In this blog, I’ll share with you my Boracay Travel Guide : Detailed Itinerary, Activities and Budget based on my actual expenses and experience last summer.
The finest white sand I’ve ever seen, my mermaid dream, the crazy Saturday Pub Crawl night, the influx of tourists all enjoying as the sun sets, the sand that touches your feet and that full braid everyone’s raving about. There goes the Mango shake from Jonah’s Fruitshake people are lining up in the middle of the day, the coconut Ice Cream from Coco Mama I would gladly try all over and over again, and that Calamansi Muffin where Boracay was known for the best pasalubong to bring home; these are just some of the highlights of my Boracay Summer Escapade.
So read on…
Boracay, is a tropical island surrounded by stunning white sand beaches and clear blue waters located about less than an hour of travel time from Manila. Specifically located at the Western Visayas (or Region VI) of the Philippines.
It was recently closed last April 2018 due to the government’s effort to the island’s environmental rehabilitation and opened to the public by October 2018.
Ever since it is known as a paradise for certified sun-worshipers all over the world. In fact, both local and foreign tourists have made Boracay their yearly destination.
I was then excited as I planned for my Bora trip for the first time, the rehabilitation of the island made me go for Aklan as my next travel / beach destination. I initially planned and booked for a solo travel on this; it just so happen that I was able to tag along my BFF from Singapore (Erone) to join me on this escapade!!!! (*hoorayyyyy!!!)
HOW TO GO TO BORACAY?
- Book a plane bound to Caticlan, I got mine via Cebu Pacific for P3,100.00 for two-way trip (it wasn’t on seat sale that time but I just booked it still)
- Travel time from Manila to Caticlan is only 40 minutes
- You would be alighting at Caticlan International Airport
- From the airport going to Boracay Island :
- You have an option to DIY (Do-It-Yourself) all the way to Boracay Island but I recommend the latter;
- Where I booked for the airport transfers from www.klook.com – Complete transfers from airport to Boracay Island. It was very efficient and easy, after exiting thru the airport I proceeded to the Island Star Booth just in front of the airport exit
- It cost Php 390.00 per pax; this includes the van transfer from airport to the port, a public passenger boat ride to Boracay Island, then another van transfer where it took us straight to our hostel, the payment also includes Php 100 for the terminal fee and Php 75 for the Environmental Fee (*so the package rate is actually really cheap already)
- It was stress free and the guide form Star Express all the way to my hostel was very accommodating.
WHERE TO STAY IN BORACAY?
- Due to the rehabilitation of the island, accommodation should be accredited by the local government first as to make sure they pass and followed the new rules of the island
- That is why, one must booked an accommodation in advance and keep your reservation in case they look for it. Check also via online : https://www.myboracayguide.com/info/en/boracay-opening-2019-6240.html the list of Boracay hotel & hostels
- Personally, since I decided to have my solo travel escapade I booked at Frendz Hostel (*if you’ve been keeping up with my blog, you’d see that I am so in love with hostel places rather than expensive hotel rooms for my vacation)
FRENDZ RESORT & HOSTEL BORACAY
Rate : Php 630.00 per pax / bunk bed
Address : Station 1, Balabag Main Beach, White Beach path
- Each room comes with an AC, a room of 8 pax mix dorm type, with private CR inside the room
- The hostel also offers different type of room based on your requirement (they also have a private room)
- They give welcome drinks of ice tea or beer
What I like about this hostel :
- It is near the White Beach area, a short 3 minute walking distance
- The location of the hostel was within the convenience needed for a trip
- Even though I love staying in hostels, I still value privacy – so a curtain per bunk bed is really a must for me.
