Philippines: Boracay Island

Boracay Island is definitely one of my favorite destinations on Earth.  Our trip to Boracay with baby was our second trip there.  In 2012, Boracay was awarded as the best island in the world from Travel & Leisure magazine.

Boracay Island is a small, 4 square mile island, about 200 miles south of Manila.  It’s about an hour plane ride from the Ninoy Aquino Airport.  Note that there are no direct flights into Boracay; you will have to fly to either Caticlan or Kalibo.  We usually  fly to Caticlan which is the closer airport.  Once at Caticlan you can take a 5 minute taxi ride to the Caticlan Jetty port, and take a 10-20 minute boat ride to Boracay Island.

Getting off the plane at Caticlan

Boracay is certainly a magical place; a beach goer’s paradise.  The bluest water you’ll ever see and the softest, whitest sand you’ll ever feel.  There is an exception to this though;  If you travel during the rainy season known as “habagat”,  the picturesque blue waters get contaminated with green algea which kind of spoils the picture perfect island.  We were unfortunate enough on our second trip to catch  the end of the rainy season which made the trip a bit underwhelming.  Nevertheless, it was still an amazing and memorable experience to take our little poochie mama to our favorite little island in the world.

Just caught the end of Habagat

Compared to the dry season from when we went in 2008

The main attraction in Boracay Island is White Beach.  White Beach is about a two and a half mile stretch of pristine white sand and blue water.  The entire stretch is lined with resorts, hotels, restaurants, souvenir shops and somewhat pushy water sports and tour vendors.  (See my post on how to avoid aggressive vendors abroad).  All of the resorts, shops and restaurants are connected at the beach by a beautiful tree lined promenade (which is also stroller friendly!).  During the day there is plenty of beach going activities, shopping, dining and numerous fun tours that can be taken from the beach.  At night, all of the restaurants set up tables on the beach for an evening of dinner on the sand.  Many restaurants turn into night clubs and blast music late into the night.  There are also numerous street performers that wonder the crowd walking the promenade through the night.  Boracay has an unending amount of things to do making it a great spot for all ages.

Boracay Promenade has so much to do

Street performers come out at night

We’re actually biased to a particular resort on Boracay…  The Boracay Regency.  On our first trip to Boracay we asked the cab driver to take us to the nicest resort on White Beach.  He took us to see two resorts (I don’t even remember what the other resort was) but we liked The Boracay Regency better and booked our stay there.  Since our first trip many newer resorts have opened on White Beach but our heart is set on The Regency.

Boracay Regency is ideally located in the center of White Beach

One of the swimming pools at the Regency

The Regency is ideally located in the middle of Station 2.  First, let me explain the stations.  The stretch of White Beach is divided into three stations.  Station one being the furthest north and Station 3 being the southern stretch.  We ideally like to stay in Station 2 so that we can access all three stations without being too far from our resort.  Many tours depart from Station 1 and drop you off at Station 3 at the end of the day.  I never understood why they did that.  Probably so that the tourists can spend more money walking back to their resort or taking a taxi or tricycle back.  From Boracay Regency it’s just a short fifteen minute walk back to the resort from either end of White Beach. Just one other thing I’d like to add… There is actually a Starbucks located on Station 1!

Packed Beach at Station 1

Baby & Starbucks in tow!

Amazing view with Willy’s Rock in the background

Our Poochie Mama loved Boracay Island.  For the most part we spent our days relaxing on the beach with our little Lana trying to get her used to the sand (she hates the sand!).  We grabbed many of the local snacks throughout the day trying to get a taste of everything the island had to offer.  We also took some tours to nearby beaches and islands which was also fun with baby.

Leaving for our tour to Crystal Cove Island

Stopping to climb a Palm Tree

Seafood is always FRESH

Being in Station 2 we were only a five minute walk to the D-Mall which is a large open air mall filled with shops and cheap eats.  As the sun began to set we headed to Station 1 near Willy’s Rock to watch the sail boats float by on the sun soaked horizon.

Here is a section of the D-Mall in Station 2

Souvenir Shops in D-Mall

Restaurants in D-Mall

Amazing Sunsets and Sailboats

More Boracay Sunsets

I’ll be honest, we did not get to experience much of the famous Boracay nightlife on this trip with our Little Lana.  Mommy and Daddy were probably even more tired than baby after dinner and an entire day of fun in the sun.  Nevertheless we still had an amazing and memorable time here in Boracay and can’t wait till our return.

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