Manic Manila to Beautiful Boracay

manic-manila-to-beautiful-boracayManic Manila to Beautiful Boracay

By Mel Cook

Manila is a stopover, at best, because only two words come to mind when you arrive: organised chaos. From the moment you leave the airport you are in a place of extreme and manic disarray. With around 11 million people living in Manila, it’s little wonder people look confused.

My advice is to book the earliest ticket out of there and jump a flight to Boracay Island, voted one of the ‘Top Ten Beaches of The World’.

Walking out of the resort, you are confronted with the most gorgeous beach of white sand and overhanging palm trees – I felt like I was in heaven! White Beach is where you can relax and snorkel all day long or, alternatively, drink until the sun comes up. I managed to do both but I will say that I have never experienced a hangover quite that bad before. There are definitely no RSA laws in the Philippines. The cocktails are supersized and so are the nips – so be warned! You can even have your rum served in a bucket. At least you don’t need to go to the bar all night (but you may need to find the closest toilet).

My days (after the hangover) were spent sailing and snorkelling around the island. The water is like glass and if you are lucky you can see the odd Korean tourist or two walking with underwater helmets on the bottom of the ocean. Very strange … I prefer snorkels myself.

Now for New Year’s Eve … I highly recommend being there for this as it would have to be the longest display of fireworks I have ever seen. As I stood there feeling a little sentimental with my newfound friends, I started to wonder if this really was the best place on earth?  Or maybe I’d had too many Tanduay Rums?

Despite the fact that it’s hard to get to, Boracay Island is definitely worth the trip. It’s a hidden treasure that not many Australians know about … and maybe they shouldn’t so ‘Shhh!’…

Getting there

To get to the Island of Boracay, you can fly in to either Caticlan or Kalibo airports. It only takes about an hour to Caticlan and one and a half to Kalibo. It’s worth noting that landing in Kalibo leaves you with a two hour van ride back to Caticlan Harbour.

Once you arrive at the harbour, you  purchase a ferry ticket for about 120 peso ($3AUD) and get on the next ferry. Don’t be surprised if you feel like you are in a herd of cattle – it’s pretty much how  everything is organised – Manic! Manic! Manic!

Thankfully it is only a 15 minute ferry ride to one of the most relaxing and beautiful beaches in the world. Upon arrival, you are ‘tuk tuk-ed’ to your resort for around 50 peso (every ride on the island seems to be 50 peso).

10 comments on “Manic Manila to Beautiful Boracay

  1. Interesting. I remember visiting Manila and feeling quite intimidated by the place, but I had a great time visiting the countryside (sorry I can’t remember any of the names). Unfortunately I never saw the beaches but it sounds like I should be planning a trip soon, maybe during Easter. Shall check flight prices…

  2. All true! Done all this and the beach is amazing. The locals are wonderful – they’ve never been anywhere else. Best way to Boracay IS via Caticlan. Very easy really – an adventure! Stayed at Fridays Resort. Easy to book it all yourself. Best to go in high season otherwise a little windy … and beach bars are closed or at least their front openings to the sand are. Water is amzing colour too. Cheap to eat and play, however no real local cuisine-unless you like fish heads and fatty pork knuckles. Buy yr BYO wine to take the dinner at the bottle shop – our restaurant offered us a bottle of ancient hot white when we requested red wine with dinner!

  3. Great post. I lived in the Philippines for a couple of years and never got to Boracay. Now I know what I missed. Hope to get back there some day.

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