Get around

  • Most visitors opt for motorizedtricycles, which act as the island’s taxis and make up most of its traffic. As the tricycle seats are (in)conveniently located right above the vehicle exhausts, there can be a little pollution however – bring a handkerchief if you tend to be easily bothered by this sort of thing.
  • Short rides on busy routes, say from D’Mall to Station 3 or from Station 1 to Station 3, are a standard rate of ₱20 per passenger if you hire a vacant trike as they drive past. Trikes that are stationary and seeking passengers are seen as seeking a chartered fare and fares will start at ₱60. In short, if you wish to save money, you should flag down a moving vacant trike. Drivers often charge higher prices in the evenings.
  • Long rides, like Puka beach to D’Mall, should cost around ₱40. Drivers waiting near beaches, hotels, etc, generally ask a higher price like ₱150-200 even if you’re alone. May be worth bargaining if there are a few people with you and you want an individual ride – otherwise, better catch a passing-by tricycle on the main road.
  • Scootersprovide the best flexibility at a reasonable price. The downside is having to deal with island traffic which can be unnerving for visitors unused to the aggressive tricycle drivers.
  • Mountain bikesare also available for rent at several locations along White Beach, which is off limits to motorized vehicles.
  • To explore around the island, rent a nativesailboat (paraw) or motorized outrigger (banca) and visit the many beaches of Boracay. Unless you are booking a sailboat or banca through your hotel or resort or an established tour operator, avoid paying for sailing trips in advance. Some tourists pay for a sailboat ride the day before only to be disappointed when the sailboat never shows up the following day.

See

  • White Beach– This is what most people are here for. Not only is it a lovely stretch of powdery white sand against azure water, it’s also the commercial center of the island. The long beach is divided into three sections, Station 1, Station 2, and Station 3. Station 1 is the northernmost and has the widest beachfront, where prime hotels and resorts are located. Accommodations are pricier, but quality is generally the best as well. Station 2 is the commercial and geographical center of white beach. This is the center of it all for for shopping, eating, partying, and etc. That said, the beach here is also the most crowded, and the area the noisiest. Station 3 is the southernmost section; quieter than station 2, it is the least developed, and also the lowest priced. All of White Beach from the northernmost tip of Station 1 to the southernmost of Station 3 (~4km) is open to the public, so one can relax and/or swim wherever you like, regardless of hotel location.
  • Puka Beach– A quiet stretch of white sand along the northern tip of the island, Puka Beach is an image of what most people expect on a tropical island: white sand, azure water, and relatively empty. This is where locals gather the small puka shells for some of the jewelry that is sold on the island so expect the sand to be more coarse than on White Beach. The water tends to be a little rougher on this side of the island but it is much quieter. Similarly, there are fewer services — there are only a couple of restaurants, but you likely won’t have a problem getting a cold drink or an ice cream as there are a few vendors that patrol the beach. The main road in Boracay terminates at Puka Beach therefore you’ll be able to hire a tricycle to get there in less than 10-15 minutes from central White Beach. Make sure you arrange a pick up if it is a quiet day and no tricycles are hanging around the beach. Most people experience Puka as one of their sailboat or banca stops during a day trip. This is a good spot for a picnic, but be sure to bring your trash home with you.
  • Baling Hai Beach– This is a quiet little cove just north of Diniwid Beach, where you can enjoy swimming, snorkeling and dining in a relaxed, peaceful environment. There are some fantastic views from the cliff top restaurant. Baling Hai is often included as a stop-off on an island boat tour.
  • Bulabog Beach– Come there on a windy days to see kiteboarders doing high jumps and crazy tricks.
  • The Bat Cave. One will see in several tour guides and maps of Boracay something called the Bat Cave, which houses many small insectivorous bats (the larger fruit bats roost in the trees on the hillside above Punta Bunga Beach), and locals will be more than happy to accompany you there for a fee, or “tip”. The cave is on the western-end of the island and down several dirt roads. The guide will then take you on a short hike through the forest to the mouth of a cave, which drops down at a very steep angle. The mouth of the cave is littered with large boulders, and is extremely difficult to enter and walk down. There is no visible path, no handrail, and the stones are extremely slippery with slime and bat guano, as well as extremely dangerous, since the cave is at such an extreme angle. Also, the air inside the cave is very warm and humid, and in addition to the amount of guano, is very difficult to breathe. Additionally, several snakes live inside the cave. Caution should be taken by those visiting and entering the cave. There are bats in the cave, but down at the bottom of it in the dark, and unless you have a flashlight or are there at dusk, you won’t see them. The ceiling of the cave is interesting, however, with multiple, small stalactites. Just nearby, you can find another cave, called “crystal” cave which has a lot of stalactites and a hole on the opposite site of the entrance, from which you can watch out to the sea if you dare to climb up to it. You will have to pay ₱50 entry-fee to visit both caves on behalf of the family that owns the land, in addition to paying your guide. Visiting both caves can cost up to ₱2500 for the guide, but this is the “rich tourist price”, so try to bargain if you like.

