The Chocolate Hills are a geological formation in the Bohol province of the Philippines. There are at least 1,260 hills but there may be as many as 1,776 hills spread over an area of more than 50 square kilometres. [**]
Chocolate Hills, Bohol, the Philippines. March 2017. Kodak Gold 200, Olympus OM4Ti, OM ZUIKO 24mm/f2.8. These grass-covered limestone formations vary from 100 to 165ft (30-50 meters). Lifted above sea level due to the movement of our earth’s tectonic plates, they are a combination of algae and fern fossils, rainfall, groundwater and surface water.
There are several legends that explain the formation of the Chocolate Hills.
The first tells the story of two feuding giants who hurled rocks, boulders, and sand at each other. The fighting lasted for days, and exhausted the two giants. In their exhaustion, they forgot about their feud and became friends, but when they left they forgot to clean up the mess they had made during their battle, hence the Chocolate Hills.
A more romantic legend tells of a giant named Arogo who was extremely powerful and youthful. Arogo fell in love with Aloya, who was a simple mortal. Aloya’s death caused Arogo much pain and misery, and in his sorrow he could not stop crying. When his tears dried, the Chocolate Hills were formed.
The third legend tells of a town being plagued by a giant carabao, who ate all of their crops. Finally having had enough, the townsfolk took all of their spoiled food and placed it in such a way that the carabao would not miss it. Sure enough, the carabao ate it, but his stomach couldn’t handle the spoiled food, so he defecated, leaving behind him a mound of feces, until he had emptied his stomach of the food. The feces then dried, forming the Chocolate Hills.
The last legend is that the flatland of Carmen, extending outwards, was the playground of giant children. That day the children where pretending that they were baking cakes, molding and forming them from mud and sand in a half shell of a giant coconut and letting them “bake” under the heat of the sun. It was a contest. The one who makes the most wins. After a time, the children were called home. When they came back to play, they found their cakes “cooked” and were very happy and did not have the heart to destroy their masterpieces and so left them as is.
Composed of 1,268 coned shaped hills of about the same size and spreads for over 50 kilometers in the island of Bohol.
When we were on the van going to the chocolate hills, our guide told us a story of about how the Chocolate Hills came to be, The first legend tells the story of two feuding giants who hurled rocks, boulders and sand trying to destroy each other. This fighting lasted days and exhausted the two giants. In their exhaustion, they forgot about their feud and became friends so that when they left, they forgot to clean up their mess in the battlefield, hence the Chocolate Hills.
The much more romantic legend tells of a giant named Arogo who was extremely powerful and youthful. Arogo fell in love with Aloya who was a simple mortal. Aloya’s death caused Arogo so much pain and misery that in his sorrow, he could not stop crying. When his tears dried the Chocolate Hills were formed.