk to the top past all the boats there are tables set up in little huts, you can book in there or ask the guys with the signs who walk up and down the beach, they'll hook you up (but make sure you barter!)

How Much?
£4.50 p/p or 300 Pesos if you're good at bartering (prices start at 800 Pesos p/p = £12.50)

Helmet Diving Borocay

What to expect
You get a quick 5 min speed boat out to a floating dock in the middle of the sea. You walk down a little silver ladder into the water then they put the helmet onto your head, and you lower yourself down. The guide is in the water with his diving gear on and he helps hold you down until your safely resting on the sand.You have to equalise on your way down by holding your nose and breathing out to pop your ears. But as soon as your in you can breath as normal, but you're standing on the bottom of the ocean! The diver you go down with will take photos of you and you get a CD delivered to your hotel the same day (lol!) You'll be able to walk on the ocean floor for around 20 minutes.
Watch our helmet diving video here

 What to bring?

  • A GoPro
  • A towel
  • A drink
Helmet Diving Borocay

9. Stand Up Paddle Boarding on the Loboc River 

 SUP on the Loboc River, Bohol

SUP on the Loboc River, Bohol

Where?
SUP Bohol is about a 40 minute drive from the main town in Bohol which is where most of the hotels and hostels are, you can either take a taxi or if you're adventurous you can ride a scooter (it was the best scooter ride we did on our whole trip - so scenic!)

How Much?
We did the waterfall SUP tour which was BRILLIANT and this cost £30 or 2100 Pesos p/p for a 4-5 hour tour including lunch. Use the code 'KINGINGIT0120@' in the message box when booking for 5% off your waterfall tour! (you're welcome!)

SUP Bohol Aimee.JPG
 The Rope Swing Stop off

The Rope Swing Stop off

What to expect:
When you arrive you will meet your instructor who will give a run down of the day, then you will get fitted with a paddle and head to the dock. There are lockers at the main building where you can keep all of your valuables. Once you get on the river and get used to the technique you'll head down the river for one of the most beautiful, serene, relaxing rides of your life. The sounds, the smells and the scenes are something that you will never forget. You can see houses lining the river, people washing their clothes and cooking, karaoke boats carrying tourist who are singing their hearts our and kids jumping from trees into the warm water. Halfway through you will stop at a little lagoon that has a rope swing where you can swing into the river and show your new mates your best tricks.
Watch our journey down the river here.

 What to bring?

  • GoPro
  • A towel (in case you fall in!)
  • Suncream
  • Drybag
 The Rope swing spot!

The Rope swing spot!

 SUP Bohol

SUP Bohol

8. Island Hopping in El Nido, Palawan

small and big lagoon.JPG

Where?
Just a short ride from the main port in El Nido. You can take a tour or hire a private boat for yourself for the day and beat the crowds!

How Much?
We booked our kayak tour with El Nido Boutique & Art Cafe

  •  Tour A with kayaks- £28/1900 Pesos p/p
  • Tour A without kayaks - £18/1200 Pesos p/p 

Both options include the boat tour, lunch halfway through and to stop off at the different spots.

 Small Lagoon (right) & Big Lagoon (left) El Nido

Small Lagoon (right) & Big Lagoon (left) El Nido

 Big Lagoon, El Nido

Big Lagoon, El Nido

 Snorkel spot on Tour A

Snorkel spot on Tour A

What to expect: 
You get picked up just outside El Nido Boutique & Art Cafe  in the morning and you'll head off on a boat with usually around 10+ people. Every location you arrive at you will be completely blown away. The guides are really helpful and they will kayak/swim with you to all the best spots and show you around. You’ll have never seen anything like it! The shear beauty of these lagoons is mind blowing. The colours and cleanliness of the tropical waters just makes you feel like your in an enchanted land; The epitome of bliss!  There were lots of little hidden caves in and around this lagoon. We found ourselves in a very dark small cave wondering what was in there with us! With the sun shining this was so beautiful, the colours are just magic. Big lagoon was just as pretty. Many of the boats cannot go in so far to big lagoon so you will need a kayak (boats rent them for 300php per kayak) or a SUP board. The run up is a wide, smooth clear blue runway. The further you go on the bluer the water becomes. Once you're inside it's so peaceful, as long as there are no loud muppets knocking about you'll have a lush little reflection on your life and how far you've come.
 Watch our vlog on Tour A here.

 What to bring?

  • GoPro
  • A towel 
  • A hat (don't get sun stroke!)
  • Suncream
  • Drybag
 7 Commando Beach, the last stop on Tour A

7 Commando Beach, the last stop on Tour A

7. Zip Line in El Nido

 Zip lining from one island to another! El Nido

Zip lining from one island to another! El Nido

Where?
Just up from Las Cabanas beach -get a tricycle and tell the driver that you want to head to Maremegmeg Beach for the Zipline. from El Nido town it should cost around 100 Pesos and take about 15 minutes. When you get there it’s about a 15 minute walk to the top - not for the faint hearted.. take lots of water!
 