- My bunk bed has the basic needs I always look out for a hostel (a socket, a small cabinet and a personal light)
- The spaces of the room was also big enough for everyone to fit it
- There is a private hanging place inside the room which is actually awesome as well for the wet clothes and towel
- They have a restaurant inside the hostel so if you wish to order for food or drinks, it is available anytime
- A small swimming pool if you want to soak anytime of the day
MODE OF TRANSPORTATION :
- It is evident that if you would be roaming around the island, the best way is to ride the tricycle, however you may also do a lot of walking around if you would only be transferring from one station to the other, so you get to save on this part also plus, you get to spend your time soaking your feet thru the beach J (*wink)
- Your final budget in Boracay actually depends how many and how wide you wanted to have your experience, you can basically beach bum the entire week and just spend on food and accommodation, or spend more on activities that are all widely available In the island
- As for me, I have always been dependent with com for activities where I get cheaper price and trusted agencies at the same time.
- For 4 days / 3 nights I actually spent around Php 13,000 pesos / 254 USD this is all-in with airfare,food, accommodation, and all the activities. *you can definitely spend a little less or more than this.
ACTIVITIES TO DO IN BORACAY
I’ll be sharing here the list of activities that I decided to do during my trip in Boracay, there were actually so many more options to look out and try for, so sharing all from my actual experience below.
1. PUB CRAWL
Where to book : check their FB page @Boracay PubCrawl by Haqqy Life
Cost : Php 790 per pax (discounted if early booking)
Schedule : only available on Friday and Sundays
Overview : Bar Hopping with complete strangers and have so many new found friends!!! Bars and night out is very much known in Boracay, not until its rehabilitation took place, the night out and party vibe eventually changes as well. Most of the parties ends by 12mn or 1am, the Pub Crawl only happens every Friday and Monday.
So if you want to party your way out and meet new people join the HAQQY PUB CRAWL, for the price you get the legendary yellow shirt (*where everyone is using as well), baller band as souvenir, you get free access to 5 different bars for free for the night, a shot glass, and 10 free shot voucher – where you use 2 per each bar stops.
I don’t really party much without my friends and if not on travels hahaha!! So I really get to enjoy this one, there was definitely no strangers around, and we get to dance and party with everyone!!! Super fun!!!!!
Shout out to my beshy Erone – for being extra tito the entire time, but who managed to loosen up a beat and started dancing with the rest of the beshies around!!! Hahahahah!! I laveeetttt (*keeping all your videos for future reference of how fun the night was!!!)
Thanks to this Cebu crew, for being with us up until we all gave up and went to the nearest Mcdo just to eat a little bit at 4AM! Hahahaha!!
2. TAKE A MERMAID CLASS
Where to book : search on FB @Philippine Mermaid Swimming Academy
Cost : P2,200 (per pax for a regular scheduled class) no walk-ins allowed purely for scheduling
Also read for full post: My Mermaid Dream : Be a mermaid for a day in Boracay
Overview : Have you ever wanted to become a mermaid and wear those colorful fins, swim thru the ocean and use your flippers to do it? Another activity I enjoyed the most was to learn some basic mermaid strokes and really posed and swim thru the ocean with my tail.
As a water baby, I have always been in love with the ocean, the sea and the beach, I love staying in the water primarily because I love swimming at the same time, that is why one of my Boracay Travel Bucket List is to really have a class and learn basic mermaid swimming.
It was a little bit pricey, but the experience of having your own fins!!! I am so in love, I was beyond happy!!! Like OA na happiness!!! Hahahaha!!
Here’s my detailed blog about this dream escapade of mine of being a mermaid : *blog post to follow
I get to learn some strokes with my fins with me, a quick photo op session as well which makes all my Mermaid Dreams into reality!!!
3. PARAW SAILING
Where to book : book via http://www.klook.com
Cost : Php800.00 / pax
Also read for full post : Paraw Sailing in Boracay
Overview : Paraw Sailing is a local sail boat activity. The boats use two outriggers and two sails. …
Paraw sailing around Boracay is probably best done in time for sunsets. The calmness of the sea was really amazing.
I booked for 2 pax for me and my best friend for this activity and it just so happened that the boat would only have us for the entire paraw trip. It was like a private booked activity which was totally cool, the waves, the sun that shines beneath our boat, the calmness of the sea – that is what you’ll enjoy in this activity.
