Boracay


Boracay

Infobox Island
name = Boracay



image caption = White Beach in Boracay
location = South East Asia
coordinates = coord|11|58|10|N|121|55|38|E|type:landmark_scale:25000_region:PH
archipelago = Visayas
area = 10.32 km²
country = Philippines
country admin divisions title = Barangay
country admin divisions = Manoc-Manoc, Balabag, and Yapak
population = 12,003 [cite web|url=http://www.census.gov.ph/census2000/p060400.html|title=Total Population, Household Population and Number of Households|date=May 1, 2000|publisher=National Statistics Office|accessdate=2007-05-31]
population as of = 2000
density = 1,163/km²
ethnic groups = Ati, and Aklanon

Boracay is a tropical island located approximately 315km (200 miles) south of Manila and 2km off the northwest tip of the island of Panay in the Western Visayas region of the Philippines. It is one of the country's most popular tourist destinations. The island comprises the barangays of Manoc-Manoc, Balabag, and Yapak (3 of the 17 barangays which make up the municipality of Malay), and is under the administrative control of the Philippine Tourism Authority in coordination with the Provincial Government of Aklan.

History

The island was originally home to the Ati tribe. Boracay is part of Aklan Province, which became an independent province on April 25, 1956.cite web |url=http://www.admu.edu.ph/offices/mirlab/panublion/r6_aklantour.html |title=Aklan Tour |publisher=Panublion Heritage Site |accessdate=2007-06-12] Formerly undiscovered, it wasn't till the 1970s that tourism began to develop in Boracay, [cite book |title=100 Resorts in the Philippines: Places with a Heart |author=Grele, Dominique, Lily Yousry-Jouve |year=2004 |publisher=Asiatype, Inc. |isbn=9719171979 |pages=p. 225] and the island became popular with backpackers in the 1980s.

Years ago, Boracay Island was a well-guarded secret, almost possessively so that only a few knew of its existence.

It was only in the 70's when, it is said, a foreign movie crew accidentally "discovered" this island paradise. Others maintain that it was the German traveller, Jens Peters' book, which included rave reviews of Boracay that changed the island’s pace from that of being a quiet secret to eventually being voted as having the best beach in the world.

Whichever story is true, it was around this time that Boracay Island slowly ceased to be a private travellers hangout and eventually became a favourite tourist destination in the Philippines. In a span of a mere 10 years, the whole world, it seemed, discovered Boracay and the once, nearly deserted stretch of beach became a teeming vacation and leisure spot for upscale tourists from all parts of the world.

Geography

Boracay Island is located off the northwest corner of the island of Panay, and belongs to the Western Visayas island-group, or Region VI, of the Philippines. The island is approximately seven kilometers long, dog-bone shaped with the narrowest spot being less than one kilometer wide, and has a total land area of 10.32 square kilometers.

South-facing Cagban Beach is located across a small strait from the jetty port at Caticlan on Panay island, and the Cagban jetty port serves as Boracay's main entry and exit point during most of the year. When wind and sea conditions dictate, east-facing Tambisaan Beach serves as an alternative entry and exit point.

Boracay's two primary tourism beaches, White Beach and Bulabog Beach, are located on opposite sides of the island's narrow central area. White Beach faces westwards and Bulabog Beach faces eastwards. The island also has several other beaches.

White Beach is the main tourism beach. It is a bit over four kilometers long and is lined with resorts, hotels, lodging houses, restaurants, and other tourism-related businesses. In the central portion, for about two kilometers, there is a footpath known as the Beachfront Path separating the beach itself from the establishments located along it. North and south of the Beachfront Path, beachfront establishments do literally front along the beach itself. Several roads and paths connect the Beachfront Path with Boracay's Main Road, a vehicular road which runs the length of the island. At the extreme northern end of White Beach, a footpath runs around the headland there and connects White Beach with Diniwid Beach.

Bulabog Beach, across the island from White Beach, is a secondary tourism beach and Boracay's main windsurfing and kiteboarding area.

Boracay is divided, for land use and conservation purposes, into 400 hectares of preserved forestland and 628.96 hectares of agricultural Land. [ [http://www.gmanews.tv/story/126064/Boracay-to-be-developed-as-forest-land--DENR-official gmanews.tv, Boracay to be developed as forest land – DENR official] ] [ [http://www.supremecourt.gov.ph/jurisprudence/2008/october2008/167707.htm G.R. No. 167707 and G.R. No. 173775, The Secretary of DENR vs. Mayor Jose Yap, Dr. Orlando Sacay vs. The Secretary of DENR, October 8, 2008] ] [ [http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/regions/view/20081008-165365/SC-affirms-Proclamation-1064-on-Boracay inquirer.net, SC affirms Proclamation 1064 on Boracay] ]

Climate

Amihan and Habagat

Weather in Boracay is generally divided into two seasonal weather patterns known locally as the Amihan and Habagat seasons. In the Tagalog language, "Amihan" means "a cool northeast wind", and "Habagat" means "west or southwest wind; south-west monsoon".cite book
last = English
first = Fr. Leo James
authorlink =
title = Tagalog-English Dictionary
publisher =
date = 2004, 19th printing
pages =
doi =
id = ISBN 971-08-4357-5(SB)
] Amihan and Habagat seasons are generally associated respectively with the El Niño and La Niña global weather patterns. The Amihan season is characterized by moderate temperatures, little or no rainfall, and a prevailing wind from the east. The Habagat season is characterized by hot and humid weather, frequent heavy rainfall, and a prevailing wind from the west.

