HIT THE BEACHES AND HEAD FOR THE HILLS

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - TRAVEL & INDULGENCE -

BO­HOL IS­LAND, VISAYAS: Bo­hol is home to about 1200 lime­stone mounds known as the Cho­co­late Hills, which are a bit like gi­ant Mal­te­sers melted across a huge tray. Pleasantly un­usual to be­hold, go in the sum­mer (Jan­uary to May) when they’ve dried out to brown. Also liv­ing on the is­land are tar­siers, one of the world’s small­est pri­mates. At less than 15cm high, th­ese furry lit­tle fel­lows have huge adorable eyes but are rather shy and en­dan­gered, which is why they can be found at a sanc­tu­ary in Corella.

BORACAY IS­LAND, VISAYAS: Imag­ine a gen­tly slop­ing shore of tal­cum pow­der, and you’re close to vi­su­al­is­ing Boracay’s White Beach. This white-hot lit­tle trea­sure has been in­ter­na­tion­ally praised to the skies, so is any­thing but quiet, with dozens of restau­rants and bars. On Boracay’s north­ern tip, Puka beach has more of a rugged cast­away wilder­ness feel.

BAN­TAYAN IS­LAND, VISAYAS: Un­known even to most Filipinos, Ban­tayan is not the eas­i­est place to reach but the is­land’s quiet, beau­ti­ful white-sand beaches de­serve the ef­fort. Its splen­did iso­la­tion has so far saved it from pack­age trav­ellers and ho­tel chains. By mo­tor­bike, you can tour Ban­tayan in half a day, or, as it has few con­tours, cy­cling on quiet roads shaded by co­conut trees is an easy, in­vig­o­rat­ing way to beach-hop. Kota Beach has the ad­van­tage of a mini la­goon, pro­tected by a white sand­bar formed be­tween Jan­uary and June. Con-

NE­GROS IS­LAND, VISAYAS:

BANAUE RICE TER­RACES, LUZON:

The Cho­co­late Hills on Bo­hol Is­land, Visayas

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