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Philippines, Travel

World’s Best Island – Boracay Travel Guide


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If you are looking for a perfect destination for a beach vacation, consider putting Boracay on the top of your list! Boracay is named the World’s Best Island in Travel & Leisure Magazine for getaways in 2012 and came in second in 2013, beating Galapagos Islands, Bali and the Hawaiian islands in the beach destination race. Fast forward to 2017, it was voted the World’s Best Island among Readers Choice Awards.

With white sandy beaches and crystal clear waters, Boracay offers you the picturesque views you often see in awe-inspiring travel magazines. It is located Southeast off Manila, the capital of Philippines. Philippines is well-known for it’s thousand islands and Boracay is one of those you can’t miss.

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When to visit Boracay

The best time to get to Boracay is from December to May. The monsoon period starts after June when it gets rainy and the waters get choppy. However, that is also the period when it is off-peak and you can get really good deals.

 Getting there and around

Tigerair flies from Singapore to Kalibo (Boracay) three times weekly. If you are looking for something that offers more comfort, check out the newly launched SG-Kalibo flights by SilkAir. Flight time is around 3.5 hours. I had the opportunity to fly on SilkAir inaugural flight to Boracay launched on 27th May 2014. I think it is a very worthy option if travellers are looking for more perks and extras. Check out my review on SilkAir Business Class from SG-Kalibo.

Various land transfer is available from Kalibo International Airport to the Caticlan Jetty where you take a 15 minutes ride to the island. Don’t worry about finding your way to the island because there are many transport vendors at Kalibo International Airport offering to take your there.

It costs around PHP 200 for the ride from the airport to the jetty, and another PHP 200 for the boat ride to the island, which is inclusive of the environmental fee (PHP 75) and Caticlan Jetty terminal fee (PHP 100).

Upon arrival at the island, you can hire a tricycle to take you to your accommodation; the average rate is PHP 100, depending on the location of your accommodation. However, do note that some hotels do offer transport as part of their packages.

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 P1040454 Caticlan Jetty

 Accommodation

There are different kinds of accommodation, ranging from hostels to 5-star resorts. Family run guesthouses offer private rooms starting from PHP 500, the cost per person reduces when you share the room with friends. Beachfront resorts or hotels start from PHP 12,000, perfect for honeymooners on their romantic getaway.

GOPR0908Here’s the front view of The District, my hotel during my time in Boracay.

 Things to do

A minimum of 3 days is needed to fully experience what Boracay has got to offer. I would say the ideal period of stay is 5 days to really soak in the beach vibes and get sun-kissed.

There are all kinds of water activities; para-sailing, fly-fish, snorkeling, kayaking and cliff jumping are some good examples. A lot of people flock to Ariel’s Point to do the famous cliff jump.

Packages start from PHP 1,500, depending on season. These packages include unlimited cliff jumps, kayaking, snorkelling, unlimited non-alcoholic and alcoholic drinks (you might need them to muster up the courage for the highest 15m cliff jump). I would say Ariel’s Point would be my favourite of all activities because you can do many activities over there! Read about my experiences at Ariel’s Point here.

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GOPR0795Take the leap!

P1040636Snorkel in the clear pristine waters

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GOPR0873View from the top of Mt Luho

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If you are not a fan of water sports or activities, you can take a good stroll along the white sandy beaches or take the sunset sail and admire the stunning Boracay sunset. You can engage in some land adventures such as the ATV (All-Terrain-Vehicle) ride to Mt Luho – the highest point of Boracay where you can catch a complete view of the white beach.

You can also visit D-Mall, a collection of 100 small tourist shops and restaurants that reach the back of the main road. Be prepared to pay tourist prices and do not hesitate to haggle.

P1040704 Watch the beautiful sunset on the sailboat

P1040469Main Road in Boracay

P1040472Off the streets of White Beach

 Nightlife

Nightlife in Boracay is pretty interesting. There are stretches of countless restaurants and bars along the beach. Enjoy your dinner with the heart pumping fire dance as the dancers come right up to you to perform fire spinning stuns over your head.

 Dinner and more

Boracay offers a wide array of food selection, ranging from street foods to upscale dining, catering to different kinds of travellers on the island. Cocktails and beers are available at many bars and restaurants for less than PHP 100, a nice complement to your sunset watching. Check out Jonah’s Fruitshake and Snack Bar for a wide variety of tasty milk shakes, prices are around PHP 90, depending on your selections.

