It was my second time in Boracay, a place that’s close to my heart for it reminds me of my dearly departed friend Orly Cajegas who served as my tour guide there in 2015. Now here I am appreciating it even more.
I was part of the media group that joined the inaugural Cebu-Caticlan flight of AirAsia, which left the Mactan Cebu International Airport (MCIA) on April 22 at 12:45 p.m.
Together with PRWorks’ Mafe Barcelo, my travel buddies for the trip were lifestyle writers Chelzee Salera and Dezsa Rubio, along with Cebu-based YouTube sensations, the Hospital brothers Jomie and Abing.
On seat 1A, I had a good view of the cloud formations while I indulged in my chicken rice hot meal courtesy
of the airline.
It was a 50-minute flight to Godofredo P. Ramos Airport (also known as Caticlan Airport and recently, Boracay Airport) in Malay, Aklan.
We were met by a team from Azalea Hotels and Residences Boracay led by Keio Palma.
Since ours was a maiden flight, also on hand to give us a warm welcome were representatives from the Department of Tourism (DOT) in the province.
A fanfare announced the arrival of guests who were greeted with Boracay souvenir necklaces.
We went to Caticlan Jetty Port and kuya Keio arranged our boat tickets to Boracay Island. After 15 minutes, we were there.
Then we headed to Azalea Hotels and Residences Boracay at Station 2, our official host for our three-day stay in Boracay island.
Adrian Ramirez, Azalea Group Marketing Communications head personally received the group and escorted us to a three-bedroom apartment suite.
Azalea Hotels and Residences Boracay is ideal place for families on holiday since their rooms have a kitchen equipped with cookware and tableware, and not to mention dining and lounge areas.
It didn’t take too long before we found ourselves mesmerized and taking photos of Boracay’s famed sunset and its long, wide shoreline.
At dinner, we met Philippines AirAsia communications consultant Aileen Dreyfus, Ace Perez, who works for a local daily in Davao City, and members of Davao Digital Influencers Dave Stephenn Villamora and Verna Luga.
We decided to cap off the day bar hopping and checking out the colorful nightlife this world-class destination has to offer.
Expectedly, Boracayis known for water sports and activities like parasailing, banana boating, helmet diving, sunset sailing and snorkeling.
But my second time here showed me that there’s more to the island than all this.
Ten minutes away from Boracay is MagicIsland. If you’re tired of letting your fear of heights get the better of you, how about challenging yourself to a 3-meter, 5-meter, 8-meter, 9-meter or 10-meter cliff diving.
And then, at Crystal Cove, in a “boodle” feast, we were served grilled chorizo, shrimps, pork and crabs.
After a quick lunch, we explored this 2.5-hectare private island with two coves.
I chose to check out the Crystal Cove Museum and their 3D art gallery.
But one can also opt to go on a trek or feed the pigeons.
After our island hopping, we went to the Happy Dreamland Theme Park for an ATV and buggy car challenge.
Dezsa and I drove the buggy car to Ocean Tower View Point and Bar, the highest point in the island.
There we climbed up the stairs to get to the top for a 360-degree view of Boracay Island. I just had to take photos!
On our third day I experience some kind of “separation anxiety.” Not only did I see more of Boracay, but I also gained new friends.
With only half a day to spare, we decided to spend it at Talipapa for some pasalubong.
For P700, I was able to buy two shirts, two coin purses, two dozens of turtle magnets and shell key chains, and three packs of banana chips.
Boy, what a trip! Till next time, Boracay!