4. ISLAND HOPPING
Where to book : via http://www.klook.com
Cost : P700.00 / pax (comes with the island hopping activity + LUNCH)
Overview : An island experience wouldn’t be complete without the Island Hopping. There were actually 3 islands as per the tour to visit to, where you can avail the service for this.
But to tell you in advance, I was somehow disappointed in this activity.
The first island was in Crocodile Island where you can snorkel; there weren’t much fish actually in this island hahahah!! As I ask Erone over his snorkeling experience – “Ilang fish besh?” (how many fish, friend?) and he would say “Three!” hahahahahah!! *nothing against it, I just expected a little bit more on this island.
And another snorkeling site around where we happen to have our buffet lunch as well. Food was great but there were so many people around, no matter which tour operator you book your island hopping activity with – you’ll all end up in the same lunch area.
And the last stop is in Puka Beach, where if you join the tour, will let you stay for only around 40 minutes then return to Boracay Island, but Pukka Beach can also be reached via trike so we decided to stay in the beach and spend the rest of the afternoon.
After sunset we just rode a tricycle back to Boracay Island for P150.00 for the two of us. Pukka Beach is another white sand beach area in Caticlan, but it still isn’t as fine as that of the White Beach. You’ll fall in love with Pukka since it has fewer tourists and people around.
5. BEACH BUMMING
Cost : FREE!!!
Nothing seems better than a beach bumming activity in a very pristine white sand beach. Literally lying down and enjoy the sunset the entire afternoon!!! You have the option to stay at the White Beach or ride all the way to Puka Beach, don’t forget to bring your sunscreen and pashmina to enjoy that whole day of beach bummin’.
FOOD TO TRY OUT :
There were various food stalls and dessert shops, café and restaurants in Boracay – the options were actually endless, It just depend on your preferences for the day. Fastfood and buffet, were also all available.
This coconut ice cream that comes serving with the coconut husk as its base, it cost Php 150.00 per coconut piece. They also have other coconut related products that you may try out. Watch out as many tourists wanted to have a grasp of this coconut dessert, as early as 9AM you’ll see people lining up.
It was a refreshing dessert and a must try in Boracay!!!
Located : Station 1
Everyone’s favorite in the island, is something refreshing that is why the Fruitshakes from Jona’s is one of the most popular. You’d see a bunch of tourists lining up for their own dose of shakes.
Where is it located : Real Coffee and Tea Café / Station 2
The calamansi muffin is people’s favorite for a pasalubong when one visits Boracay, you can buy a box of 6 pcs of this at Real Coffee.
Make sure when you plan on buying a box of calamansi muffin — you order ahead of time, or reserve and pay in advance so you are sure you get a pasalubong from Real Coffee.
It is actually a restaurant serving American breakfast (*we tried to eat here for breakfast – but apparently, they don’t serve RICE meal so we decided to eat elsewhere HAHAHAA!!)
This is one of my favorite place where we dine the usual Filipino food, the ambiance was good it wasn’t pricey plus an acoustic singer was also present.
After that series of beach activities in the morning, the vibe and mood in Lights Hotel was definitely a must do, Filipino dishes with the usual soup you are craving for — they got it all here.
AS I mentioned, the ambiance was really good — it really is very relaxing. I loved it here!!!
OTHER RESTAURANTS YOU MAY CHECK OUT :
Wokeria Crab Pasta House
Located : D Mall
Must Try : Creamy Seafood Pasta and Amatriciana (*if you are craving for an Italian dish and enjoys pasta and seafood, this is a place to be)
If you want a chill night for a couple of beer or even iced coffee, try looking for this spot! The couches facing the beach is such a delight after a full day of activities.
This was actually one of my favorite as well since it was far enough from the big and noisy crowd at the center.
Overview : On this part, I’ll be sharing my exact travel itinerary for 4days / 3 nights. All activities is still dependent on your final preference so just make use of it as a guide and reference as well.
Day 1 | Friday
Overview : assuming that the food and other misc expense is not covered under that costing below. Final cost is still dependent on your final activities.
