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Boracay

It's a three hour drive to Caticlan from Roxas City, another beach town on the island of Panay. Then a short 15 minute hop by pump boat to the white sand beaches of Boracay. We stayed at White Beach where most of the action takes place. Our hotel was right on the beach, convenient for the many walks we took during our brief stay. We arrived in Boracay just about lunch time and we found a buffet restaurant close by. For two hundred pesos, we had our fill or more. While eating our lunch at this crowded beachfront resto, I watched how the pigs were prepared and slowly roasted for that evening's dinner.


Soon the pigs were turning a golden hue with the patient manual rotation by these two men.

A couple more hours and the "lechon" will be on the buffet table. We ate dinner at another restaurant, Mesa, where we savored their specialty - tinapa rolls along with what else, tinapa rice and fried tilapia. Tinapa is a tiny smoked fish. My friends and I thought the food at Mesa …

Going Private in Boracay

Finding the perfect accommodation at the hottest beach destination in the Philippines and perhaps Asia can be a bit tricky. There are native huts, five star hotels, Mediterranean inspired lodgings, boarding houses and if you’re lucky as I was, a room in a private home.

I’ve written before about Filipino hospitality and how easily I’ve made friends with them during my travels around the world. In Boracay, I was once again reminded how generous and welcoming Filipinos are.

My friends had invited me to Boracay for a long weekend through the first couple days of Holy Week. I was excited because I wanted to get away and see more of the island. My first visit to Boracay was on a day trip and we spent most of our time walking along White Beach. I was captivated by the colors of the sea and the missing crowds. It must have been off season then.

When we arrived at the home of my friends’ friends in the neighborhood of Station 1, I was entranced by the tropical landscape, the tree house, the nipa …

Boracay on Yahoo! Travel's 2007 Top Ten Best Beaches List

Boracay Island's dazzling beaches has just been selected by Yahoo! Travel among its Top Ten Best Beaches for 2007. Boracay ranked 7th on the list which follows:
1. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
2. Miami, Florida
3. Cancun, Mexico
4. Kaanapali, Hawaii
5. Honolulu, Hawaii
6. San Diego, California
7. Boracay Island, Philippines
8. Key West, Florida
9. Sydney, Australia
10.Santa Barbara, California

For more information, check out this link:
http://travel.yahoo.com/beaches;_ylt=Ag5LWiuYAlPghcC6YWI3sHn8xmoA

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Images by Rosario Charie Albar



The Score on Boracay

Yes the beaches of Boracay have fine, white sand and its wonderful to burrow your feet into its warm recesses. The water is clear and cool. The coconut trees sway in the gentle breeze and offer much needed shade and the sunsets are showstoppers.

These things we already know about Boracay. But here’s what we haven’t heard or read about:

1. You take a ferry to Boracay from Caticlan for P30.00, a relatively inexpensive fare. But to this you have to add an environmental fee of P50 which you pay at a separate window and a terminal fee of P20 which is paid to a different cashier. If you travel after 6 p.m., there is a fare surcharge as well.

2. To get into the ferry (usually an outrigger), you have to walk a plank which measures about 1.5 ft. in width. Attendants will help you along but watch your step anyway. It gets tricky when you are carrying a bag or two. One of the passengers in our boat dropped his luggage in the sea. While an attendant dove to retrieve it, his clothes were all wet.

3. I…