Boracay Island, the crown jewel of Philippine Tourism, comes with many firsts. Tourists will be able to see and experience different things in Boracay that they have never encountered in other tourists spots. The good thing with first experiences is that it is exciting and unpredictable. No one can guess what is in store, and only an anticipation of the good stuff will be your weapon. With that, most Boracay Tourists often fall for newbie travel mistakes.
Having to experience Boracay the first time may spell some common mistakes which are avoidable. Knowing these mistakes is necessary to learn to remedy them the next time you visit. Due to the struggles that some returning tourists have experienced before, there has been a pattern that can serve as a guide on what can be prevented and must be remembered to have the exceptional Boracay experience.
To aid your exploration in a way that can save you some slack, here are the common mistakes that new Boracay tourists often make and some helpful tips to solve or prevent them.
Top 10 Mistakes That New Boracay Tourists Often Do
1. Failing to Prepare a First Aid Kit While Hiking in Mount Luho
Trekking the rocky and rough patch of the highest point of Boracay is definitely one of the experiences that you should have on your Boracay to-do list. It offers a new way to experience the island and enables you to see the wonders that most tourists often miss. Travelers will witness how balanced and diverse the ecology of Mount Luho is. Various trees and new flowers that only exist in Boracay can be admired as you explore the lush, green jungle of Mount Luho. When you reach the top, the aerial view of paradise will surely take your breath away.
In any way you go, be it with your own feet, with a bicycle, ATV, or other measures, you should always have with you your personal health kit. As cautious as one may be, the possibility of danger is never zero. The slippery slope of the terrain may cause some injuries to your leg. Sharp leaves and thorns may cause some wounds and bleeding. Insect bites might cause irritation to those with allergies. Therefore, the best way to be safe when trekking Mount Luho is by packing a small bag that includes basic wound cleaning materials. They can include gauze, alcohol, wound cleaning solution, and wound pads. It is also advisable to bring some insect repellant and sunscreen for added protection.
2. Neglecting to Apply Sunscreen When Playing in White Beach
Absorbing the bounty blessing of the sun in the presence of the cold sea is tremendously satisfying. Add the fact that the White Beach of Boracay is one of the bests beaches in the world. The white sand is as fine as one would hope for. The light bluish tone of the water is perfect for swimming. Boracay’s soft breeze accompanies tourists to get the rest that they want. Enjoying the heavenly offerings of Boracay can make tourists forget the things that they should do that might lead to mistakes. Thus, many tourists constantly forget to use sun protection while they are chilling on the beach. Often, it leads to skin irritations and burns that even last for many days. In the long term, it can pose skin cancer and immune system suppression. It’s an unpleasant feeling that you can prevent with proper precaution.
For sufficient protection, choose sunscreen lotions with SPF ranging from 30 to 50. Applying higher SPF products may pose allergic reactions. Before going out in the sun, apply sun lotion generously to the exposed area. This will help you go sunbathing without worry and itchiness for the coming days. If necessary, always bring a beach umbrella with you. With the absence of sunscreen lotion, umbrellas and parasols will help you rest in the shade when the heat becomes excessive. Wear sunglasses when outdoors since the eyes are also susceptible to sun damage and UV exposure.
3. Forgetting to Bring an Extra Pair of Clothes when Island Hopping
Island hopping is a day trip that is best to experience in Boracay to witness the beauty of other neighboring isles. This excursion will transport you to other beautiful beaches and islands such as Puka Shell Beach, Crocodile Island, and Crystal Cove Island. Each has its own distinct character that will make you fall in love with the place even more. As part of the journey, island tourists will have a chance to swim or snorkel in some of the prime locations where fishes reside. Here, you will appreciate the abundance of marine life. You will witness for yourself some endemic sea creatures that can only be seen in the Philippines.
Often, Boracay tourists and travelers are not aware early on that the island-hopping package includes such activities. As an effect, they do not bring an extra set of clothes that they can use when the ones they are wearing become wet. Take note that the swimming activities are often done in the middle of the exploration, so there will still be more itineraries for the day. It is awkward and uncomfortable to walk while you are soaking wet. Therefore, bringing an extra set of clothes and a bag for it is the key.
4. Ignoring the Rules and Regulations While Doing Water Activities
The time that you will be spending on the tropical retreat, also known as Boracay, is the moment of your life to be free and forget everything about your city life. Always remember that you are on vacation to enjoy and savor the tranquility that only the island can provide. Nonetheless, some tourists take this freedom to an entirely different level. They have become too bold to the point where they are now violating local ordinances and the rules that various establishments are providing. One such example is during their water activities.
When Boracay tourists do extreme sports such as windsurfing, hoverboarding, banana boat, and others, following the protocols is necessary to avoid mistakes and accidents. At all times, you must follow the instructions of the guide to avoid putting yourself and anyone in danger. Especially when you are a beginner, do not try diving into deeper depths. Do not also dive to areas where there is no one to help you when things go rough. Never lie about your medical condition since some rides may not be suitable for your situation. No matter what happens, be transparent with the instructor. Always be a responsible tourist to get the most out of Boracay Island.
5. Not Wearing Slippers While Walking on the Beach
There are tons and lots of Boracay ventures to keep yourself busy without even getting your feet wet. For one, you can relax on the sandy shore of the island. You can also read books or listen to a podcast, or even eat in some restaurants’ outdoor cabana. The beach area is also a fitting location for a dinner date, a wedding venue, and a fire stunt open floor. In short, you will be spending more of your time outdoors since the majority of your islander’s pursuit will be here.