On Boracay, the main indicator of the switch between the Amihan and Habagat seasonal patterns is the switch in wind direction. In most years this transition is abrupt and occurs overnight. In some years there is a period of perhaps a week or two where the wind will switch between Amihan and Habagat patterns several times before settling into the pattern for the new season. As a general rule of thumb, Boracay will be in the Amihan weather pattern from sometime in September or October to sometime in May or June and in the Habagat weather pattern for the remainder of the year. These dates can vary in individual years, though.

Daytime temperatures on Boracay generally range from 77-90°F (25-32°C) from the beginning of the Amihan season into February or March, increase to the 82-100°F(28-38°C) range until the onset of the Habagat season, and moderate back to the 77-90°F (25-32°C) range with the return of the Amihan season. During Tropical Storm periods, temperatures can fall below 68°F (20°C). Tropical Storms can impact Boracay at any time of year, but are most likely to be seen during the Habagat season.

Tourism

Partly because of its wind and weather patterns, tourism in Boracay is at its peak during the Amihan season. During Amihan, the prevailing wind blows from the east. Boracay's main tourism area, White Beach, is on the western side of the island and is sheltered from the wind. During the Amihan season, the water off White Beach is often glassy-smooth. On the eastern side of the island, hills on the northern and southern ends of the island channel the Amihan season wind from the east onshore, onto Bulabog Beach in the central part of the island's eastern side. This makes the reef-protected waters off that beach ideal for windsurfing and kiteboarding / kitesurfing.

Accommodation

A number of accommodation types are scattered all over the island, ranging from luxurious hotel types to budget, spartan rooms. Guests can also choose according to location--Station 3 is where most of the cheaper lodgings are located, while Station 2 is meant for those who want to be within close proximity of the bars. Station 1, meanwhile, is where you can find the more isolated accommodations, offering peace and quiet to those looking for a respite from the usual action-packed Boracay night scene. These are usually for the more upscale vacationers.

Boracay is the site of a world-class 18-hole par 72 golf course designed by Graham Marsh. In addition, Boracay now has in excess of 350 beach resorts with more than 2,000 rooms ranging in quality from five-star to budget accommodations, so tourists are sure to find whatever they are looking for.

Boracay also offers a wide range of restaurants, bars, pubs, and nightclubs that bop until morning.

Most Boracay hotels and resorts have Low and High Season price levels, with High Season prices generally coinciding with Amihan Season dates. Some have additional "Super" Peak Period pricing during periods of heavy tourism (usually including Christmas / New Year, Easter / Holy Week, and Chinese New Year periods).

Events

Boracay is one competitive venue for the Asian Windsurfing Tour, with the week-long Boracay International Funboard Cup competition usually being held on Bulabog Beach each January..

The well-known Ati-Atihan Festival takes place each January in Kalibo on nearby Panay island. A much smaller Ati-Atihan festival is celebrated on Boracay, usually in the second or third week of January.

Dragon boat races are held annually on Boracay under the auspices of the [http://www.pdbf.com Philippine Dragon Boat Federation] , with teams coming from around the Philippines and from other Asian nations to compete. The races usually take place sometime in April or May.

Since 2003, the [http://philippineultimate.org Philippine Ultimate Association] has been organizing the Boracay Open Asian Beach Ultimate Tournament, an ultimate frisbee event, which is usually held during summer.

The Olympic Council of Asia has announced that Boracay will host the 2014 Asian Beach Games.

The Boracay Dragons, Boracay's ultimate frisbee team, ranked #1 in the Philippines, and soon in Asia. They competed in Brazil for World Championship Beach Ultimate 2007. All of the players on the Boracay team were shorter than the shortest players on every other team combined, and only half of the team could afford to fly to Brazil. Nonetheless, the Boracay team took home the most awards undefeated against every other team until the final match in which they lost. Despite being second place in the tournament, the Boracay Dragons are considered to be 2007's most formidable Ultimate Frisbee team.

Languages

Other than Filipino (Tagalog), English is widely spoken in Boracay. Aklanon or "Akeanon", is also spoken, as Boracay is part of Aklan Province. The Ati language was spoken by the original inhabitants of the island. [cite web|url=http://www.ethnologue.com/show_language.asp?code=atk|title=Ati — A language of Philippines|publisher=Ethnologue: Languages of the World, Fifteenth edition. Dallas, Tex.: SIL International. Online version|editor=Gordon, Raymond G., Jr.|date=2005|accessdate=2007-05-01] failed verification|date=December 2007

Transportation

On the island, the two main modes of transport are via motor-tricycles along the main road or by walking along the beaches. Pedicabs are also available for transport along the Beachfront Path. Other means of transportation include mountain bikes, quadbikes and motorbikes, all of which can be rented.

To explore around the island's coast, motorized bancas and sailing paraws are available for rent. These are outrigger canoes and are common sight in waters around the island. The sailing paraw is a narrow hulled boat with outriggers either side and with passengers sometimes seated on a trampoline platform between the outrigger supports. These are extremely fast off the wind, but can be unwieldy for inexperienced sailors.

Boracay Radio Station

* 106.1 Radio Boracay [http://www.radioboracay.com Website]
* Yes FM 91.1 Boracay [http://www.yesfm911.piczo.com Website]
* B 97 Boracay 97.3 FM

Gallery



References

External links

*wikitravel
* [http://maps.google.com/?ll=11.958052,121.927986&spn=0.139723,0.234146&t=k&om=1 Boracay in Satellite View]
* [http://wiki.alumni.net/wiki/Asia/Philippines/Aklan/Malay/Boracay/#map Boracay Wiki Map]
* [http://www.openstreetmap.org/?lat=11.9667&lon=121.9244&zoom=13 Boracay street map]


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