Boracay – a Quick Getaway from Manila

Last updated on June 14th, 2018 at 02:14 am

Manila is one of the top destinations to land in the Philippines via plane as it houses the biggest international airports of the country. If you are traveling to the visit the beautiful islands here, you’ll be taking a flight (or a ferry) from Manila. Today, let us tell you about the island of Boracay, one of the most popular beach getaway from Manila.

Boracay is just an hour by plane from Manila which is why it’s a very popular quick getaway for locals and even the elites and actors of the country, who are mostly coming from Manila. What do the locals and even foreign people see in Boracay that makes them always come back?

Sunrise at Bolabog Beach

watch the Sunrise in your getaway from Manila

First thing to do in Boracay, is the sunrise. We know how difficult it is to wake up early, but trust us it’s really worth it. Bolabog Beach offers an amazing sunrise and it’s really quiet in the wee hours of the morning. The only people you will see are the ones working in the area, preparing for work, and dedicated people who stood up early to see the sunrise and run in the beach, and of course, the ones looking for picturesque Boracay mornings.

Island Hopping: Crystal Cove Island

Crystal Cove Island great for a getaway from Manila

After the sunrise, there are many activities you can actually do around the island. For us, we picked to get a short boat ride to another stop, the Crystal Cove Island. It’s an island cove that can be your private island for the day!

Entrance to Crystal Cove Island

Once you get to the island, there are various activities to do. The island has two coves that you can explore by foot, alone or with a guide. There is a small park where you can see the Lotus open (this is if you are arriving early in the morning), see local paintings, learn about Philippine history and traditions in a small museum, and watch collection of sea shells. The activities are spread around the island, so you hike to visit everything and there is also a point for you to see a 360 view of all the islands surrounding the cove, including Boracay, Romblon, and the Turtle Island.

Rachel in our getaway from Manila

The cove is called the “Crystal Cove” because of the crystalline blue waters. The water is so clear, and you can snorkel to see corals and fishes inside the cove. We missed that part during our visit because it was a hide tide day, and the water waves was just too strong (apparently, there was a strong storm coming. It actually hit Boracay island by the evening that day we were in Crystal Cove). And since it’s surrounded by water everywhere, it’s easy to have sumptuous sea food in the island. Highly recommended. The crabs and fishes we had are so fresh and cooked so well and the they were super big size! Even Rachel was impressed! This is definitely an activity for you to do if you’re looking for a complete disconnect for a day trip. Boracay can get a little bit too touristy, although that doesn’t affect the beauty of the place. Crystal Island Cove has no electricity, so you can actually focus in the moment, disconnected from wifi. You can also take a swim and just sit down and marvel at the beauty of the island.

Bangus in Crystal Cove Island

eating crabs in Crystal Cove Island

Crystal Cove Island

Kitesurfing at Bolabog Beach

More in to adventure activities? The wind is actually really good for Kite Surfing activities in the Bolabog Beach. Which is why you’ll see there are many training centers in the beach to do this exactly. There are actually a good number of people doing kitesurfing from early morning, so its a very popular activity. It´s a great doing activity for a getaway from Manila.

Bolabog Beach

Shopping and eating at D’Mall

Beer in the sunset a perfect getaway from Manila

D’Mall is the main shopping center at the middle of Boracay, Station 2. There are various choices from souvenir shops to all beach wear you can actually think about. And there are even much more bar options and food places, local, international, you name it. Boracay also has the local seafood market, where you can actually choose the seafood that you want to eat, and have them cooked fresh for you at the same moment to have a sumptuous feast. You can enjoy eating in solitude, or with friends. And the seafood is definitely high quality in the area since everything is sea side. From there, you have two steps to White Beach.

Enjoy the popular White Beach, The Best getaway from Manila

Sunset a perfect plan in the getaway from Manila

White Beach is the popular beach of the area, and we loved staying here. Now, the beach can get crowded for sure, so you really have to pick your spot for relaxation. We enjoyed drinking our favorite local beer, Red Horse, while we sat by the beach waiting for the sunset, watching the beautiful Paraw Sailing Boats (please link to the other article). Our favorite hangout!

Where to eat: The Ruf Resto

Chicken at The Ruf Resto

Pork and corn at The Ruf Resto

Chicken Satay at The Ruf Resto

Nasi Goreng at The Ruf Resto great dinner for your getaway from Manila

Our favorite place for dinner was The Ruf Resto. Located well inside Boracay and farther from the bars and restaurants, it’s actually a few minutes walk from Bolabog Beach and the White Beach. The ambiance is perfect, and if you actually visit at the right moment, you’re actually eating with the amazing views of the sunset. There is a daily theme for music, and you can enjoy dining in tables or couches, whatever you’re feeling at that day. The food was exquisite, Asian fusion, so we were actually able to enjoy Chicken Satay, Pork, Nasi Goreng with the rest of the local choices. Big portions, and very delicious. We tried different options, Malay, Indonesian, Thai and of course Filipino dishes. Also there are nice cocktails to start the night. Rachel’s first mojito (and surprisingly, non-alcoholic.ha!)

Where to sleep: Ferra Hotel

getaway from Manila where to sleep: Ferra Hotel

We enjoyed our stay in Ferra Hotel. The local vibe, nicely mixed with modern style was a nice touch. The rooms were big enough and we really loved the common areas. The best asset of the hotel is definitely its people, which of course, is what everyone talks about. They are the friendliest and most courteous staff we’ve met so far, with great attention to details. Everyone in the whole hotel is naturally friendly, and you can see that it’s really part of the hotel’s culture, and just makes your stay a hundred times easier, much lighter and happier.  A perfect addition to the Boracay paradise!

Where to sleep in your getaway from Manila

You can have breakfast by the pool which is always great! Also, we always walk to check the sunrise before our breakfasts, what with the Bolabog beach just  minutes from the hotel. We then spend our day (after a few hours of working in our hotel room) in the White Beach.

This was how we spent a quick getaway from Manila. And if you want to know more about getaways in the Philippines, check here to know more about other beaches close to Manila like Subic. If you want to have an adventure getaway, click here to read our experience visiting Tagaytay and hiking Taal Volcano, the second most active volcano in the Philippines. And if you want to read more things to do in Boracay, click here.

If you want to check more places where to stay in Boracay, click here.

Let us know how you like this post in the comments below. What other type of guides and getaways are you looking for on your next trip? Let us know!



Ruben Arribas is a Spanish traveler who has traveled more than 70+ countries around the world. He believes in travel without money. Recently, he finished a bicycle trip, 9500 km, from Madrid to North Cape.

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