The Chocolate Hills are an unusual geological formation found in Bohol, in the Central Visayas region of the Philippines. It is found that there are 1,776 hills spread on an approximate 50 square kilometer area. Depending on the season, the Chocolate Hills change in color, varying from green to chocolate brown.
The Chocolate hills are the most famous tourist attraction in Bohol. The Chocolate hills were featured in the Philippine Tourism Authority’s list of Philippine tourist destinations and are the Philippines’ third National Geological Monument. Proposals to include the Chocolate hills in the UNESCO World Heritage Site list are currently being conducted.
Of the 1,247 hills, two have been developed into resorts for tourism.The original resort is located in Carmen, Bohol located in Barangay Buenos Aires, only a few minutes drive from downtown Carmen. The resort in Carmen is called Chocolate Hills Complex. The more recent one in Sagbayan is called Sagbayan Peak.
The original viewing station of the Chocolate Hills is a government-owned and operated resort called "Chocolate Hills Complex" located in Carmen, Bohol, about 55 kilometres (34 mi) from Tagbilaran City and about 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) from the town proper of Carmen, Bohol.
The other way to view the Chocolate Hills is at "Sagbayan Peak", a mountain resort in Sagbayan town, about 75 kilometres (47 mi) northwest of Tagbilaran City. Viewing is made from the deck of an elevated ridge that provides an unobstructed view of the Chocolate Hills as well as the sea off Cebu City. This is only 18 kilometres (11 mi) from the Chocolate Hills complex in neighboring Carmen town.
Sagbayan Peak is a 5-hectare (12-acre) mountaintop resort and recreation center. Its viewing deck offers a 360-degree perspective of the Chocolate Hills plus the blue sea that separates Bohol and Cebu. Aside from the function hall and viewing deck, a hotel, swimming pool, driving range, a butterfly dome and a tarsier sanctuary are planned. A 100-hectare (250-acre) golf course is also planned.
The Chocolate Hills look like women’s dress, or giant mole hills, or something out of a child’s drawing. The unusual thing about it is that it is a natural phenomena! Geologists believe that the hills were formed from marine limestone on top of a clay layer. The Chocolate hills are uniform in shape, some standing from 30 to 50 meters high. They are usually covered with grass the year around, but turn brown during the dry season, thus the name. You can see the magnificent view by climbing 214 steps to an observation outpost above the hills.
The Chocolate Hills is indeed one of the Philippines’ most amazing destinations. The Chocolate Hills Complex has: a hostel, swimming pool, restaurant, and an observation deck to view the amazing hills. You can also view the hills at Sagbayan Peak in the town of Sagbayan.
You can get to the Chocolate Hills on your own or by joining a day tour. From Tagbilaran, go to the bus terminal in Dao, and take a bus to Carmen. Ask the bus driver to drop you off at Chocolate Hills, located 4 km before you reach Carmen.
If you're coming from Tubigon (arriving from Cebu by boat), a few buses go to Carmen daily, but sometimes you'll have to wait for some time for the bus to fill up. When you arrive in Carmen, you can catch the next bus or jeepney in the direction of Bilar, Loay or Tagbilaran, or ask a 'habal-habal' driver to bring you to the Chocolate Hills Complex.
If you get lost you can always ask help from the locals who are very hospitable and friendly.
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