How Much?
Sitting Position

  • £7/500 Pesos one way
  • £13/900 Pesos two ways

Superman Position

  •  £10/700 Pesos one way
  • £16/1100 Pesos two ways 

The time we were there (March), they only offered a one way ticket down the zipline. But at peak season (November - April-ish) you can get a two way ticket.

 Zip Line Price List

Zip Line Price List

 The View before you Zip over the trees!

The View before you Zip over the trees!

What to expect:
You get to zipline from one island to another mate!! There are some incredible views from being so high over the clear waters and trees, it's both scary as shit, intense and a once in a lifetime. When you’re done you have to walk back down some very steep steps and across a little sand bar back to the beach.
The Zipline opens from 9am-5.30pm.

What to bring?

  • GoPro/Camera
  • Suncream
  • WATER
  • Sturdy shoes

 

6. Canyoneering in Cebu

 Canyoneering in Cebu

Canyoneering in Cebu

Where?
Located in the south of Cebu in a place called Badian you will find all the tour companies. We stayed in a town called Moalboal and had a 30 minute scooter ride to our meeting point. You can get buses from Cebu City on a daily basis which takes about three hours and for an extra price the company we booked with Island Trek Tours will pick you up from wherever you're staying in Cebu.

How Much?
We booked our tour with Island Trek Tours and it cost:

  • £42/2,900 Pesos p/p (price goes down for bigger groups)
 The snack spot halfway through the trek

The snack spot halfway through the trek

What to Expect:
Canyoneering basically involves trekking down creeks and streams through a huge, jungle like canyon by walking, jumping, swimming and climbing. Canyoning will start at Canlaob river moving downstream and ending at Kawasan falls.  Kawasan falls is absolutely breathtakingly beautiful, its the most likely place to come up when you google 'The Philippines'; The colour of the waters is unreal! You have to see it for yourself. You get to have the best time with the best backdrop and test your nerves with some HUGE jumps! You don’t have to do all of the jumps if you don’t want to. There are other ways to get around them. Halfway through the tour you will stop off for some snacks then at the end you will have a cooked meal at Kawasan Falls where you can watch people brave it jumping off the biggest waterfall!

 What to bring?

  • GoPro
  • A towel 
  • Suncream (if the sun's out!)
  • Drybag (although they are provided)
Canyoneering Kawasan Falls
Canyoneering Cebu
Canyoneering Cebu

5. Scootering Around 

Scooter Bohol

Where?
Anywhere and everywhere! Smile and say hello to locals on the way around - they are super friendly and in the Philippines they are usually really shocked to see tourist on scooters.

How Much?
Average prices are £5.40/ 350 Pesos per scooter. Make sure you get a helmet.

What to Expect:
FREEDOM! You really get a feel of a place when you get to scooter around it, taking in the smells and colours.
It’s miles better than just jumping in a taxi. You really get to see where you are and have a proper look around! Stopping on every corner for pictures! Just don’t be a dick head and ride nicely. The amount of people you’ll see who’ve come off spectacularly and are bandaged up like mummy’s is crazy. The last thing you want on your holibobs is to be in a hospital getting your wounds washed and bandaged up and not being able to swim for the rest of it. Once you get on the road, you will see so much, meet so many locals and have the best road trips ever!

Scooter Bohol
scootering2.JPG

4. Island Hopping in Coron

Where?

This might throw you off but the island hopping in Coron, is actually in Coron! ... But yeah we booked our trip with Coron Galeri and we did the Coron Island Ultimate Tour.

How Much?

  • £14/950 Pesos p/p

Lagoon Coron

What to Expect:
Island hopping in Coron was superb, not as quiet as Bohol and not as busy as El Nido. The hidden Lagoons and lakes are very different to the ones in El Nido and once you get inside some of them they are so calm and peaceful. The stop offs on this ultime tour were brilliant, there was plenty of snorkelling, plenty of swimming and incredible scenes. If you're not sure where you'd prefer to do a tour (you should try and do them all!) Then we will be writing a Vs. article on what we loved the most. But for us, Coron was up there, absolutely amazing!

What to bring?

  • GoPro + other cameras
  • A towel 
  • Suncream 
  • Drybag 
 Shameless Selfie at Secret Lagoon

Shameless Selfie at Secret Lagoon

4. Dolphin & Turtle watching in Bohol

Turtle in Bohol

Where?
You will get picked up from your hostel or hotel and driven to Baclayon Pier which is about 15-20 minutes from Tagbilaran city (the main city in Bohol). 

How Much?
We booked our tour with Pamilacan Island Dolphin tours and we went for 'Package 2' 

  • £37/2500 Pesos p/p
 Pamilacan Island, the lunch stop off with a beautiful coral garden for snorkelling

Pamilacan Island, the lunch stop off with a beautiful coral garden for snorkelling

 Virgin Island

Virgin Island

What to expect:
By far this was the best day we had in The Philippines! Our guide and boat man were the friendliest funny people and made the whole day so much fun. On the way out within 15 minutes we saw a pod of 200+ dolphins all swimming and jumping out of the water, we ended up being the only boat out and just sat there and watched in utter amazement. After that we headed for Pamilacan Island for some lunch and a chill. When we were ready we took these tiny boats over a coral garden and we saw giant jack fish, star fish and some beautiful coral. We got back on our motor boat and went in search of some turtles. We ended up seeing about 9 turtles in one spot and snorkelling around with them for about an hour- life changing shit that was! Our last stop was an amazing strip of beach called 'Virgin Island'. All in all the day was just endless 'WOW's, 'OM-G's and 'HOLY SH*T's. If you are heading to Bohol you HAVE to make sure you do this tour. Unlike El Nido or Coron it is so much quieter and chilled - 100% worth it.

