Magsaysay Park in Bilar Bohol is famous for their “too friendly” Philippine Long Tailed Macaques. But, this place is in fact much more than these monkeys.
Magsaysay Park, located in Riverside Bilar, Bohol is just a small portion of Rajah Sikatuna Protected Landscape (RSPL). RSPL is an area of forested limestone hills, grasslands and natural springs and is the largest remaining zone of natural forest in Bohol which includes parts of the towns of Carmen, Sierra Bullones, Garcia Hernandez, Valencia, Dimiao, Bilar and Batuan.
I have special attachment to this place since this is one of the places that made me love the outdoors. During college days, I usually visit the place at least once a year for outdoor organization activities or just random trip with friends.
I’ve always wondered how the place is underappreciated despite the vast experiences and learning it could offer.
I hope this blog will make people appreciate more of what this place has to offer and would go there too!
Let me tell you of the possible activities you could do…
Park Tour (P100/5 pax)
This walking tour will give you an interesting day through nature appreciation, Philippine Long Tailed Macaques encounter and a short hike to the a viewing deck that will give you a glimpse of the Protected Landscape from above.
Forest trekking (P500/5 pax)
This is perfect to those who loves adventure and those who want to test their endurance. Trails of varying degree of difficulty are available and can last 2 hours or more depending on the group’s pace. During the forest trekking we’ve done, we always see interesting flora and fauna. Like the ghost plant we saw! and the sleeping flying lemurs and others. I’m always on watch also of beautiful patterns of art in nature inside the forest.
Night Safari (P500/ 5 pax)
I have no other photos that would relate. Sorry. 😂
This is something I’ve done before but not in RSPL and I hope next time I go camping there, I’ll do this. It would be exciting! As the forest makes way of our nocturnal friends like flying lemurs, birds like owls and even tarsiers! And trying to spot them through flashlights would be challenging (I have bad eyes sight.lol) and exciting.
Camping (P25/pax) (Tent: P100 good for 2 pax)
One of the safest place to camp in Bohol. The camping site itself was a venue to a lot of big camping long time ago. They offer tents for rent for camping so no worries on that part
Bird Watching (P500/ 5 pax)
We are not bird watching here. Just looking at a sleeping lemur. 😅
I have not tried bird watching there yet but definitely I will the next time (We saw a frog mouth bird one time while trekking though).
While locals do not know much about the park as a good site for bird watching, this landscape is known as one of the best place for bird watching for seasoned bird watchers.
The best time for this activity is early in the morning where birds are most active. So if you plan to camp, then go bird watching!
There are four cold spring in the park but the most accessible is Logarita Cold Spring. This would be a perfect place to be after a long hike!
There are several cave systems inside the protected landscape and if you are hiking, the guide could lead you inside the mouth of some of these caves which are home to different species of our bat friends!
Rooms for night stay and function areas are available in RSPL inside the Magsaysay Park. An orientation area is also available before going up the park.
To me and my friends, going there is always fun. We always learn and get excited of what this place has to offer. The place is source of many of our treasured moments.
Going there is easy,
If commuting, from Tagbilaran’s Dao Integrated Bus Terminal, ride a bus going to the interior of Bohol (or ask people on which buses pass by the town of Bilar). Stop by the market of the town then ride habal-habal from there- a more or less 5 minutes ride. Or if comfortable on an extra walk, you can stroll at a comfortable distance from the highway to the park. You can ask locals for the way. 🙂 You can also can take in the beautiful rice fields.
For inquiries contact Miss Maila of DENR: 0909 403 1935
And remember! In traveling always LEAVE NO TRACE!
Respect the locals!