Here are some things you may not have know about this beautiful spot in the Philippines.
In 2013, a marine geology expert from the Marine Science Institute of the University of the Philippines (UP) has presented their research findings which found that for the period of twenty years (1993-2013), the beaches on the Western side of Boracay has suffered from eight to 40-meter coastal erosion. But even before this study’s findings were presented, the Province of Aklan had already urged the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to take a look at its recommended solution, beach nourishment, to combat beach erosion in Boracay.
In a recent interview of Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Ramon Jimenez, he said that the Philippine government is considering an “engineering intervention” to save Boracay. There are those who were aghast with the mere mention of engineering intervention. It was as if Secretary Jimenez was the one who had thought about it in the first place. While he did not mention what kind of engineering intervention it would be, it’s obvious that the DOT Secretary was referring to beach nourishment.
Erosion not Unique to Boracay
An eroding coastline is not unique to Boracay, however. To average out large seasonal variations, beaches have the natural tendency to erode when observed over long time spans. The rising temperature caused by climate change; the destruction of the seagrass, coral reefs, mangroves; and the proliferation of buildings near the coastline add to the reduction in beach width.
To counteract the effects of erosion, there are a number of engineering methods that have been employed to stabilize or restore beaches. Seawalls, groynes (or groins), detached breakwaters and revetments are some of these traditional protective measures. However, none of these approaches actually augment the beach system with sand to help compensate for what has been removed by natural erosion.
What is Beach Nourishment?
In 1995, the National Research Council of the National Academies of Science and Engineering in the US concluded that “beach nourishment is a viable engineering alternative for shore protection and is the principal technique for beach restoration.” Beach nourishment can widen the beach while improving natural protection and adding recreational area.
Beach nourishment is a technique of adding sand to the eroding beach from outside sources. This makes beach nourishment as the only engineered solution to the problem of shore protection that directly addresses the question of how to cover the deficit in net sand deposition onto the beach system.
This is not just a mere matter of using mechanical tools to add sand to the beach. Beach nourishment is a combination of knowledge from oceanography, geology, ecology, and civil engineering to come up with computer simulations and judgment based on science and experience.
The technology has reached the point where one can add specifications to a beach nourishment project as if one is ordering a designer dress. You can specify what you really want to happen to the beach system to be nourished. The beach’s size, shape, visual impression, and texture can be manipulated, or engineered, to some extent. And, yes, some beach nourishment projects can produce really good results, just like a good designer dress.
Places to eat in Boracay
Café Christina’s is a beachfront in-house fine dining restaurant of Boracay Regency, situated on White Beach’s Station 2. The restaurant, which has a modern décor and is fully air-conditioned, serves Italian and Filipino cuisine with a good wine selection and an attentive wait staff. Although Café Christina’s is located in the middle of the crowded Station 2, it offers relative privacy and quietness. If you’re the type who can be very much in your own worlds amidst being able to watch everybody else, then this is the place for you. For reservations and special requests, you may call Christina’s through telephone number (036) 288-6111 local 458.
Indigo is an in-house dinner-only restaurant of Discovery Shores, situated on White Beach’s Station 1. The restaurant has been shortlisted in 2010 and 2011’s Miele Best Restaurant in Asia List. Indigo Restaurant, which requires a smart casual dress code, serves modern international, local and Asian cuisines, with signature dishes that include jumbo prawns, US prime beef tenderloin, and classic lobster bisque. True to Discovery’s personalized service, don’t be limited with what’s on offer in the menu. You may request for a customized menu only for you and your sweetheart. If you want to have a special place set up only for you, you may inform Indigo’s manager. Just make sure to give at least one day notice before your dinner date. You may call Indigo Restaurant through telephone number (036) 288-4500.
Manami is an award-winning in-house restaurant of Nami Resort, situated on the cliffs of Din-iwid Beach, a less crowded beach in Boracay. Going up to the restaurant (or the resort) is an experience in itself as you have to ride a quirky bamboo elevator. A relaxed, serene atmosphere and a breathtaking, 180 degree view of the Sulu Sea awaits you up there. Manami serves modern international, local and Asian cuisines with signature dishes that include mushroom tart, spanakopitas and Nami Salpicao in generous portions. If you want a personalized dish, you may ask the chef to prepare one for you. You may contact Manami through telephone number (036) 288-6753.
