There’s more to Boracay than White Beach. The 5-kilometer stretch of powdery white sand is obviously the most popular beach in the island. It is also the most developed and busiest beach with hundreds of resorts, hotels, restaurants, and clubs lined up along the coast. But did you know that there are other Boracay beaches that are just as beautiful and stunning?
Boracay Island has more than a dozen beaches and each one promises a unique and distinctive experience. Whether you are the type who wants some peace and quiet, or the type that seeks thrills and adventures, there is a perfect Boracay beach for you. Step outside the white sand beach and explore other wonders that this Aklan island, simply one of the best in the world, has to offer.
Photo courtesy of dr_tr via Flickr Creative Commons
Simply put, Puka Beach at the northern tip of the island provides a glimpse of how the old White Beach looked before it was inhabited by commercial establishments. Puka is usually one of the stops when you go island hopping but it may also be reached via a 20-minute chartered tricycle trip. Some hotels, such as the Alta Vista de Boracay, offers exclusive access to Puka beach. There are a lot of accommodation options near Puka Beach for those who want to experience Boracay minus the crowd and noise.
If you are wondering where to go in Boracay, Puka Beach is easily a top recommendation. While the sand is not as fine as the White Beach, the water is clearer. There are also huts and locals offering refreshments. Also known as Yapak Beach, Puka beach is for travelers looking to have some quiet time or a truly relaxing swim in the beach without having to worry about being disrupted by the many water activities as in the White Beach.
Perfect for: Squad and families looking for quiet time
Photo courtesy of Roman Nuritdinov via Flickr Creative Commons
Bulabog Beach is like the White Beach’s cousin. It runs parallel to the White Beach, on the east side of the island. It’s about a 700-meter walk from the beach and stretches for around 2.5 kilometers.
If the White Beach is for sunsets, Bulabog Beach is dawn. From November to April, the beach bears the brunt of monsoon winds from the north, making it the best time to go windsurfing or kiteboarding. Banana boat riding, fly fish riding, and parasailing activities are also offered. There are kiteboarding and windsurfing schools by the beach, as well as budget accommodations for travelers who want to escape the White Beach crowd but still within a 10-minute walk from the main beach, D’Mall, and some restaurants.
Perfect for: Adventure-seekers
Diniwid Beach is less than a 5-minute walk or trail from Station 1. It can be reached via a cliffside trail. But while Diniwid is the White Beach’s next door neighbor, it has less of everything — crowd, noise, resorts, and food options. A unique restaurant built on the side of a cliff called the Spider House is a popular destination among beach-goers. Direct sea access for swimming and the great sunset view are some of the reasons that make Diniwid one of the best beaches in Boracay.
Perfect for: Couples on a romantic getaway
While Ilig-iligan Beach may seem quiet, it can actually be a bit rugged. It lies on the northeastern side of Boracay and travelers can get here by walking inland or joining island hopping tours where it is one of the featured stops. Ilig-iligan is a secluded beach with unspoiled natural beauty. It feels rugged because it is a gateway to two secret beaches that are best explored by experienced swimmers. If the sea is calm, Ilig-iligan is also a great snorkeling spot. Be warned though of the strong current.
Perfect for: Experienced swimmers looking to be challenged
If you want to be blown away by a marine paradise, head on to Tambasaan Beach. It is one of the best beaches in Aklan for snorkelers and divers because of the abundant marine life. To get to these marine sanctuaries, you have to walk about one-third along the beach and swim about 25 meters into the bay. It is best to visit during summer when there is little wind. Tambisaan is home to different species of fish and colorful coral gardens. The Crocodile Island, another popular island hopping stop is also nearby.
Perfect for: Snorkelers and divers on a hunt for rich marine life
Photo courtesy of Marc van der Chijs via Flickr Creative Commons
Tucked between Puka and Diniwid, Balinghai is a small and secluded beach accessible only during low tide. There are small cottages here where you can just bask under the sun or read a book during a lazy afternoon. The waters are clear and it also has a beautiful marine life perfect for snorkeling.
Balinghai Beach belongs to Balinghai Beach Resort, and an entrance fee of Php500 is required. The fee is consumable and is used as credit for the resort’s restaurant. The resort offers dinner by the beach, which can be quite romantic because chances are you are the only ones there.
Perfect for: Couples and solo travelers who want to relax
Tulubhan doesn’t have much of a tourist appeal. But if you have already spent your days trying all the water sports and your nights partying, then some local fare might be a good idea. If you seem to have run out of “what to do in Boracay,” activities, then Tulubhan can be your refuge. In Tulubhan, you can see local villages along the beach, their boats docked on the shore. You can watch locals as they survey the seabed for some fresh catch. There are also a few accommodations in Tulubhan if you want to get away from the busy and crowded White Beach.
Perfect for: Backpackers on an adventure
Photo courtesy of Francis Gimenez via Flickr Creative Commons
Framed by two rock formations, Banyugan is a 100-meter sheltered stretch of beach accessible only via Shangri-La’s Boracay Resort & Spa. Terraces on top of the left rock make the beach all the more attractive. Banyugan is accessible to non-guests although reservations are advisable. It is also a great snorkeling spot.
Perfect for: Couples and Families that value privacy
Located on the left of Banyugan is another exclusive beach, Punta Bunga. It is accessible via several private resorts, but only a limited number of non-guests are usually allowed so calling before going is advised. In Punta Bunga, you get to try almost all water sports without having to compete with hoards of tourists. The environment is more relaxed and they value privacy and exclusivity.
If you’re staying at Alta Vista de Boracay during your vacation trip, then you’re lucky! The hotel’s staff can bring you there for free as long as you have arranged it ahead of time. Just ask the concierge about the free trip, let them arrange it for you, and you’re good to go! The hotel can also bring you for free to Ilig-iligan Beach.
Perfect for: Couples and solo travelers who want to escape the crowd
Cagban is right next to the jetty port and may be accessed via a narrow road. It is a tiny beach that is not very popular but it’s got some unique charm into it. It is semi-secluded and perfect for a relaxing afternoon stroll. A bit of trivia: locals say Cagban used to be a place where treasures of tribal chiefs were hidden, which is why you may request for some treasure hunting activity while you’re there.
Perfect for: Couples and solo travelers who want some private time
Just like Tulubhan, Manoc-Manoc is where you’ll find locals at work. It is where supply boats dock and you could see locals harvest sea urchins during low tide. It isn’t as majestic as the White Beach or Puka Beach, but it has character. It offers a great view of the hillside and mountains. There are also shops for some refreshments.
Perfect for: Friends looking for a unique Boracay experience
You can find Sugod past Tulubhan Beach. It is a rugged looking spot marked by a cliff. It looks like a private property but you can actually have a look and take some pictures. There are also some resorts and hotels in Sitio Sugod if you want to experience its rugged charm more.
Perfect for: Friends who want to explore the off the beaten track
Boracay is not one of the best islands in the world for nothing. It is a sprawling island with more than a dozen beaches that exude unique charm, appeal, and character. Depending on your mood or preference, Boracay has got you covered.