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The Surf, Sand and Sunsets of Boracay Beach

Written by  Katie Hultgren

 

Asia13Just look at any photo of the Philippines, and you’ll know that this place is special. With 7,107 islands, there is more beach here than almost anywhere else.

 Located just an hour from metro-Manila by air, the island of Boracay is a multi-award winning beach destination.  This 4.5 mile long island is located off the northwest corner of Panay Island, and belongs to the Western Visayas island-group of the Philippines. Here, guests will find remarkably beautiful beaches and strong tourism infrastructure. 

Boracay has amazingly clear turquoise-blue water, snow-white powdery beach sand in most areas, and a wealth of accommodations and activities for travelers to choose from. These attributes have resulted in an ever increasing number of tourists. The two primary tourism beaches are White Beach and Bulabog Beach, located on opposite sides of the island’s narrow central area. White Beach faces westward and Bulabog Beach faces eastward. 

TO THE BEACH

On White Beach, tourists use the numbers of former boat stations as location points along the beach. Boat Station 1 is in the north, Boat Station 2 is in the center, and Boat Station 3 is in the south. These boat stations are no longer in use, however they are the accepted points of reference. Colorful and vibrant, the beach is lined with resorts, restaurants, and shops. Along the central portion of White Beach, there is a footpath a little over a mile long, which separates the beach from these establishments. It can be crowded, and is definitely tourist oriented - with souvenir shops, bars and restaurants and services such as hair braiding and henna tattooing on offer. Vendors offer all types of water activities including diving, kiteboarding, and windsurfing. Restaurants feature a variety of menu items, and you can find food from around the world here. Boracay is as famous for its nightlife as its beaches, with bars and clubs open until the wee hours.

Bulabog Beach, across the island from White Beach, is the second most popular tourism beach on the island. Protected by a great reef, it is Boracay’s main windsurfing and kiteboarding area,  and world acclaimed compeitions are held here.

There is also the beautiful and undeveloped Yapak Beach, which is also appropriately called Puka Shell Beach. because the sand is comprised of crushed puka shells. It is more remote, and less populated with tourists. You can get here by boat, or hire a trike and driver to take you here, and around the island. 

Across the island, there are many types of activities available. Try parasailing, boating, beach ball sports, banana boat rides, and fly fishing activities. Try horseback riding, or play a round of golf on 18-hole, par 72 golf course designed by Graham Marsh. For your adventurous clients, there is rock climbing and mountain biking, and exploring the island’s natural wonders. 

Getting There

The trip to Boracay Beach is not direct, but white sand and adventure awaits. Fly on a turboprop plane from Manila or Cebu to Caticlan, the main gateway for sea and air access to Boracay. Be transported to the jetty port on a motorized trike, and take a boat across the strait to arrive on Boracay. Depending on the season, you will arrive at one of two Boracay Ports - Cagban Port in the High Season and Tambisaan Port in the Low Season. The distance from either port to White Beach is about ten minutes, and another motor-trike ride from either port takes visitors to the main road that borders White Beach. The motor-trikes stop on the main road near one of the paths that lead to White Beach. Guests walk down the path from the main road, and using the help of porters who are available to assist with luggage. Most hotels offer transportation services for their guests.     

Tourist Season

The Low Season (May-October) is when the winds blow eastward into White Beach. There is more rain, but fewer tourists.  During the High Season (October-May), the winds come from the back of the island, and White Beach is protected. The wind blows out to sea, leaving the beach clean and calm. Tourism here peaks during the holidays, so reservations should be made well in advance. For more information, visit www.itsmorefuninthephilippines.com   

 

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