Some of you probably know this place good enough from our Facebook. In the beginning of January we flooded you with pictures with lots of white sand, turquoise water and palms growing on the beach. We got to the Philippines quite accidentally, but it proved to be a great decision!
December was almost half way through when we looked for a perfect location to relax. We already had tickets to Hong Kong and knew, we spent a few day there. We had a return ticket from Bangkok because we couldn’t even think about not stopping there for a moment! But between one metropolis and another , we wanted to chill out, lie down and rest in beautiful circumstances.
We dreamt about a nice hotel. Preferably with bungalows, not a huge concrete behemoth. Preferably by the beach so we can run barefoot all day long, stretch out while looking at the sea and white sand in the morning. Preferably with plenty of nature around that provides a pleasant shade throughout the day. With a swimming pool obviously because Maks loves it! We went to several places like that on our earlier trips. Tugu Lombok located on Indonesian Lombok is certainly one of such (incredible – our thoughts can be found(HERE!) or amazing Rayavadee on Krabi in Thailand. But we looked for a new place this time! Łukasz made a research since he’s the master when it comes to searching for perfect flight connections and paradise hotels! We considered several places… Malaysia, Maldives, Cambodia, Thailand (once again!), Philippines. As for Philippines, we mainly took El Nido on Palawan and Bohol and its surroundings under consideration. We gave up on Boracay because despite having paradise beaches it doesn’t have that good opinions (crowded, commercialised, mainstream!) and we wanted to rest most of all! We weren’t that interested in sightseeing because we needed a moment for ourselves after a really busy year.
And finally, Łukasz found South Palms Resort Panglao on a tiny Panglao next to the larger Bohol island. You can fly to Bohol from Manila (the airport in Tagbilaran is an attraction of its own, trust me!:)) or take a ferry from Cebu for instance (we flew from Hong Kong with Cebu Pacific airlines). In order to get to Panglao, take a taxi or a local rickshaw in the marina which will take you 15-20 minutes.
It only took us several steps around our new ‘resort’ along with a walk from reception to our house to convince us that it’s PERFECT and exactly what we wanted!!!
We spent carefree 8 days in South Palms Resort taking only two trips outside our hotel – we drove around the nearby BOHOL (what to see on Bohol – read HERE!) by car, and went for island hopping around (impressions – HERE!) on a boat. What did we do in the meantime??? Rested. We had everyday problems such as: go to the beach or to the pool (one of two)?? Maks always chose the pool, but still went to the beach to hunt for mussels and starfish! We dug in the sand, read books and did everything you do on a lazy holiday trip! 😉
And South Palms only made lazing around easier… we could walk barefoot all day long as we imagined it before, spent time in charming resting areas (a rocking bed under the palms! – incredible!!), on huge mattresses on the beach and enjoy everything else that made this place capable of charging our batteries for the rest of the coming year! We also loved the ‘barn’ from which the kids could take plenty of equipment – buckets, shovels, sand forms and everything else we usually take to make fun on the beach even better! And when the sun went down, the was a tiny kids’ corner with a whole lot of toys and teddy bears and fairytales for evening – Maks usually flew there right after he finished his dinner and we could then calmly finish ours. Perfect! Another thing we loved looking from the parents’ perspective – a pool right next to the restaurant. Thanks to that, every day we sat at the table waiting for our lunch and drinking cool coconut water Maks could still play in the pool, jumping our only to eat his meal!
What about the food? I have to admit that after Hong Kong, the hotel food turned out to be the least impressive aspect. You can’t say it was bad, but for us, especially during breakfast and dinner buffet, it was definitely too western 😉 Even though our initial contact with Filipino cuisine wasn’t such a great experience, we still wanted to try as much local food as possible. Therefore the best moment was an evening with Filipino cuisine during which we tried various, very exotic desserts (and other things!)
I really liked puto, a steamed rice cake (this green muffin;)), maja blanca (coconut pudding) and banana turon a popular type of street food in Philippines – a kind of tiny, sweet spring rolls. Halo – Halo turned out to be a particularly funny dessert – a combination of colourful jellies, ice, milk and sugar! An incredibly colourful dessert and also incredibly sweet! It’s a pity we only tried calamay once – made from coconut milk, brown sugar an sticky rice. If you ever come to Bohol or Panglao, be sure to try it – it’s quite popular here!
But you know what? Even without perfect food, South Palms is PERFECT!!!! If you ever find yourselves looking for a hotel near a paradise beach for your paradise vacation, here’s one proposition for you!!! And now, go to the beach, pick your folding bed, a hammock or maybe a massage with a sea view?? And relax!
If you’re interested…
All information about the hotel can be found – o HERE!
As usual, we booked via Booking.com 🙂