|a view of "Chocolate Beach" - seen at Ocean View Park, Surigao del Sur|
Located at Barangay Cumawas, Bislig City, Surigao del Sur, Ocean View Park is located hilltop that provides you with a breathtaking view of the "Pacific Ocean" situated around Bislig Bay. The place is owned by the married couple Werner and Ruelaine Williman and they operate both the restaurant and the international doll house.
From the entrance, you can only reach the restaurant by climbing 270 steps of stairs! It was like going to Batu Caves and Sunrise Peak all over again :P I thought it was a good idea for an eatery though since you have to burn off calories before since you'll be eating again anyway. You'll be rewarded by a grand elevated view of the ocean once you reach the restaurant which some locals might call "Chocolate Beach" because of its brownish color.
While going to the view deck is free, why not sample some of the dishes they offer at the restaurant? My two companions had an early lunch so they settled with desserts so I had no choice but to order only one dish since there's no one else who would chip in with the bill. :( I actually had a very hard time choosing what to order because eveything in the menu looks good and intriguing! They have the usual filipino favorites such as burger, rice mals like fish fillet and burger steak. There are some new dishes that I only came across when I visited the restaurant such as the schnitzel and picatta.
|where they take your orders, you can also see Mr. Werner prepare the food in action|
After some time, Ms. Ruelaine helped me out with my dillema: schnitzel or picatta. I finally went with picatta since it was her favorite and it was also their menu of the month. I also ordered hawaiian burger for take out that I wolfed down for dinner which was also pretty delish!
Everyone in this establishment was so friendly and always smiling! The owners must be doing a really good job! Besides from that, they are also hands-on with running the business, Mr. Werner is usually seen in the kitchen and Ms. Ruelaine usually runs the cash register, entertains guests and also cooks.
When my order arrived, I was surprised to actually see two picattas instead of one since I remember seeing only one on the menu, but hey I am not complaining! The spaghetti tasted like how my Mom would cook it, very homey. The picatta looked oily but it didn't taste like it. The meat was juicy and very very tasty! I like my meat with sauce but I was able to finish two picattas with no sauces. The serving was pretty big, enough for two. If you have been to 50's Diner at Baguio, then the serving size there is a bit similar, though OVP's is cheaper.
|my order - picatta with spaghetti|
The doll house was our next target after we finished eating. I wasn't really a big fan of dolls growing up (I would usually shave Barbie's head bald and dress them up as soldiers, lol) but I am really amazed with people who collects stuff until they grow older since I myself also do collect some childhood memorabilias that I still pursue up until now. Before entering the doll house, you have to remove your footwear to minimize the dirt getting inside. We were joined by one of their staff who also showed as a 3D wallpaper previously owned by Universal Studios that was actually bought by the couple from an auction.
|The International Doll House of Bislig|
Upon entering, I noticed how well-kept the doll collection was. The whole room was air conditioned and I kept thinking to myself how envious I am of these dolls who gets to have AC the whole day! lol The dolls are properly segregated per category and continent they represent. The staff who toured us around was also pretty knowledgeable and attentive to our questions. We came to know that the collection started with Barbies at first during the 1980s and that it grew on until the couple started travelling and Ms. Ruelaine compiled dolls on each country that they visit. The museum was then opened by 2008. Her husband has also started his own collection of mini cars and other toys.
|cute and colorful babies!!!|
|twin dolls and some that are derived from fairy tales|
|the collection is so diverse! I love Gloria's headdress|
|The Asian Group|
|Shireem, the most expensive doll in the collection. it looks so real, I want one for myself! It reminds me of that doll from the movie Doll Master|
|Stuffed Toys and Clowns|
|Barbies, Ms. Ruelaine's first collection|
|dolls in Filipino costumes|
|Mr. Werner's also started his own collection!|
Ocean View Park is a must if you have time before going to Tinuy-an, not just because it offers a nice view of the city, but the food is great for the tummy and the wallet and the hospitality of the owners is not just something you can always experience in Manila.
|Ron, Z, and me with the friendly owners of Ocean View Park Restaurant and Doll House|
Ocean View Park Info and Contact Details:
Admission (Doll House): Adult - 20 Youth - 15 Child - FREE
Operating Hours: Tuesdays to Sundays, 10 AM - 7 PM
Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/OceanViewParkPhilippines
How to go to Bislig, Surigao del Sur:
From Butuan Bancasi Airport
From Langihan Terminal, ride a bus bound for Mangagoy (Bislig) (approx. 5 hour trip)
From Surigao del Norte
Take a bus bound for Butuan and take bus bound for Mangagoy.
From Britania, San Agustin
Ride bus going to Butuan and alight at Barobo terminal. From there, take another bus bound for Mangagoy (Bislig).
Take buses/van that go directly to Bislig. Alternatively, you can also take those bound for Butuan and alight at Mangagoy (Bislig).
Breakdown of Expenses for Day 2 (Enchanted River + Tinuy-an Falls)
Habal habal contacts:
Kuya Rene (recommended! no cellphone though, look for him around crossing/Hinatuan terminal) Rate from crossing to river one way is 50 pesos. He resides at Hinatuan.)
Kuya Loloy (09485750496 resides at Bislig, rate from crossing to Tinuyan round trip incl. waiting time is 250 pesos)
* Drivers also accept tours combining Enchanted River + Tinuy-an Falls for a standard rate of 1,500 pesos
Britania Group of Islands (San Agustin)
Enchanted River (Hinatuan)
Tinuy-an Falls (Bislig)
International Doll Museum/Ocean View Park Restaurant (Bislig)
Itinerary and Expenses
2-Day Itinerary, Guide and Travel Expenses for Surigao del Sur
More of Mindanao here