I would consider Boracay as my very first major travel destination. I have been to farther places before like Cebu and Davao, but those were mostly sponsored travels meant for work or study and not vacation. Fortunately last May 2009, my older sister and I decided to go ahead and visit Boracay. 🙂
Due to our (mostly mine) limited budget, we opted to take sea transportation to go to the dream beach. That proved to be an bad decision, but being the adventurer that I am, it worked out pretty alright with me. To save more money, we brought with us food–from canned goods to biscuits, water, coffee, and bread. Later on, this proved to be a wise decision as most of the places to eat in Boracay are costly (except for maybe Andok’s). :p
Together with my older sister, her then boyfriend Noel (now her husband), my Uncle, and my Uncle’s friend, I braved several hours of land, sea, land, sea and land travel (all in that order) totalling to almost 24 hours before we actually saw the white sands of Boracay.
The first time I laid eyes on Boracay I was not really very impressed. It might be because I was tired from the very long travel or the fact that I was born in Romblon, in a house steps away form the beach and I have high standards for beaches or maybe both. So I thought maybe we should get settled first as we came to Boracay without any reservations. In short, we did not have a place to stay yet. RAWR.
A local guide helped us find a place that fits our budget and given the options that we had at that time, we chose Aquitel Boracay. I think it was still new back then. It had a minimalist style and is located just a few steps away from the police station.
We got a room for PhP 3500 with air conditioning, two double beds, bathroom, television, a sort of patio and table.
The room was good enough even though it was not beachfront. But it was a relief that the staff allowed all five of us in the room. It was funny but I had to share a bed with my sister and Noel.
After getting settled, we all took a bath, got beach-dressed and started our first official day in Boracay!
Station 1 of Boracay was a bit crowded due to some Summer beach events. As we are not really party people, we skipped that and moved on to the quieter parts of the beach. I, most especially, am not into crowds so I liked it better that we just looked for nice spots for picture-taking and relaxation.
It was a fairly sunny day in Boracay which is good. We thought then that we were really taking a chance of still going to Boracay in May since during this time in Manila, it is already raining. I was really wishing that time that it will not rain during our entire 3 days in Boracay.
While walking around Stations 1 and 2, we saw some Filipino celebrities. I am not into Pinoy showbiz so for me it doesn’t really matter. But I guess it was a plus and it made our simple Boracay trip fairly interesting. Almost all the good restaurants, bars and shopping places are in Stations 1 and 2 so we headed there to look for a place to eat.
We found a place called Paradiso Grill and decided to have Halo-halo. haha.
Our Halo-Halo surprisingly came in a bowl and not in the usual tall Halo-Halo glass. It looked really nice but I would have to say the taste was pretty normal.
On our way to Paradiso Grill we actually saw a big crush of mine, Carlos Morales! That is probably the reason why I only had Halo-Halo for dinner. The other celebrities we saw I did not care much about, but with Carlos I was almost tempted to ask for an autograph.
We also passed by henna tattoo kiosks on our way back to our room in Acquitel. I am not really interested in getting a henna tattoo but I thought what the heck! So i lined up to get a small henna tattoo which means intelligence. It only took a few minutes to get it done.
My sister also got a small henna tattoo after me. Once done, we immediately went back to Acquitel to rest. We planned to just take a a bath and rest a bit then go out again to roam around. However, when we went back to our room, rain started to pour. We ended up just watching television. Eventually, we all fell asleep as we were all tired from the long travel we took to reach Boracay.
The following day, we were determined to make the most of the sun shining brightly. We decided that we will spend the rest of the day swimming (as if), taking pictures, relaxing, and taking more pictures!
We looked for all the nices places to have our picture taken in all sorts of poses. Station 1 and even station 2 was pretty crowded then so we went to station 3 instead. It turned out to be the best place to take pictures as there were almost no people. We had the place all to ourselves!
As the title of this blog post implies, we did not engage in any activities when we went to Boracay. To be honest with you, we were actually unprepared. Im sure you have already guessed that when I mentioned earlier in the post that we came there without any room reservations. Well, we did not have an itinerary either. The plan was simply to see Boracay and bring home pictures to prove we’ve been there.
Looking back, I would have to say in 2009 I was not really into travelling yet. Neither was I into blogging. So I did not help my ister in researching about things to do and places to stay/eat. Now, I cant imagine going anywhere, even in places in Metro Manila, without me consulting blogs to find information and see pictures of the destination.
We stayed in the beach until before noon. By noon we were alraedy hungry and decided to have lunch at Andok’s. I find it very funny that we were in such a nice travel destination but kept on eating at Andok’s because we couldnt afford the other places. Oh well.
After lunch, we stopped taking pictures first as we were super bloated form all the rice and chicken we ate. We just stayed in the beach and waited for the sun to set.
Even when it was alreadydark, we still stayed in the beach and swam. Ate and Noel attempted to teach me how to swim and I did try to at least keep myself afloat for a few seconds. Being the coward that I am though, I surrendered after only a few tries. I know it comes as a shock or a joke to most people when they find out I cannot swim as I am always in the beach or always planning to go to the beach. I will talk more about that in my next posts.
When we finally got tired hanging out, we went back to Acquitel to take a bath again and rest for a bit. Once done, we changed into our pathetic attempts for night/party outfits hoping to have a little taste of Boracay night life. That turned out to be a fail though as we didnt have much money on us. So we pretty much just roamed around to see the restaurants, pasalubong places, bars, etc.
This was our final night in Boracay so we made sure to have a picture of all of us with the Boracay sandcastle. By the way, the sandcastles are done by the locals and just left randomly anywhere in the beach but you would have to pay/give a donation in order to pose with it during picture-taking. We chose the nicest sandcastle that night, gave a donation nad made sure we got our money’s worth (which is not much) by asking the manong to take our picture. Judging from the final product, what can you say? Not bad, eh? 😛
We slept late that night and got up early the following day to pack and go home. We made sure we have enough energy as we will be braving another almost 24 hours of land and sea travel (reverse sequence as mentioned earlier) to go back home to Manila.
Here are some useful information about our Boracay Trip:
Accomodation: Acquitel Boracay
Station 2, Tourist Center, near Police station at the back of Dos Mestizos restaurant, White Beach., Bulabog Beach, Boracay / Caticlan, Philippines
- Bus from Manila to Batangas Pier
- Ferry Boat (Montenegro Shipping Lines) from Batangas to Mindoro
- Van from small port Calapan Port
- Ferry boat from Calapan pot to Kalibo, Aklan
- Fast craft to Caticlan
- Tricycle from Caticlan to Bulabog Beach, Boracay
- Tricycle from Bulabog Beach to Caticlan
- Small fishing boat (illegal, wahaha) from Caticlan to Romblon
- Ferry boat from Romblon to Batangas Pier
- Bus from Batangas Pier to Manila
How is that for our travel?
Over all, I had fun in Boracay. Take note that this trip happened way back 2009 hence the lack of preparedness. Over time, I have already developed the love and respect for travel so much that now, i can actually say that sometimes I overprepare. I swore during this trip that I or we will go back to Boracay armed with more knowledge, an itinerary, and a lot of money! It has been 3 years and I still haven’t gone back. Heck, it is not even in my Travel plans for next year. I plan to go to the more interesting and hidden places first, but who knows? 🙂
Until the next trip,