Palay is an in-house restaurant of Asya Premier Suites Resort, situated at the southern end of White Beach’s Station 3. The restaurant is suitable for intimate al-fresco dining as it is very quiet and private, with a great view of the sea. There are rock formations on the beach, where you can make a bended-knee marriage proposal, before or after your romantic dinner. Palay serves Mediterranean cuisine, with signature dishes that include summer salad, slow roasted pork ribs with Java rice, and chicken ala Kiev. The restaurant has also a good wine selection. You may contact Palay through telephone number (036) 288-1790.
Rima is an in-house restaurant of Shangri-La Boracay, situated in Yapak. The restaurant has a tree-top setting, being ensconced on the highest peak of the resort. Rima is a very quiet and intimate restaurant, with lush greenery and soft lights from candles on the dining table, which radiates a romantic mood. To get the best view, request to be seated next to the window. The restaurant serves Italian cuisine, with signature dishes that include Risotto Ai Funghi and Zucchine Aragosta C Zafferano. Rima’s dress code is casual. Dinner hour starts at 6pm and ends at 11pm. You may contact Rima through telephone number (036) 288-4988 ext. 6479, or email for any special request at restaurantreservations.slbo @shangri-la.com.
Sirena is another in-house restaurant of Shangri-La Boracay. The restaurant, perched on the low hilltop between Punta Bunga Beach and Banyugan Beach, offers a breathtaking panorama and candle-light setting. To get the best view of the restaurant, you may want to reserve the table on the deck. This is Shangri-La’s seafood restaurant, with signature dishes that include seafood platter, tempura nori tuna loin and pan-roasted lapu-lapu. Dress code is resort casual, and the restaurant is open until 10:30pm. You may contact Sirena using the same telephone number and email as Rima’s. If you’re not staying in Shangri-La but wish to dine at either Rima or Sirena, you may proceed to Budget Mart at D’Mall. There’s a van that shuttles guests for free to the resort every hour during off-peak season and every 30 minutes during peak season.
Boracay: the Lay of the Land
Boracay Island is in the Philippine province of Aklan, 200 miles south of Manila. The narrow Tabon Strait separates Boracay from the larger Panay island; the port of Caticlan lies on the Panay side, a prime gateway for air and land travelers going to Boracay.
The city of Kalibo is another two-hour drive away, and its Kalibo International Airport serves as an alternative airport for Boracay visitors.
Boracay Travel Basics provides essential travel information for tourists planning a trip to Boracay. Find out when to visit Boracay, how to get around, plus money and communications information relevant to Boracay.
The shape of Boracay reminds one of a dumbbell or a cartoon bone – two protuberances on either end of a long shaft 4.3 miles long. Most of the fun takes place on either side of Boracay’s length – White Beach occupies most of the southwestern coast, while Bulabog Beach stretches across part of the northeastern coast.
Politically speaking, Boracay is part of the municipality of Malay, located within Aklan province. The island can be subdivided into three communities called “barangays”: Yapak in the north, Balabag in the middle, and Manoc-Manoc in the south.
The beaches of Boracay are the island’s biggest draw – 12 beaches are distributed around the island, each having their share of resorts and seaside activities. The first-time visitor to Boracay only needs to know two: White Beach and Bulabog Beach.
White Beach holds the lion’s share of Boracay’s popular establishments, as it has the island’s longest uninterrupted stretch of beach, with arguably the best sand and most favorable winds during peak season.
Visitors to Boracay tend to refer to the “boat stations” along White Beach as geographical reference points, even as the new jetty at Boracay’s eastern tip has made such stations obsolete.
Station 1 in the north combines posh resorts and relative peace and quiet; centrally-located Station 2 is Boracay at its liveliest, as the shopping district known as “D’Mall” is located there; Station 3 in the south offers plenty of budget beachfront accommodations.
Bulabog Beach is directly opposite White Beach, and is more popular with the watersports crowd. Yearly surfing and kiteboarding competitions are held on Bulabog Beach during peak season, as the prevailing winds are stronger on Boracay’s eastern coast.