Home Introduction A Handy Guide for First Time Travelers to Boracay

A Handy Guide for First Time Travelers to Boracay

Travel + Leisure named Boracay as the second best beach in the world this year. And it’s no surprise why. This tropical island in Aklan, which is just an hour’s flight from Manila, is renowned for its clear turquoise waters and sparkling white sand that stretches 7 kilometers long. It lures in over one million tourists every year.

Tourist season

Having traveled to Boracay several times in the past, I must say, it pays to know the peak season. Enjoy better rates and smaller crowds during the low season from May to October. But don’t expect the island to be empty. Tourists still come here even during the low season so it’s a good idea to book accommodations early.

Getting there

There are two airports near Boracay—Caticlan Airport and Kalibo Airport. The first is only five minutes away while the other is 90 minutes. Kalibo Airport serves international flights while Caticlan Airport only caters domestic flights from Cebu and Manila. Airlines that travel to and fro these airports include Zest Air, Pal Express, Philippine Airlines, Tiger Airways and Air Asia. It’s also an option to arrive here via a Roll-on/Roll-off (Roro) ferry. Trip is 16 to 20 hours. This is the usual roro travel route to Boracay:
Cubao to Batangas (3 to 4 hours), Batangas to Calapan (2 to 3 hours), Calapan to Roxas (2 to 3 hours), and Roxas to Caticlan (4 to 5 hours). Batangas to Calapan and Roxas to Caticlan are by sea while the rest are by land.
I’ve tried both air and Roro travel to Boracay. The former is definitely a better choice for those who have limited time (and patience). But I did enjoy our Roro travel even though it took us a long time to get there.


Beaches and Activities

There are two main beaches that you’d want to visit in Boracay. These are White Beach and Bulabog Beach. It depends on what type of traveler you are. If you’re like me and you prefer convenience and partying, you’d want to stay and hang out at White Beach, where all the popular establishments and bars can be found.
There are three stations here: Station 1, Station 2 and Station 3. The most expensive and posh hotels can be found in Station 1 while Station 3 has all the budget accommodations. Now, if you’re an adrenaline junkie, you’d surely want to visit Bulabog Beach where surfing and kiteboarding are the usual activities. Other activities that you can enjoy in Boracay include diving, island hopping, parasailing, windsurfing, skimboarding, kayaking, and jetskiing.


When the sun goes down, the place transforms into a bustling party place. One of the most popular is Cocomangas Bar, well known for its “still standing after 15” drinking dare. If you finish 15 different shots, you get a t-shirt and a space for your name in their wall of fame.
If you’re coming to the Philippines, there’s no way you can miss out on the wonderful offerings of this exciting tropical island.

/// Written by Wendeline Garcia, The Philippines