Located on Panglao Island, there lies a small yet serene stretch of tropical paradise – Alona Beach. This famed tourist attraction quickly became a crowd favorite among local and foreign travelers looking for a relaxing escape from the city. Its wonderful white sand beaches, stunning reefs, and crystal clear waters will surely leave you fascinated.
For travelers in Bohol who consider themselves avid sun-worshippers and beach bums, Alona Beach is surely a must-visit in one’s itinerary. This beach is famous for its 1.5-kilometer stretch of white sand which has two rock walls bordering on both ends. In just 10-15 minutes, you can walk the entire stretch of beautiful white sand while enjoying the sea breeze and the picturesque view.
But, you’re probably wondering why it’s called Alona Beach? There’s no literal translation of the beach’s name because it’s said to be named after Alona Alegre – an actress whom locals loved dearly for her charm and genuine kindness. During the ’70s, Alona Alegre shot a film at this beach in Bohol. At the time, it was unnamed and there was no sign of commercialism – no restaurants nor hotels in sight. Unlike her fellow co-actors, Alona was friendly to the locals and so was loved by the people. Even after filming ended, locals would still talk about her and refer to the beach as the place where Alona filmed her movie. Over time, people became accustomed to calling it Alona Beach.
Its white sand beauty, crystal clear waters, and numerous tourist-friendly activities make Alona Beach one of the most popular beaches in the Philippines. It’s also now home to a number of hotels and restaurants – ranging from budget-friendly accommodations to luxury attractions – that offer a great time to travelers while on the island of Panglao. Apart from being a relaxation hub, below are just some of the many reasons why travelers keep coming back to Alona Beach:
Diving and snorkeling
Just like Malapascua Island, Alona Beach is also considered one of the best diving destinations in the world. Upon arrival, visitors will instantly notice the numerous dive boats available in the area. Let local guides take you to underwater adventures and see the great marine life underneath. If you’re hoping to get a glimpse of some amazing coral life, check out the House Reef and find a variety of sea creatures such as lion fish, clown frog fish, and star fish!
Island-hopping and dolphin-watching
Near the famous Alona Beach, you’ll find Balicasag and Virgin Island. Take a tour and you can have the chance to see the breeding of sea turtles in Balicasag. Meanwhile, Virgin Island stays true to its name – quiet, pristine, and unspoiled. Plus, it has an arching sandbar perfect for Instagram-worthy photos. Of course, the best part of starting your day with an island-hopping tour is being able to catch sight of the dolphins.
A wide variety of food choices
Apart from native Filipino dishes being served on the island, food enthusiasts will be happy to know there’s also a strong presence of international cuisine at Alona Beach. Here, you’ll find French, Italian, Swiss, and even exotic international dishes to please your palate. Giuseppe Pizzeria and Sicilan Roast Italian Restaurant is a favorite culinary destination in Bohol and a must-visit for pizza lovers!
Find clubs and bars with a variety of music genres, good food at reasonable prices, and a great atmosphere near Alona Beach. The nightlife is not as crazy as some other destinations – Alona Beach is a quiet, romantic place for those who want to chill at night, enjoy a candle-lit dinner, and listen to good music while enjoying the night with a drink.
Once you’re in Bohol or Tagbilaran City, it’s easier to reach this piece of paradise. You can rent a tricycle to take the 20km ride from Bohol’s capital city. And, if you’re coming from anywhere in the Philippines, there are domestic plane flights and fast ferry boats that can take you to Bohol to make your way to Alona Beach.