So I checked and felt a sense of pride upon seeing Boracay at No. 2 - more so when no other Asian destination apart from the Maldives made it to the list. Providenciales in the Turks and Caicos Islands is No. 1. Sadly, though, the Asian list was dominated by Thai beaches. While Boracay sits at the top of the list, no other Philippine beach made it to the ranking.
Beach umbrellas and sun beds along the main beach.
Common, whatever you have to say about it being overdeveloped, highly commercialized and overcrowded, Boracay is still beautiful and certainly one of the best.
What I call "The Rape of Boracay," an aerial view of the seemingly endless developments on the island.
I am very much aware of the many issues - environmental especially - that hound Boracay. But I won't dwell on that. I want to celebrate its beauty and charm, the very reason I keep coming back to this island. So here's a collection of some photos I took that do just that. Enjoy and fall in love all over again...
What's not to love about the beach itself? While typhoon Seniang eroded a great portion of the beach (which most people deny), Boracay's main White Beach remains a gorgeous 7-kilometer stretch of powdery white sand. And no matter how scorching the sun, the sand is always cool. It's sand is by which I measure all other beaches out there.
The water. Just lovely. I enjoy swimming in it a lot. Like, a lot.
Frolicking on the beach in the afternoon, waiting for the sunset. Curiously, it's the time of day when most people start to flock to the beach. But then I said it already, the sunset.
Boracay's gorgeous sunset! Of course, having Willy's Rock in the background doesn't hurt. And much better if you catch a paraw in the frame.
The nightlife. Boracay is just pulsating with life. The island being party central is also one of the things some people don't like about Boracay. But to each his own.
In recent years, fire poi performances have become commonplace at night.
The dogs! Who doesn't love all the playful doggies roaming along the beach? I actually have a photo collection called Dogs of Bora from 2007. Maybe I should post something about that. The last time I've been there, though, they've banned the dogs from the beach. Violators were impounded. But I hope they just let them canines be. They add charm to the island.
Puka Beach. I'm glad it's still as expansive as ever.
Hopping on a boat tour around the island is also something. But it was extra special back then when there were more stops on several small coves now occupied by the likes of Shangri-la and other resorts. I even remember from my first time in Boracay that snorkeling on the other side of the island was pretty decent.
Souvenirs galore! And they're also some of the cheapest I know.
Skim boarding and all other activities around. Can you do a headstand while on a moving skim board like this kid does?
If you're lucky, you can actually still catch a quiet moment along the beach. But of course you wish you'd have enjoyed the island long before it became the Boracay that it is today.
Boracay, see you again in May!
UPDATE: Boracay dipped four places to no.6 in 2012. Nevertheless, it's still the only one from Asia on the list of twenty-five. But while it's no.1 in Asia, it's the only Philippine beach on that regional ranking.