LUSH TROPICAL GREEN drapes this small island, which is home to two of the Philippines most famous attractions: tiny bug-eyed primates called tarsiers, and an area of small domed hills, known as The Chocolate Hills.
Almost no point is more than 50km from the coast, which boasts fine beaches, diving and whale and dolphin watching opportunities. On land, terraced rice fields buttress forest, and waterfalls hide at the end of bumpy roads. Lightly trafficked roads wind down from gentle hills, over deep green rivers and through friendly villages. Sleep by the river or amongst a butterfly-filled garden, but do not skip Bohol.
Bohol is a spot of an island to the east of Cebu, and is every bit as pretty as Bali.
If you arrive in the port city of Tagbilaran, you could be forgiven for disagreeing.
A bridge joins the city to Panglao Island, where Alona Beach is a major resort town. I didn't get the attraction, although this pastel coloured house was rather nice.
I spent more time in the gym than on the beach. No air-con, rusty weights and cracked benches. $2 a visit.
I was however pleasantly surprised to find food here was actual OK. Not good or great, but in the Philippines OK is a step up.
Enough of the beach. Just 40km away on this crowded jeepney was my first Bohol destination.
Jeepney drivers and conductors have this unique way of holding their cash.
This was home for a few days. Lobok is a base for exploring the beautiful waterfalls, hills and wildife in the east of Bohol.
It was a friendly little town, with a pizza shop, several bakeries, and a basketball tournament.
Armed with a motorcycle, I set out to see some of the many incredible places nearby.
Gentle bends around verdant hills make for beautiful riding through farmland and forests.
Tarsiers are 15cm primates that live in the southern Philippines and parts of Indonesia.
A pair of sanctuaries a short hop from Lobok are realistically your only chance to see these creatures. Even in the sanctuary you will need some help to see them hiding under leaves.
On the same road is a butterfly conservation park. While the enclosures are small, the range of species is interesting.
The gardens are well kept and peaceful. A handful of lodges on site provide a relaxing night's rest.
So you can spend the early morning checking out the flowers and the butterflies.
Bilar Eco Park is a fancy name for a very quiet forest walk. I tried to visit a national park, but I needed to have an over-priced guide even to sit on the grass and read a book. I went back to Bilar!
There is no shortage of scenery outside the national parks, with green waterways across the island.
Pahangog is one of several waterfalls in the Lobok area. You'll need your own transport, a good sense of direction, and a firm grip on the handlebars.
The road back down from Pahangog Falls gives superb views out to sea.
With a bit of google-mappery, I was able to find plenty of rewarding backroads in and out of Lobok.
Sometimes, the highways had their own rewards, too.
A main highway joins Lobok and the Chocolate Hills via the Tarsier Sanctuary.....but so do some backroads.
The Chocolate Hills are one of the country's premier attractions, but why roar up there on a highway?
Lunch stop was at a friendly little market town somewhere between here and there.
Bohol does some of the best food in the Philippines. Not that there is much competition, but in other parts, it can be pretty grim.
More than 1700 hills dot a 50 square kilometre area in the middle of the island. Some say they were formed by giants having a rock fight- cool!
2-3 million years old, these limestone domes turn brown when the grasses die in the dry season, hence the name.
An expat I had met in Bohol told me to take the road through Sierra Bullones to the coast.
It was a good tip. Descending from the Chocolate Hills area through terraced rice fields like this was some of the best riding I have done.
Verdant fields busy with village activity.
The downside came the next day when on my return ride to Lobok, rain fell in that way it only can in the tropics.
I decided to wait it out under the tiny awning of a roadside kiosk. Youngsters just kept on playing.
Eventually, the rain of course eased enough to ride on, and soon enough Bohol was putting on a show again.