It’s my third time in Boracay Island, and I think, it’s going to be an annual trip, because why not?
Boracay is my happy place. It has everything I need for a quick getaway. It offers high-energy parties, good food, exciting water activities, fine white sand, and pristine water.
If all I want to do is relax and chill, there’s also a good spot for that. Indeed, Boracay offers great things to do that keep me coming back and indulge in one of the best islands in the world.
Contrary to what many believe, vacation in Boracay is inexpensive unless you want to spend a lot of money. On my first visit three years ago, I spent around PHP6,000 for a three-day and two-night stay.
I spent most of my budget on food on my first time. It was a budget trip. We stayed in La Carmela de Boracay, a low cost beachfront hotel located in Station 2. Booking comes with free breakfast which is a good deal. I recommend this place for people who are looking for a nice place to sleep without breaking the bank. Nothing fancy to expect though.
You also won’t get hungry on the island, because there are various fast food stores that serve good meals for less than PHP150 or US$3 each. That was where I usually ate. If you want to find cheaper food, walk along the main road where you can find local eateries. You can get a meal for only PHP50 or US$1. There are also cheap BBQs in the beach area.
I didn’t do any activities. I only swam in the morning and drank at night. That was how I spent my three days on the island.
My second time in Boracay was in 2016. This time, I did a lot of fun activities, and stayed in a luxury villa and hotel. I booked a room in Villa Caipirinha, a luxury villa situated on top of Diniwid Hill. It has an amazing view of the Island. You can chill in the wide living room, or take a nice dip in the adjacent infinity pool with jacuzzi. The place has 7 bedrooms (which can accommodate up to 25 persons), kitchen, dining area, and a billiard table. It’s good for family reunions, or group getaways.
For a small group of family, or friends, I always recommend Azalea Hotels and Residences. You can get a deluxe room with kitchen and breakfast for as low as PHP5,200, or a one-bedroom apartment suite with kitchen and breakfast for as low as PHP6000.
I also did exciting land and water activities like ATV, parasailing, helmet diving, and flying fish, but Pubcrawl Boracay was absolutely my favorite.
My third visit was in October this year. It was an unplanned getaway and as expected, flight directly to and from Caticlan airport was expensive. The best option is to fly to Kalibo from Manila. We booked a late night and cheap flight using Traveloka, and decided to stay the night at a hotel near the airport. If you’re looking for a decent place to stay near Kalibo Airport, I recommend Basa Hotel, which is only 2 km from the airport. We got a basic room for PHP1200. Nothing fancy, but it was enough to give us comfortable sleep. The staff were accommodating whenever we needed assistance.
We hired the services of Southwest Tours Boracay which handled our travel requirements to Boracay. We paid PHP600 or US$12 for a one-way trip from Kalibo to Boracay. That includes bus, boat, and van transfers to the hotel, and all other fees (environmental and terminal). That’s absolutely a good deal since you don’t need to fall in line to buy tickets and pay fees.
I was surprised to see electric tricycles replacing almost all old ones. That’s good for the island. Traffic leading to Station 2, however, was heavier. The road is still narrow. I think road widening is no longer possible. I noticed though that there was ongoing pavement construction when we passed through Station 1.
Also, Boracay has a big mall now. Before, I couldn’t imagine Boracay would someday have a big mall. Commercialization is way faster than ever. I just hope that they find the right balance between nature and development. Still, I’m thankful that the beach area is clean.
We stayed in a boutique hotel, Sol Y Sombra Boracay Hotel, in Station 1. It occupies a floor of a three-story building. There are only five rooms, perfect for couples, small family, and barkada of eight. My first impression is that the hotel has a hippie vibe. The color of the wall is relaxing. The style is very millennial and Instagramable. The bed and pillows are comfortable. The staff are accommodating, and they attend to your needs right away, but that’s something you’d expect from a boutique hotel.
What makes it a more ideal place to stay in Boracay is the location. Going to the white beach will take you only two minutes of walking. There’s a convenience store, a pharmacy and an ATM nearby. Bars, restaurants and coffee shops are only a 5 to 10-min walk from the property.
So, did I do anything new on my third visit? Absolutely. A few years back, I heard of Spider House Boracay, but didn’t get the chance to visit it. This year, I made it a point to go there.
Our trip from Station 1 to Diniwid beach cost us PHP150. The beach is not crowded. The view from the Spider House is impressive. The resort has a restaurant and bar that’s made of bamboo and wood, blending naturally with the surrounding. It’s located at the base of a mountain by the water of Diniwid beach.
The view of Boracay from Diniwd is beautiful and serene. It’s perfect for Titos and Titas of Manila who are looking for a chill place to hang out and drink. What surprised me was the underwater world. Under the clear and turquoise green water lie colorful corals decorating the seabed. There were varieties of fish, too. I recommend this place for people who love to do snorkeling and skin diving.
People who say that Boracay is overrated are those who have never explored the island’s entirety yet. There are many things that keep me excited to come back. Whether you are looking to party, relax, do fun land and water activities, or just beach bum and stay in fancy resorts or hostels to meet people, Boracay has it all for you.