First day is entirely getting to know the island, the places around, convenient stores, resto and food hopping.
DAY 1 SUMMARY WITH EXPENSE
TIME PARTICULARS BUDGET
12:20PM FLIGHT TO CATICLAN VIA CEB PAC P3,100.00
1:30PM ARRIVAL TO CATICLAN
AIRPORT TRANSFER FROM CATICLAN TO HOSTEL PHP 390.00
2:30PM CHECK-IN AT FRENDZ RESORT AND HOSTEL PHP 630.00 / NIGHT
FREE TIME / BEACH BUM
6:00PM DINNER AT WOKERIA CRAB PASTA HOUSE PHP 969.00 (FOR 2)
8:00PM PUB CRAWL VIA HAQQY MANILA PUB CRAWL PHP 790.00
Day 2 |SATURDAY
Overview : My second day was spent with more beach bumming, my Mermaid Activity and Paraw Sailing in time for sunset.
DAY 2 SUMMARY WITH EXPENSE
TIME PARTICULARS BUDGET
9:00AM WAKE-UP CALL
10:00AM MERMAID CLASSES PHP 2,100.00
12NN LUNCH PHP 250.00
1:00 – 3:00PM FREE TIME / BEACH BUM
3:00PM PARAWSAILING ACTIVITY PHP 800.00
6:00PM DINNER PHP 250.00
9:00PM NIGHT OUT – MAD MONKEY HOSTEL PHP 300.00
Day 3 | SUNDAY
Overview : Explored the Island Hopping activity around. Stayed and beach bum at Puka Beach.
DAY 3 SUMMARY WITH EXPENSE
TIME PARTICULARS BUDGET
7:00AM` BREAKFAST PHP 150.00
9:00AM ISLAND HOPPING PHP 700.00
12NN LUNCH *part of the package
2:30PM END OF ISLAND HOPPING
PUKA BEACH – BUM
6:00PM TRIKE BACK TO BORACAY PHP 150.00
7:00PM DINNER PHP 250.00
9:00PM NIGHT OUT – PARAW BAR PHP 300.00
Day 4 | MONDAY
Overview : Free day to explore the island, buy souvenirs, eat and dine to the rest of your resto list to try and look out.
Bound back to Manila.
DAY 4 SUMMARY WITH EXPENSE
TIME PARTICULARS BUDGET
8:00AM BREAKFAST PHP 250.00
BEACH TIME – FREE TIME
LUNCH PHP 250.00
1:00PM BOUND TO AIRPORT PHP 390.00
3:00PM FLIGHT TO MANILA
Other notes :
- I still have my actual excel file with all my actual costing and details for my trip. Should you wish to have a copy of one – just follow me on IG @nathaliecsalcedo and send me a DM! I’ll be glad to share it with you.
- The food and other misc expenses is not indicated with the above list – that is primarily because all your expenses is dependent on all your booked activities during your stay
- You could have saved if you are a group of people travelling where you could share most on the expenses.
- I also just stayed in hostel, which makes it much cheaper than staying over nice and expensive hotels
- The food choices are everywhere – I was just also expecting to see more Boracay delicacy in the future; since most of the establishments were also present in Manila.
- The Boracay Fine White Sand and beach is still incomparable with the other beach areas in the Philippines. The vibe, the beauty and the wonder this island has is definitely something to look forward.
I didn’t thought that partying in Boracay would be so much fun (*being not a party girl) this comes as a surprise for me hahaha! And that Mermaid swimming wasn’t as easy as it looks like.
Sometimes, our travels gives us more opportunities and chances to do things we didn’t thought we’ll enjoy, so I hope you let yourself open with all possibilities life and adventure has to offer.
Cheers to more travels…
If you wanted to see the actual places I’ve been, check out my IG story highlight under Boracay.
See what best interests you and plan your itinerary well!!!
Follow me on IG @nathaliecsalcedo and send me DM if you need one!
I also update my FB Page @ilovenatsblog
*All photos were originally taken by the blogger @nathaliecsalcedo