Kalibo, Caticlan and Red Coconut Hotel, Boracay 2016 4D3N getaway

Mabuhay! It means ‘ May you live’ or ‘Cheers’ or ‘Welcome’ in Tagalog!

Day 1

KLIA2 - now very spacious. However you need to walk very far to get to the boarding gate.

KLIA2 – now very spacious. However you need to walk very far to get to the boarding gate.

Arrived at KLIA2 for a transit to Kalibo, Philippines. After another 4 hour flight, we finally touched down at Kalibo International

This airport is small and congested!. It'a in the middle of Kalibo Town.

This airport is small and congested!. It’s in the Kalibo Town.

The street just outside the airport

The street just outside the airport

This is the van we took to Caticlan Jetty. All together there are 10 of us in the van. Quite congested.

This is the van we took to Caticlan Jetty. All together there were 10 of us in the van. Quite congested.

Airport at around 2.40 pm. Immediately we took a van to Caticlan Jetty which is situated 78 km away from Kalibo. The journey took us 1 hour 40 minutes through some winding hilly roads. Another 10 minutes boat ride finally took us to Boracay.

Passing through the crowded Kalibo town

Passing through the crowded Kalibo town

Everyone was rushing to enter the jetty main entrance!

Everyone was rushing to enter the jetty main entrance!

This is the type of ferry that we are going to take. notice the bamboo wings at the side of the ferry? It;'s a regulation in Philippines that all boats must have wings to balance the boat for safety precautions.

This is the type of ferry that we are going to take. Notice the bamboo wings at the side of the ferry? It’s a regulation in Philippines that all boats must have wings to balance the boat for safety precautions.

Waiting to board the ferry

Waiting to board the ferry

Disembarking the ferry

Disembarking the ferry

Wait, we still need to take another 15 minutes van ride to the hotel!

This is the transport we took to Boracay. You can also take a tuk-tuk which costs around 100 pesos

This is the transport we took to Boracay. You can also take a tuk-tuk which costs around 100 pesos

All in, it took us 13 hours from point to point i.e. from home in JB  to hotel in Boracay! From Kalibo airport to Hotel in Boracay, it costs 500 PHP per pax including terminal fee, environmental fee and ferry fare.

Checked into Red Coconut Hotel at Station 2, a very trendy and vibrant hotel. Our room is at ground floor facing the mini swimming pool. Immediately we went for dinner at the hotel restaurant at the beach front. After dinner we went to D’Mall which is just few minute walk from the hotel to explore. After that we went for a stroll at the beach. The beach is full of people especially from Korea, China, Taiwan and Europe.  There are live band and fire dance everywhere along the beach. The beach is full of life when the sun goes down! There are plenty of restaurants along the stretch of beaches!

Our hotel at Station 2

Our hotel at Station 2

The open cafe cum restaurant at the hotel

The open cafe cum restaurant at the hotel

Checiking in the hotel

Checking-in the hotel

They display names of guests checking in on that day at the entrance of the hotel

They display names of guests checking in on that day at the entrance of the hotel

Personal message from the resident manager to welcome you!

Personal message from the resident manager to welcome you!

Welcome drink

Welcome drink

Mixed fruits punch.

Mixed fruits punch.

Our dinner at Red Coconut Restaurant

Our dinner at Red Coconut Restaurant

Red Coconut Restaurant next to the swimming pool

Red Coconut Restaurant next to the swimming pool

Dance performance at the beach front. There are many hotels offering different performances

Dance performance at the beach front. There are many hotels offering different performances

Relaxing at the balcony of our hotel room

Relaxing at the balcony of our hotel room

Day 2

After breakfast, it’s time for Island hopping! The first station is snorkeling at the end of white beach, which is popularly known as ‘live coral bed’.  Alas, the view and the coral are in no way comparable to our Pulau Perhentian or Pulau Redang in the east coast of Malaysia. There are few corals and they are not beautiful at all. Fish is also not abundant. Moreover the water current is quite strong.  It was quite a disappointment!

Ready to go for island hopping!

Ready to go for island hopping!