Do

Locals working in tourism will patrol the beach offering various excursions such as scuba diving or ATVing, and you are almost certain to be solicited. You should never agree to the price that is first quoted or that is written on the informational literature provided; solicitors can almost always be talked down and will often set the price far too high.

 

Scuba diving

For those interested in Scuba Diving and Diving Packages, there are literally dozens of Dive Centres along the White Beach; it is a good place to learn or to improve your skills, although tech, cave, wreck and instructor level qualifications can be earned. Cost is typically $33 per dive which includes hire of all equipment. The dive centres operate a cartel and have agreed standard prices amongst themselves so prices will be the same at all centres. There are 25-30 dive sites within 10-15 minutes speed boat ride from the beach, suitable for beginners up to advanced level. Dives range from ‘Angol Point’ (10m), through ‘Crocodile Island’ (22-25m), a straightforward wall dive, up to ‘Yapak’- a deep wall dive suitable for only the most experienced divers due to strong currents, although there is the possibility of seeing sharks and stingrays.

Boat tours

One way to see the beauty of Boracay and its various beaches is by Paraw (native outrigger sailboat), which sail along White Beach every afternoon just before sunset. You will be constantly asked if you want to take a boat trip, as there are literally dozens of companies offering this service.

There are a few entrenched and powerful brokers here who control much of tourist activities that do nothing more than rip the tourist off. Booking an activity through them can cost as much as 5 times what it would cost if you only had gone directly to the office of that tour/activity. These brokers have strong-armed their way into many hotels with ‘commisioners’ that book at the hotel or on the beach so you may not even know that you’re dealing with their rep. The best thing to do is grab a trike and cruise around and visit the service providers directly. If you’re on the beach and are interested in island hopping or parasailing, walk right up to the boat. Avoid the people with flyers and clipboards. Prices are usually negotiable except for scuba where competition is frowned on but you may find price fixing in other businesses as well because they don’t like competition on the island.

Kiteboarding

Boracay’s Bulabog beach is known as the best kitesurf destination in Asia. The season runs from November through to April with onshore winds varying between 12-30 knots. Small lagoon (2km wide) is protected from waves with coral reef. Water becomes almost flat on a low tide, making it easy to start learning kitesurfing and continue with freestyle tricks. Because of its nice conditions, spot becomes overcrowded with riders in high season.

  • Freestyle Academy Kitesurfing School Bulabog Beach
  • GreenYard Kite School Bulabog Beach
  • Habagat, Bulabog Beach
  • Isla Kiteboarding school, Bulabog Beach
  • Pinas Kite Boarding, Bulabog Beach

Skimboarding

Skimboarding in Boracay has been a new fun sport for kids and entertainment for older for people for several years. It is a welcome new attraction and a pleasure to watch. Skimboards are available for rent at several places along White Beach. But be sure to hire an expert to teach you to do the skills, 1-hour lesson from a local rider is usually around ₱300.

 

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