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Trip Report Boracay Trip Report

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Hi. I just got back from a four-day trip to Boracay. Since there aren’t many posts on Boracay on the forum, I thought I’d do a short trip report.

Overall Impression:

Boracay is a beautiful island. Unfortunately, it was slightly cloudy/rainy so we didn’t get a chance to go snorkeling or parasailing, which was fine with us. We just sat on the beach, swam a little, and got daily massages.

Transportation:

We flew from Seoul to Manila to Caticlan. Once in Caticlan, we had arranged for a transport (boat and van) from the airport to our hotel on the island. Fortunately for us, our travel agent gave us three hours to transfer from the international terminal to the domestic terminal in Manila, and we used every bit of that time. The ride from the int’l terminal to the domestic terminal, which should have taken five mins (per our taxi driver) took 30 mins b/c of traffic. Also, we waited for about 10 mins for the free airport shuttle to take it us to the domestic terminal, but it never showed up. We ended taking a taxi (under 200 pesos). Once at the airport, you have to go through a security check just to get into the airport. After that we got stuck in one line or another. On our return trip, instead of getting stuck in traffic b/n the terminals, we got stuck trying to get into the airport. It took us about 2 hrs from landing in the domestic terminal to completely checking in at the int’l terminal.

Departure Fees:

Unlike most airports, the departure tax is not built in your ticket price. We paid 50 pesos at the domestic terminal and 800 pesos for the int’l terminal. If you run at out pesos like we did, you can pay your departure tax for the int’l airport in dollars. In Boracay, we had to pay 50 pesos to enter and leave the island.

Hotel:

We stayed at the Residence at Fairways & Bluewater New Coast Hotel. It’s the only resort on Boracay with a golf course. It also has a private beach, but we don’t recommend it. The sand isn’t as smooth as the White Beach, and they don’t provide any lounge chairs. They also have two pools right off the main clubhouse/reception area. Overall, our room was very nice (we stayed at one of the new villas off the golf course). However, I think the “hotel” part of the resort is new to them. As a result, the service wasn’t great. They didn’t clean our rooms one day and forgot to stock our room with some basic items (soap, cups in the bathroom, etc). The free breakfast they offered in the morning got progressively worse throughout our stay. They charged a rental fee for the beach towels. On the upside, the staff was extremely friendly. Always smiling and saying hello. Also, they had a spa that provided in-room massages, which were divine. Getting the in-room massages (800 pesos) was a lot cheaper than going to the actual spa (over 1500 pesos).

Hotel Location:

The Fairways is a little ways from the White Beach. But, the hotel provides a free shuttle service to the White Beach twice an hour. If you miss the shuttle, it is relatively easy and cheap (about a 50 to 75 pesos) to take a motorbike taxi. Just make sure you arrange the price before you get on.

Food:

We ate a variety of places on the White Beach during our stay. Our favorite place was Aria, which is in D’Mall right on White Beach. The food and service was great. We also tried the buffet at SeaWinds (a hotel). You pick all the meat/seafood you want them to grill. On our last night, we tried the restaurant at the Discovery Shores. The atmosphere was very nice, but the food and service was a little lacking. In the end, our dinners ran about 1000 pesos per person (including drinks). Mind you, we tended to go overboard and get a lot of food.

Note:

At night the mosquitoes come out, so don’t forget to bring your bug spray. If you forget, there is a great market (Budget Market) that is stocked to the gills with everything that you may need (all of which is packaged in small containers, perfect for traveling.)

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