Ready to snorkel

Ready to snorkel

Other members of our snorkelling trip comprising of different nationals from China, Taiwan, US, Philipines and Canada

Other members of our snorkelling trip comprising of different nationals from China, Taiwan, US, Philipines and Canada

Like this also can, selling ice-cream in the middle of the sea!

Like this also can, selling ice-cream in the middle of the sea!

Fine weather and beautiful sky!

Fine weather and beautiful sky!

We stayed for about 40 minutes and proceeded to Puka Beach. The sand here is white and pristine.  We just strolled along the beach and nobody swam at the beach.

Disembarking at Puka Beach

Disembarking at Puka Beach

Learn how to selfie!

Learn how to selfie!

Relaxing at Puka Beach

Relaxing at Puka Beach

Then it was already lunch hour. We went to the mainland for buffet lunch at Caticlan.

Entrance to the 'restaurant'

Entrance to the ‘restaurant’

Waiting for van to bring us for lunch at Caticlan

Waiting for van to bring us for lunch at Caticlan

This was the van which brought us to the restaurant

This was the van which brought us to the restaurant

Queing up for food at the restaurant which is just a simple shed!

Queing up for food at the restaurant which is just a simple shed!

Simple and rudimentary washroom. Luckily didn't get diarrhea after lunch !

Simple and rudimentary washroom. Luckily didn’t get diarrhea after lunch !

Snapshot at the beach near the restaurant

Snapshot at the beach near the restaurant

On the way back to the boat, the boatman asked me where I came from. I told him that I come from Malaysia. Know what he said? “Malaysia no money. China a lot of money!” Looks like the whole world knows about our financial scandals. Lol!

Our MYR tak laku. Sorry no quotation!

See, our MYR tak laku. Sorry no quotation!

The next destination is the beautiful Crystal Cove Island. Entrance fee is 200 PHP. But it is worth visiting as the scenery is amazing. We walked up the steps to the top of the cove to get a panoramic breathtaking view of the natural rock formation at the cliff. There is also a shell gallery displaying various types of sea shells. We walked from cove 1 to cove 2 to explore as much as possible of the island.

Entrance to the Crystal Cove Island

Entrance to the Crystal Cove Island

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Not sure the rock formation is man-made or natural!

Not sure the rock formation is man-made or natural!

Beautiful scenery

Beautiful scenery

Another part of the island

Another part of the island

More photos from the island

More photos from the island

Baywatch at Cove 2

Baywatch at Cove 2

Ending the Crystal Cove Island tour!

Ending the Crystal Cove Island tour!

In the evening we went to the D’Mall to try out the well-known mango ice-cream at Halowich. I particularly like this mango ice-cream. It is smooth, creamy and not so sweet. Compared to the ice-cream we had in Hokkaido which is quite course. We tried the Italian ice-cream gelato before in Auckland which is too sweet to our taste. This one is more like the snow ice-cream we had in Simending Taipei. At the bottom of the glass, you will find fresh mango cubes. In fact we went back again the next day to get another round of the ice-cream!

Still miss the mango ice at this outlet

Still miss the mango ice at this outlet

The yummy mango ice!

The yummy mango ice!

Buying fruits outside D'Mall at the main road.

Buying fruits outside D’Mall at the main road.

Dinner was at the Smoke in the D’Mall. It was very stuffy and hot inside. So we waited for vacant seats outside the restaurant.  It turned out to be quite a disappointment!

Hot like an oven inside the restaurant! Food is among the cheapest at D'Mall.

Hot like an oven inside the restaurant! Food is among the cheapest at D’Mall.

At night we went to the beach front to watch live band performance while enjoying a couple of Filipino San Miguel beers!

Live band at our hotel beach front

Live band at our hotel beach front rendering English and also Mandarin songs

Day 3

After breakfast, we started walking from Station 2 to the main road and walked along the main road to Station 3.

 

Main street of Boracay at D'Mall

Main street of Boracay at D’Mall. The hop on tuk-tuk costs 10 pesos and you can stop anywhere in Boracay town.

Another street view of Boracay

Another street view of Boracay

On the way, we stopped at Talipapa, a well known wet market at Boracay. Here you can buy fresh seafood  and there are restaurants around to help you to do the cooking.

