Although I told myself I would avoid as many early wake-ups as possible on this Philippines trip, I knew there would be certain days I would have no choice but to wake up at dawn. Today was one such day. Janet and I had to leave together at 6am. I had to be at NAIA Terminal 2 for my 11:45am PAL Express flight to Boracay, and Janet had to be in office by 7:30am.
Once we reached Manila, Janet and I took the MRT to Pasay.
The morning rush. I barely had any space to stand, and was squeezed in an awkward position for much of the journey. I was sweating and just hoping Pasay would reach soon. When we did, I got out and stretched for a while to ease my aching back. Then I thanked Janet for hosting me and we said our goodbyes. She took a jeepney to office and I took a jeepney going to the airport.
There’s all sorts of fees visitors to Boracay have to pay before even arriving at the actual island. A sum total of ₱75+25+50+100 is what I paid for everything including the environment fee, boat ride to Cagban jetty (on Boracay island), terminal fee, and trike ride to the boat terminal.
When I was researching on where to stay, Station 1 was described as the most expensive and the most crowded spot was around Station 2. I chose a place that was kind of in between Stations 1 and 2, because it had all the conveniences I needed within walking distance, but was away from the noise.
Is ₱600 (Rs. 850/$13/€10) a night a bit high for a bed on the floor? Sure, but this is what you get on this side of Boracay. And Boracay – in general – is expensive!
After a short nap, I did some work. Yes, my freelancing gigs mean working a little even while I travel. It’s the compromise I made when I decided not to join a fixed job at a corporate office for a while. Anyway, I did step out again later at night for dinner.
For all the hype Boracay gets as a party island, I didn’t find a whole lot of partying going on after sunset. Sure, there are live bands playing at fancy beachfront restaurants, but they largely catered to a family crowd, and played your usual cover songs. The nightclubs seemed few.
Disappointed by the lack of thumping music, I had a quiet dinner at a Greek restaurant called Cyro’s. I don’t know where the photo I took at Cyro’s went, but did make a note of eating something that cost ₱380.
After dinner, I booked an island tour for tomorrow morning. There was little else to do, so I went back to my room and did some more work before going to sleep.