Having been a frequent Boracay goer prior to its closure in April 2018, I wasn’t entirely sure what its rehabilitation and re-opening would mean for well-known island favorites.
While the promise of a cleaner and more pristine Boracay sounded like a great idea, I prepared myself to face the truth that the island may not be the same as what I had been used to growing up. But all it took was a quick three-day trip for me to invalidate my worries. Apart from being in awe of the wider shoreline, the strict implementation of sustainable practices, and the noticeably smaller crowds, I was thrilled to come back and experience these all-time go-tos. Planning a Boracay trip yourself? Here are the things you simply cannot miss.
1. Sip on a refreshing bottle of Jonah’s Fruit Shakes
Picture yourself lying on the cool, soft, powdery sand, as you soak up the sun and hear faint laughter and happy chatter harmonizing with the sound of the crashing waves. If you’re anything like me, then the only thing missing for absolute tropical R&R perfection is a sweet, cold fruit shake.
Since this beloved restaurant is no longer in its old beachfront spot, you can take a lovely stroll and keep your eyes peeled somewhere between Station 1 and 2 for a colorful Jonah’s sign that will point you towards the fruity haven and restaurant.
2. Satisfy your cravings with a hearty Chori Burger
A relaxing day at the beach almost always makes me crave the perfect afternoon snack, but my indecisive self usually can’t pick between savory and sweet. Enter the Chori Burger, also known as the answer to our prayers! Serving the best of both worlds, it’s quick to make and easy to eat—plus, with numerous stalls lining the beach during the late afternoons, it’s as readily accessible as it was before.
3. Get your fill of Oyster Sisig and Four Cheese Pizza
If you made your way to the island, but missed out on the still extremely buzzy Oyster Sisig and Four Cheese Pizza from barLO, did you really go to Boracay?
Photos of these two dishes have been filling up my social media timeline for as long as I can remember, and for good reason: the mouthwatering party of flavors in the sisig is wonderfully balanced by the subtle taste of the stringy cheese atop the light and chewy pizza crust. And yes, it really has to be the Oyster Sisig AND the Four Cheese Pizza—go for both or none at all.
4. Let your toes sink into the powder-white sand
There’s no better way to see, hear, taste, and experience Boracay than with a spirit for adventure and discovery. And there’s no better way to explore everything the island has to offer than by walking!
Kick off your flip-flops and walk along just where the sand meets the sea. You’ll find that the same fine, smooth sand we know and love is a constant, and an added treat of a more extensive shore is perfect for leisurely strolls and finding just the right spot for that tanning session.
5. Turn it up at Epic
As it was once known as the country’s party island or even the Philippine equivalent of Ibiza, Boracay’s closure and rehabilitation may have sparked fear among the island’s frequent partygoers. But while you can’t drink by the beach anymore, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that long-standing party place Epic Beach Club is still highly relevant in the Boracay nightlife scene.
Festive lights, heart-pumping music, dancing with strangers-turned-friends, and a tequila shot (or two, or three…or more!) in my system brought me back to the good ol’ days of partying in Boracay till the sun came up, almost as if nothing had changed!
6. Wind down with paraw sailing
Growing up and frequenting the island with family and friends, I had gone through pretty much the whole list of water sports and activities tour companies offered. My go-to each and every visit? Definitely paraw sunset sailing! Imagine closing your eyes and lying down, hearing the sound of the waves, taking in the ocean breeze, and feeling the occasional splash of water as you sail into the mesmerizing sunset… Could life get any better than this?
7. Watch the ever-changing sunsets
A personal favorite activity of mine is a simple one that’s free of charge and requires little to no effort. Whether I’m wading in the water, walking along the fine expanse of powdery sand, or sitting at a bar taking advantage of happy hour, watching the sunset is the one thing I’ll never get tired of.
To this day, I still find myself captivated by how the skies can dance with vivid and fiery reds, yellows, and oranges, then sing its sweetest songs through baby blues, light pinks, and lilacs. If there’s one thing about the island that rings true no matter how many years go by, it’s that no two Boracay sunsets are ever the same—in itself a solid reason to keep returning to (and falling in love with) the island.
Find your old-time favorites and discover exciting things to love in the new and improved Boracay. Get the best stays on the island at unbeatable rates here.
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