Always wear a slipper or any feet protection while on the sand. There may be some sharp shards of metal and glass that can pierce through your skin upon contact. Even when you are on the sand, do not be too comfortable that everywhere you will set foot is safe. There may be some seashells and stones with sharp edges that can also puncture your skin. It’s all fine if the wound is only a tiny slit, but it’s a different conversation when the open wound is large enough to cause excessive blood loss. For your vacation to not turn into a disaster, prioritizing your safety while enjoying the island is still the best way for a smooth stay.
6. Overlooking the Unpredictability of the Weather Condition
Now that it is easier to book online for Boracay activities, many stayers opt to choose online reservations, which are much more efficient and less hassle. You only need to access reputable platforms like MyBoracayGuide or Klook.PH. and select your preferred schedule and payment method. After that, your reservation will be confirmed, and you only need to show that confirmation on the scheduled date that you chose. For some, a common miscalculation is that they get too excited to the point where they forget that the weather will not always go as they want it to be. In some instances, the majority of the water endeavors will be canceled when the waves are rough, and a chance of thunderstorms is imminent. You can reschedule your reservation for a later date when the sea is not dangerous to traverse.
However, for an adventurer with limited vacation time, a day’s worth of rescheduling may spell one day’s worth of unenjoyment. To prevent these circumstances, always have a backup plan for your activities. There are several winds and land activities that you can still go for even when the water ones are not available. Try ziplining, zorbing, Segway tours, Oceanarium, and other indoor amenities that your favorite island resort hotel offer.
7. Setting Aside Hydration When Shopping in Station 2
It is easy to overlook your thirst when you are enjoying yourself so much. In the shopping district of Boracay, you can find things that will surely suit your taste in any possible way. Lots of designer brands and luxury items are available in the D’Mall area. There are Boracay memorabilia and keepsake that are too beautiful not to purchase. There are crafty trinkets, accessories, furniture, personalized souvenirs, and local delicacies that are made to perfection by local Aklanons.
When looking for quality and affordable items at Station 2, travelers’ fault is that they become too occupied with their souvenir haul to the point where they neglect their physical needs. One such example is forgetting to drink water. During the dry season, the temperature can get up to 35 degrees Celsius outside. For those that are not too fond of the heat, this may mean heat exhaustion or worse, heatstroke. Of all the mistakes in this list, most Boracay tourists are often found guilty of this one. In many cases, always bring a portable bottle filled with water or any of your favorite drinks. Electrolyte drinks will also be good to counter fatigue. When there is no other choice, go for different beverages and refreshments stores that can cool your body bit by bit. Fruit smoothies and shakes are also great alternatives.
8. Brushing Off the Chance to Buy Souvenirs
Most people think that their Boracay escapade is finished when they have done all their scheduled activities. Nonetheless, a new adventure starts when you start to pack all your things. Never pass up the chance to buy Boracay keepsakes and pasalubong items to remember the time you spent on the island. There are thousands of souvenir items to choose from, so you will be able to find something that will suit your preference.
For teenagers, Boracay-themed shirts and dresses can be a suitable fashion statement when you go back to the cities. If you have “titos/uncles and titas/aunts,” you can buy Boracay mugs, bags, and tumblers that they can use when they are at work. For practical travelers, buy things that are also functional. Locally sourced furniture made from rattan and narra is a nice touch to add to your interior design. Surfboard and musical instruments are also a good choice when you want to learn new skills for the next time that you will be venturing into the sanctuary again.
9. Refraining from Looking at Different Food Options in Different Stations
Being adventurous and courageous is one of the essential attitudes that you must bring when on the isle. There are various unique things that will let you gain new insights and perspectives about life and different aspects of it. One of the most relevant examples of accumulating new experiences is when explorers try the local cuisine of Boracay. There is no distinctive gastronomical taste to associate on the island because it has a piece of everything that you can think of. When you crave a particular cuisine or want to taste something novel, undoubtedly, some restaurants have it.
Nonetheless, refraining from exploring other food offered in different restaurants is one of the greatest mistakes for Boracay tourists. Delicious and scrumptious choices are present and are available all throughout the island. It will be a shame if you stick with your usual options since this food hunt will enlighten you about the culture of the cuisine’s origin. As a pro tip, eat as many new things as you can. You may even discover various bites that will replace your old favorites. When it comes to the food in Boracay, it won’t be there if it is not proven to be good and trusted by those who have experienced it.
10. Leaving Things Unattended in Public Places
As lax as one can be, awareness of your personal belongings and surroundings is a trait that every Boracay traveler should possess. It is unprecedented that some people might take your valuables, intentionally or unintentionally, when it is unattended. There are thousands of people in Boracay, and you do not know every single one that you encounter. Thus, being cautious and proactive is better than regretting when the worst possible thing happens. It is better to leave your important things in the hotel room, which is more secure when you have no use for them. Always think ahead and do not bring things that are unnecessary or will just be a liability to your excitement and enjoyment.
As a subset of awareness, always ask when in doubt. Do not hesitate to inquire about specific aspects when it is necessary. People can help you when you are in trouble. Constantly seek help, especially when you are alone or you lost your stuff. Filipinos are very hospitable, so they will surely be to the rescue when something happens.
Guilty of These Mistakes Tourists Do While In Boracay?
No matter how many mistakes tourists commit while in Boracay, one fact remains true at any point in time. Your Boracay escapade is one of the best decisions that you made in your life. There will be no regrets since the mistakes that you may make are overwritten by the fun memories you have created. At the end of the day, your travel flaws will only comprise a small portion, and almost the entirety of your vacation will go down as the best moments of your life.