Boracay Island

- Contributed by Ang Chong Lee -

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The island of Boracay is a shinning jewel among Filipino islands. If you are looking to escape the city life and retreat to a sun-drenched resort island with cool turquoise waters and the finest white sand which slips through the small spaces between your fingers, look no further than Boracay.

Boracay is an island about 5 km long. Along its southwestern coast line, a row of resorts, handicraft shops, restaurants, cafes, bars and diving centres spans the entire 5-km beach front. While the infrastructure for tourism is commercialised, the island has not evolved into yet another faceless beach littered with Starbucks cafes and Warner Brothers specialty shops. In fact, you'll be pleased to know that the long row of hospitality establishments is quaint in a tropical, rural way. There are about just a small handful of glitzy four/five-star hotels. Even then, the four/five-star resorts are not more than 3 stories high. Most of the chalet-style accommodations are run by locals. The roofs are sometimes woven palm-leaves and furniture is styled mostly from natural tree-stumps, straw, cane, rope, unfinished wooden planks, bamboo and coconut husks.

Another day in Boracay

If you take a walk down the sandy track along the beach where the long row of shops are, you will encounter island dogs and cats, local street vendors selling their wares, local women offering massage services and boatmen urging you to take a boating trip. Popular music English and Filipino greet you as you pass each new outdoor diner. The holiday crowd is a mix of locals from other nearby islands, Japanese and Europeans. I like how the island offers quiet and tranquil surroundings with pockets of leisurely tourist activity. It makes Boracay the perfect setting for lazing and doing absolutely nothing whilst sipping fresh mango juice or diving to uncover colourful ocean secrets. Let the island magic work its way into your body system and you will find yourself a holiday at your desired pace and rhythm.


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