Boasting over seven thousand islands, you can only imagine how many beaches there are in the Philippines. Blinding white sands or shell encrusted dunes, coves filled to the brim with coral, or waves worthy of windsurfing. Party until the sun comes back up amongst the palms, or dine on your own private bay. This corner of the world has an incredible variety of beach experiences, so if you’re a beach lover, we’ve found heaven for you. You’ve probably heard about the astounding and iconic White Beach of Boracay (which you must visit), but variety is the spice of life, and we’re having a love affair with a few other beauties.
PUKKA SHELL BEACH
Sometimes we like something that’s a little less obviously postcard perfect and more of a hidden treasure. Pukka Beach is second to none for these criteria. Leave the tourists behind and sneak round the coastline to this rustic, secluded haven. No civilisation is settled here, it’s just you and the waves lapping onto the shell crumbled sands. Enjoy the driftwood adorned with the tiny pink shells chiming in the breeze crafted by previous visitors. It really is an enchanting part of the island – but you’ll have to sneak off quietly, as it’s only a short boat ride round Bohol from White Beaches…
If you’re looking to escape to one of nature’s hideaways, look no further than to the untouched and harmonious Dalpac Beach on Boayan Island, just half an hour by boat from San Vicente. Forget vast stretches of sands, this spot is secluded, tranquil, and only found if someone tells you about it. Home to the vibrant Palwan and Tabon bird, it is also a hub for Filipino flora and fauna. The fresh water bay is so pure you can swim with your eyes open, and the jungle is so bountiful you’ll be shaded from the rays. This is a place to bring your own picnic as not one speck has been touched by humanity. How wonderful.
For those looking for a beach with cocktails, make sure you anchor down at Alona Beach in Bohol. After a relaxing day exploring the natural wonders of the Chocolate Hills and indigenous ancient architecture, you might be craving a different scene for sunset. There’s no need to move islands, just make your way to Alona Beach where all your beach bar needs will be taken care of. Dine for two as the waves lap before you, or pitch up a bar stool as the warming sunset descends down the horizon. Admire the lanterns hung from palm to palm and candles flickering in the light sea breeze. People often gather round on cushions by the driftwood fire or get down on the sandy dance floor; this is a beach sprinkled with a little bit of party.
So, not all of us can lie on the beach for hours on end watching the world go by, and that’s why the Philippines also has places like Bulabog beach. Leave your magazines behind – this is the water sport Hotspot. Palms fringe the coastline and sway in the prominent breeze, whilst the clear blue waters glimmer between the wave breaks. If you’re here between November and April you’ll be out there on a kiteboard riding with the currents, or come May to October you’ll be gliding on a jet ski. Whatever the season, Bulabog is a place with an energetic atmosphere urging you to get involved in the plethora of activities it has to offer.
Beaches aside, the Philippines is also famed for its wealth of diving spots. There’s a huge choice out there for you, however we rather adore a spot which is home to some of the more dramatic and beautiful underwater scenes. Puerto Galera brings together beach paradise and diving adventure in one very beautiful bay. Floating in the province of Oriental Mindoro, its towering limestone tree studded mountains shield the golden sandy bay, providing the perfect haven for a morning of beach bumming. When the afternoon rolls around, the beach truly comes into its own. Translating as the ‘Port of Galleons’, dive from the shores and discover the underwater shipwrecked canyons adorned with coral of every shape and sea life of every colour.