If you are used to the beaches at Hawaii, Cancun or at the French Riviera, overcrowded and overdeveloped, then Boracay is really different. If you like 5 stars hotel, please avoid Boracay.
Boracay has been voted as one of the most beautiful beaches in the World, and here we are talking about a true beach, a beach where there is no visible concrete in the vicinity. As the few roads on Boracay Island are inland, the path along the beach is made of sand and earth, not of concrete and you can walk barefoot. This is not Miami beach, this is a Philippines beach still preserved from aggressive high rise building.
Yes Boracay Island is touristic. Its main activity is to cater for the foreigners visiting it. But it does not feel like the usual tourist trap, far from it. Initially this was a backpackers’ paradise in the 70s, and backpackers are still welcome. Accommodations cover the full spectrum, from the cheapest low-budget bungalows up to a few upscale resorts. And there is a highly ranked golf course.
So it does not matter your budget, you will find anything you like, except the ultra top resorts, which exist in more secluded upscale environments.
The atmosphere is a cool relaxed one, with excellent restaurants by the dozens and plenty of bars to meet your fellow beachcombers. Many of them are run by Westerners, so you will receive excellent quality and great food. The seafood in particular is abundant. Other activities include scuba diving, wind surfing, boating, fishing and trekking in the middle of the island.
The way to reach Boracay Island is by boat as it is only a short distance from the bigger island of Panay. So you will take either a small ferry or a lighter pirogue to arrive. To reach Panay you can fly from Manilla, as flying is the main form of transportation for tourists in the Philippines, as this is a large country made of 7,107 islands. The nearby Caticlan airport is the nearest, but only lands smaller planes. Another airport is further away and requires an extra bus ride.
The weather is fantastic in this south-east Asian destination, but avoid the rainy season from June to November, but even then you’ll have a good time with less tourists and less heat. The Filipino people are extremely friendly and you will make new friends easily.
Warning. If you visit Boracay Island, you might get addicted to it. Some people do not leave.