Saturday, June 18, 2011

Visit Boracay

Boracay is a tropical paradise approximately 345 km south of Manila, located at the northwest part corner of the island of Panay. It has a total land area of 10.32 sq km and as of census 2000 there are 12,003 inhabitants.

The weather in Boracay is generally divided into two seasonal weather patterns; the cool northeast wind (September to May) and the southwest wind (June- August). Its temperature ranges from 25- 32°C, however during the Tropical storm periods, temperature falls down to 20°C , while during the hottest monthS temperature rises up to 28-38°C.

Boracay is administratively controlled by the Philippine Tourism Authority in coordination with the Provincial Government of Aklan. This seven kilometers long, dog- bone shaped enchanted island is nestling on blue-green azure sea and surrounded by coral reefs.

The island of Boracay is comprises of three barangays: Manoc-manoc on the south; Balabag, in the center of the island; and in the north is Yapak. The island was originally home to the Ati tribe of Aklan province. In 1970’s tourism began to develop in this island. It was in the 1980’s when it became famous among backpackers.

On the south of the island is the Cagban jetty port which serves as Boracay’s main entry and exit point. Tambisaan Beach is located at the east side of the island serves as alternative entry and exit point.

There are two primary beaches in the island, located on opposite sides are the Bulabog beach and the White beach. Located at the West coast between the villages of Balabag and Angol is the White beach of Boracay also known as the Long beach. It has more or less 4 km of fine, white coral sand. The water is shallow; the sand is finer and brighter than any other beaches in the archipelago. Major attractions are sunbathing on the sparkling white sand, open air massage as well as wading and snorkeling. One hundred meters off shore is the Willy’s Rock, a castle-like volcanic formation that stands out like a dark dot on the white shoreline of White Beach. Facing the beach are stairs leading to a small, quaint shrine of Virgin Mary. On the south end of the White beach, pass the beach rocks, is a large coral shelf. The Live Coral Beds contain countless varieties of living corals of myriad shapes and sizes.

On the east coast is the Bulabog beach of Boracay, comes alive during the early months of the year when windsurfers skim through its water. Along the beach is the Boracay Butterfly Garden, a tropical garden with collections of rare and beautiful butterflies. Located just off the east coast beach is the Boracay Rock, a fascinating natural formation. The small island has been completely undercut by the sea and the top overhangs it recessed base.

Mt. Luho, the highest elevation on Boracay Island, is 100 m above sea level. Situated on the north of Barangay Bulablog, Mt. Luho has an impressive viewpoint of Boracay. Located on the southern end of Bulabog is an abandoned fishpond with branches of dead mangroves reaching strangely out of the water while on the south end of White beach is the wooded area of the island.

From the north end of White beach along Fairways and Blue Water road is the 200 m long secluded peaceful beach of Diniwid. On the top of the high hill at the northernmost end of a beach is a spectacular view of Boracay’s crystalline blue waters.

On the northern tip of the island is the Puka Shell beach, this is the second longest beach on the island with 800 meters long. In contrast with the fine coral sand of White Beach, the sand here is more silica. It has an abundance of small shells and tiny, white coral amulets.

The village of Manoc-Manoc is on the southern end of Boracay. It is a home of half of the local population of the island. A visit to the village provides a glimpse of the traditional Philippines’ way of living. The coast on this village is a busy place with a steady stream of boats from Caticlan unloading needed supplies for Boracay hotels, resorts and other businesses.

There are numerous caves around the island. Between Balinghai and Punta Bunga is Kalikuguan Cave. Along the rocky coast east of Yapak are the Crystal Cave, Cave of Buslugan and the Bat Cave. Bat Cave is the home to many cave bats with wingspans up to four feet. On the east coast of Boracay Island is an impressive jungle where giant fruit bats are seen hanging in the trees.

Ilig-Iligan village offers several coves and caves. Also located in this village is the Kar-tir Seashell Museum which showcases interesting collection of seashells, woodcarvings, pottery, hand-woven articles, and traditional Filipino costumes.

Aside from these stunning attractions of the islands, the Boracay’s markets will also take tourist to a new and exotic sights and impressions where one can buy souvenirs, local delicacies and others. The Talipapa, a flea market which covers 4000 sq m between the White Beach and the main road at the centre of the island offers items that are sold at unbelievably low prices.

Getting There
The best way to get to Boracay is by air to Panay Island. There are two airports that serve Boracay; the Caticlan, with its small strip close to the jetty port and serviced by small aircraft with regular service from Manila and Clark Freeport; and the Kalibo, a larger airport serviced by airlines from a number of destinations.

Upon arrival in Caticlan, it is 5 minute tricycle ride to jetty port and 15 minute outrigger boat ride to Boracay.

Upon arrival in Kalibo, it is 1 ½ hour bus ride to jetty port and 15 minute outrigger boat ride to Boracay.

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