The information below is from our visit in March 2016. To make things easier for ourselves we were working off the exchange rate of AUD$1 = PHP₱30
The Places We Travel
Boracay is a small island 215km south of Manila. As there is no airport on the island to get there you will need to fly to Panay island and then get a ferry to Boracay.
The main airports to fly into are Kalibo airport or Caticlan Godofredo P. Ramos Airport.
Flying into Kalibo Airport
If you fly into Kalibo Airport you will need to get a minivan/bus to Caticlan Ferry Port. There will be buses waiting at the airport once your flight lands as there is no regular schedule for the buses – they follow the flight schedules. The trip to Caticlan will cost ₱200 one way per person. The drive takes roughly 1 hour. Some hotels in Boracay offer transfers to the ferry port so check with your hotel first before your fly into Kalibo.
Flying into Caticlan Godofredo P.Ramos Airport
If you fly into Caticlan airport you can either walk to the ferry port or get a tricycle. A tricycle to the port will cost you ₱50 one way for a maximum of 3 people. If you prefer taking a tricycle than walking, head out of the airport and turn right and walk towards the airport entrance gates. On your right hand side there will be a line of tricycles and you can buy a ticket here and get a life to the ferry. There will be people trying to sell you ticket packages for the ferry to Boracay along with a tricycle to the port. Don’t buy these as they are close to double the actual cost of the tickets at the port.
Once at the Ferry Port
Once you arrive at the port you will need to buy a number of tickets to be able to get to Boracay. Look for ‘Window 1’ on the left hand side of the entrance to the ferry terminal.
Once at Window 1 you can purchase your boat ticket there. They will cost you ₱25 per person one way during the day and ₱30 in the evening. Then, move to the next window and buy your Environmental Fee ticket for ₱75 and then at the next window buy your terminal fee ticket for ₱100. Total cost comes to ₱200 during the day or ₱205 at night.
Now, with your handful of tickets you will be able to walk to the terminal, get your bags x-rayed and follow the signs to an outrigger boat. The crossing to Boracay takes about 10 minutes. You will arrive at Cagban Jetty Port where you will find tricycles ready to take to you to your hotel. They have set prices depending on which part of the island your hotel is located on. We stayed in station 3 and it cost us ₱100 for our tricycle.
A word of advice:
You will need to be aware that the airlines have a 10kg checked baggage allowance and anything over that you will be charged ₱200 per kg. If possible try to only take a minimal amount with you to El Nido so you don’t have to worry about it or contact the airline you choose to fly with well in advance to see if you can buy additional baggage prior to flying. We couldn’t get in contact with Philippine Airlines while over there so had to pay the excess baggage charges, while a friend we met booked additional baggage when she first booked her flights as they were travelling with children and she didn’t want to stress about it.
If you are stopping in Manila before and after your trip to Boracay your hotel may be able to store your luggage for you until you return, however if they aren’t or you don’t feel comfortable doing that you can leave your luggage at Manila Airport NAIA Terminal 3 with Protecta Bag. They have secure lockers with CCTV to ensure safe storage of your luggage.
The Places We Stay
Boracay can be broken up into 6 parts.
The main and most popular parts are Stations 1, 2 & 3.
We stayed in Station 3 which is the cheaper of the 3 but it doesn’t mean that the beaches are any less picturesque.
To get around the island tricycles offer a hop-on-hop-off system where you can share tricycles with other people for a fraction of the cost. To use this you simply wait at one of the tricycle stops (they look like bus stop signs) and someone will stop by to pick you up. You just tell them where you are going and they will stop once you get there. As a rough guide you can expect to pay ₱10 between each point, i.e. 1-2, 2-3 etc. If you are getting into a tricycle and there isn’t anyone else in there are that time but you want to use the hop-on-hop-off service just say “Regular service” to the driver so they know they can stop to pick up others. Unfortunately being tourists means that some drivers won’t want to use this service for you and will quote you a full rate to get to your destination. If you don’t want to pay the price, simply wait for the next tricycle.
The Places We Sleep
We were so happy with our accommodation in Boracay. We booked through AirBnB and stayed in a studio loft apartment with private bathroom and access to a roof top terrace. Value for money here was great and we really enjoyed getting to know our hosts.
If you would like to book here click on the link below and in your message let the hosts Stephen and Andy know we recommended it. They will give you 10% off the room rate.
The Places We Eat
Boracay is filled with so many restaurants I don’t actually think you would ever be able to try them all!
The view here at the north of the island is simply amazing. They have a huge menu with a large variety of food and drinks.
We ate at Aria a number of times as they have really good Italian food.
This was recommended to us by our hosts and the food is super cheap and great.
The Places We Write About
You can read our blog post from our time in Boracay by clicking on the link below.