If you prefer a sumptuous dinner that indulges your taste buds, eyes and ears, do pay a visit to Boracay Regency, where the “dancing chefs” are. Your “dancing” food is cooked by the chefs while performing interesting dances. There are also many live bands that lighten up the mood, bringing dinner and food indulgence to another level altogether. Decent meals at restaurants will set you back around PHP 100 to PHP 200 per dish. I recommend to try out the seafood feasts because those are fresh catches! If proper dinners are not your thing, you can always head out to the streets for some street snacks. Street foods can be found along the main road and little streets for around PHP 50.

P1040561The fire dancers

P1040529Enjoy your dinner with the sunset

P1040546“Dancing Chefs’”at work

P1040526Gorgeous sunset on the White Beach

Overall, Boracay is an excellent option when you are looking at beach destinations for your vacations. Be it you are a backpacker, honeymooner or you are looking for a family getaway, it has got so much to offer for different categories of travelers. Be sure that you will be sun-kissed with lots of fun along the way!

Already feeling the Boracay vibes? Check out http://tripzilla.sg/travel/packages/philippines

Special thanks to Tripzilla Magazine for the invite, SilkAir and Philippines Department of Tourism for collaborating such a wonderful experience.

This article also appeared on http://magazine.tripzilla.com

Hotel & Flight Reviews, Philippines, Travel

Review Of SilkAir Business Class SG-Kalibo (Boracay)


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SilkAir launched their inaugural flight from Singapore to Kalibo on the 27th May 2014. This opens up another option of airline for holiday makers flying out of Singapore to Boracay.  Boracay is named the world’s best island getaway 2012 by an international travel magazine; Travel & Leisure. Boracay beats the Galapagos Islands, Bali and islands in Hawaii.

Previously, Tigerair was the sole airline that flies directly from Singapore to Kalibo. For travelers that wants more comfort for their 3 hours plus flight to Kalibo, SilkAir provides that upgraded option. This is an ideal option for family traveling with young children because they usually want more space and comfort. An economy round trip ticket costs around 300 plus SGD, business class at 1800 plus SGD. A search on Tigerair on the same route comes up to around 300 plus SGD too, which looks very competitive for both airlines. But we all know Tigerair has frequent promotions, the best price that I have seen is around 150-200 SGD. Prices are as mentioned at time of writing.

SilkAir is a full service premium carrier and that means the price you pay includes checked bags and meals. You are paying a little more for checked bags and meals. I think this is a very worthy option provided by SilkAir for travelers flying out of Singapore because you are getting the full SilkAir experience. The timing for SilkAir’s SG-Kalibo flight is ideal, departing from Singapore at 10am from Changi International Airport and you will reach Boracay before evening for the stunning sunset.

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GOPR0229-3The business class features an 2-2 configuration on the A320 plane, a total of 12 seats.

Each business class seat is spacious and comfy, though I will love it more if they provide power point for charging devices and the seats can be reclined lower.

P1040375Got the pilots to smile for the camera before takeoff

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P10403723-3 configuration on the economy class

SilkAir is rolling out Lenovo tablets for business class passengers as part of their wireless inflight streaming entertainment. I got the chance to try it out! There are some travel articles, music and movies in the tablets, which I think is sufficient for the flight. Economy class ticket comprises of 30 kg check in baggage allowance (40kg for business class), inflight meals, KrisFlyer Miles and seat selection. The seats are also more spacious than budget airlines.

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There’s snacks and meals provided on the flight. For snacks, there were choices of mixed nuts, pretzels and potato chips for business class passengers. The meal consisted of an appetizer and a main dish, pretty delicious stuff.

P1040381Appetizer and the desert

P1040387Delicious meatball spaghetti

P1040730The appetizer for the return flight

P1040731Got a chicken fillet on my return flight

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Overall, it was a positive experience flying with SilkAir, furthermore enhanced with their fantastic cabin crew that were attentive and friendly throughout the flight. Although SilkAir might not provide the cheapest ticket compared to budget airlines, but you certainly get enough comfort for the price you pay. Like I always say, it’s not about getting the lowest price, it’s about getting what you pay for and making sure it is worth it.

As the regional wing of Singapore Airlines, SilkAir operates the Singapore Airlines Group’s narrowbody fleet and extends the Group network by seeding and developing new, exciting destinations in Asia-Pacific. Today, the full service airline operates more than 300 weekly flights to 45 destinations in 12 countries. Visit SilkAir.com to check out promotions and fly with them on your next destination.

Special thanks to Tripzilla Magazine for the invite, SilkAir and Philippines Department of Tourism for collaborating such a wonderful experience.

This article also appeared on http://magazine.tripzilla.com