What to bring?

  • GoPro + other cameras
  • A towel 
  • Suncream 
  • Drybag 
  • Snacks (it's a long day and we got V hangry)
 One of the hundreds of pods of dolphins!

One of the hundreds of pods of dolphins!

2. Stay on a Private Island

Brother Island red.JPG

Where?
Before we left we found out that in EL Nido you can actually stay on some of the islands off the coast. In doing out research we came across Brother Island on Air BnB. It's about 1 hour from the town of El Nido where Ali and his crew will pick you up on one of their awesome hand built Filipino boats. Then about another 10-15 minute boat ride until you reach paradise.

 Next level sunrise on Brother Island 💙

Next level sunrise on Brother Island 💙

How Much?
Prices vary depending on time of year but it's roughly £220 per night. That's for a WHOLE island to yourself, your own chef, use of the boats and snorkelling gear, and the ultimate chilled island experience. 

 Ali, our wonderful host

Ali, our wonderful host

What to expect:
It's really difficult to describe Brother Island in words. But from the very beginning when you are greeted by Ali and his team you will feel instantly welcome and chilled. We became really great friends with Ali, he has some brilliant stories and is just a super cool guy doing lots for the local community with the island. You will get a choice of a few rooms to sleep in, although the whole house is yours so take your pick! You will have breakfast, lunch and dinner cooked by a fabulous chef. There's also a fridge with beer, coke and lots of soft drinks as well as tea, coffee and water to help yourself to all day. The best part about Brother Island is there's NO WIFI! NOW some of you are probably thinking 'WTF bro I need to post on Instagram and Facetime my gerbil!?' Trust me, by having no internet you will quickly feel VERY chilled without the need to scroll through your feeds for pointless house. Instead, take a wicked book, or if you can't sit still snorkel around the island, walk around it or take a kayak- you are in paradise! And if you thought it couldn't get any better there are also three dogs! Rambo, Lucky and Zorro!

What to bring?

  • Everything you own

In El Nido you can actually camp on some of the islands off the main port. If you ask around in the town or see posters offering this then just see how much you can do it for. Alternatively you can ask the local boat men and see if they'll drop you off with a tent and some supplies for a day or two - a proper Robinson Crusoe experience!

 Kayaking around Brother Island

Kayaking around Brother Island

1. Whaleshark diving in Donsol
 

whaleshark.JPG

Where?

Whale shark swimming should be done in Donsol and Donsol only. A lot of people go to Oslob in Cebu, but you should know before you go there that the whale sharks are not in their natural habitat. They have been feeding the whale sharks there for a number of years as the tourism was catching on and more and more people wanted to see them. It's a bit like riding an elephant in Thailand, you just shouldn't do it as it's exploiting the animals and messing with their natural rituals.  In Donsol however  you get to see the whale sharks in their natural environment. There are certain rules which all the boat tour companies abide by to protect the whale sharks here. By seeing them in Donsol you can also contribute to their protection instead of in Oslob where a lot of the whale sharks get injured from tourists riding them and boat propellers scarring their fins and bodies from overcrowding and no instruction of what's right or wrong.
Make sure you get yourself somewhere banging to stay whilst you're in Donsol. Here are some of our favourite places to stay.

How Much?
You pay for a boat which will hold up to 7 people. The boat costs 3500pesos (£55) so you can have your own boat or share with others to make it cheaper.
There is also a registration fee of 300 filipino pesos (£4.50)
There is also snorkel and flipper rental there for cheap or if you have your own you can use them.
 

 Happiest kids after spotting the Whalesharks!

Happiest kids after spotting the Whalesharks!

What to expect:
You must go to the Donsol tourism office to arrange a boat and get it for the best price. If you choose to book through your hotel then you will more than likely get charged twice the price so just get a tricycle to the tourism office. Once you get a boat you will have a crew of 3-4 Donsol locals that will keep a look out for the whale sharks. As soon as they see one, they shout and you all get ready on the side of the boat ready to jump in, when he says, ‘go’ you all jump in and follow the whale sharks for as long as you legs can. It's hard work but it’s all very exciting!

 Our boat on the lookout for the friendly giants!

Our boat on the lookout for the friendly giants!

So there you have it! Kinging-It's Top 10 things to do in the beautiful Philippines! Now what are you waiting for?! Go ahead and book those flights baby! If you want to watch what we go up to on our 6 week trip then click the video below for some lols and some 'Wow!'s. 

Big Loves, C & A x

 

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