Ever feel tired of just being in the city? Waking up early in the morning to get ready for work and go on an awful commute at a rush hour. Of course you know how stressful Manila traffic is. Nothing compares to Manila traffic, it’s that terrible. Don’t even get me started on the MRT. And as soon as you get to your workplace, you’d have to exhaust yourself for a rough 8 hours. Shout out to the Manila-Working-People! What I’m trying to say is, having to repeat that kind of routine for five days a week just drains the life out of you. You deserve a break, girl!
As I was scrolling my time away on Facebook one night, I saw a post about “10 Beaches near Manila” and one of it was Borawan Island. It’s located in Padre Burgos, Quezon. So I was like, what the hell.
Borawan got its name from the two most popular tourist spots in the Philippines, Boracay and Palawan. The island possesses the white sands of Boracay and the rock formations of Palawan, hence the combination of the two. Here are a few photos that I took.
Honestly, I have never been to Boracay because it’s the last place I would want to visit during my Around the Philippines Adventure, just ‘cause. Though I have visited Palawan last year and fell completely in love with the place. So if the island claims to be the combination of these two wonderful Islands, I had to raise my expectations.
I regretted travelling at 8AM. We got caught up in traffic in San Pablo Laguna and Sariaya Quezon all the way to Candelaria Quezon. We arrived at the Lucena Grand Terminal at about 3PM, do note that no stopovers happened during that almost 7-hour ride. My butt really hurt!
Upon arrival at the Grand Terminal, we just stretched for a bit, had our lunch in one of the many Carinderyas (Canteen or small restaurants), and waited for yet another bus bound to Unisan. Like that 7-hour bus ride isn’t enough already. Though it’s wasn’t really a long wait. There’s a bus ride every 25 minutes and it departs whether it’s packed with passengers or not.
Getting to Padre Burgos was a tough ride. It’s a mini bus that’s full with people but it was fun all the same. It was about an hour bus ride. After the first 30 minutes, you will feel the fresh air and smell the cool breeze of the mountains that you’ll rather feel relaxed despite the uncomfortable seat on the bus. You know you’re almost there!
You’ll have to rent a boat to be able to reach Borawan Island. A roundtrip boat ride costs P800 and it can accommodate up to 8 pax. We found someone there to take us to Borawan. I asked for his number so we can contact him if we decide to get back and he gave us his calling card instead. It was unexpected, it was so cool. Sadly I have lost the calling card dammit.
As soon as you alight from the boat, you will be met by someone who’s in charge of collecting fees in the island. Entrance fee costs P120 pesos per person if you’re staying overnight. And P60 if it’s just a whole day stay. Tent fee is P200/tent. I was not able to ask how much tent rental costs because we had our own.
There’s a convenient store on the island where you can buy food, cold drinks, ICE, and whatnot. Of course, it a lot pricey than of the town proper so I suggest you guys should bring everything you need before heading to the island.
Borawan was packed with people! I suppose the perfect time to visit the island is during the weekdays. Always better on the weekdays. We settled at about 5PM so there was really nothing much to do, we were all tired from the almost 9-hour travel time. I just tucked myself in and started reading my book.
The fact that we were staying on a tent, the place was not at all relaxing. I was expecting cool summer breeze as I was on the beach, but noooooo, it was hot and humid we could not even stay inside the tent.
We had breakfast at 6AM and it was already starting to get hot so I guess it’s time to swim!
Comfort/Shower rooms are free! You’d just have to fall in line.
The beach, I can say is okay. Like I said, I was a wee bit disappointed because I really had high expectations. But we all enjoyed the water nonetheless. It was too hot not to come in the water.
Overall rating – I give it 3 stars!
I like how it’s near Manila. And I’m the type of person who enjoys the journey more rather than the destination itself, so I enjoyed the joyride. I love the boat ride, it’s like the ocean keeps on calling to me I wanted to dive in it but sadly they do not allow it, it’ll be so cool if they did. Channelling my inner mermaid, lol.
If I’m to go back, I would visit the islands near Borawan, the Dampalitan beach and Puting Buhangin. J
Here's how to get there:
- Ride a bus bound to Lucena. There are buses along EDSA but I doubt you can still have a seat so it’s safer you ride from the Terminal. You can either go to Buendia, Taft or in Alabang South Station. Fare: P180/pax
- Alight at Lucena Grand Terminal. Travel time should be about 5 hours without the traffic.
- Ride a mini bus bound to Unisan and drop off at Padre Burgos market. Fare: P35/pax
- Rent a boat to Borawan. You can contact Kuya Robin, refer to the image below for his calling card. Roundtrip Fare: P800/8 pax
- Going home, while waiting for a mini bus that will take us back to Lucena Grand Terminal, we got really lucky that we saw a bus bound directly to Alabang. Fare: P190