After witnessing the elegant cascades of Tinuy-an falls and be mystified by the enchanted river, we can say that Surigao is undoubtedly on the upper-hand when it comes to nature’s blessings.
Yet, aside from the surreal beauty of its water forms, an unlikely attraction has found its home on this humble province; the International Doll house.
I was quite skeptical at first on including this on the itinerary, but since the entrance fee is very cheap (20php per head), I just put it in like a filler – ah, not bad. But it turns out, this is not your ordinary “doll house” and in fact, this is one of my most enjoyed destination in Surigao!
The International Doll House and the adjacent Ocean View Park Restaurant both sit atop a hill in Barangay Cumawas, Bislig City.
Getting there is quite a workout! You have to survive 257 steps to reach the top where a small and fancy pink house awaits.
Both the dollhouse and the restaurant were owned by the Switzerland-based couple Werner and Ruelaine Williman. Mrs Willman began collecting her treasures in 1980.
The brother of Ruelaine greeted us as we enter and guided us inside the premise. One must enter in barefoot (so as to maintain cleanliness) in the air-conditioned room that housed the dolls.
Dolls of different sizes, characters and fashion style surrounds the small gallery behind glasses. The dolls were of finest quality (and the prices were crazy!).
The owner bought majority of the display overseas from all corners of the world. Hairs of some dolls were taken from well known personalities like Princess Diana of Wales (woah!), Marilyn Monroe and Michael Jackson (if that’s not impressive, I don’t know what else is)
Real jewels adorned some of the dolls and the clothings were made of fine fabrics.
They also sell souvenir dolls from Switzerland for 150php. All the profit, including the entrance goes to charity.
Few feet away from the doll house is the Ocean Park View restaurant. It offers good view and great food!
We also had fun wandering around the Bislig Bay Walk where a huge sign I-<3-BISLIG stood with an overview of the Pacific.