Boracay Island

In contrast to bustling Cebu Island is Boracay Island -- unclogged, (no cars, busses, Jeepney's or planes) clean, peaceful, and exotically beautiful.

A short one hour and twenty minutes from Manila or Cebu, this fabled island is only five miles long and is surrounded by 32 magnificent beaches. The most popular beach, called "White Sand Beach" is over three miles long and has that soft-powdered sand that never gets hot.

The B.M.W. tropical beach handbook rated this beach as one of the top five in the world. This beach is palm fringed and endowed by crystal clear turquoise water that has to be seen to believe. There is no airport to this island and one is boated from the neighboring island to your hotels beach location. At night it is a continuous party with discos, bars, French restaurants, and loads of local women. Every star God created can be seen at night and with the soft tropical breezes blowing keeping you cool, this is paradise!


Getting to Boracay is a little difficult than Cebu, but much more fun. PAL has daily jet service from Manila and Cebu to Kalibo. For under $100.00 r/t you arrive at this small town at the northern tip of Panay Island, take a two hour bus trip to Caticlan, where you catch a small boat for the twenty minute crossing to Boracay. The boat takes you directly to your hotel's beach (if you have made reservations in Manila) or drops you off in the center of White Beach, where a beach boy and his motor bike will hotel shop with you until you find your perfect spot.

A second option to Boracay is with the local carriers of Aerolift or Pacific Air. They fly 19 seater turboprops twice daily direct to the small runway in Caticlan from Manila or Cebu. Any travel agent in Manila or Cebu can make these reservations but the tickets are twice the price of the PAL flights (around $150.00 r/t). The obvious advantage is that you miss that boring two hour bus ride. The disadvantage is these smaller planes don't turn the A/C till airborne ( I sat and sweltered for fifteen minutes before take-off) and can be a little bumpy.

Remember in the Philippines you get what you pay for!


On the romantic island of Boracay your selection of night-time fun isn't as diverse as Cebu but it is just as rewarding and perhaps more fun.

There are no Karaokes, strip bars, or girls in bikinis on stage. The main entertainment are simple, open-air, starry night covered discos. The best are the Beachcomber, close to Fridays Hotel and the most popular is Bazura Bar & Disco which and centrally located in the middle of White Sand Beach. Here are local and non-aggressive girls, all looking to make new friends to dance with or perhaps someone to help with their family grocery shopping for the following morning. You must ask them to dance or offer to join them at their table for a drink -- from here on it's up to you on how long you want your new friend to stay with you ... one dance or the entire night!

Any other activities

On Boracay the night life isvery subdue. The biggest event of the early evening is the sunset. After watching the day end it's time for dinner. There are German, Italian, Filipino, Chinese, American, or French restaurants all lined up along White Beach. By the time you inspect all the intriguing menus, pick out a favorite, zip a glass of wine, and have your main course it will be time for the discos to begin. Besides the late time music bars, there is not much else to do... but maybe that's why you are here!

Where to stay

On Boracy all the hotels lay along White Sand Beach and moving among them is as simple as packing your bag and visiting your next store neighbor. Most of the hotel are beach bungalows and once the boat drops you off at beach center, there are 50 or more to choose from.

Prices will range from $10.00 to $50.00 and remember you get what you pay for. There are two semi-deluxe establishments, each with private pool, restaurants and evening entertainment. First is the Paradise Garden Resort which is centrally located and while not beach front it is set in lush tropical gardens, and every room is A/C.

My favorite hotel is Fridays Resort where each room has two levels (great for entertaining), a nice pool, boutique store, daily newspaper, a phone ( a luxury on Boracay), a fabulous restaurant, private motor boat to pick you up or send you back to the airport, beach front, and in a quiet spot at the end of the beach. The manager, Hans, will give you a free upgrade if you mention TSM and book directly (direct FAX 632-815-14-15).

Beaches and beaches

On Boracay, the main sight is the beach. White Beach is magnificent and to see the other 30 beaches or the lush countryside you hire a motor bike.

On Boracay there are no cabs and you simply flag down a motor bike for transportation. For less than $10.00 you can hire a bike and driver for the entire morning. Of course there is wind-surfing, fishing, and speed boat service to explore the other islands, but the best thing to do on Boaracay is nothing but bask in the warm sun and cool off in the crystal clear water.

Spoil yourself and have one of the local beach girls give you a massage ($5.00) which includes a nail cut and a could be worse. After my beach pampering my manicurist offered me her friend as an afternoon nap companion and my hotel maid did the negotiating. Many girls on Boracay are from the outer islands and are country girls who speak little English. This is one time I tipped my maid more than for just cleaning the room!

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