When people at home read about our lifestyle they assume that we spend all of our time relaxing on white sand beaches in paradise. Of course this is not always true. However, sometimes it is.
During our recent travels through the Philippines we stopped for a while to enjoy Boracay, which is the quintessential holiday paradise island. You can walk for miles along the beach past cocktail bars, restaurants serving fresh seafood, scuba diving companies and luxurious hotels. It’s the type of place where you can order a drink at a bar while wearing a bikini and no one really cares, then spend your mornings sleeping off your hangover on a sun lounger.
Boracay is 100% designed for fun and enjoyment, with nothing but food, drink, sand, water, sunshine and of course water sports activities such as parasailing, jet skiing and scuba diving. We found it to be a welcome respite from the hectic urban sprawl of Manila and a great place to enjoy ourselves for a little while.
It’s not really ideal for budget travelers, as the food in the restaurants is pricier than other destinations in Southeast Asia, so if you are traveling on a shoestring your money will go further perhaps on one of the Thai Islands. However, we were still able to get a bamboo bungalow just a two minute walk from the beach for 700 pesos per night ($17/£10.50) and we found a vendor who sold cheap shawarma and rice for when we wanted a budget meal.
Of course, we did take the opportunity to treat ourselves to a few indulgences as well and I discovered that my favourite childhood milkshake flavour is made infinitely more enjoyable with the addition of rum.
While we were in Boracay, we saw that one of the beach-side restaurants was offering a special dinner featuring all the ribs you could eat and all the beer you could drink for three hours. We decided that unlimited beer and ribs must be what is on the menu in heaven, so we decided to check it out.
Four or five platters of juicy ribs and countless beers later, we found ourselves on the beach roughhousing with some local children, playing tag with them and spinning them around on our shoulders. We had a blast and when it was time for them to go it was hard to tell who was more disappointed that the fun had to end.
There seems to always be something fun happening when you stroll down the beach on Boracay Island. One day, we happened to spot a beach volleyball competition.
We also saw some pretty impressive sand sculpture art along the beach.
Several of the restaurants on the beach on Boracay have live entertainment and the best show that we saw was the fire dancers. There was a troupe of fire dancing “ladies”, (although only one of them was actually female) and they were incredibly talented performers. They also had a great way of working the crowd and getting people involved in the show. Lee really felt the heat when one of the performers started spinning balls of fire around him!
The main beach on Boracay faces the west, which means that at the end of each day the sky turns into a spectacular showcase of sunset colours. This was my favourite time to walk along the edge of the water, listening to the music from the bars, enjoying the sea breeze and watching the sun sink slowly into the ocean.