However, here you need to do a lot of bargaining. Apparently, the patrons are mostly Chinese from mainland China. Here the price is exorbitant! A simple meal of seafood consisting of a medium size lobster, a crab and few prawns will easily cost you more than four thousand pesos! Here you must really bargain as they don’t display prices. If you think you have got a good bargain, well there’s another catch when they recommend you to the restaurant for your seafood to be cooked. It costs around 2K pesos for just 3 dishes!

At the entrance of Talipapa, the wet market.

At the entrance of Talipapa, the wet market.

On the way to the market, there are a lot of shops selling souvenirs, t-shirts and other clothings, handicrafts etc

On the way to the market, there are a lot of shops selling souvenirs, t-shirts and other clothings, handicrafts etc

Plenty of fresh seafood are sold here!

Plenty of fresh seafood are sold here!

Even sea urchins (sea rambutans) are also available here.

Even sea urchins (sea rambutans) are also available here.

Cooking service to help you to cook your fresh sea food bought there

Cooking service to help you to cook your fresh sea food bought there

Through walking we get to explore the life-style of the people of Boracay.

The Filipino also celebrate CNY! I think more to attract the tourists from Mainland China!

The Filipino also celebrate CNY! I think more to attract the tourists from Mainland China!

The busy Beach Road where no vehicle is allowed to use this road.

The busy Beach Road where no vehicle is allowed to use this road.

Another view of Beach Road

Another view of Beach Road

Before coming to the Philippines, I saw a program in TV about lambanog, a wine made from the sap of the coconut flowers. The sap is fermented and it is something like the toddy in Malaysia. After that is is distilled to produce the lambanog wine. We went to all the liquor outlets to search for this wine. However, we were disappointed to find that they don’t sell in Boracay!

Looking high and low for this toddy in Boracay.

Looking high and low for this toddy in Boracay.

We were back to our hotel by around 2.00 pm. Took a rest and went for lunch at the D’Mall. This time we tried Inasar, a local franchise restaurant. We ordered for pansit, which is noodles in tagalog. I particularly like the halo-halo which is a dessert served mixed fruits shaved ice with evaporated milk and ice cream topping. Ingredients include kidney beans, sugar palm fruit, jack fruits, mango , jelly, sweet potato and yam. Not bad I would say.

The famous and delicious dessert in Boracay known as halo-halo!

The famous and delicious dessert in Boracay known as halo-halo!

In the evening, again we went out to catch the sun-set. This time we wouldn’t miss it. A day before, we were a bit late. There were already thousands of people waiting patiently at the beach. Some prefer to sail out on a yacht for a fee of around 500 pesos, actually it is negotiable. We didn’t opt for it as you need to wade through the water to reach the yacht. So you have to wet your feet or may be your pants too, depending on the tides.

Strolling along the beach waiting for sun-set

Strolling along the beach waiting for sun-set

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The creative Filipino boy craving out sand castle at the beach. You need to pay a fee for taking photo with the sand castle.

The creative Filipino boy craving out sand castle at the beach. You need to pay a fee for taking photo with the sand castle.

More and more people gather at the beach to catch the sun- set

More and more people gather at the beach to catch the sun- set

Beautiful sun-set at Boracay

Beautiful sun-set at Boracay

Going down ....

Going down ….

Almost gone!

Almost gone!

Dinner was at the Red Coconut Restaurant. We ordered baby pork ribs. It was comparable to the pork ribs we had in Bali. After dinner, we strolled along the beach to enjoy the cool sea breeze. It is really vibrant and happening when the sun comes down at Boracay Beach!

Pork rib dinner at Red Coconut Restaurant

Pork rib dinner at Red Coconut Restaurant

Day 4

Checked-out after breakfast and it’s another long journey back to the Kalibo airport before boarding a flight back to Malaysia!

Waiting for bus to pick us up at Caticlan jetty

Waiting for bus to pick us up at Caticlan jetty

Waiting for boarding at the congested airport!

Waiting for boarding at the congested airport!

[MYR 1 = 9.5 PHP]

 

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About HP Lim

An experienced Form 5 chemistry teacher from Johor Bahru.